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Latin America Grapples with U.S. Financial Crisis

Although many governments in South America boast that aggressive saving and thriving commodities trading have been a buffer against economic hard times, the turmoil in the U.S. financial industry is starting to deflate those arguments.

Some of the region's small businesses have had to suspend sales. And Brazilian President Lula da Silva has pleaded with consumers to keep spending.

Alexei Barrionuevo, bureau chief for The New York Times in Rio de Janeiro, and Anna Szterenfeld, Latin America editor for the Economist magazine's Intelligence Unit, discusses what effect U.S. market turmoil could have on South and Central America.

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