for the Social Credit
Brazil: a bank for the poor
On June 25, 2003, Brazil's President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva announced the creation of the Popular Bank, aimed at improving the availability of credit for the poor, and reducing sky-high lending rates. 25 million Brazilians who live on the minimum wage (240 reals, or 80 US dollars per month) are excluded from the system, since they have access neither to a bank account nor to loans. President da Silva wants to keep a 2% interest rate on loans to the poorest, so they can purchase at least the basic necessities. The day before, he had denounced credit agencies that ask up to 323% yearly interest from people who want to borrow 200 reals ($70 U.S.).