Numbers of the week: Jan 30, 2021

. Jan 30, 2021
libertadores approval coronavirus numbers vaccine covid

This is Brazil by the Numbers, a weekly digest of the most interesting figures tucked inside the latest news about Brazil. A selection of numbers that help explain what is going on in Brazil. This week: Bolsonaro’s re-election prospects, the government’s spending on food, unemployment rates, fintech investment, Libertadores final, and more.

Send any suggestions to

50 percent of Brazilians don’t think Jair Bolsonaro deserves re-election

According to a new poll by Ideia Big Data,

50.3 percent of Brazilian voters say President Jair Bolsonaro doesn&#8217;t deserve a second term. However, he would still win re-election if the 2022 presidential vote was held today. </p> <p>But the numbers raise some red flags. “Despite remaining stable overall, Mr. Bolsonaro’s approval rating has been on a downward trend in traditional support bases, such as the <a href="">North region</a> and low-income and poorly-educated voters,” says Mauricio Moura, CEO of Ideia Big Data.</p> <div class="flourish-embed flourish-chart" data-src="visualisation/5125293"><script src=""></script></div> <hr class="wp-block-separator"/> <h2>Copa Libertadores: 37<sup>o</sup>C at kickoff</h2> <p>This evening, Brazilian sides Palmeiras and Santos will dispute the final of the Copa Libertadores — South America&#8217;s most prestigious club football competition. The game will take place at the <a href="">iconic Maracanã stadium</a> in Rio de Janeiro — and temperatures are expected to hit 37 degrees Celsius (98.6 Fahrenheit) at the time of kickoff. Coaching staff on both sides have shown concern for players&#8217; health, but instead of delaying the kickoff, Libertadores organizers opted instead to allow for <a href="">water breaks</a> during each half.</p> <hr class="wp-block-separator"/> <h2>USD 2.91 million on condensed milk</h2> <p>News website <a href="">Metrópoles</a> published an article detailing the federal government&#8217;s spending on food items. The results went viral, as citizens were shocked to see that the administration had used USD 2.91 million to buy condensed milk, which President Bolsonaro is fond of eating for breakfast, slathered onto pieces of bread. The president gave an expletive-filled rant against reporters, saying &#8220;all these condensed milk cans are to shove up your asses.&#8221;</p> <p>What the original report failed to detail, however, is that the figures accounted for purchases from <em>all</em> government departments — not just the president&#8217;s office, as many readers assumed — and that the <a href="">amount spent on food products</a> actually went <em>down </em>in 2020, including a 54-percent decrease in condensed milk purchases.</p> <hr class="wp-block-separator"/> <h2>14 million people out of work</h2> <p>Brazil&#8217;s <a href="">unemployment rate</a> went down between October and November 2020, from 14.3 to 14.1 percent. Despite the reduction, the rate is the highest for the month in nearly a decade, with roughly 14 million people out of a job in Brazil.</p> <hr class="wp-block-separator"/> <h2>Nubank gets an extra USD 400 million</h2> <p>As we explained in our <a href="">Tech Roundup</a>, fintech Nubank announced a new investment round raising USD 400 million. It now becomes one of the five most valuable financial institutions in Latin America and the biggest independent bank in the world. The funds will help to expand services in Brazil and to invest in operations in Mexico and Colombia.&nbsp;</p> <hr class="wp-block-separator"/> <h2>89.3 percent debt-to-GDP ratio</h2> <p>Brazil’s gross public <a href="">debt</a> in 2020 reached the record-shattering level of 89.3 percent of the GDP. That represents a 15-point increase from 2019, due to massive expenditures to fight the Covid-19 pandemic, according to data released by the Central Bank. Last year, the coronavirus emergency aid program was responsible for 38.5 percent of the BRL 524 billion spent on the pandemic response. Earlier this week, the federal administration announced it had ended the year with a BRL 743.1 billion deficit, in comparison with a BRL 95.1 billion loss in 2019.</p> <hr class="wp-block-separator"/> <h2>175 travestis and transgender people murdered</h2> <p>January 29 is National Trans Visibility Day in Brazil. According to a <a href="">report</a> by Brazil&#8217;s National Association of Travestis and Transgender People, the country is the most dangerous place for <em>travestis</em> and transgender people out of 71 surveyed nations, with 175 murders victimizing members of this population in 2020 alone.</p> <p>In the past 12 years, the number of murders of transgender people in Brazil has increased 201 percent.</p> <hr class="wp-block-separator"/> <h2>1.5 million-plus people vaccinated in Brazil&nbsp;</h2> <p>Brazil has administered <a href="">coronavirus vaccines</a> to over 1.5 million people. That represents 0.94 percent of the Brazilian adult population. Meanwhile, the country continues to post four-digit figures for new daily deaths, and multiple regions are facing imminent collapses of their respective health networks.

Read the full story NOW!

Gustavo Ribeiro

An award-winning journalist, Gustavo has extensive experience covering Brazilian politics and international affairs. He has been featured across Brazilian and French media outlets and founded The Brazilian Report in 2017. He holds a master’s degree in Political Science and Latin American studies from Panthéon-Sorbonne University in Paris.

Our content is protected by copyright. Want to republish The Brazilian Report? Email us at