By any standards, Brazilian consumer debt is exploding. The balance of credit cards, payroll-deductible loans, unsecured loans and auto loans totaled R$264 billion ($1.57 billion) at the end of 2007, up 29% from a year earlier.

With blazing growth like this, and given the liquidity crisis abroad, you might expect a significant slowdown. But experts say that's not in the cards.

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