* Economists trim forecasts for growth, rates in 2012
* 2012 inflation view up to 5 pct from 4.98 pct
By Silvio Cascione
SAO PAULO, Aug 6 Weak economic growth will
likely prompt Brazil's central bank to cut interest rates deeper
than previously expected this year, a weekly central bank survey
of economists showed on Monday.
Forecasts for Brazil's benchmark overnight lending rate at
end-2012 were down to 7.25 from 7.50 percent one week earlier,
according to the poll, which tracks weekly forecasts of the most
widely watched indicators in Brazil.
Brazil's benchmark Selic rate is already at an all-time low
of 8 percent after eight cuts since August 2011 as policymakers
try to jump-start a stagnant economy.
The world's sixth-largest economy will grow only 1.85
percent this year, according to the survey, less than the
forecast of 1.9 percent seen one week earlier.
That would be its worst performance since a mild contraction
in 2009 in the aftermath of the global credit crisis, and a far
cry from the 7.5 percent boom in 2010.
Estimates for inflation in 2012 edged up to 5.00 percent
from 4.98 percent, according to the survey. That is still
within the central bank target of 4.5 percent plus or minus 2
The poll results are the median forecast of analysts polled
by the central bank at about 100 financial institutions.
Consumer prices were seen rising 0.30 percent in July from
the previous month, up from 0.26 percent seen a week earlier.