Brazil also has a U.S.-style problem with consumer debt: Since 2003, about 40 million Brazilians have entered the middle class and brought a strong appetite for consumption. Brazilian leaders credited those consumers with invigorating the economy in recent years and helping protect it from external shocks.
But most of the buying has been on credit. And those bills are adding up. In a report last week, London-based Capital Economics estimated that debt payments now eat up 20 percent of household income in Brazil.
"The current pace of credit growth in Brazil remains unsustainable — and the longer it continues, the bigger the risk of a messy ending further down the line," Capital Economics warned.
Similarly, the outlook has dimmed for India, the world's fourth-biggest economy. Its growth slowed to a 5.3 percent annual rate in the first three months of 2012, the slowest rate in nine years.
Over the past two decades, India has emerged as a powerhouse in services — writing software, running call centers, making movies, drafting engineering plans.
In a report last month, Andrew Kenningham, senior global economist at Capital Economics, said India's troubles are mostly self-inflicted.
"Weak governance, although not new, is the most plausible explanation for the slowdown," he wrote.
The government has reneged on promises to make it easier for foreigners to invest in India. It has taxed Indian firms that acquire companies overseas. Indian factories have cut production. And the pay of many Indians has been diminished by inflation, which has averaged more than 9 percent a year for the past two years.
The slowdown in the developing world could make it harder for the economies of Europe and the United States to climb out of their ruts. And the weaker the rich countries get, the harder it will be for developing economies to regain their old fast pace.
"In today's interconnected world, we can no longer afford to look only at what goes on within our national borders," IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde said earlier this month. "This crisis does not recognize borders. This crisis is knocking at all our doors."
Associated Press Staff Writers Bradley Brooks in Rio de Janeiro, David McHugh in Frankfurt and Joe McDonald in Beijing contributed to this report.
- What people never mention when they talk...
- 3 tips for traveling cheaply
- N. Korea proposes joint probe over Sony hacking
- Survey says parents spend $532.87 a month to...
- AP PHOTOS: A look at 2014 in the business world
- Amazon offers one-hour delivery in Manhattan...
- Utah economy still adding jobs, report says
- Amazon-Hachette feud headlines book news in 2014
- NYC premiere of Rogen film 'The... 8
- US consumer prices fall in November 4
- Keystone pipeline to top Senate agenda... 3
- AP sources: NFL employees turn over... 3
- Sony hack adds to security pressure on... 3
- What people never mention when they... 3
- US current account deficit rises to... 1
- Incoming Senate Majority Leader Mitch... 1