Friday, 12 July 2013


1. Colonial period Foundation of St. Paul, 1913 painting by Antonio Parreiras.

The Portuguese village of São Paulo dos Campos de Piratininga was marked by the founding of the Colégio de São Paulo de Piratininga on January 25, 1554. The Jesuit college of twelve priests included Manuel da Nobrega and Jose de Anchieta, and their structure was located on top of a steep hill between the rivers Anhangabaú and Tamanduateí. They first had a small structure built of rammed earth, made by the Indian workers in their traditional style. The priests wanted to evangelize - teach (catechesis) the Indians who lived in the Plateau region of Piratininga and convert them to Christianity. The site was separated from the coast by the Serra do Mar, called by the Indians Serra Paranapiacaba.

The name of the college was chosen as it was founded on the celebration of the conversion of the Apostle Paul of Tarsus. Father José de Anchieta wrote this account in a letter to the Society of Jesus:

"The settlement of the region's Courtyard of the College began in 1560. During the visit of Mem de Sá, Governor-General of Brazil, the Captaincy of São Vicente, he ordered the transfer of the population of the Village of Santo André da Borda do Campo to the vicinity of the college. It was then named "College of St. Paul Piratininga". The new location was on a steep hill adjacent to a large wetland, the lowland do Carmo. It offered better protection from attacks by local Indian groups. It was renamed Vila de São Paulo, belonging to the Captaincy of São Vicente."

Courtyard of the College, in the Historic Center of São Paulo. At this location, the city was founded in 1554. The current building is a reconstruction made in the late 20th century, based on the Jesuit college and church that were erected at the site in 1653.

For the next two centuries, São Paulo developed as a poor and isolated village that survived largely through the mostly native population's cultivation of subsistence crops. For a long time, São Paulo was the only village in Brazil's interior, as travel was too difficult to reach the area. Mem de Sá forbade colonists to use the "Path Piraiquê" (Piaçaguera today), because of frequent Indian raids along it.

On March 22, 1681, the Marquis de Cascais, the donee of the Captaincy of São Vicente, moved the capital to the village of St. Paul, designating it the "Head of the captaincy." The new capital was established in April 23, 1683, with large public celebrations.

1.1. The Bandeirantes

In the 17th century, São Paulo was one of the poorest region of the Portuguese colony. It was also the center of interior colonial development. Because they were extremely poor, the Paulistas could not afford to buy African slaves, as did other Spanish colonists. The discovery of gold in the region of Minas Gerais, in the 1690s, brought attention and new settlers to São Paulo. The new Real Captaincy of São Paulo and Minas do Ouro was created in November 3, 1709, when the Portuguese crown purchased the Captaincy of São Paulo and Santo Amaro Captaincy from his former grantees.

Conveniently located in the country, up the steep Serra do Mar sea ridge when travelling from Santos, while also not too far from the coastline, São Paulo became a safe place to stay for tired travellers. The town became a centre for the bandeirantes, intrepid explorers who marched into unknown lands in search for gold, diamonds, precious stones, and Indians to make slaves of. The bandeirantes, which could be translated as "flag-bearers" or "flag-followers", organized excursions into the land with the primary purpose of profit and the expansion of territory for the Portuguese crown. Trade grew from the local markets and from providing food and accommodation for explorers. The bandeirantes eventually became politically powerful as a group, and were considered responsible for the expulsion of the jesuits from the city of São Paulo in 1640, after a series of conflicts between the jesuits and the bandeirantes over the trade of Indian slaves.

On July 11, 1711, the Town of São Paulo was elevated to city status. Around the 1720s, gold was found by the pioneers in the regions near what are now Cuiabá and Goiania. The Portuguese expanded their Brazilian territory beyond the Tordesillas Line.

Monument to Independence in Independence Park, located at the place where Dom Pedro I proclaimed the independence of Brazil.

When the gold ran out in the late 18th century, São Paulo shifted to growing sugar cane, which spread through the interior of the Captaincy. The sugar was exported through the Port of Santos. At that time, the first modern highway between São Paulo and the coast was constructed and named the Walk of Lorraine.

Nowadays, the estate that is home to the Governor of the State of São Paulo, located in the city of São Paulo, is called the Palácio dos Bandeirantes (Palace of Bandeirantes), in the neighbourhood of Morumbi.

