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Bank profitability and economic growth

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  • Klein, Paul-Olivier
  • Weill, Laurent

Abstract

This paper analyses the effect of bank profitability on economic growth. While policymakers have shown major concerns for low levels of bank profitability, there are no empirical studies on the growth effects of bank profitability. To fill this gap, we investigate the impact of bank profitability on economic growth using a sample of 133 countries during the period 1999–2013 with several empirical approaches. Our first major conclusion is that a high current level of bank profitability contributes positively to economic growth. Our second conclusion is that the past level of bank profitability exerts a negative influence on economic growth leading to the absence of significance for the overall bank profitability. Hence, the positive impact of bank profitability on economic growth is short-lived. These findings are robust to a battery of robustness checks, including those using alternative measures for profitability and growth.

Suggested Citation

  • Klein, Paul-Olivier & Weill, Laurent, 2018. "Bank profitability and economic growth," BOFIT Discussion Papers 15/2018, Bank of Finland, Institute for Economies in Transition.
  • Handle: RePEc:bof:bofitp:2018_015
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • G21 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Banks; Other Depository Institutions; Micro Finance Institutions; Mortgages
    • O16 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Financial Markets; Saving and Capital Investment; Corporate Finance and Governance
    • O40 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - General

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