Researchers Watching Brazil For Economic Clues

Among emerging markets, those nations that used to be called developing countries, none is being more closely watched during the current global economic turmoil than Brazil. If the real, Brazil's currency, can be successfully supported -- most likely by the U.S. Treasury and the International Monetary Fund-- the South American nation can make it through the troubles with a mild recession, and the rest of Latin American can grow some, says the Global Securities Research & Economics Group at Merrill Lynch & Co. Inc., New York. But if Brazil's currency is devalued, the country "will have a deeper recession that probably spreads to the rest of Latin America, with feedback to other regions of the world," warn Merrill Lynch's experts.

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