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Dual Financial Systems and Inequalities in Economic Development

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  • Tressel, Thierry

Abstract

This paper analyzes the emergence and the evolution of a modern banking system, in a developing economy where banks coexist with informal credit institutions. Banks have a superior ability in mobilizing savings while informal lenders enjoy a superior information on borrowers. More specifically, banks cannot observe perfectly the behavior of borrowers; therefore the latter need to provide collateral assets in order to obtain bank loans. Physical collateral is not needed to borrow in the informal credit market: informal lenders can rely on social networks to obtain information on borrowers' behavior and invoke social sanctions to enforce repayment. The sustained growth path is associated with the successful development of the banking system that gathers savings on a large scale. However, informal lenders and other traditional credit institutions are necessary in the first stage of development when collateral is scarce. In this economy, the development of modern financial intermediaries is closely associated with the accumulation of collateral assets by entrepreneurs. This implies that the initial level of development as well as the initial distribution of wealth will determine the joint evolution of the real side of the economy and the financial system. Under certain conditions, two long-run steady-state equilibria exist: in the first one the economy stops growing and the banking system never successfully develops; in the second one the economy reaches a sustained growth rate and the informal sector asymptotically vanishes. The impact of the following policies is discussed: financial repression, micro-credit institutions and redistribution of assets. Copyright 2003 by Kluwer Academic Publishers

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  • Tressel, Thierry, 2003. "Dual Financial Systems and Inequalities in Economic Development," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 8(2), pages 223-257, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:kap:jecgro:v:8:y:2003:i:2:p:223-57
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    2. Bourguignon, Francois, 2005. "The Effect of Economic Growth on Social Structures," Handbook of Economic Growth, in: Philippe Aghion & Steven Durlauf (ed.), Handbook of Economic Growth, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 27, pages 1701-1747, Elsevier.
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    5. Henry Waleru Akani & Lucky Anyike Lucky & Kingsley Cheta Uzah, 2016. "Financial Sector Development and Macro-Economic Stability in Nigeria: A Long- Run Analysis," International Journal of Empirical Finance, Research Academy of Social Sciences, vol. 5(2), pages 112-128.
    6. Nabi, Mahmoud Sami & Rajhi, Taoufik, 2005. "Banking, Credit Market Imperfection and Growth," MPRA Paper 24495, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised 2010.
    7. Figueroa, Aldo, 2011. "Income inequality and credit markets," Revista CEPAL, Naciones Unidas Comisión Económica para América Latina y el Caribe (CEPAL), December.
    8. Mahmoud Sami Nabi & Taoufik Rajhi, 2010. "Banking, Credit Market Imperfection and Economic Growth," Working Papers 540, Economic Research Forum, revised 09 Jan 2010.

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