SAO PAULO, Sept 5 A preliminary report from
Brazil's antitrust authority Cade recommended approval of a
joint venture by Brazil's largest banks to start a credit
research bureau, the agency said on Monday.
The credit research company, called Gestora de Inteligência
de Crédito (GIC), will gather information on the bill-paying
history of both Brazilian consumers and companies with the aim
of bringing down default rates and the cost of credit in a harsh
The recommendation to approve the venture now needs to be
confirmed by Cade's tribunal, the statement said, without giving
a date for a final decision. Approval will hinge on the parties
signing a control agreement, known as an ACC, Cade said.
Last January, state-controlled Banco do Brasil SA
and Caixa Econômica Federal teamed with private-sector
banks Itaú Unibanco Holding SA, Banco Bradesco SA
and Banco Santander Brasil SA to create
the research unit. Each of the banks will take a 20 percent
stake in the joint venture.
The implementation of a credit-scoring company rewarding
prompt payers is seen by policymakers and bankers as a way to
help bring down credit costs amid rising defaults in Brazil's
harshest recession in the past 80 years.
With Brazil's benchmark interest rate holding at 14.25
percent since July 2015, consumers in the country pay the
highest borrowing costs among the world's major economies.
Boa Vista Serviços SA, as well as the local units of
Experian Plc and Fair Isaac Corp, or Fico, are
the largest providers of borrower quality information in Latin
America's largest economy. They obtain from the country's banks
data on borrowers' behavior, promptness patterns and also
estimates on demand for both consumer and corporate credit.
(Reporting by Ana Mano; Editing by Bill Trott)