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CEPAL Review

Cepal Review is the leading journal for the study of economic and social development issues in Latin America and the Caribbean. Edited by the Economic Commission for Latin America, each issue focuses on economic trends, industrialization, income distribution, technological development and monetary systems, as well as the implementation of economic reform and transfer of technology. Written in English and Spanish (Revista de la Cepal), each tri-annual issue offers approximately 12 studies and essays undertaken by authoritative experts or gathered from conference proceedings.

English Spanish

The Spanish banks’ strategies in Latin America

After more than ten years of a broad-ranging and extensive process of financial liberalization and deregulation, the Latin American picture in the banking, insurance and pension fund markets has been significantly changed by the massive presence of globalized financial institutions. The major Spanish banks have been among the main actors in this respect and have become leading figures in most countries and business segments. From the Latin American standpoint, the entry of foreign banks, especially those of Spain, has helped to invigorate and modernize the financial systems of the region; has brought in new instruments and technologies; has increased competition, with direct effects on access to credit and its cost, and has given the local financial systems greater strength and stability. However, it has also given rise to some difficulties, such as greater concentration and only a very slow process of handing on to clients the benefits of the greater competition and efficiency achieved in the Latin American financial markets. This extensive presence of Spanish banks, together with the active expansion of Spanish non-financial companies in the main Latin American markets, has revealed the limitations of the local regulatory frameworks for coping with the growing globalization of international markets. Thus, decisions taken in Europe affect users in Latin America, causing reactions at various levels whose results will only become evident in the future.

English Spanish

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