Business: A Mountain of Debt in Brazil

International bankers are hooked by the biggest borrower

On those frequent occasions when their country careens toward yet another seemingly insoluble crisis, Brazilians like to reaffirm their abiding faith in last-minute miraculous rescues. "God," they say, "is a Brazilian." If ever Brazil needed divine intervention it is now.

With its huge size and vast mineral resources, Brazil ought to be one of the world's most prosperous nations. Instead a series of policy blunders and punishing outside factors have pushed the colossus of the south once again into a quagmire of economic problems.

After subsiding for nearly a decade, inflation is now racing upward...

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