2. Imperial Period

After Brazil became independent from Portugal in 1823, as declared by Dom Pedro I where the Monument of Ipiranga is located, he named São Paulo as an Imperial City. In 1827, a law school was founded at the Convent of São Francisco, these days a part of the University of São Paulo. The subsequent influx of students and teachers gave a new impetus to the city's growth, thanks to which, the city became the Imperial City and Borough of Students of St. Paul of Piratininga.

The expansion of coffee production was a major factor in the growth of São Paulo, as it became the region's chief export crop and yielded good revenue. It was cultivated initially in the Vale do Paraíba and then in the regions of Campinas, Rio Claro, São Carlos and Ribeirão Preto.

From 1869 onwards, São Paulo was connected to the port of Santos by the Railroad Santos-Jundiaí, nicknamed The Lady. In the late 19th century, several other railroads connected the interior to the state capital. São Paulo became the point of convergence of all railroads from the interior of the state. Coffee was the economic engine for major economic and population growth in the State of São Paulo.

In 1888, the "Golden Law" (Lei Áurea) was sanctioned by Isabel, Princess Imperial of Brazil, declaring abolished the slavery institution in Brazil. Slaves were the main source of labour in the coffee plantations until then. As a consequence of this law, and following governmental stimulus towards the increase of immigration, the province began to receive a large number of immigrants, largely Italians and Portuguese peasants, many of whom settled in the capital. The region's first industries also began to emerge, providing jobs to the newcomers, especially those who had to learn Portuguese.

3. Old Republican Period

By the time Brazil became a republic in 15 November 1889, coffee exports were still an important part of São Paulo's economy. São Paulo grew strong in the national political scene, taking turns with the also rich state of Minas Gerais in electing Brazilian presidents, an alliance that became known as "coffee and milk", given that Minas Gerais was famous for its dairy produce.

Industrialization was the economic cycle that followed the coffee plantation model. By the hands of some industrious families, including many immigrants of Italian and Jewish origin, factories began to arise and give the city a new, modern, industrial face. São Paulo became then known for its smoky, foggy air. This quick industrialization of the city found reflexes in many aspects of the cultural scene, which followed modernist and naturalist tendencies in fashion at the beginning of the 20th century. Some examples of notable modernist artists are poets Mário de Andrade and Oswald de Andrade, artists Anita Malfatti, Tarsila do Amaral and Lasar Segall, and sculptor Victor Brecheret. The Modern Art Week of 1922 that took place at the Theatro Municipal was an event marked by avant-guard ideas and works of art.

Nowadays, São Paulo's main economic activities derive from the services rendering industry - factories are since long gone, and in came financial services institutions, law firms, consulting firms. Notwithstanding, up to this day, old factory buildings and warehouses still dot the landscape in neighbourhoods such as Barra Funda and Brás. Some cities around São Paulo, such as Diadema, São Bernardo do Campo, Santo André and Cubatão are still heavily industrialized to the present day, with factories producing from cosmetics to chemicals to automobiles.

3.1. Constitutionalist Revolution of 1932

This "revolution" is considered by some historians as the last armed conflict to take place in Brazil's history. In 9 July 1932, the population of São Paulo town rose against a coup d'état by Getúlio Vargas to take the presidential office. The movement grew out of local resentment from the fact that Vargas ruled by decree, unbound by a Constitution, in a provisional government. The 1930 coup also affected São Paulo by eroding the autonomy that states enjoyed during the term of the 1891 Constitution and preventing the inauguration of the governor of São Paulo Júlio Prestes in the Presidency of the Republic, while simultaneously overthrowing President Washington Luís, who was governor of São Paulo from 1920 to 1924. These events marked the end of the Old Republic.

The uprising commenced on 9 July 1932, after four protesting students were killed by federal government troops on 23 May 1932. On the wake of their deaths, a movement called MMDC (from the initials of the names of each of the four students killed, Martins, Miragaia, Dráusio and Camargo) started. A fifth victim, Alvarenga, was also shot that night, but died months later.

