Using a variety of theoretical frameworks drawn from the social sciences, the contributions in this edited collection offer a critical perspective on the dominant paradigms used in contemporary financial activities. Through a detailed study of the organisation and functioning of financial intermediaries and institutions, the contributors to this volume analyse ‘finance in the making’, by shedding light on the structuring of banking and financial systems, on their capacity to prescribe action and control, on their modes of regulation and, more generally, on the process of financialisation.
Contributions presented in this volume have been written by authors working within the ‘social studies of finance’ tradition, a research programme that emerged twenty years ago, with the aim of addressing a diversity of financial fieldworks and related theoretical questions. This book, therefore, sheds light on different areas that are representative of contemporary financial realities. Specifically, it first studies the work of financial employees: traders, salespeople, investment managers, financial analysts, investment consultants, etc. but also provides an analysis of a range of financial instruments: financial schemes and contracts, financial derivatives, socially responsible investment funds, as well as market rules and regulations. Finally, it puts into perspective the organisations contributing to this financial reality: those developing and selling financial services (retail banks, brokerage houses, asset management firms, private equity firms, etc.), and also those contributing to the regulation of such activities (banking regulators, financial market authorities, credit rating agencies, the State, to name a few).
Each text can be read without any specific knowledge of finance; the book is thus addressed to anyone willing to better understand the intricacies of contemporary financial realities.
Table of Contents
Finance as social science
Isabelle Chambost, Marc Lenglet and Yamina Tadjeddine
Critical analysis of mainstream financial theory and its uses
1. Financial services – a collection of arrangements
2. Taming the risk borne by financial products
Pierre de Larminat
3. The political and moral imaginaries of financial practices
4. The role of financial analysts in the social construction of financial value
5. Public–private partnerships (PPP) between financing requirements and micro-economic governance: complementary scientific and real-world justifications
6. The risk fluctuation: The consequences of avoiding interest rate risk
Anne EA van der Graaf
7. What makes a price a price? Commensuration work on financial markets
Hélène Rainelli-Weiss and Isabelle Huault
8. The leptokurtic crisis and the discontinuous turn in financial modelling
9. Beyond performativity: How and why American courts should not have used efficient market hypothesis
Structural dynamics in the financial industry
10. Sources of risks in financial innovations: Embedded and additional risks in Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs)
Mohamed Oubenal and Laurent Deville
11. Junior stock markets and SMEs: An ideal relation? The case of the Alternative Investment Market
12. Structures and measures for responsible finance
13. Territories of finance – the Parisian case
14. The workforce and professional training in banks
15. Cooperative banking: Finding a place for the social in finance?
16. Relationship banking – an ‘endangered species’? Evidence from Germany
17. The future of stock exchanges has a long past: What can we learn from financial history?
Paul Lagneau-Ymonet and Angelo Riva
18. Compliance and the regulation of practices: A two-fold paradox
19. Financial regulation: A question of point of view
A new system of accumulation
20. Sociological domestication of a financial product. The case of derivatives
21. The work of financialisation
22. Circuits of trust and money: The resilience of the Italian Credito Cooperativo
23. Justification and critique in the credit rating system: Reaffirming the power of agencies
24. The Function of finance: An ethnographic analysis of competing ideas
25. At the very heart of financial dominance: The case of LBOs
26. The internationalisation of the mutual fund sector and the origin of the financialisation: A historical process of production rules
27. Conceptualising finance within the capital–labour nexus: Asset management as a new zone of social conflict
28. Democracy and the political representation of investors: On French sovereign debt transactions and elections
29. Knitting together finance and our daily lives
30. Making sense of the economy: A debt network coordinated by currency
Conclusion: What finance manufactures
Isabelle Chambost is Associate Professor in Management at the Conservatoire National des Arts et Métiers, Paris, France.
Marc Lenglet is Associate Professor in the Department of Strategy and Entrepreneurship at NEOMA Business School, Rouen, France.
Yamina Tadjeddine is Professor of Economics at the Université de Lorraine, Nancy, France.