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Is Bank Income Diversification Beneficial? Evidence from an Emerging Economy

  • Céline Meslier-Crouzille

    ()

    (LAPE - Laboratoire d'Analyse et de Prospective Economique - UNILIM - Université de Limoges - IR SHS UNILIM - Institut Sciences de l'Homme et de la Société)

  • Ruth Tacneng

    ()

    (LAPE - Laboratoire d'Analyse et de Prospective Economique - UNILIM - Université de Limoges - IR SHS UNILIM - Institut Sciences de l'Homme et de la Société)

  • Amine Tarazi

    ()

    (LAPE - Laboratoire d'Analyse et de Prospective Economique - UNILIM - Université de Limoges - IR SHS UNILIM - Institut Sciences de l'Homme et de la Société)

This paper examines the impact of bank revenue diversification on the performance of banks in an emerging economy. Using a unique dataset with detailed information on non- interest income, our findings show that, conversely to studies on Western economies, a shift towards non-interest activities increases bank profits and risk-adjusted profits particularly when they are more involved in trading in government securities. Our results also indicate that foreign banks benefit more from such a shift than their domestic counterparts. Moreover, we account for the institutional and regulatory environment advocating loans to SMEs and find that higher involvement in non-interest activities is only beneficial for banks with low exposures to SMEs. Our findings have important policy implications in terms of achieving optimal diversification and lower risk exposure, which might conflict with policies aiming to promote SME lending.

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Date of creation: 2013
Handle: RePEc:hal:wpaper:hal-00918574
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