Opinion

Lower consumer prices give Bolsonaro a fighting chance in October

If the elections were today, former President Lula could beat Bolsonaro in a landslide. But there is still a long way to go

Lower consumer prices give Bolsonaro a fighting chance in October
Despite trailing in the polls, Bolsonaro is not done in this year’s election. Not just yet. Photo: Clauber Cleber Caetano/PR

Back in February, I wrote in an op-ed that the economy would provide an electoral lifeline to President Jair Bolsonaro. And since then, data on economic activity has largely brought positive surprises.

According to Brazil’s official statistics agency, the number of employed Brazilians surpassed the pre-pandemic level in Q2, roughly one year before most economists had predicted. Brazil’s GDP, meanwhile, is set to grow by 2 percent in 2022, more than double the rate I had forecasted at the beginning of this year.

However, the matter of inflation has remained a major obstacle in Mr. Bolsonaro’s quest for popularity gains,...

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