By Kristen Nozell, Contributing Reporter
RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL- A bank workers’ strike that lasted twenty-three days finally came to a close on Friday in the majority of the country with bank employees returning to work on Monday following their decision to accept an eight percent pay raise.
Remaining cities followed suit yesterday, with just a few banks, which have not accepted the adjustments offered by the National Federation of Banks (Fenaban), still closed.
Specifically, Banco Nordeste (BNB), Banrisul, and Banco de Amazônia branches remain closed in many states. Banco do Brasil and Caixa also remain on strike in select locations across Brazil.
In many cities, including Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo, bank assemblies accepted the proposed wage adjustment of eight percent for inflation and an increase of 8.5 percent in minimum wage on Friday, upon the recommendation of the Command of the National Banks (CNB), which represents 95 percent of banks across the country.
These adjustments are significantly lower than the 11.93 percent increase bank workers requested, which would have reflected an adjustment for inflation in addition to a real wage increase. The final increase accepted is higher than the 6.1 percent raise that had been proposed by Fenaban at the end of September. In addition to the raise, bank employees will be compensated for the days on which they have been on strike.
Bank workers’ strikes have become frequent in Brazil as banks’ profits soared with the country’s stable economic growth. Banking profits are believed to be relatively unaffected by the strikes, as customers are able to perform transactions on ATMs and the Internet. The 23-day strike shut down around 1,000 bank branches in the Rio de Janeiro metropolitan area alone.
Read more (in Portuguese).
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