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Brazil’s unemployment jumps to 11.9 percent

By on December 29, 2016

SAO PAULO — Unemployment has jumped yet again in Latin America’s largest economy, which is in deep recession.

Brazil’s IBGE statistics bureau said Thursday that unemployment in the three months through November rose to 11.9 percent. That’s nearly 3 percentage points higher than it was during the same period last year.

The rate is the highest since 2012, when Brazil changed how it measures unemployment. Unemployment has repeatedly hit new highs since May of last year.

Brazil’s economy has contracted for six straight quarters, and the government is hoping a series of reforms will return it to growth. But political scandals and rising unemployment could make it increasingly difficult for President Michel Temer to govern. Accusations he accepted illegal campaign contributions — which he denies — could even force him from office.

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