UPDATE 1-Brazil economists raise 2010 IPCA, GDP forecasts

* Brazil inflation seen rising 5.54 pct in 2010

* GDP growth forecasts also raised to 6.3 pct

* Selic rate forecast kept at 11.75 pct for end 2010
(Recasts, adds GDP growth, Selic rate)

SAO PAULO, May 17 (BestGrowthStock) – Economists in a weekly
central bank survey lifted their forecasts for inflation and
expansion in Brazil in 2010 on expectations growth in Latin
America’s largest economy will pressure consumer prices.

Economists forecast the benchmark IPCA inflation index at
5.54 percent in 2010, compared with the 5.5 percent forecast a
week earlier, according to a central bank weekly survey
released on Monday.

Brazil’s gross domestic product is seen expanding 6.30
percent this year, compared with a 6.26 percent forecast
previously.

Economists have raised their 2010 inflation forecasts for
17 straight weeks, while GDP growth estimates have been rising
for nine weeks, underscoring expectations the central bank will
raise borrowing costs further after raising the benchmark Selic
rate last month for the first time in almost two years.

Estimates for the benchmark Selic interest rate at the end
of 2010 were kept unchanged at 11.75 percent. The Selic was
raised last month to 9.5 percent from an all-time low of 8.75
percent.

For 2011, the IPCA forecasts stayed at 4.8 percent for a
fifth straight week. The central bank has a 4.5 percent
inflation target for 2010 and 2011, plus or minus 2 percentage
points.
Stock Market News

(Reporting by Elzio Barreto; Editing by Theodore d’Afflisio)

UPDATE 1-Brazil economists raise 2010 IPCA, GDP forecasts