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Bank market concentration and efficiency in the European Union: a panel granger causality approach


  • Cândida Ferreira


The relationships between bank market concentration and bank efficiency are of particular relevance in the European Union (EU), but they remain controversial. Using a panel Granger causality approach, this paper contributes to the literature, testing not only the causality running from bank market concentration to bank efficiency, but also the reverse causality running from efficiency to concentration. The results obtained confirm the relative complexity of these causality relationships, although they generally point to a negative causation running both from concentration to efficiency and from efficiency to concentration. These findings are in line with the Structure Conduct Performance (SCP) paradigm and the suggestions that the increase of the banks’ market power will contribute to inefficiency, since these banks will face less competition to obtain more output results with less input costs. Our results suggest that within this panel of all 27 EU countries over a relatively long time period, from 1996 to the onset of the 2008 financial crisis, the more cost-efficient commercial and savings banks operated in less concentrated markets.

Suggested Citation

  • Cândida Ferreira, 2012. "Bank market concentration and efficiency in the European Union: a panel granger causality approach," Working Papers Department of Economics 2012/03, ISEG - Lisbon School of Economics and Management, Department of Economics, Universidade de Lisboa.
  • Handle: RePEc:ise:isegwp:wp032012

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Hasan, Iftekhar & Koetter, Michael & Wedow, Michael, 2009. "Regional growth and finance in Europe: Is there a quality effect of bank efficiency?," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 33(8), pages 1446-1453, August.
    2. Bikker, Jacob A. & Haaf, Katharina, 2002. "Competition, concentration and their relationship: An empirical analysis of the banking industry," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 26(11), pages 2191-2214, November.
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    5. Joaquin Maudos, 1998. "Market structure and performance in Spanish banking using a direct measure of efficiency," Applied Financial Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 8(2), pages 191-200.
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    Cited by:

    1. Dima, Bogdan & Dincă, Marius Sorin & Spulbăr, Cristi, 2014. "Financial nexus: Efficiency and soundness in banking and capital markets," Journal of International Money and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 47(C), pages 100-124.
    2. Abou-Zeinab , Ali, 2013. "Patterns of Bank Credit Allocation and Economic Growth: The Case of Denmark, 1736-2012," Lund Papers in Economic History 131, Lund University, Department of Economic History.

    More about this item


    Concentration; Efficiency; Granger causality; European banks.;

    JEL classification:

    • G21 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Banks; Other Depository Institutions; Micro Finance Institutions; Mortgages
    • F36 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - Financial Aspects of Economic Integration
    • D24 - Microeconomics - - Production and Organizations - - - Production; Cost; Capital; Capital, Total Factor, and Multifactor Productivity; Capacity
    • L11 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Production, Pricing, and Market Structure; Size Distribution of Firms

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