Reaching Out: Access to and Use of Banking Services Across Countries

52 Pages Posted: 10 Nov 2005

See all articles by Thorsten Beck

Thorsten Beck

City University London - Sir John Cass Business School; Tilburg University - European Banking Center, CentER

Asli Demirgüç-Kunt

World Bank - Development Research Group; World Bank

Maria Soledad Martinez Peria

International Monetary Fund (IMF)

Date Written: October 2005

Abstract

The authors (1) present new indicators of banking sector penetration across 99 countries based on a survey of bank regulatory authorities, (2) show that these indicators predict household and firm use of banking services, (3) explore the association between the outreach indicators and measures of financial, institutional, and infrastructure development across countries, and (4) relate these banking outreach indicators to measures of firms' financing constraints. In particular, they find that greater outreach is correlated with standard measures of financial development, as well as with economic activity. Controlling for these factors, the authors find that better communication and transport infrastructure and better governance are also associated with greater outreach. Government ownership of financial institutions translates into lower access, while more concentrated banking systems are associated with greater outreach. Finally, firms in countries with higher branch and ATM penetration and higher use of loan services report lower financing obstacles, thus linking banking sector outreach to the alleviation of firms' financing constraints.

Suggested Citation

Beck, Thorsten and Demirgüç-Kunt, Asli and Martinez Peria, Maria Soledad, Reaching Out: Access to and Use of Banking Services Across Countries (October 2005). World Bank Policy Research Working Paper No. 3754. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=844808

Thorsten Beck (Contact Author)

City University London - Sir John Cass Business School ( email )

106 Bunhill Row
London, EC1Y 8TZ
United Kingdom

Tilburg University - European Banking Center, CentER ( email )

PO Box 90153
Tilburg, 5000 LE
Netherlands

Asli Demirgüç-Kunt

World Bank - Development Research Group ( email )

United States
202-473-7479 (Phone)
202-522-1155 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://econ.worldbank.org/staff/ademirguckunt/

World Bank ( email )

1818 H Street, NW
Washington, DC 20433
United States

Maria Soledad Martinez Peria

International Monetary Fund (IMF) ( email )

700 19th Street, N.W.
Washington, DC 20431
United States

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