What does excess bank liquidity say about the loan market in Less Developed Countries?
Evidence about developing countries’ commercial banks’ liquidity preference suggests the following about their loan markets: (i) the loan interest rate is a minimum mark-up rate; (ii) the loan market is characterized by oligopoly power; and (iii) indirect monetary policy, a cornerstone of financial liberalization, can only be effective at very high interest rates that are likely to be deflationary. The minimum rate is a mark-up over a foreign interest rate, marginal transaction costs and a risk premium. A calibration exercise demonstrates that the hypothesis of a minimum mark-up loan rate is consistent with the observed stylized facts.
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