Upheaval at Brazil's Central Bank
President Luiz Inácio Lula da
Silva promoted Henrique Meirelles,
president of Brazil's Central Bank, to the cabinet in August as
the Brazilian media focused on Meirelles' personal finances and
tax planning. Politicians and the media have called for an
official inquiry into the former banker's financial affairs and
demanded he be fired and sued for tax evasion; his new
ministerial status means he can only go on trial before the
Supreme Court. Millionaire Meirelles has won few friends in his
unbending fight against inflation. He has held interest rates
at a punishing 16% since April, and business leaders have
accused him of slowing the country's recovery. Vice President
José Alencar joined the fray, calling
Brazil's interest rates "outlandish."
Meirelles hired Rodrigo Azevedo, a US-educated
economist at CSFB in São Paulo, as the Central Bank's
new monetary policy...
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