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Cross-country variation in financial inclusion: a global perspective
Recent years have witnessed a global commitment to advancing financial inclusion as a key enabler for promoting equal opportunity and reducing poverty. In this paper, we use the IMF’s Financial Access Survey data and two different approaches to construct a multidimensional financial inclusion index for a global sample of 95 countries over 2004-15. Results reveal an overall progress in financial inclusion over the period under study, most markedly in the use and access dimensions. Financial inclusion appears to be positively and significantly associated with GDP per capita, employment, bank competition, human development, government integrity, and internet usage. Our evidence also points to the importance of considering the level of national income when designing policies to boost financial inclusion.
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