UPDATE 1-Brazil's economy slows sharply in June, adds to recession signs

viernes 15 de agosto de 2014 08:34 GYT
 

(Recasts, adds second-quarter data, background)

By Silvio Cascione

BRASILIA Aug 15 (Reuters) - Economic activity in Brazil dropped sharply in June as the World Cup soccer tournament shut down shops and factories across the country, adding to signs Latin America's largest economy slipped into recession.

The Brazilian central bank's IBC-Br economic activity index fell 1.48 percent in June from May in seasonally adjusted terms, the bank said on Friday. It was the fifth monthly decline in a row and the worst since May 2013.

The slowdown was worse than the median estimate of a 1.3 percent drop, according to a Reuters survey of 23 analysts.

As a result, economic activity fell 1.2 percent in the second quarter from the first period, versus a decline of 0.02 percent in the prior three months.

The index, a gauge of activity in the farming, industrial and services sectors, has proven to be an imperfect barometer of gross domestic product data compiled by statistics agency IBGE, which is considered the official measure of economic growth.

Second-quarter GDP data will be released on Aug. 29. While initial data showed GDP rose 0.2 percent in the first quarter, many economists believe the result could be revised lower.

Central bank figures were revised lower on Friday to a drop of 0.80 percent in May, versus a prior 0.18 percent decline.

Without seasonal adjustments, the economic index dropped 2.15 percent in June from the same month a year ago. (Reporting by Silvio Cascione; Editing by W Simon and J Benkoe)