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Contestability, Technology and Banking

  • Gropp, Reint
  • Corvoisier, Sandrine

We estimate the effect of internet penetration on retail bank margins in the euro area. Based on an adapted Baumol [1982] type contestability model, we argue that the internet has reduced sunk costs and therefore increased contestability in retail banking. We test this conjecture by estimating the model using semi-aggregated data for a panel of euro area countries. We utilise time series and cross-sectional variation in internet penetration. We find support for an increase in contestability in deposit markets, and no effect for loan markets. The paper suggests that for time and savings deposits, the presence of brick and mortar bank branches may no longer be of first order importance for the assessment of the competitive structure of the market.

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Paper provided by ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research in its series ZEW Discussion Papers with number 09-007.

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Date of creation: 2009
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Handle: RePEc:zbw:zewdip:7532
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  1. Gropp, Reint & Kashyap, Anil K., 2008. "A New Metric for Banking Integration in Europe," ZEW Discussion Papers 08-102, ZEW - Zentrum für Europäische Wirtschaftsforschung / Center for European Economic Research.
  2. Gropp, Reint & Kok, Christoffer & Lichtenberger, Jung-Duk, 2007. "The dynamics of bank spreads and financial structure," Working Paper Series 0714, European Central Bank.
  3. Vesala, Jukka, 1995. "Testing for competition in banking : Behavioral evidence from Finland," Scientific Monographs, Bank of Finland, number 1995_001, September.
  4. De Bandt, Olivier & Davis, E. Philip, 2000. "Competition, contestability and market structure in European banking sectors on the eve of EMU," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 24(6), pages 1045-1066, June.
  5. Berger, Allen N. & DeYoung, Robert, 2006. "Technological Progress and the Geographic Expansion of the Banking Industry," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 38(6), pages 1483-1513, September.
  6. Besanko, David & Thakor, Anjan V., 1992. "Banking deregulation: Allocational consequences of relaxing entry barriers," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 16(5), pages 909-932, September.
  7. Hannan, Timothy H & Berger, Allen N, 1991. "The Rigidity of Prices: Evidence from the Banking Industry," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 81(4), pages 938-45, September.
  8. J.A. Bikker & K. Haaf, 2000. "Competition, concentration and their relationship: an empirical analysis of the banking industry," Research Series Supervision (discontinued) 30, Netherlands Central Bank, Directorate Supervision.
  9. Corvoisier, Sandrine & Gropp, Reint, 2002. "Bank concentration and retail interest rates," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 26(11), pages 2155-2189, November.
  10. Berger, Allen N, 1995. "The Profit-Structure Relationship in Banking--Tests of Market-Power and Efficient-Structure Hypotheses," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 27(2), pages 404-31, May.
  11. Boone, J., 2004. "A New Way to Measure Competition," Discussion Paper 2004-004, Tilburg University, Tilburg Law and Economic Center.
  12. Morrison, Steven A & Winston, Clifford, 1987. "Empirical Implications and Tests of the Contestability Hypothesis," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 30(1), pages 53-66, April.
  13. Baumol, William J, 1982. "Contestable Markets: An Uprising in the Theory of Industry Structure," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 72(1), pages 1-15, March.
  14. Lieven Baele & Annalisa Ferrando & Peter Hördahl & Elizaveta Krylova & Cyril Monnet, 2004. "Measuring financial integration in the euro area," Occasional Paper Series 14, European Central Bank.
  15. Allen N. Berger, 2002. "The economic effects of technological progress: evidence from the banking industry," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2002-50, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
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