* Economists cut Brazil’s GDP forecasts for 10th week
* 2012 inflation estimate up to 4.87 pct
* Analysts expect benchmark rate to end year at 7.5 pct
SAO PAULO, July 16 (Reuters) - Economists lowered their forecasts for economic growth in Brazil this year for the tenth straight week, to 1.90 percent from 2.01 percent even as forecasts for inflation rose, a central bank survey of economists showed on Monday.
That would be the weakest growth in the world’s No.6 economy since 2009, when it contracted slightly, and a far cry from the 7.5 percent boom seen in 2010.
The outlook for Brazil’s benchmark IPCA inflation rate in 2012 was raised to 4.87 percent from 4.85 percent a week earlier, according to the survey, which tracks weekly forecasts of the most-widely watched economic indicators in Brazil.
As the economy sputters, the central bank will likely keep cutting interest rates, the economists said.
The country’s benchmark rate is expected to end this year at an all-time low of 7.5 percent, down from the current 8 percent and unchanged from last week’s forecasts.
The survey’s results are the median forecast of analysts polled by the central bank at about 100 financial institutions.
The central bank targets inflation of 4.5 percent annually, with a tolerance range of plus or minus 2 percentage points.
Analysts foresee prices rising 5.50 percent next year, unchanged from last week’s prediction.
Consumer prices were seen rising 0.21 percent in July from the previous month. Brazil’s national statistics agency IBGE will release official inflation figures for mid-July on Friday .