Gustavo S. Cortes and Renato L. Marcondes
This chapter analyzes the origins and development of the Brazilian banking system from colonial times to the present day. It begins with a description of the first credit relationships before the existence of banks in colonial Brazil, followed by a discussion of the difficulties faced by the first banks established in the imperial period. It then presents a detailed discussion of domestic and foreign banks during the First Republican, and the key institutional changes that occurred during the Great Depression of the 1930s and the military regime after 1964. Later, it covers banking activities in the hyperinflation period up to the country’s stabilization in 1994. The chapter concludes with an analysis of the recent period and how the banking system endured the Great Recession of 2008–2010 and the recent Brazilian fiscal crisis that began in 2014.