Brazil March industrial confidence lowest since August: FGV

A worker checks a machine at the Brazil-based Ambev, the Latin American arm of brewing giant AB InBev, in the Pirai city near Rio de Janeiro
FILE PHOTO: A worker checks a machine at the Brazil-based Ambev, the Latin American arm of brewing giant AB InBev, in the Pirai city near Rio de Janeiro, Brazil March 23, 2020. REUTERS/Pilar Olivares

March 19, 2021

BRASILIA (Reuters) – Brazilian industrial confidence fell in March for a third month to its lowest since last August, a survey showed on Friday, as a deadly second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic sweeps the country and triggers new lockdown measures in many states.

The Fundacao Getulio Vargas’s national industrial confidence index for March fell 4.0 points to a seasonally adjusted 103.9 from 107.9 in February, a preliminary reading showed.

That is the lowest since August 2020, and a further slip from December’s 10-year high.

The current conditions index fell 4.1 points to 110.8 and the expectations index fell 4.0 points to 96.9, FGV said in a media release. This is the first time since August the expectations index has been below the “neutral” level of 100, it said.

Capacity utilization fell 0.7 percentage points to 78.4%, the lowest since September, FGV said.

(Reporting by Jamie McGeever; editing by Jason Neely)