In a few months, the state of São Paulo rebelled against the federal government. Counting on the solidarity of the political elites of two other powerful states, (Minas Gerais and Rio Grande do Sul), the politicians from São Paulo expected a quick war. However, that solidarity was never translated into actual support, and the São Paulo revolt was militarily crushed on October 2, 1932. In total, there were 87 days of fighting (July 9 to October 4, 1932—with the last two days after the surrender of São Paulo), with a balance of 934 official deaths, though non-official estimates report up to 2,200 dead, and many cities in the state of São Paulo suffered damage due to fighting.

There is an obelisk in front of Ibirapuera Park that serves as a memorial to the young men that died for the MMDC. The University of São Paulo's Law School also pays hommage to the students that died during this period with plaques hung on its arcades.

Physical Geography

Physical setting Pico do Jaraguá Mountain is the highest point in the city, at 1,135 metres (3,724 ft).

São Paulo is located in Southeastern Brazil, in southeastern São Paulo State, approximately halfway between Curitiba and Rio de Janeiro. The city is located on a plateau located beyond the Serra do Mar (Portuguese for "Sea Range" or "Coastal Range"), itself a component of the vast region known as the Brazilian Highlands, with an average elevation of around 799 metres (2,621 ft) above sea level, although being at a distance of only about 70 kilometres (43 mi) from the Atlantic Ocean. This distance is covered by two highways, the Anchieta and the Imigrantes, (see "Transportation" below) that roll down the range, leading to the port city of Santos and the beach resort of Guarujá. Rolling terrain prevails within the urbanized areas of São Paulo except in its northern area, where the Serra da Cantareira Range reaches a higher elevation and a sizable remnant of the Atlantic Rain Forest. The region is seismically stable and no significant seismic activity has ever been recorded.

See also: Water management in the Metropolitan Region of São Paulo

The Tietê River and its tributary, the Pinheiros River, were once important sources of fresh water and leisure for São Paulo. However, heavy industrial effluents and wastewater discharges in the later 20th century caused the rivers to become heavily polluted. A substantial clean-up program for both rivers is underway, financed through a partnership between local government and international development banks such as the Japan Bank for International Cooperation. Neither river is navigable in the stretch that flows through the city, although water transportation becomes increasingly important on the Tietê river further downstream (near river Paraná), as the river is part of the River Plate basin.

No large natural lakes exist in the region, but the Billings and Guarapiranga reservoirs in the city's southern outskirts are used for power generation, water storage and leisure activities, such as sailing. The original flora consisted mainly of a great variety of broadleaf evergreens. Today, non-native species are common, as the mild climate and abundant rainfall permit a multitude of tropical, subtropical and temperate plants to be cultivated, especially the ubiquitous eucalyptus.

Climate Heavy rain and lightning in Sao Paulo.

The city has a monsoon-influenced humid subtropical climate (Cfa), according to the Köppen classification. In summer (January through March), the mean low temperature is about 17 °C (63 °F) and the mean high temperatures is near 28 °C (82 °F). In winter, temperatures tend to range between 11 °C (52 °F) and 23 °C (73 °F). The recorded high was 35.3 °C (95.5 °F) on November 15, 1985 and the lowest −2 °C (28 °F) on August 2, 1955 and on the same day −3.8 °C (25.2 °F) was recorded unofficially. Temperature averages are similar to those of Sydney and Los Angeles. The Tropic of Capricorn, at about 23°27' S, passes through north of São Paulo and roughly marks the boundary between the tropical and temperate areas of South America. Because of its elevation, however, São Paulo enjoys a distinctly temperate climate.

Rainfall is abundant, annually averaging 1,454 millimetres (57.2 in). It is especially common in the warmer months averaging 219 millimetres (8.6 in) and decreases in winter, averaging 47 millimetres (1.9 in). Neither São Paulo nor the nearby coast has ever been hit by a tropical cyclone and tornadic activity is uncommon. During late winter, especially August, the city experiences the phenomenon known as "veranico" or "verãozinho" ("little summer"), which consists of hot and dry weather, sometimes reaching temperatures well above 28 °C (82 °F). On the other hand, relatively cool days during summer are fairly common when persistent winds blow from the ocean. On such occasions daily high temperatures may not surpass 20 °C (68 °F), accompanied by lows often below 15 °C (59 °F), however, summer can be extremely hot when a heat wave hits the city followed by temperatures around 34 °C (93 °F), but in places with greater skyscraper density and less tree cover, the temperature can feel like 39 °C (102 °F), as on Paulista Avenue for example. In the summer of 2012, São Paulo was affected by a heat wave that lasted for 2 weeks with highs going from 29 °C (84 °F) to 34 °C (93 °F) on the hottest days.

