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Finance and democracy in Africa

  • Simplice A, Asongu

The motivations of the Arab Spring and hitherto unanswered questions about some of its dynamics inspired this paper, which focuses on how democracy, polity and autocracy affect financial development dynamics of depth, efficiency, activity and size in Africa; contingent on religious-domination, income-levels and colonial-legacies. Findings could be summarized in the following. (1) Authoritarian regimes have a higher propensity to effect policies that favor the development of financial intermediary depth, activity and size. Democracy has important effects on the degree of competition for public offices but less significant effects in comparison with autocracy on policies towards financial development. (2) Christian-dominated countries have higher (lower) levels of financial intermediation efficiency (depth) than-Islam oriented countries. (3) Income-levels also matter in financial development as poor countries have a lower propensity to improve their financial dynamics than wealthy states. (4) On average English common-law countries have better democratic institutions that their French civil-law counterparts. (5) There is evidence of a U-shape relationship between national wealth and the level of democracy, with Low-income countries experiencing lower (higher) levels of democracy than Upper (Lower) middle income countries. As a policy implication, once democracy is initiated, it should be accelerated (to edge the appeals of authoritarian regimes) and reap the benefits of level and time hypotheses in financial development.

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Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 35500.

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Date of creation: 20 Dec 2011
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Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:35500
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  1. Asongu Simplice, 2011. "Law and Investment in Africa," Working Papers 11/014, African Governance and Development Institute..
  2. Narayan, Paresh Kumar & Narayan, Seema & Smyth, Russell, 2011. "Does democracy facilitate economic growth or does economic growth facilitate democracy? An empirical study of Sub-Saharan Africa," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 28(3), pages 900-910, May.
  3. Simplice A, Asongu, 2012. "Are Proposed African Monetary Unions Optimal Currency Areas? Real, Monetary and Fiscal Policy Convergence Analysis," MPRA Paper 41552, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  4. Hristos Doucouliagos & Mehmet Ulubasoglu, 2006. "Democracy and Economic Growth: A Meta-Analysis," Economics Series 2006_04, Deakin University, Faculty of Business and Law, School of Accounting, Economics and Finance.
  5. RAFAEL LaPORTA & FLORENCIO LOPEZ-de-SILANES & ANDREI SHLEIFER & ROBERT W. VISHNY, . "Legal Determinants of External Finance,"," CRSP working papers 324, Center for Research in Security Prices, Graduate School of Business, University of Chicago.
  6. Yang, Benhua, 2011. "Does democracy foster financial development? An empirical analysis," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 112(3), pages 262-265, September.
  7. Simplice A. ASONGU, 2011. "Why Do French Civil–Law Countries Have Higher Levels Of Financial Efficiency?," Journal of Advanced Research in Law and Economics, ASERS Publishing, vol. 0(2), pages 94-108, December.
  8. La Porta, Rafael & Lopez-de-Silanes, Florencio & Shleifer, Andrei, 2001. "Government Ownership of Banks," Working Paper Series rwp01-016, Harvard University, John F. Kennedy School of Government.
  9. Rafael La Porta & Florencio Lopez-de-Silanes & Andrei Shleifer & Robert W. Vishny, 1998. "Law and Finance," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 106(6), pages 1113-1155, December.
  10. Asongu Simplice, 2011. "Law, finance, economic growth and welfare: why does legal origin matter?," Working Papers 11/007, African Governance and Development Institute..
  11. Beck, Thorsten & Demirguc-Kunt, Asli & Levine, Ross, 2003. "Law and finance: why does legal origin matter?," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 31(4), pages 653-675, December.
  12. Stulz, Rene M. & Williamson, Rohan, 2003. "Culture, openness, and finance," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 70(3), pages 313-349, December.
  13. Easterly, William & Levine, Ross, 1997. "Africa's Growth Tragedy: Policies and Ethnic Divisions," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 112(4), pages 1203-50, November.
  14. Asongu Simplice, 2012. "African Financial Development Dynamics: Big Time Convergence," Working Papers 12/003, African Governance and Development Institute..
  15. Jagdish Bhagwati, 1995. "Democracy and Development: New Thinking on an Old Question," Indian Economic Review, Department of Economics, Delhi School of Economics, vol. 30(1), pages 1-18, January.
  16. repec:fth:wobaco:1083 is not listed on IDEAS
  17. Simplice A. Asongu, 2013. "Real and monetary policy convergence: EMU crisis to the CFA zone," Journal of Financial Economic Policy, Emerald Group Publishing, vol. 5(1), pages 20-38, February.
  18. repec:ner:tilbur:urn:nbn:nl:ui:12-3125511 is not listed on IDEAS
  19. Simplice A, Asongu, 2012. "Fighting consumer price inflation in Africa. What do dynamics in money, credit, efficiency and size tell us?," MPRA Paper 41553, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  20. Gyimah-Brempong, Kwabena & Traynor, Thomas L, 1999. "Political Instability, Investment and Economic Growth in Sub-Saharan Africa," Journal of African Economies, Centre for the Study of African Economies (CSAE), vol. 8(1), pages 52-86, March.
  21. Guillaumont, Patrick & Jeanneney, Sylviane Guillaumont & Brun, Jean-Francois, 1999. "How Instability Lowers African Growth," Journal of African Economies, Centre for the Study of African Economies (CSAE), vol. 8(1), pages 87-107, March.
  22. Asongu Simplice, 2011. "Law and Finance in Africa," Working Papers 11/009, African Governance and Development Institute..
  23. Ross Levine & Sara Zervos, . "Stock markets, banks and economic growth ," CERF Discussion Paper Series 95-11, Economics and Finance Section, School of Social Sciences, Brunel University.
  24. King, Robert G & Levine, Ross, 1993. "Finance and Growth: Schumpeter Might Be Right," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 108(3), pages 717-37, August.
  25. Daron Acemoglu & Simon Johnson, 2005. "Unbundling Institutions," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 113(5), pages 949-995, October.
  26. Simplice A Asongu, 2012. "On the effect of foreign aid on corruption," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 32(3), pages 2174-2180.
  27. Olivier Blanchard & Andrei Shleifer, 2000. "Federalism with and without Political Centralization: China versus Russia," NBER Working Papers 7616, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  28. Federico Varese, 1997. "The Transition to the Market and Corruption in Post-socialist Russia," Political Studies, Political Studies Association, vol. 45(3), pages 579-596.
  29. Asongu Simplice, 2011. "New financial intermediary development indicators for developing countries," Working Papers 11/005, African Governance and Development Institute..
  30. Simplice A, Asongu, 2012. "Government quality determinants of stock market performance in African countries," MPRA Paper 39631, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  31. Rajan, Raghuram G. & Zingales, Luigi, 2003. "The great reversals: the politics of financial development in the twentieth century," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 69(1), pages 5-50, July.
  32. Simplice A., Asongu, 2011. "Law, Finance and Investment: does legal origin matter?," MPRA Paper 34698, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  33. Wade, Robert, 1985. "The market for public office: Why the Indian state is not better at development," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 13(4), pages 467-497, April.
  34. Badawi, Ibrahim El & Makdisi, Samir, 2007. "Explaining the democracy deficit in the Arab world," The Quarterly Review of Economics and Finance, Elsevier, vol. 46(5), pages 813-831, February.
  35. Ojo, Oladeji & Oshikoya, Temitope, 1995. "Determinants of Long-Term Growth: Some African Results," Journal of African Economies, Centre for the Study of African Economies (CSAE), vol. 4(2), pages 163-91, October.
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