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The impact of financial liberalization on economic growth in sub-Saharan Africa

Foluso A. Akinsola and Nicholas Odhiambo ()

Cogent Economics & Finance, 2017, vol. 5, issue 1, 1338851

Abstract: This study examines the impact of financial liberalization on economic growth, given the discrepancy and the gap in the literature, using a sample of 30 sub-Saharan African (SSA) countries. The study applies a dynamic panel estimation to examine the special role of financial liberalization and banking crises on economic growth in SSA. The linear generalized method of moments is estimated according to the Arellano and Bover approach. We also examine whether differences in income levels across countries in sub-Saharan Africa will affect the relative impact of financial liberalization in SSA. Our findings indicate that the coefficient of the financial liberalization variable is positive and significant for SSA. However, the financial liberalization dummy sign changed to negative for low-income countries, even though it was statistically insignificant. The results also show that there is a negative relationship between a banking crisis and economic growth, showing that the period of a banking crisis can drastically affect economic growth in sub-Saharan Africa. Considering the crucial role played by most financial intermediaries in developing countries, the results have some implications for different African countries, especially countries whose economies are still undergoing financial reforms.

Date: 2017
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