Around the World's Markets: Sao Paulo

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BRAZILIAN SHARES plunged yet again yesterday, with the stock market close to circuit-breaker limits as concerns persisted over the decision of the state of Minas Gerais to default on its debt to the government.

In early afternoon trade, the Bovespa index was down 8.9 per cent at 5,835 points, and reassuring comments from Washington did little to halt the persistent speculation over a possible devaluation of the Brazilian real.