São Paulo is also known for its rapidly changing weather. Locals say that you can experience all four seasons in one day. In the morning, when winds blow from the ocean, the weather can be cool or sometimes even cold. When the sun hits its peak, the weather can be extremely dry and hot. When the sun sets, the cold wind comes back bringing cool temperatures. This phenomenon happens usually in the winter.

Climate data for São Paulo (1961 - 1990, records lows since 1931) Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year Record high °C (°F) 34.2 (93.6) 34.6 (94.3) 33.6 (92.5) 31.3 (88.3) 29.8 (85.6) 28.9 (84) 29.3 (84.7) 33 (91) 37.4 (99.3) 34.4 (93.9) 35.2 (95.4) 35.7 (96.3) 37.4 (99.3) Average high °C (°F) 27.4 (81.3) 28 (82) 27.3 (81.1) 25.1 (77.2) 23 (73) 21.7 (71.1) 21.8 (71.2) 23.3 (73.9) 23.9 (75) 24.7 (76.5) 25.9 (78.6) 26.3 (79.3) 24.5 (76.1) Daily mean °C (°F) 22.2 (72) 22.4 (72.3) 21.7 (71.1) 19.8 (67.6) 17.6 (63.7) 16.4 (61.5) 15.8 (60.4) 17.1 (62.8) 17.8 (64) 19 (66) 20.3 (68.5) 21.2 (70.2) 18.5 (65.3) Average low °C (°F) 18.7 (65.7) 18.8 (65.8) 18.2 (64.8) 16.3 (61.3) 13.9 (57) 12.3 (54.1) 11.7 (53.1) 12.8 (55) 13.9 (57) 15.3 (59.5) 16.5 (61.7) 17.8 (64) 14.5 (58.1) Record low °C (°F) 10.2 (50.4) 11.2 (52.2) 10.9 (51.6) 6 (43) 5.2 (41.4) 0.9 (33.6) 0.2 (32.4) −2.2 (28) 2.1 (35.8) 4.2 (39.6) 6.9 (44.4) 7.3 (45.1) −2.2 (28) Precipitation mm (inches) 240 (9.45) 250 (9.84) 160 (6.3) 80 (3.15) 70 (2.76) 60 (2.36) 40 (1.57) 30 (1.18) 70 (2.76) 130 (5.12) 140 (5.51) 190 (7.48) 1,460 (57.48) Avg. precipitation days 18 16 13 9 9 6 7 7 9 11 13 16 134 Mean monthly sunshine hours 148.8 150.8 145.7 141.0 151.9 144.0 164.3 155.0 126.0 136.4 144.0 130.2 1,738.1 Source #1: INMET — Clima, Hong Kong Observatory for data of sunshine hours Source #2: World Weather Information Service, for data of precipitation days Metropolitan area Main article: Greater São Paulo Satellite view of Greater São Paulo.

The nonspecific term "Grande São Paulo" ("Greater São Paulo") covers multiple definitions. The legally defined Região Metropolitana de São Paulo consists of 39 municipalities in total and a population of 19,889,559 inhabitants (as of 2010 National Census).

Because São Paulo has significant urban sprawl, it uses a different definition for its metropolitan area, Complexo Metropolitano Expandido. Analogous to the US's CSA (Combined Area) definition, it is the third largest city in the world with 27 million inhabitants, behind Tokyo and Jakarta, which includes 2 contiguous legally defined metropolitan regions and 3 microregions.

Subdivisions Main article: Subdivisions of the City of São Paulo

The city of São Paulo is divided into 31 subprefectures (subprefeituras), in turn divided into 96 districts. Locally, districts contain one or more neighborhoods (bairros). The subprefectures are officially grouped into nine regions (or "zones"), taking into account their geography and history of occupation. These regions are used only in technical and governmental agencies and are not identified by any visible features.

A geographic radial division was established in 2007 by mayor Gilberto Kassab. These geographical areas (historical downtown, extended downtown, north, south, east, west, northeast, northwest, southeast and southwest) are each identified with a distinct color on bus maps and in the street signs. These are not related to subprefectures and districts.


