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BRASILIA, June 1 (Reuters) - Brazilian Finance Minister Henrique Meirelles said on Thursday that it was "normal" that the Central Bank signaled it would slow the rate at which it would cut the nation's benchmark interest rate amid a political crisis and because it had already significantly lowered the rate in recent months.
Meirelles told reporters that the signal that the bank would slow cuts was even more reason for Congress to pass the economic reforms President Michel Temer is pushing, to help stabilize the economy further to allow for future lowering of the rate. The minister spoke just hours after the Brazilian government announced that gross domestic product grew 1.0 percent in the first quarter from the preceding one, allowing the country to emerge from its worst recession on record. (Reporting by Brad Brooks; Editing by Jonathan Oatis)