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Bancarization and Determinants of Availability of Banking Services in Argentina

Author

Listed:
  • Alejandra Anastasi

    () (Central Bank of Argentina)

  • Emilio Blanco

    () (Central Bank of Argentina)

  • Pedro Elosegui

    (Central Bank of Argentina)

  • Máximo Sangiácomo

    () (Central Bank of Argentina)

Abstract

The level of bankarization (access to and use of banking services) is relatively low in Argentina both in historical terms and compared with similarly developed countries. This is shown by indicators both of access to and use of banking services. This paper analyzes a unique database containing information on availability and use of regulated banking services at locality level for the 1998-2005 period. Evidence shows a sharp discrepancy among provinces, both in access to and use of formal banking services. As a result of the 2001 economic, social, and financial crisis, there was a decline in the bank loan and deposit/GDP ratio. While the use of banking services has declined, the availability of banking infrastructure has increased, especially through ATMs and mainly concentrated in already financially developed localities. The analysis of the economic determinants of availability and use of banking services indicates a significant correlation with population and socio-economic situation of the locality, district area, economic activity level and business environment of the province. These determinants depend on bank’s ownership structure (public, foreign or domestic private), thereby reflecting their different business strategies. In fact, public banks usually operate in relatively smaller localities, foreign banks mainly operate in urban centers, whereas domestic private banks largely depend on the business environment of provinces. Finally, a Bayesian econometric approach shows that the use of banking services is characterized by spatial dependence, which suggests the importance of extending access to bank financial services locally in order to foster bankarization.

Suggested Citation

  • Alejandra Anastasi & Emilio Blanco & Pedro Elosegui & Máximo Sangiácomo, 2006. "Bancarization and Determinants of Availability of Banking Services in Argentina," BCRA Working Paper Series 200615, Central Bank of Argentina, Economic Research Department.
  • Handle: RePEc:bcr:wpaper:200615
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Angela González Arbeláez & Laura Capera, "undated". "Un índice de bancarización para Colombia," Temas de Estabilidad Financiera 064, Banco de la Republica de Colombia.
    2. Marcela Cristini & Ramiro Moya & Guillermo Bermudez, 2011. "Argentina`s Housing Market in the 2000s," Research Department Publications 4733, Inter-American Development Bank, Research Department.
    3. Hallerberg, Mark & Scartascini, Carlos, 2017. "Explaining changes in tax burdens in Latin America: Do politics trump economics?," European Journal of Political Economy, Elsevier, vol. 48(C), pages 162-179.
    4. Lebdaoui Hind & Wild Joerg, 2016. "Islamic Banking and Financial Development," Review of Middle East Economics and Finance, De Gruyter, vol. 12(2), pages 201-224, August.
    5. Marcela Cristini & Ramiro Moya & Guillermo Bermúdez, 2011. "Argentina's Housing Market in the 2000s," IDB Publications (Working Papers) 3421, Inter-American Development Bank.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    access to banking services; Argentina; bankarization; locality; regulation; use of banking services;

    JEL classification:

    • C10 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods and Methodology: General - - - General
    • C11 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Econometric and Statistical Methods and Methodology: General - - - Bayesian Analysis: General
    • G21 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Banks; Other Depository Institutions; Micro Finance Institutions; Mortgages
    • G28 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Government Policy and Regulation

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