Italian immigrants arriving in São Paulo. Main articles: Demographics of São Paulo and Demographics of Brazil Promotion to Italian diaspora to São Paulo in 1886. Arab influence in the city of São Paulo. The Liberdade district is a Japantown of São Paulo.

In 2010, São Paulo was the most populous city in Brazil and in South America. According to the 2010 IBGE Census, there were 10,659,386 people residing in the city of São Paulo. The census found 6,824,668 White people (65.6%), 3,433,218 Brown (mixed) people (26.5%), 736,083 Black people (5.5%), 246,244 Asian people (2.2%) and 21,318 Amerindian people (0.2%).

In 2010, the city had 2,146,077 opposite-sex couples and 7,532 same-sex couples. The population of São Paulo was 52.6% female and 47.4% male.


São Paulo is one of the country's most ethnically diverse city. When slave trafficking ended in Brazil (1850), São Paulo started to replace African labor with voluntary immigrants in the coffee plantations. The pioneer in this new project was senator Nicolau Vergueiro, who brought many German, Swiss and Portuguese immigrants to work in his own properties. The next waves of immigrants contained Italians and Portuguese from the mid-19th century until the start of the 20th century. These were far more adaptable to coffee cultivation and became over time the largest immigrant communities in the state of São Paulo.

After the abolition of slavery (1888), São Paulo received increasing numbers of European immigrants, most from Italy, followed by Portugal, Germany and Spain. In 1897, Italians made up over half of the city's population. Portuguese, Spaniards, Germans, Japanese, Jews, Armenians and Christian Syrian-Lebanese as well as Eastern-Europeans also came in significant numbers. From 1908 to 1941, many Japanese immigrants arrived. In the 1960s, Chinese and Koreans started arriving. In the mid-20th century, many from the drought-stricken Northeastern Brazil started to migrate to São Paulo. Nowadays, the city is witness to a large wave of Bolivian migration.

São Paulo City in 1886 Immigrants Percentage of immigrants in foreign born population Italians 47.9% Portuguese 29.3% Germans 9.9% Spaniards 3.2%

A French observer, travelling to São Paulo at the time, noted that there was a division of the capitalist class, by nationality (...) Germans, French and Italians shared the dry goods sector with Brazilians. Foodstuffs was generally the province of either Portuguese or Brazilians, except for bakery and pastry which was the domain of the French and Germans. Shoes and tinware were mostly controlled by Italians. However, the larger metallurgical plants were in the hands of the English and the Americans. (...) Italians outnumbered Brazilians two to one in São Paulo.

Until 1920, 1,078,437 Italians entered in the State of São Paulo. Of the immigrants who arrived there between 1887 and 1902, 63.5% came from Italy. Between 1888 and 1919, 44.7% of the immigrants were Italians, 19.2% were Spaniards and 15.4% were Portuguese. In 1920, nearly 80% of São Paulo city's population was composed of immigrants and their descendants and Italians made up over half of its male population. At that time, the Governor of São Paulo said that "if the owner of each house in São Paulo display the flag of the country of origin on the roof, from above São Paulo would look like an Italian city". In 1900, a columnist who was absent from São Paulo for 20 years wrote "then São Paulo used to be a genuine Paulista city, today it is an Italian city."

São Paulo City Year Italians Percentage of the City 1886 5,717 13% 1893 45,457 35% 1900 75,000 31% 1910 130,000 33% 1916 187,540 37%

Research conducted by the University of São Paulo (USP) shows the city's high ethnic diversity: when asked if they are "descendants of foreign immigrants", 81% of the students reported "yes". The main reported ancestries were: Italian (30.5%), Portuguese (23%), Spanish (14%), Japanese (8%), German (5.6%), Brazilian (4.3%), African (2.8%), Arab (2.4%) and Jewish (1.2%).

Domestic migration

Since the 19th century people began migrating from Northeastern Brazil into São Paulo. This migration grew enormously in the 1930s and remained huge in the next decades. The concentration of land, modernization in rural areas, changes in work relationships and cycles of droughts stimulated migration. Northeastern migrants live mainly in hazardous and unhealthy areas of the city, in cortiços, in various slums (favelas) of the metropolis, because they offer cheaper housing. According to the 2000 Brazilian Census, 3,641,148 people from Northeastern Brazil lived in São Paulo, about 20% of the city's population. According to another resource, the largest concentration of Northeastern migrants was found in the area of Sé/Brás (districts of Brás, Bom Retiro, Cambuci, Pari and Sé). In this area they composed 41% of the population.

