SAO PAULO, April 2 (Reuters) - The average purchase price for homes in 20 of Brazil's main metropolitan areas likely rose slower than inflation in March, a private survey showed on Thursday, underscoring how a sharp economic slowdown has chilled the real estate market.
The FipeZap Price Index rose an average 5.34 percent in the 12 months through March. While the official IPCA consumer price index for the period is not expected to be released until April 8, Fipe's calculations based on a weekly central bank poll of economists forecasts the number at 8.21 percent.
Think tank Fipe and real estate website Zap Imoveis have been compiling the index since 2008, using the average prices listed in online classified advertisements. (Reporting by Asher Levine; Editing by Jonathan Oatis)