Sectoral Credit Around the World, 1940-2014

33 Pages Posted: 24 Feb 2017 Last revised: 13 Nov 2017

Date Written: September 15, 2017


Despite considerable interest in the role of credit markets in macroeconomic fluctuations, there is a striking paucity of reliable cross-country data. This paper presents a novel dataset on the detailed sectoral structure of outstanding credit to the private sector for 108 countries starting in 1940. I document a range of new stylized facts about banking sectors around the world. Over the last 70 years, household credit has increased considerably both in advanced and emerging economies, while manufacturing credit has declined. Residential mortgages only account for part of the story: particularly in emerging economies, consumer credit plays an even more dominant role. These findings have implications for theories of financial development and financial crises.

Keywords: Bank lending, financial history, financial development, credit markets

JEL Classification: E44, F34, G21, N20, O16

Suggested Citation

Müller, Karsten, Sectoral Credit Around the World, 1940-2014 (September 15, 2017). Available at SSRN: or

Karsten Müller (Contact Author)

Princeton University ( email )

Julis-Rabinowitz Center for Public Policy & Financ
Princeton, NJ 08540
United States


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