This article deploys a welfare regime approach to examine changes in social policy in Latin America since the "lost decade". Before the "lost decade" the welfare regime in Latin America could best be described as "conservative/informal". It was "truncated" because the main welfare institutions, social insurance and employment protection, did not extend beyond workers in formal employment. The article shows that the structure of the labour market was the main stratification device, and argues that labour market liberalization and new forms of social assistance are producing a shift towards a "liberal-informal" welfare regime, "hyphenated" rather than "truncated".
Keywords: Labour Market, Latin America, Truncated and Hyphenated Welfare Regimes