UPDATE 1-Brazil's inflation slows less than expected in mid-April

miércoles 20 de abril de 2016 08:47 GYT

(Adds data, table)
    BRASILIA, April 20 (Reuters) - Brazil's 12-month inflation
rate extended its decline in mid-April after the government cut
electricity rates, but the drop was smaller than expected as
food prices jumped.
    Brazil's IPCA-15 consumer price index rose 9.34
percent in the 12 months through mid-April, slowing from an
increase of 9.95 percent in mid-March, government statistics
agency IBGE said on Wednesday.
    Prices rose 0.51 percent in mid-April from mid-March
, the IBGE added. The index had been expected to
rise 0.47 percent, according to the median forecast in a Reuters
poll after an increase of 0.43 in the previous month.
    Brazil's inflation has slowed in 2016 as the country's deep
recession entered a second year with recovery not yet in sight.
    The central bank has kept interest rates at 14.25 percent
, the highest levels since 2006, in an attempt to
bring inflation closer to its 4.5 percent target.
    The last time Brazil's inflation met the central bank's goal
was in August 2010. 
    Electricity rates fell nearly 3 percent in the month to
mid-April after the government shut down costlier thermal power
stations tapped during a drought that depleted reservoirs at
hydroelectric dams. Food prices increased 1.35 percent, mostly
from fruits.
    Brazil's 12-month inflation rate is expected to fall to just
above 7 percent by the end of the year, according to a weekly
central bank poll of economists.    
    Below is the result for each price category:     
                                Mid-April   Mid-March
 - Food and beverages                1.35        0.77
 - Housing                          -0.41       -0.52
 - Household articles                0.28        0.88
 - Apparel                           0.49        0.44
 - Transport                         0.18        0.45
 - Health and personal care          1.23        0.70
 - Personal expenses                 0.36        0.70
 - Education                         0.15        0.67
 - Communication                    -0.96       -0.51
 - IPCA                              0.51        0.43
 (Reporting by Silvio Cascione Editing by W Simon)