The effectiveness of banking sector reforms on financial intermediation in African countries

Chakahwata, Cynthia
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The banking industry plays an essential role in any economy in terms of resource mobilisation and allocation. Banks also accept deposits, create credit, offer agency, utility and money transmission services.A well-developed banking industry plays an important role in efficient financial intermediation and this helps to boost economic growth. The financial intermediary role performed by banks allows the banking sector to influence the direction of available resources, thereby affecting the rate of economic growth (Obadeyi, 2014).Due to these benefits derived from the banking sector, a large number of industrialised, developing and transition countries have undertaken extensive reforms in their banking sector over the past two decades (Swary and Topf 1992). Banking sector reforms are defined as government intervention in the banking industry to provide a panacea for existing anomalies in the banking sector (Azeez and Ojoh, 2012). The reforms that were implemented by various countries included interest rates liberalisation, the removal of quantitative controls on lending, lifting barriers to competition, deregulation of the banking sector, the privatisation of public financial institutions and the introduction of market based securities. They were implemented to enhance the intermediation role of banks, ensure that banks are well positioned to greatly mobilise savings and optimally allocate these mobilised savings in the form of credit extension to profitable investments (Ajayi, 2005). The treatise investigates the effectiveness of banking sector reforms on financial intermediation in African Countries using data of eleven countries. Annual time series and panel data which covered a period of 20 years from 1980 to 2000 was used.Secondary data which was used for this treatise was gathered fromjournals, books, peer-reviewed articles, International Monetary Fund statistics (IMF), Global Banking (Center for financial markets Milken Institute) and World Bank Financial Development database was used in this research. The regression results showed that the banking sector reforms had a negative impact on financial intermediation on the eleven countries under study. Thus, the reforms failed to achieve their objectives of mobilising savings and increasing intermediation activities (lending). In addition, the results showed that the control variables which were inflation and gross savings had an inversely relationship with financial intermediation except for income per capita which had a positive relationship. The main causes of the failure of the banking sector iii reforms in Africa were the macroeconomic imbalances, financial system instability and wrong sequencing of the reforms.
Thesis (M.M. (Finance & Investment)--University of the Witwatersrand, Faculty of Commerce, Law and Management, Wits Business School, 2016
Chakahwata, Cynthia (2016) The effectiveness of banking sector reforms on financial intermediation in African countries, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, <>