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Brazil September Unemployment Higher Than Economists Forecast

Oct. 24 (Bloomberg) -- Brazil’s unemployment rate was higher than economists forecast in September, as the central bank boosts rates to tame above-target inflation.

The jobless rate rose to 5.4 percent from 5.3 percent in August, the national statistics agency said in Rio de Janeiro today. That was higher than forecast by 35 economists surveyed by Bloomberg, whose median estimate was 5.3 percent. Even with the increase, the rate tied the record low for the month, set last year.

The world’s second-biggest emerging economy has seen unemployment hover near historic lows even as growth faltered during the first two years of President Dilma Rousseff’s administration. The low jobless rate has added pressure to inflation, which the central bank is attempting to rein in with the greatest rate-raising cycle among major economies.

Swap rates on the contract maturing in January 2015, the most traded in Sao Paulo today, fell two basis points, or 0.02 percentage point, to 10.47 percent at 9:02 a.m. local time. The real weakened 0.3 percent to 2.1969 per U.S. dollar.

Brazil’s inflation rate in the month through mid-October slowed to 5.75 percent, its lowest since mid-November last year while still above the 4.5 percent midpoint of the central bank’s target range. To stem inflation, the bank has boosted the benchmark Selic rate by 225 basis points since April in five monetary policy meetings.

The labor force remained stable at 24.5 million people in September as the number of unemployed rose 2.5 percent to 1.3 million, the statistics agency said. The agency surveys the job market in six of Brazil’s metropolitan areas.

Brazil’s economy created 211,068 government-registered jobs in September, the most since April 2012 and beating all estimates of analysts surveyed by Bloomberg.

The economy in 2011 and 2012 grew at its slowest two-year pace in more than a decade. In the second quarter, gross domestic product expanded 1.5 percent, its fastest pace in more than three years.

To contact the reporter on this story: David Biller in Rio de Janeiro at dbiller1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Andre Soliani at asoliani@bloomberg.net

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