08272016Sat
Last update: Sat, 27 Aug 2016 06pm

South America

World - South America

Brazil inflation likely eased slightly in mid-July BRASILIA: Brazil's annual inflation rate likely dropped slightly in mid-July as a stronger local currency eased the price of imports and a crippling recession dragged down consumer spending in Latin America's largest country. Consumer prices likely rose 8.84 percent in the 12 months through mid-July, down from an increase of 8.98 percent in mid-June, according to the median of 23 forecasts in a Reuters poll for the IPCA-15 index due on Thursday. Erratic weather in key agricultural states has hit output and pushed up food prices, keeping the 12-month inflation rate from dropping more rapidly. Worried about high inflation expectations, the central bank is expected to keep its benchmark Selic rate on hold at its rate-setting meeting on Wednesday under the leadership of new governor Ilan Goldfajn. Goldfajn has ruled out rate cuts in the short term and vowed to do whatever is needed to lower inflation to the 4.5 ...

World - South America

Brazilian judge blocks WhatsApp nationwide: court RIO DE JANEIRO: A judge on Tuesday suspended the WhatsApp smartphone messaging service across Brazil, where it is hugely popular, for failing to surrender user data in a police investigation."WhatsApp is blocked across the whole national territory," a spokesman for the court in Rio de Janeiro told AFP.WhatsApp, owned by Facebook, has clashed several times with Brazilian courts after refusing to give access to police.The 19-page court ruling said Brazilian telephone operators must "immediately suspend" ...

World - South America

Venezuela threatens US company reps with jail after closure CARACAS: President Nicolas Maduro threatened Monday to seek the arrest of Kimberly-Clark representatives after the US paper products company shut down production in Venezuela amid a deep economic crisis.The company, which halted operations two weeks ago, produced items that are in extremely short supply in Venezuela like toilet paper, diapers and feminine hygiene products.Maduro accused the company of failing to fund social benefits that its workers had been promised. About 900 workers were laid off ...

World - South America

Venezuelans fired for backing Maduro recall vote CARACAS: Eva Belloso's boss fired her from her government job with a single, chilling line: "You know what you did."Indeed, she thinks she does. She signed a petition calling for a recall referendum against Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro.She is one of 1,250 government employees sacked for signing the petition, according to the trade union UNETE, which plans to file a discrimination case at the International Labor Organization demanding their jobs back."I had spent my entire ...

World - South America

Brazil considers WTO challenge to Bombardier state funding BRASILIA: Brazil may launch a trade challenge against Canada over state funding to struggling planemaker Bombardier Inc that could hurt Brazilian rival Embraer, Foreign Minister Jose Serra told Reuters on Thursday. Serra, a former presidential candidate who took over the ministry two months ago, said a $1 billion investment in Bombardier from the province of Quebec was a "subsidy" and gave the company an unfair advantage against Embraer. "We are studying opening (a challenge) again ...

World - South America

Temer ally voted new house speaker in Brazil BRASMLIA: Brazil's lower house of Congress elected an ally of interim president Michel Temer as its new speaker Thursday, replacing the embattled Eduardo Cunha, an architect of impeachment proceedings against suspended president Dilma Rousseff.Rodrigo Maia of the right-wing Democrats party was elected with 285 out of 460 votes in a second-round election in the Chamber of Deputies.That puts the 46-year-old banker first in line to succeed the president in Latin America's largest economy.After months of ...

World - South America

Maduro again extends Venezuela's state of emergency CARACAS: Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro has extended the country's state of "economic emergency" for another 60 days, an official newspaper reported, a sign of declining conditions in the crisis-hit country.The state of emergency, in place since January, was necessary due to "extraordinary... social, economic, political, natural and ecological" pressures, according to the presidential decree, signed by Maduro on Tuesday and released Wednesday.The declaration allows the government to seize assets of private companies to obtain essential ...