How big is the visible hand of the state in the Russian banking industry?
This paper tackles state participation in the Russian financial sector. We take the case of the banking industry to suggest criteria for a more accurate definition of public sector boundaries and an assessment of the actual scale of state presence in the national banking market. The approach for the assessment of the extent of state participation is based on the analysis of the peculiarity of the Russian banking industry due to the high extent and institutional specificity of government intervention in the financial system. The results presented in this paper provide evidence that the existing channels of state influence over banks are not limited to equity ownership with governance and other methods of control being employed as well and prove the hypothesis about the presence of downward bias in official estimates of the existing scale of state penetration.
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