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Poverty and Inequality in Ecuador, Brazil and Mexico after the 2008 Global Crisis


Lukasz Czarnecki, Erik Balleza and Mayra Saenz

How deep is the impact of the 2008 global crisis on Ecuador, Brazil and Mexico? Although having similar experience with the policies of the Washington Consensus, Ecuador, Brazil and Mexico have established different concepts of social and economic development during the last decade. These differences could also be observed during and after the global crisis in 2008. In contrast to the social anti-neoliberal policy implemented in Ecuador and the progressive social and economic policy in Brazil, Mexico has been carrying out the policy of continued neoliberalism. One of the conclusions drawn is that Mexico faces abysmal inequalities and persistence of poverty, which are not only explicated by historical roots, but also by strong applications of neoliberal policies.
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The case of Brazil: Erik Balleza


The case of Brazil

Erik Balleza

National Autonomous University of Mexico Faculty of Social and Political Science Mexico e-mail:


The main purpose of this paper is to present the evolution of income inequality and poverty both of which have persisted in Brazil over the past three decades, as well as discussing the determinants that have contributed to their reduction. Furthermore, it outlines some considerations about the effects of the current international economic and financial crisis. The paper consists of five parts: 1) Introduction, 2) Income inequality and poverty, 3) Determinants that have contributed to the reduction in the levels of inequality and poverty, 4) The effects of the current international financial and economic crisis, and 5) Final comments. The structural evolution of income inequality and poverty in Brazil between 1977 and 2011 is reconstructed from the analysis of documents and working papers written by the Institute of Applied Economic Research (IPEA by their Portuguese acronym), scholarly articles and journals from Brazil and international organizations have been consulted as well. Following are some general tables, which display this evolution.

Income inequality

According to data on income inequality, it is confirmed that during the eighties and nineties it remained more or less stable, that is, with minor variations, the Gini index remained around 0.60.1 Firstly, we turn our attention to the years 1981 and 1986, where we can observe a more favorable income distribution mainly for the...

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