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Why are interest spreads so high in Uganda?

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Author Info

  • Beck, Thorsten
  • Hesse, Heiko

Abstract

Using international comparisons and a unique bank-level dataset on the Ugandan banking system over the period 1999 to 2005, we explore the factors behind consistently high interest rate spreads and margins. International comparisons show that the small size of Ugandan banks, persistently high T-Bill rates and institutional deficiencies explain large proportions of the high Ugandan interest rate margins. The Ugandan bank panel confirms the importance of macroeconomic factors, such as high inflation, high T-Bill rates and exchange rate appreciation. There is also evidence for the small market place and high costs of doing business explaining persistently high spreads and margins; smaller banks and banks targeting the low end of the market incur higher costs and therefore higher margins. Spreads and margins also vary significantly with the sectoral loan portfolio composition of banks, while there is little evidence for foreign bank entry, privatization or changes in market structure explaining variation in spreads or margins over time.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Development Economics.

Volume (Year): 88 (2009)
Issue (Month): 2 (March)
Pages: 192-204

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Handle: RePEc:eee:deveco:v:88:y:2009:i:2:p:192-204

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Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/devec

Related research

Keywords: Foreign bank entry Financial sector reform Bank efficiency Financial intermediation Uganda;

References

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Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
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  1. Rafael LaPorta & Florencio Lopez-de-Silanes & Andrei Shleifer & Robert W. Vishny, . "Legal Determinants of External Finance," Working Paper 19443, Harvard University OpenScholar.
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  5. Thorsten Beck & Ross Levine, 2004. "Legal Institutions and Financial Development," NBER Working Papers 10417, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Patrick Honohan & Thorsten Beck, 2007. "Making Finance Work for Africa," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 6626, October.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Harald Finger & Heiko Hesse, 2009. "Lebanon-Determinants of Commercial Bank Deposits in a Regional Financial Center," IMF Working Papers 09/195, International Monetary Fund.
  2. Beck, Thorsten & Fuchs, Michael & Uy, Marilou, 2009. "Finance in Africa - Achievements and Challenges," Policy Research Working Paper Series 5020, The World Bank.
  3. Tigran Poghosyan, 2012. "Financial Intermediation Costs in Low-Income Countries," IMF Working Papers 12/140, International Monetary Fund.
  4. Sarah Sanya & Matthew Gaertner, 2012. "Assessing Bank Competition within the East African Community," IMF Working Papers 12/32, International Monetary Fund.
  5. Irwan Trinugroho & Agusman Agusman & Amine Tarazi, 2012. "Why Have Bank Interest Margins Been so High in Indonesia Since the 1997/1998 Financial Crisis?," Working Papers hal-00916531, HAL.
  6. Thorsten Beck & Samuel Munzele Maimbo & Issa Faye & Thouraya Triki, 2011. "Financing Africa : Through the Crisis and Beyond," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 2355, October.
  7. Hossain, Monzur, 2010. "Financial Reforms and Persistently High Bank Interest Spreads in Bangladesh: Pitfalls in Institutional Development?," MPRA Paper 24755, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  8. Delis, Manthos D., 2012. "Bank competition, financial reform, and institutions: The importance of being developed," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 97(2), pages 450-465.
  9. Chuling Chen, 2009. "Bank Efficiency in Sub-Saharan African Middle Income Countries," IMF Working Papers 09/14, International Monetary Fund.
  10. Jugnu Ansari & Ashima Goyal, 2014. "Banks competition, managerial efficiency and the interest rate pass-through in India," Indira Gandhi Institute of Development Research, Mumbai Working Papers 2014-007, Indira Gandhi Institute of Development Research, Mumbai, India.
  11. Pohl, Birte, 2010. "Foreign Banks in Sub-Saharan Africa - Do North-South and South-South Banks Induce Different Effects on Domestic Banks?," Proceedings of the German Development Economics Conference, Hannover 2010 10, Verein für Socialpolitik, Research Committee Development Economics.
  12. Poghosyan, Tigran, 2013. "Financial intermediation costs in low income countries: The role of regulatory, institutional, and macroeconomic factors," Economic Systems, Elsevier, vol. 37(1), pages 92-110.
  13. World Bank, 2009. "Uganda - Making Finance Work," World Bank Other Operational Studies 12502, The World Bank.
  14. Brown, Martin & Maurer, Maria Rueda & Pak, Tamara & Tynaev, Nurlanbek, 2009. "The impact of banking sector reform in a transition economy: Evidence from Kyrgyzstan," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 33(9), pages 1677-1687, September.
  15. Francois Boutin-Dufresne & Santiago Peña & Oral Williams & Tomasz A. Zawisza, 2013. "Benchmarking Banking Sector Efficiency Across Regional Blocks in Sub-Saharan Africa," IMF Working Papers 13/51, International Monetary Fund.

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