Financialization and the World Economy

Financialization - the increasing importance of financial markets, institutions and motives in the world economy - is described and analyzed in this rigorously researched volume. The contributors, top scholars in their fields, explore the quantitative and qualitative dimensions of financialization and tally its costs and benefits for society as a whole. They explore the puzzling promotion of financial liberalization by governments despite its enormous costs, and describe what can be done to alter the destructive path toward excessive financialization that most countries are taking. The book begins by presenting basic data on the distributional implications of financialization. Part two focuses on financialization in the context of the US economy, with discussion of the relationship between financialization and non-financial corporations, the stock market bubble, and the evolution of derivatives markets. The international dimensions of financialization are explored in part three, with particular attention paid to the evolution of the international monetary system. Part four presents five case studies of financialization and financial crises in emerging markets in the 1980s and 1990s: Mexico, Turkey, Argentina, Brazil, and South Korea. The final section offers ideas for policy responses, including capital controls and securities transaction taxes. Researchers and students of international economics and finance will find this provocative volume an important part of the debate surrounding this multi-faceted phenomenon.