Brazil’s finished 2017 with a record trade surplus 40.5 percent higher than in the previous year.
The $67 billion surplus was in line with market projections and within the $65 billion to $70 billion range forecast by the government.
Brazil’s economy is projected to grow 2 percent this year, according to an annual report by the United Nations-backed Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (CEPAL) released last month.
That is unspectacular but far better than the 0.2 percent expected for 2017.The government’s own projections are slightly more optimistic: 3 percent in 2018 and 1.1 percent in 2017.
Economy Minister Henrique Meirelles said that the improvement was down to better “fiscal control, the approval of a freeze on public spending and reforms in general.”
The country’s key interest rate is now at a record low of 7 percent, half of what it was in late 2016. Inflation is now considered a minimal risk.