This book analyzes the relative balance of bargaining power between
governments and the banks in charge of underwriting their debt
during the first financial globalization. Brazil and Mexico, both
indebted countries that underwent major changes in reputation and
negotiating power as they faced financial crises, provide valuable
case studies of government strategies for obtaining the best
possible outcomes. Previous literature has focused on bankers'
perspectives and emphasized that debtors were submissive during
negotiations, but Weller finds that governments' negotiating power
varied over time. He presents a new analytical framework that
interprets when and why officials were likely to negotiate loans
more or less effectively, with newly uncovered primary sources from
debtors' and creditors' archives suggesting key causes of
variation: fiscal accounts, political stability, and creditors'
exposure and reputation.
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