Lights Out: Brazil’s Power Problem

With the World Cup over, Brazilians are turning to their next big event—October’s presidential elections. While President Dilma Rousseff still leads in the polls, her margins continue to shrink. A recent Datafolha poll puts Rousseff and Aecio Neves—her leading challenger—as statistically tied in a hypothetical second round. Potentially adding to Rousseff’s vulnerabilities is Brazil’s electricity sector, which, […]

Brazil’s Petrobras Ramps Up Production of Pre-Salt Oil

By Nick Cunningham: After several years of very little progress, Brazil is finally beginning to extract oil from ultra-deep water. It’s a welcome development for the South American country, which has experienced four years of flat oil production. Brazil’s economy grew at an astounding pace from 2005 to 2010, thanks to a commodity boom that […]

Argentina’s Default: A Not-So-Illogical Move

Argentina failed to reach an agreement with its holdout creditors last week, defaulting on its debt for the second time in thirteen years. In this piece for Foreign Policy, I explain why this outcome is not so surprising. You can read the beginning of the piece below:  On July 30, Argentina defaulted on its outstanding debt. The technical […]

Argentina Defaults: The Day After

Argentina has defaulted. The long-running court drama that ran for over ten years and pitted Argentina against a small group of holdout creditors was decided decisively in favor of the holdouts in June, and Argentina subsequently refused to make payments as required by the courts. As a result, neither the holdouts nor the holders of […]

BRICS Bank Will Not Solve Members’ Energy Issues

By Chris Dalby: From changing the nature of global politics to being a force for human rights, the announcement of the new BRICS development bank has been met with feverish anticipation by the global economic community. Its supporters have written that it will free the world from the grip of the U.S. dollar as reserve currency, while […]

Increasingly Desperate Venezuela Makes Oil-for-Cash Deal With China

By Nick Cunningham: Venezuela is showing increasing signs of desperation as it takes out an additional $4 billion in loans from China in exchange for oil. The deal, announced July 21, will give embattled Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro an immediate influx of cash, which he needs to keep the economy afloat. Average Venezuelans are suffering […]

Is the BRICS Bank More ‘Democratic’ Than the World Bank?

The launch of the new BRICS development bank “reflects the disparity and democratic deficiency in the global governance and is trying to restart, to rethink that,” according to Nobel economist Joseph Stiglitz.  But is the BRICS bank really more “democratic” than the World Bank, whose governance legitimacy its founders are challenging? As the Geo-Graphic above shows, […]

Hurling BRICS at the World Bank and the $

Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa (the “BRICS”) made a splash last week with the official launch of their new development bank.  The backers made no secret of their intention to challenge the way things are done in the established international financial and monetary architecture. The irony is that India and China are the […]

BRICS and Mortals

Leaders of the BRICS–Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa–meet in Rio today to swap World Cup stories and launch a long-discussed “BRICS Bank.” The bank creates two funds–a development lending facility (New Development Bank or NDB) backed by $50 billion in capital ($10 billion from each of the BRICs), and a $100 billion rescue […]