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Financial Inclusion Disparities in the European Union

Cristina Zeldea

Global Economic Observer, 2021, vol. 9, issue 1, 82-90

Abstract: The European Union is a leader when it comes to various inclusion indicators. At first glance, this would suggest that the EU enjoys a high level of financial inclusion. The analysis we performed reveals that the EU-level averages often hide extremes. While Western European countries have a very high level of financial inclusion, when we look at the countries in Eastern Europe, we can even talk about a financial exclusion of the population. The study relies on three sets of indicators, related to the use, geographical access, and digitalization of financial services. On a positive note, inclusion indicators have improved over the analyzed period. However, this improvement took place at different paces for the Member States and, as a result, disparities not only persisted, but even deepened in many cases.

Keywords: financial inclusion; financial integration; disparities; European Union; financial services access; digitalization (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: G20 G21 G50 G53 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2021-06
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