Public Banks in the Age of Financialization
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Public Banks in the Age of Financialization

A Comparative Perspective

Edited by Christoph Scherrer

This book asks the important question of whether public banks are a better alternative to profit-seeking private banks. Do public banks provide finance for development? Do they serve as stability anchors in financial markets? What kind of governance keeps public banks accountable to the public? Theoretically the book draws on the works of Minsky for the question on stability and on interpretative policy analysis for the issue of governance. It compares empirically three countries with significant public banks: Brazil, Germany, and India.
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Chapter 5: Public banks and recent anticyclical policies: A comparison of the experiences of Brazil and Chile

Ana Rosa Ribeiro de Mendonça and Brunno Henrique Sibin


The authors analyse the parallels between the crisis response of the Brazilian public bank Caixa Econômica Federal (Caixa) and its Chilean counterpart BancoEstado in their different political and economic environments. Both banks acted anticyclically, but encouraged by the strong pro-growth orientation of the Brazilian government and enabled by the institutionalized access to compulsory savings funds, Caixa continued the expansion of lending even after the crisis had been overcome. This procyclical behaviour is a sign that Caixa’s mandate went beyond the function of a stability anchor.

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