As in all of Brazil, people of different ethnicities mix with each other, producing a multi-ethnic society. Today, people of many different ethnicities make São Paulo their home. The main groups, considering all the metropolitan area, are: 6 million people of Italian descent, 3 million people of Portuguese descent, 1.7 million people of African descent, 1 million people of Arab descent, 665,000 people of Japanese descent, 400,000 people of German descent, 250,000 people of French descent, 150,000 people of Greek descent, 120,000 people of Chinese descent, 60,000 Bolivian immigrants, 50,000 people of Korean descent, and 40,000 Jews.

Changing demographics of the city of São Paulo

Source: Planet Barsa Ltda.

Religion São Paulo Cathedral in Downtown São Paulo. Main article: Religion in Brazil Religion Percentage Number Catholic 58.20% 6,549,775 Protestant 22.11% 2,487,810 No religion 9.38% 1,056,008 Spiritist 4.73% 531,882 Buddhist 0.67% 75,075 Umbanda and Candomblé 0.62% 69,706 Jewish 0.39% 43,610

Source: IBGE 2010.

Languages Museum of the Portuguese Language. Main article: Languages of Brazil

The primary language is Portuguese. Due to the large influx of Italian immigrants, the Portuguese spoken in the city reflects a significant influence from the languages of the Italian peninsula, particularly from Neapolitan and Venetian.

Italian dialects mix with the countryside Caipira accent of São Paulo. Some linguists maintain that the São Paulo dialect of Portuguese was born in Mooca, a neighborhood settled in the early 20th century mainly by people from Naples, Southern Italy.

The Italian influence in São Paulo accents is more evident in the traditional Italian neighborhoods such as Bella Vista, Mooca, Brás and Lapa. Italian mingled with Portuguese and as an old influence, was assimilated or disappeared into spoken language. The local accent with Italian influences became notorious through the songs of Adoniran Barbosa, a Brazilian samba singer born to Italian parents who used to sing using the local accent.

Other languages spoken in the city are mainly among the Asian community: the Liberdade neighborhood is home to the largest Japanese population outside of Japan. Although today most Japanese-Brazilians speak only Portuguese, some of them are still fluent in Japanese. Some people of Chinese and Korean descent are still able to speak their ancestral languages.

In some areas it is still possible to find descendants of immigrants who speak German (especially in the area of Brooklin paulista) and Russian or East European languages (especially in the area of Vila Zelina). In the west zone of São Paulo, specially at Vila Anastácio and Lapa region, there is a Hungarian colony, with three churches (Calvinist, Baptist and Catholic), so on Sundays it is possible to see Hungarians talking to each other on sidewalks.


São Paulo has the third highest density of buildings in the world. Vital statistics Category Data Vehicles 7,081,778 (June 2011) Daily newspapers 34 (September 2008). Helicopters World's largest fleet Urban area 1,968 km² (760 sqmi) Air passenger traffic 47,723,894 (2010) Cumbica, Congonhas, Viracopos, Campo de Marte, São José dos Campos), the largest in Southern Hemisphere. Buildings 3rd-most highrise buildings with 5,644, according to Emporis database. Largest shopping center in Latin America, the Centro Comercial Leste Aricanduva with365,000 m2 (3,928,827.30 sq ft) of built area and 242,300 m2 (2,608,095.49 sq ft) of gross leasable area. Rail passenger traffic per day 6 million passengers in the São Paulo metro and the CPTM (3.7 million and 2.3 million respectively). Hospitals Largest complex in Latin America, the Hospital das Clínicas of the University of São Paulo with 352,000 m2 (3,788,896.47 sq ft) of built area. Billionaires 21: 6th most in the world, tied with Mumbai GDP Greater São Paulo is the world's 10th richest city in 2008 with GDP (PPP) of $388 billion


São Paulo Stock Exchange. Main articles: Economy of São Paulo and Economy of Brazil

