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On the expansion of finance and financialisation

Russo, Alberto and Zanini, Adelino (2010): On the expansion of finance and financialisation.

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Abstract

In this paper we explore the role of finance in the recent crisis noting that its expansion, in a context of deregulation and globalisation, has boosted financial profits and capital accumulation, but at the cost of a growing systemic instability both in the leading capitalist economy, i.e. the USA, and at the international level. The expansion of finance tends to emerge in certain phases of capitalist development, in particular during periods of countries’ decline. At the same time, each phase has its peculiar aspects and, referring to the recent evolution, we focus on the phenomenon of financialisation, intended as an increasing involvement of economic agents in the working of financial markets.

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