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This study analyzes the role of the Bank in helping client countries to implement financial sector reforms. It focuses on the country as the unit of analysis, rather than individual loans, and on performance indicators in the financial and real sectors. Even without full incorporation of lessons still to be drawn from recent East Asia crisis, this study find a satisfactory outcome in only 12 of the 23 countries that it examines. Initial conditions appear to be significant in determining the outcome of reforms, and prior sector work is important for ensuring that policy reforms in Bank loans reflect a country ' s initial conditions. In general, adjustment loans are more successful and more sustainable in promoting institutional development than are financial intermediaries loans. The main recommendations of the study are that the internal guidelines of financial sector operations provide a valid framework for preparing operations in support of financial sector reforms. The Bank should go beyond these guidelines, however, by incorporating best practices on both substantive issues and Bank processes, after sufficient time has elapsed to evaluate and learn from recent developments in East Asia.

Publisher: World Bank

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