São Paulo is considered the "financial capital of Brazil", as it is the location for the headquarters of many major corporations and the country's most renowned banks and financial institutions. São Paulo is Brazil's highest GDP city and the 10th largest in the world, using Purchasing power parity. According to data of IBGE, its gross domestic product (GDP) in 2010 was R$ 450 billion, approximately US$220 billion, 12.26% of Brazilian GDP and 36% of all production of goods and services of the State of São Paulo. According to PricewaterhouseCoopers average annual economic growth of the city is 4.2%. São Paulo also has a large "informal" economy. In 2005, the city of São Paulo collected R$ 90 billion in taxes and the city budget was R$ 15 billion. The city has 1,500 bank branches and 70 shopping malls.

The São Paulo Stock Exchange (BM&F Bovespa) is Brazil's official stock and bond exchange. It is the largest stock exchange in Latin America, trading about R$ 6 billion (US$ 3.5 billion) every day. São Paulo's economy is going through a deep transformation. Once a city with a strong industrial character, São Paulo's economy has followed the global trend of shifting to the tertiary sector of the economy, focusing on services. The city is unique among Brazilian cities for its large number of foreign corporations. 63% of all the international companies with business in Brazil have their head offices in São Paulo. São Paulo has the largest concentration of German businesses worldwide and is the largest Swedish industrial hub alongside Gothenburg. São Paulo ranked second after New York in FDi magazine's bi-annual ranking of Cities of the Future 2013/14 in the Americas, and was named the Latin American City of the Future 2013/14, overtaking Santiago de Chile, the first city in the previous ranking. Santiago now ranks second, followed by Rio de Janeiro.

The per capita income for the city was R$ 32,493 in 2008. According to Mercer's 2011 city rankings of cost of living for expatriate employees, São Paulo is now among the ten most expensive cities in the world, ranking 10th in 2011, up from 21st in 2010 and ahead of London, Paris, Milan and New York City.

Companies in Financial Times Global 500 of São Paulo in 2012 SP Corporation BRA World 1 Ambev 1 43 2 Itau Unibanco 4 100 3 Bradesco 5 127 4 Banco Santander Brasil 6 260 5 Telefonica Brasil 8 282 6 Itausa 9 348 7 Cielo 10 423 Science and technology Main article: Brazilian science and technology

The city of São Paulo is home to several important research and development facilities and attracts companies due to the presence of several regionally renowned universities. Science, technology and innovation is leveraged by the allocation of funds from the state government, mainly carried out by means of the Foundation to Research Support in the State of São Paulo (Fundação de Amparo à Pesquisa do Estado de São Paulo – FAPESP), one of the main agencies promoting scientific and technological research.

Luxury goods Rua Oscar Freire in the Jardins neighbourhood, voted the eighth most luxurious street in the world. Unique Hotel, designed by Brazilian architect Ruy Ohtake is located in the elegant Jardins neighbourhood.

Luxury brands yet do not extend their business beyond three main cities: São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro and Brasília. São Paulo, the most important city in the country is the main place for them to start opening their business. Because of the lack of department stores and multi-brand boutiques, shopping malls as well as the Jardins district, which is more or less the Brazilian's Rodeo Drive version, attract most of the world's luxurious brands. Whether in the Iguatemi, Cidade Jardim or JK shopping malls or on the streets of Oscar Freire, Lorena or Haddock Lobo in the Jardins district, is where people can shop most of the international luxury brands available in the country, home of brands such as Cartier, Chanel, Dior, Giorgio Armani, Gucci, Louis Vuitton, Marc Jacobs, Tiffany & Co. Cidade Jardim was opened in São Paulo in 2008, it is a 45,000 square meters mall, landscaped with trees and greenery scenario, with even the main focus is on Brazilian brands the mall still is home of international luxury brands such as Hermès, Jimmy Choo, Pucci and Carolina Herrera. Recently opened in 2012, JK shopping mall has brought to Brazil new brands that weren't present in the country before such as, Goyard, Tory Burch, Llc., Prada, Miu Miu and among others. All these facts point out the astonishing growth of luxury goods' consumption in Brazil.

The Iguatemi Faria Lima, in Faria Lima Avenue, is the Brazil's oldest mall, opened in 1966. The Jardins neighborhood is regarded among the most sophisticated places in town, with upscale restaurants and hotels. The New York Times once compared Oscar Freire Street to Rodeo Drive. In Jardins there are many luxury car dealers. One of the world's best restaurants as elected by The World's 50 Best Restaurants Award, D.O.M., is located there.

