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Is Climbing Difficult? A Gendered Analysis on the Use of Financial Services in Ghana and South Africa


  • Annim, Samuel

    () (University of Cape Coast, Ghana)

  • Arun, Thankom Gopinath

    () (University of Essex)


This paper examines the gender gaps in the use of higher-order financial services such as investment and insurance, draws on the FinMark national-level data from Ghana and South Africa. The main observation is that females in South Africa are more likely to use general financial and investment products than in Ghana. The results also reveal that in Ghana, a substantial part of the gender differentials in the use of financial services can be attributed to unobserved characteristics, mostly related to attitude and perceptions that inhibit women's use of financial services.

Suggested Citation

  • Annim, Samuel & Arun, Thankom Gopinath, 2013. "Is Climbing Difficult? A Gendered Analysis on the Use of Financial Services in Ghana and South Africa," IZA Discussion Papers 7688, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp7688

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Muravyev, Alexander & Talavera, Oleksandr & Schäfer, Dorothea, 2009. "Entrepreneurs' gender and financial constraints: Evidence from international data," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 37(2), pages 270-286, June.
    2. Aterido, Reyes & Beck, Thorsten & Iacovone, Leonardo, 2011. "Gender and finance in Sub-Saharan Africa : are women disadvantaged ?," Policy Research Working Paper Series 5571, The World Bank.
    3. Annim, Samuel & Arun, Thankom Gopinath & Kostov, Philip, 2012. "Effect of Perceptions and Behaviour on Access to and Use of Financial Service: Evidence from South Africa," IZA Discussion Papers 7042, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    4. Stiglitz, Joseph E & Weiss, Andrew, 1981. "Credit Rationing in Markets with Imperfect Information," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 71(3), pages 393-410, June.
    5. Michal Bauer & Julie Chytilova & Jonathan Morduch, 2012. "Behavioral Foundations of Microcredit: Experimental and Survey Evidence from Rural India," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 102(2), pages 1118-1139, April.
    6. Mikkel Barslund & Finn Tarp, 2008. "Formal and Informal Rural Credit in Four Provinces of Vietnam," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 44(4), pages 485-503, April.
    7. Thomas N. Daymonti & Paul J. Andrisani, 1984. "Job Preferences, College Major, and the Gender Gap in Earnings," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 19(3), pages 408-428.
    8. Demirguc-Kunt, Asli & Klapper, Leora & Singer, Dorothe, 2013. "Financial inclusion and legal discrimination against women : evidence from developing countries," Policy Research Working Paper Series 6416, The World Bank.
    9. Jonathan Morduch, 1999. "The Microfinance Promise," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 37(4), pages 1569-1614, December.
    10. Philip Kostov & Thankom Arun & Samuel Annim, 2012. "Determinants of Access to Finance: An Investigation into the Mzansi Intervention," The European Journal of Development Research, Palgrave Macmillan;European Association of Development Research and Training Institutes (EADI), vol. 24(3), pages 397-412, July.
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    More about this item


    gender gaps; types and levels of access to finance; Ghana and South Africa;

    JEL classification:

    • G21 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Banks; Other Depository Institutions; Micro Finance Institutions; Mortgages
    • J16 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demographic Economics - - - Economics of Gender; Non-labor Discrimination

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