BRIC Country Update: Slowing Growth in the Face of Internal, External Challenges

Pullback in China, Russia likely to pressure oil, copper prices

Growth in the BRIC countries – Brazil, Russia, India and China – is poised to decline a third consecutive year in 2013 as global economic woes curb demand for oil, manufactured goods and other products, according to CME Group economists Samantha Azzarello and Blu Putnam.

The BRIC economic engine is “sputtering,” Azzarello and Putnam wrote in a report. The slowdown “is more severe than many had expected,” likely signaling continuing downward pressure on prices for crude oil, copper and other key commodities until emerging economies return to accelerating growth, they said.

Real, “size-weighted” Gross Domestic Product for the BRICs is expected to increase about 4.7% next year, following estimated growth of about 4.9% this year, Azzarrello and Putnam wrote. That compares to a recent peak of 8.1% in 2010.

China bears watching in particular, as the world’s most populous nation modernizes its banking system and transitions from a dependence on infrastructure spending to more of a domestic consumption growth model.

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