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Unbundling interest rate and bank credit nexus on income inequality: structural break analysis from Nigeria

Ngozi Adeleye ()

Journal of Financial Regulation and Compliance, 2020, vol. 29, issue 1, 63-78

Abstract: Purpose - Income inequality stalls economic growth with undesirable socio-economic consequences. Despite various measures targeted towards reducing the inequality gap, disparities in income distribution persist in Nigeria. Therefore, this study aims to explore a new line of argument to the finance mechanism in reducing income inequality. Design/methodology/approach - The study uses time-series data on Nigeria from 1980 to 2015 with analysis conducted using the autoregressive distributed lag-error correction model approach of Findings - The results show amongst others that the channel of real interest rate on income inequality is through bank credit, real interest rate has an indirect relationship to income inequality and bank credit has an equalising impact on income inequality when the model is augmented for a structural break. The results show amongst others, that, on average, ceteris paribus, a 1% point increase in the real lending interest rate is associated with a 0.45% decline in the volume of bank credit. Originality/value - This paper engages a new line of argument by unbundling how financial intermediation impacts on income inequality. The extant literature submits that finance directly impacts income inequality, whereas this study investigates further to show that interest rate impacts income inequality through bank credit. That is, the transmission mechanism by which finance affects income inequality is modelled and analysed.

Keywords: Interest rate; Bank credit; Income inequality; Structural break; ARDL-ECM; D63; F36; G20; G21; O15; O55 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2020
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