Brazil's president loses support but on track to win re-election

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By Paulo Prada RIO DE JANEIRO (Reuters) - Popular support for Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff has faltered ahead of the October 5 presidential election, a poll showed Thursday, but the leftist leader remains favored to win a second term. Hurt by a sluggish economy, high inflation and a scandal surrounding Brazil's state-run oil company, Rousseff's personal approval rating has dropped to 51 percent from 56 percent in November, the survey by the Ibope polling institute and Brazil's National Industry Confederation showed. "It shows that 2014 is going to be a hard year for the government," said Rafael Cortez, a political analyst with Tendencias, a consultancy in São Paulo. "All these negative issues are hurting her image as a candidate." Although Rousseff and her ruling Workers' Party still enjoy widespread support because of economic gains made during the administration of former President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, her mentor and predecessor, Rousseff is currently presiding over the fourth year of lackluster growth in Latin America's largest economy.