RIO DE JANEIRO, April 24 More Brazilian capital
goods producers made consultations for potential loans with
state development bank BNDES in the first quarter, in a clear
sign of economic recovery, Chief Executive Officer Maria Silvia
Bastos Marques said on Monday.
Consultations increased 25 percent from the year before,
while approvals rose 32 percent, Bastos said at an event in Rio
de Janeiro. Disbursements to provide working capital jumped 345
percent, she added, without giving details on the figures.
"We are seeing a gradual resumption in demand for
investments," Bastos said.
The figures reinforced expectations of a pickup in capital
spending as falling interest rates and improving business
sentiment lift the economy from its deepest recession on record.
Still, investors and economists widely agree that any
economic rebound is likely to be slow, with households
struggling to cut debt amid double-digit unemployment rates.
Measures taken by BNDES to cut credit subsidies, which for
years weighed on the government's budget and boosted public
debt, could also hamper demand for investments.
Last month, the development bank said it would introduce a
new benchmark lending rate pegged to yields on inflation-linked
bonds, which in five years would match the government's funding
(Reporting by Rodrigo Viga Gaier; Writing by Bruno Federowski;
Editing by Meredith Mazzilli)