Brazilian politics remain volatile, but something important has changed. When former President Luis Inácio ‘Lula’ da Silva (2003-2010) was briefly arrested for questioning over corruption allegations on 4 March, plunging the government of his protégé, current President Dilma Rousseff, into a new crisis, the Bovespa stock market index and the national currency, the Real, both rallied. The business community appears to have concluded that the government must fall before the economy can rise. Anything that shortens the Rousseff presidency is likely to encourage the markets. Yet resolving the political crisis still looks like being more complex, and taking longer, than many would hope.

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