Brazil's battered retailers are starting to reopen after weeks of coronavirus lockdown but may exit the crisis transformed, with the e-commerce sector strengthened and brick-and-mortar chains facing an uphill path to normality.
World oil prices crashed on Monday, fuelling a vicious selloff on stock markets that were already buckling from the spreading coronavirus outbreak. Stocks tanked as the global oil market nosedived 30% at one stage after top exporter Saudi Arabia slashed the prices it charges customers following a bust-up with Russia over crude production cuts.
Brazilian stocks topped 100,000 points for the first time Monday, on hopes for progress in President Jair Bolsonaro's promised pro-market reforms. The Ibovespa, the country's main index in Sao Paulo, hit an intra-day record of 100,037.69 before closing at its highest level ever of 99,993.93, up 0.86% from the previous trading session.
After trading lower for a good part of Tuesday's session, the Ibovespa closed higher for the third consecutive day (+0.64%), to 71,404.59 points, driven mainly by the shares of Petrobras and Vale. The improvement in the U.S. stock markets also helped to recover the benchmark stock index in Brazil, although concerns remain about a world trade war.
As Brazil continues to benefit from the return of growth and curbed interest rates and inflation, the São Paulo Stock Exchange has seen an unprecedented growth curve. In addition to achieving historical highs, the Brazilian stock market beat the performance of some of the largest stock exchanges in the planet. This means more people betting on Brazilian companies and the future of the country, according to a report from the Brazilian-American chamber of Commerce.
Ibovespa, the benchmark stock market index in Brazil, ended the last trading session of the year with a 0.43% rise to 76,402.08 points amid a lack of negative political news and tracking stock markets abroad.