Economist Ilan Goldfajn officially took office in ceremonies Monday as the new president of the Brazilian Central Bank, adopting a hawkish tone on inflation and interest rates. “We will seek an inflation rate that is both low and stable,” he said, in prepared comments. “Low, predictable inflation is needed for good business decisions…and we should never forget that those who are hurt the most by inflation are the poor.” Brazilian inflation is currently running stubbornly above 9 percent. In congressional testimony last week, Goldfajn pledged to bring inflation down to the current government target of 4.5 percent “as soon as possible.” He said the Central Bank should use all the tools at its disposal to bring down inflation. As Central Bank Chief Economist in 1999, Goldfajn helped design and launch Brazil’s inflation-targeting program.
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