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The IMF's Rethink of Global Banks: Critical in Theory, Orthodox in Practice

Gabor, Daniela



© 2014 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. The International Monetary Fund's (IMF) new financial interconnectedness agenda, developed in response to postcrisis calls from G20 to better understand systemic financial institutions, deploys a critical approach that stresses the spatial, political, and institutional dimensions of cross-border financial networks. It portrays global banks as key nodes in those networks, "super-spreaders" of systemic risk through complex business models that involve yield search, regulatory and tax arbitrage. Yet this critical view does not translate into its policy advice at country level. In regular surveillance of developing countries, the IMF remains committed to a benign view of transnational banking, even when confronted with growing cross-border fragilities. During crises of cross-border banking, the IMF tailors its conditionality to minimize domestic regulatory challenges to cross-border banking models and to propose crisis measures that create new profit opportunities for transnational banks.


Gabor, D. (2015). The IMF's Rethink of Global Banks: Critical in Theory, Orthodox in Practice. Governance, 28(2), 199-218.

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date Jan 1, 2015
Journal Governance
Print ISSN 0952-1895
Electronic ISSN 1468-0491
Publisher Wiley
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 28
Issue 2
Pages 199-218
Keywords IMF, global banks, critical, theory, orthodox
Public URL
Publisher URL