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Structural issues in the Kenyan financial system: improving competition and access

Author

Listed:
  • Beck, Thorsten
  • Fuchs, Michael

Abstract

Although by regional standards, Kenya's financial system is relatively well developed and diversified, major structural impediments prevent it from reaching its full potential. Crosscountry comparisons, however, show the importance of a well-developed financial sector for long-term economic growth and poverty alleviation. Experience from other developing economies has shown the detrimental effect of government ownership and the positive impact that foreign bank ownership can have on the development of a market-based financial system. Analyzing and decomposing the high interest rate spreads and margins in Kenya helps identify structural impediments that drive the high cost of and low access to financial services. The limited information sharing on debtors, deficiencies in the legal and judicial system, the limited number of strong and reputable banks and non-transparency and uncertainty in the banking market are major impediments to the development of Kenya's financial system, to reducing spreads and to widening access.

Suggested Citation

  • Beck, Thorsten & Fuchs, Michael, 2004. "Structural issues in the Kenyan financial system: improving competition and access," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3363, The World Bank.
  • Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:3363
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Raddatz, Claudio, 2006. "Liquidity needs and vulnerability to financial underdevelopment," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 80(3), pages 677-722, June.
    2. Wurgler, Jeffrey, 2000. "Financial markets and the allocation of capital," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 58(1-2), pages 187-214.
    3. Rajan, Raghuram G & Zingales, Luigi, 1998. "Financial Dependence and Growth," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(3), pages 559-586, June.
    4. Rafael La Porta & Florencio Lopez-De-Silanes & Andrei Shleifer, 2002. "Government Ownership of Banks," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 57(1), pages 265-301, February.
    5. repec:hrv:faseco:30747188 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Beck, Thorsten & Cull, Robert & Jerome, Afeikhena, 2005. "Bank privatization and performance: Empirical evidence from Nigeria," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 29(8-9), pages 2355-2379, August.
    7. Claessens, Stijn & Laeven, Luc, 2004. "What Drives Bank Competition? Some International Evidence," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 36(3), pages 563-583, June.
    8. Gerard Caprio, Jr., 1995. "The role of financial intermediaries in transitional economies," Carnegie-Rochester Conference Series on Public Policy, Elsevier, vol. 42(1), pages 257-302, June.
    9. Clarke, George R. G. & Cull, Robert & Martinez Peria, Maria Soledad, 2001. "Does foreign bank penetration reduce access to credit in developing countries"evidence from asking borrowers," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2716, The World Bank.
    10. Beck, Thorsten & Demirguc-Kunt, Asli & Levine, Ross, 2004. "Finance, inequality, and poverty: cross-country evidence," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3338, The World Bank.
    11. Demirguc, Asli & Laeven, Luc & Levine, Ross, 2003. "The impact of bank regulations, concentration, and institutions on bank margins," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3030, The World Bank.
    12. Clarke, George & Cull, Robert & Martinez Peria, Maria Soledad & Sanchez, Susana M., 2001. "Foreign bank entry - experience, implications for developing countries, and agenda for further research," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2698, The World Bank.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Richard Podpiera & Martin Cihak, 2005. "Bank Behavior in Developing Countries; Evidence from East Africa," IMF Working Papers 05/129, International Monetary Fund.
    2. Hesse, Heiko, 2007. "Financial intermediation in the pre-consolidated banking sector in Nigeria," Policy Research Working Paper Series 4267, The World Bank.
    3. Thorsten Beck & Michael Fuchs & Dorothe Singer & Makaio Witte, 2014. "Making Cross-Border Banking Work for Africa," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 20248, January.
    4. World Bank, 2007. "Kenya : Unleashing the Potential for Trade and Growth," World Bank Other Operational Studies 7999, The World Bank.
    5. Wolde-Rufael, Yemane, 2009. "Re-examining the financial development and economic growth nexus in Kenya," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 26(6), pages 1140-1146, November.
    6. World Bank, 2009. "Uganda - Making Finance Work," World Bank Other Operational Studies 12502, The World Bank.

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