Panorama of Paulista Avenue.

Urban planning

Skyline from Marginal Pinheiros in São Paulo by highlighting the Centro Empresarial Nações Unidas. Changes in urban fabrics in the region of Jardins, Pinheiros district: side by side, vertical areas and low houses.

São Paulo has a history of actions, projects and plans related to urban planning that can be traced to the governments of Antonio da Silva Prado, Baron Duprat, Washington and Luis Francisco Prestes Maia. However, in general, the city was formed during the 20th century, growing from village to metropolis through a series of informal processes and irregular urban sprawl.

Thus, São Paulo differs considerably from other Brazilian cities such as Belo Horizonte and Goiânia, whose initial expansion followed determinations by a plan, or a city like Brasília, whose master plan had been fully developed prior to construction.

The effectiveness of these plans has been seen by some planners and historians as questionable. Some of these scholars argue that such plans were produced exclusively for the benefit of the wealthier strata of the population while the working classes would be relegated to the traditional informal processes.

In São Paulo until the mid-1950s, the plans were based on the idea of "demolish and rebuild", including former Mayor Prestes Maia São Paulo's road plan (known as the Avenues Plan) or Saturnino de Brito's plan for the Tietê River.

In 1968 the Urban Development Plan proposed the Basic Plan for Integrated Development of São Paulo, under the administration of Figueiredo Ferraz. The main result was zoning laws. It lasted until 2004 when the Basic Plan was replaced by the current Master Plan.

That zoning, adopted in 1972, designated "Z1" areas (residential areas designed for elites) and "Z3" (a "mixed zone" lacking clear definitions about their characteristics). Zoning encouraged the growth of suburbs with minimal control and major speculation.

Panorama of São Paulo at night.


Main article: Education in Brazil The Law School of the University of São Paulo.

São Paulo has a system of public and private primary and secondary schools and a variety of vocational-technical schools. More than nine-tenths of the population are literate and roughly the same proportion of those age 7 to 14 are enrolled in school. There are more than 578 universities in the whole state of São Paulo.

Educational institutions

The city has several universities and colleges:

Universidade de São Paulo (USP) (University of São Paulo); Insper Instituto de Ensino e Pesquisa (Insper-SP) (Insper Institute of Education and Research); Pontifícia Universidade Católica de São Paulo (PUC-SP) (Pontifical Catholic University of São Paulo); Instituto Federal de Educação, Ciência e Tecnologia de São Paulo (IFSP) (São Paulo Federal Institute of Education, Science and Technology); Universidade Estadual Paulista Júlio de Mesquita Filho (Unesp) (São Paulo State University Júlio de Mesquita Filho); Faculdade de Tecnologia de São Paulo (FATEC) (São Paulo Technological College); Universidade Federal de São Paulo (UNIFESP) (Federal University of São Paulo); Centro Universitário Belas Artes de São Paulo; Universidade Nove de Julho (UNINOVE) (Ninth of July University); Universidade de Mogi das Cruzes (UMC) (University of Mogi das Cruzes); Universidade Presbiteriana Mackenzie (MACKENZIE-SP) (Mackenzie Presbyterian University) Universidade São Judas Tadeu (USJT) (São Judas Tadeu University/"São Judas University"); Escola Superior de Propaganda e Marketing (ESPM-SP) (Superior School of Advertising and Marketing); Fundação Getúlio Vargas (FGV-SP) (Getúlio Vargas Foundation); Fundação Escola de Comércio Álvares Penteado (FECAP) (School of Commerce Alvares Penteado Foundation); Fundação Armando Alvares Penteado (FAAP) (Armando Alvares Penteado Foundation); Universidade Anhembi Morumbi (Anhembi Morumbi University); Faculdades Metropolitanas Unidas (FMU) (UMC, United Metropolitan Colleges); Instituto Brasileiro de Mercado de Capitais (Ibmec-SP) (Brazilian Capital Market Institute); Faculdade de Comunicação Social Cásper Líbero (Cásper Líbero Social Communication College); Faculdade Santa Marcelina (FASM) (Santa Marcelina College)