Brazil is the largest country in South America in area and population. It was one of the world’s fastest-growing economic powerhouses from 2000 to 2010, but the boom appeared to sputter in 2011. The country’s meteoric rise occurred under the stewardship of Luiz Inacio da Silva, who served as president from 2002 to 2011.
Brazil’s current administration, headed by Dilma Rousseff, has faced discontent from a growing middle class over its preparations for the World Cup in 2014 and an array of lavish projects conceived when economic growth was surging that now stand abandoned, stalled or wildly over budget. Despite facing fierce criticism over her economic policies, Rousseff was narrowly re-elected to a second term as president on October 26, 2014.
Scroll below to learn more about Brazil using our article archive and chronology of breaking news.


  1. DEC. 30, 2014
    South America Memo; boom in prices for commodities like oil, minerals and crops has ended in South America, but there is evidence that countries including Brazil, Peru and Venezuela are in better position to avoid a bust; measure of external debt to foreign reserves is at low in region.  MORE
  2. DEC. 26, 2014
    Sao Luis Journal; former Brazilian Pres Jose Sarney's decision not to seek re-election to Senate as well as ouster of his political loyalists in state of Maranhao, one of poorest, may be opening for profound shift in Brazilian politics; Sarney is head of political dynasty that has controlled Maranhao state for five decades; powerful dynasties elsewhere in country are also showing weakness.  MORE
  3. DEC. 11, 2014
    Drug-related violence is surging in Manaus and other cities in Brazil's Amazon as country emerges as world's second-largest consumer of cocaine and key smuggling domain; violence in Manaus, including targeted police killings and grisly gang turf wars, reflects city's change and expansion since 1970s.  MORE
  4. DEC. 11, 2014
    Truth commission publishes long list of torture methods used during military rule in Brazil from 1964 to 1985; identifies 377 individuals as responsible for rights violations and calls for their criminal prosecutions in major challenge to 1979 amnesty law; report is expected to bolster challenges to military establishment that ranks among Latin America’s most recalcitrant in accepting responsibility for human rights abuses.  MORE
  5. DEC. 10, 2014
    Eduardo Porter Economic Scene column observes that Brazil and other Latin American countries are prioritizing development over plans to cut carbon emissions in light of economic slowdown; notes that tension is also evident in Peru, which is currently hosting international negotiations on greenhouse gas emissions.  MORE


Brazil's Latest Star Already Going Abroad

Malcom, Brazil's newest soccer star, appears to be continuing the tradition of taking his talents abroad.
December 31, 2014, Wednesday

An Economic Boom Recedes, but South America Might Avert the Bust

Governments of Brazil, Peru and Venezuela are seen as less likely than before to load up on debt and ignore danger signs.
December 30, 2014, Tuesday

The Soccer Rout That Shook the World

Germany's 7-1 victory over Brazil in the World Cup semifinals in Belo Horizonte was both stunning and humiliating, the first time that the Brazilians had lost a competitive match at home since 1975.
December 26, 2014, Friday

Decline of a Political Family Opens the Way for a Shift in Brazil 

As José Sarney leaves Brazil’s Senate, his family dynasty in Maranhão State is showing signs of strain.
December 26, 2014, Friday

Private Equity Funds Still Going Strong in Brazil Despite Economic Malaise

A new fund-raising round by the Carlyle Group is just one indication of private equity’s commitment to Brazil.
December 24, 2014, Wednesday

Restored Forests Breathe Life Into Efforts Against Climate Change

Driven by a growing environmental movement and mounting pressure from Western consumers, corporate and government leaders are making a new push to slow the cutting of rain forests.
December 24, 2014, Wednesday

Inquiry Into Foreign Bribes at Biomet Hangs Over $13 Billion Merger

An agreement to sell Biomet, a medical device maker, to Zimmer Holdings for $13.35 billion may be complicated by reports that Biomet helped bribe officials in Mexico and Brazil.
December 23, 2014, Tuesday

A Postcard from the Western Amazon, on Peril and Hope

A longtime resident of Brazil’s westernmost Amazon state reflects on forests, martyrs and the future.
December 22, 2014, Monday

Rio’s Sailing Site Is Contaminated

A drug-resistant superbacteria was discovered in the waters where the sailing events for the 2016 Olympics are set to be held.
December 16, 2014, Tuesday

What Our Skies Would Look Like Without City Lights 

In a series of transporting images, a photographer recovers the Milky Way — and a longing for infinite spaces — for city dwellers.
December 15, 2014, Monday


Rousseff Cries at Presentation of Report
President Dilma Rousseff of Brazil held back tears Wednesday as she presented a report by a truth commission into atrocities committed during the country’s military dictatorship.
A Chef Draws on New Flavors From the Amazon
Thiago Castanho wants to show the world the Amazon’s bounty of ingredients has the potential to turn the cuisine of Latin America on its head.
Deforestation Increasing in the Amazon
The challenges of balancing conservation and economic development in the largest remaining area of tropical forest come into sharp relief in Brazil.
Absurd or Astute: Brazil’s Political Ads
To capture attention and votes in Brazil’s fall elections, candidates use free allotted airtime to release outrageous and provocative ads.
Plane Crash Kills Brazilian Politician
Television footage of the immediate aftermath of a plane crash in a residential area that killed the Brazilian presidential candidate Eduardo Campos and six others.