Brazil updates GDP methodology, revises up 2000-2011 growth

miércoles 11 de marzo de 2015 12:02 GYT
 

RIO DE JANEIRO, March 11 (Reuters) - Brazil's economy grew more than previously estimated from 2000 through 2011, according to a broad revision of gross domestic product data presented on Wednesday by statistics agency IBGE.

The nation's average growth rate in that period was 2.1 percent higher than previously calculated, IBGE said after revising its methodology in line with international standards.

In 2011, the year President Dilma Rousseff took office, Brazil's economy expanded by 3.9 percent, more than the 2.7 percent previously estimated. Her administration took several measures to spur economic growth in that year, including interest rates cuts, fearing an abrupt economic slowdown that would materialize in following years.

The new methodology reclassified some sectors as services, incorporated recent agriculture and household income surveys and tweaked procedures for calculating investments. IBGE said it would present revised quarterly data for 2012 through 2014 later this month and publish final full-year growth rates for 2012 and 2013 in November.

The methodology changes had been discussed for years and did not take economists by surprise. "This first step in updating Brazil's national accounts came in as we expected, overall," economists at consultancy firm MCM Consultors wrote in a note.

The revised numbers show Brazil's investment rate, which experts often say is the weakest part of the nation's economy, is not as low as previously calculated. It reached 20.6 percent of GDP in 2011, up from 19.3 percent in the previous estimate.

IBGE will publish its GDP data for the last quarter of 2014 on March 27, under the new methodology. Economists estimate Brazil stagnated last year and will probably contract by 0.66 percent in 2015, according to a weekly central bank survey. (Reporting by Rodrigo Viga Gaier; Writing by Silvio Cascione; Editing by Lisa Von Ahn)