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Banking in Africa

  • Beck, Thorsten
  • Cull, Robert

This paper takes stock of the current state of banking systems across Sub-Saharan Africa and discusses recent developments including innovations that might help Africa leapfrog more traditional banking models. Using an array of different data, the paper documents that African banking systems are shallow but stable. African banks are well capitalized and over-liquid, but lend less to the private sector than banks in non-African developing countries. African enterprises and households are less likely to use financial services than their peers in other developing countries. The paper also describes a number of financial innovations across the continent that can help overcome different barriers to financial inclusion and have helped to expand the bankable and the banked population.

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Paper provided by The World Bank in its series Policy Research Working Paper Series with number 6684.

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Date of creation: 01 Oct 2013
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:6684
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  1. Sarah Rotman & David Ferrand & Stephen Rasmussen, 2012. "The Jipange KuSave Experiment in Kenya," World Bank Other Operational Studies 17074, The World Bank.
  2. Claessens, Stijn & Laeven, Luc, 2003. "What drives bank competition? some international evidence," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3113, The World Bank.
  3. ALLEN, Franklin & CARLETTI, Elena & CULL, Robert & QIAN, Jun & SENBET, Lemma & VALENZUELA, Patricio, 2012. "Resolving the African Financial Development Gap: Cross-country comparisons and a within-country study of Kenya," Economics Working Papers ECO2012/15, European University Institute.
  4. Isaac Mbiti & David N. Weil, 2011. "Mobile Banking: The Impact of M-Pesa in Kenya," NBER Working Papers 17129, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. Pascaline Dupas & Jonathan Robinson, 2009. "Savings Constraints and Microenterprise Development: Evidence from a Field Experiment in Kenya," NBER Working Papers 14693, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  6. Neeltje van Horen & Stijn Claessens, 2012. "Foreign Banks: Trends, Impact and Financial Stability," IMF Working Papers 12/10, International Monetary Fund.
  7. Aterido, Reyes & Beck, Thorsten & Iacovone, Leonardo, 2013. "Access to Finance in Sub-Saharan Africa: Is There a Gender Gap?," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 47(C), pages 102-120.
  8. Allen, Franklin & Carletti, Elena & Cull, Robert & Jun Qian & Senbet, Lemma & Valenzuela, Patricio, 2014. "The African financial development and financial inclusion gaps," Policy Research Working Paper Series 7019, The World Bank.
  9. Cull, Robert & Spreng, Connor P., 2011. "Pursuing efficiency while maintaining outreach: Bank privatization in Tanzania," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 94(2), pages 254-261, March.
  10. Banerjee, Abhijit & Duflo, Esther & Glennerster, Rachel & Kinnan, Cynthia, 2013. "The miracle of microfinance? Evidence from a randomized evaluation," CEPR Discussion Papers 9437, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  11. Franklin Allen & Elena Carletti & Robert Cull & Jun “Qj” Qian & Lemma Senbet & Patricio Valenzuela, 2013. "Improving Access to Banking: Evidence from Kenya," Documentos de Trabajo 298, Centro de Economía Aplicada, Universidad de Chile.
  12. Vivien Foster & Cecilia Briceno-Garmendia, 2010. "Africa's Infrastructure : A Time for Transformation," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 2692.
  13. Esther Duflo & Michael Kremer & Jonathan Robinson, 2009. "Nudging Farmers to Use Fertilizer: Theory and Experimental Evidence from Kenya," NBER Working Papers 15131, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  14. Brown, Martin & Guin, Benjamin & Kirschenmann, Karolin, 2013. "Microfinance Banks and Household Access to Finance," Working Papers on Finance 1302, University of St. Gallen, School of Finance.
  15. Beck, Thorsten & Cull, Robert & Jerome, Afeikhena, 2005. "Bank privatization and performance - emprical evidence from Nigeria," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3511, The World Bank.
  16. Brune, Lasse & Gine, Xavier & Goldberg, Jessica & Yang, Dean, 2011. "Commitments to save : a field experiment in rural Malawi," Policy Research Working Paper Series 5748, The World Bank.
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