Financialization and the politics of credit rating agencies in Brazilian presidential transitions
Abstract This paper analyzes credit rating agencies’ actions in Brazilian presidential transitions in the light of what is understood as financialization. It argues that the agencies, from their position in the international financial system, express and promote the financialization process during presidential transitions. To that end, they resort to forms of political activism in favor of the orthodox agenda defended by financial markets enthusiasts. The methodology draws on the case study of Brazil, with reference to the five presidential transitions that took place there between 2002 and 2018. The analysis is based mainly on the Brazilian sovereign ratings issued by S&P Global, Moody’s and Fitch Ratings, and on the country reports published by these agencies.