Since its famous citation as one of four major developing nations in Jim O'Neill's landmark BRIC whitepaper for Goldman Sachs, Brazil (along with Russia, India and China) has been the focus of considerable attention by economists and business leaders all over the world. However, a swath of political corruption scandals and related civic unrest in the mid-2010s undid a lot of the nation's progress and soured public faith in the government. Recent metrics, according to Forbes, show that Brazil's difficulties likely won't be over for some time.
The country's unemployment remains greater than 12 percent, and gross domestic product only grew 0.2 percent during the second quarter of 2018, per data from Brazil's Institute for Geography and Statistics cited by Forbes. On a year-over-year basis, the Brazilian economy grew 1 percent in Q2 2018, which also represents a decline from the 1.2 percent year-over-year growth recorded during the first quarter.
With presidential elections looming in October, Jair Bolsonaro leads most polls and still only commands 20 percent of the likely vote, which further stresses the political disaffection of many Brazilians.
According to The Wall Street Journal, high lending rates at banks have also been a notable drag on the country's economy. Brazilian bank rates stand at 53 percent, higher than 54 other countries cited by the news provider.