Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to compare the three largest economies in Latin America (Brazil, Mexico and Argentina) with other economies that have another type of capitalism, in that way we can extract some effects of the hierarchical capitalism in Latin America Design/methodology/approach – The data were taken from World Economic Outlook (IMF), The Global Innovation Index (INSEAD)and the Democracy Index (The Economist). The selected countries are: Argentina, Brazil, Mexico, South Korea, Spain and Croatia. We establish a comparison among countries in the following dimensions: economic growth, innovation and democracy. Findings – The comparison shows that Argentina, Brazil and Mexico have lower level of economic growth, innovation performance and democracy level than South Korea,... Spain and Croatia. The variety of capitalism in Latin America (hierarchical) has lower performance than others kinds of capitalism in other regions of the world. Research limitations/implications – We have compared Latin American countries with countries from other regions of the world. However, a comparison may include more countries and results could vary. Originality/value – The results tend to support the idea that hierarchical capitalism has poor results in comparison with other varieties of capitalism.