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The purpose of this paper is to present an analysis of the size of the banking sectors in central and Eastern European (CEE) countries. The banking sectors' ability is…
The purpose of this paper is to present an analysis of the size of the banking sectors in central and Eastern European (CEE) countries. The banking sectors' ability is focused to provide financial intermediation between savers and investors in the economy.
The existing literature on banking in transition economies argues in unison that banking sectors in CEE countries are too small and do not provide sufficient levels of financial intermediation. In this paper, a common drawback of the existing measures used to indicate the size of CEE banking sectors is detected: they all relate the volume of bank intermediation to gross domestic product (GDP). It is argued that since transition economies have a low stock of financial wealth relative to economic activity, a more objective measure of the size of the banking sector is the ratio of bank assets to a proxy of the stock of financial wealth rather than to GDP.
There is evidence that the estimation of the size of the banking sectors relative to GDP produce downward biased measures for the ability of CEE banks to intermediate available financial resources. When the size of the banking sector is measured relative to financial wealth, the gap between the developed European Union banking systems and those of the CEE countries is not as severe as argued in studies based on the traditional approach of measuring the size of the banking system with respect to GDP.
Using the downward biased measure of financial system development to stress the underdevelopment of the financial intermediation in CEE may produce misleading policy recommendations, e.g. recommendations in the direction of rapid financial system expansion by lowering barriers of entry for new banks. The authors' new measure presents an alternative that should be considered by policy makers in the design of measures promoting financial system development.
The paper challenges the existing consensus on severe underdevelopment of the CEE banking sectors. It presents a new approach of accessing financial system development in emerging economies.
Globalisation is generally defined as the “denationalisation of clusters of political, economic, and social activities” that destabilize the ability of the sovereign State to control activities on its territory, due to the rising need to find solutions for universal problems, like the pollution of the environment, on an international level. Globalisation is a complex, forceful legal and social process that take place within an integrated whole with out regard to geographical boundaries. Globalisation thus differs from international activities, which arise between and among States, and it differs from multinational activities that occur in more than one nation‐State. This does not mean that countries are not involved in the sociolegal dynamics that those transboundary process trigger. In a sense, the movements triggered by global processes promote greater economic interdependence among countries. Globalisation can be traced back to the depression preceding World War II and globalisation at that time included spreading of the capitalist economic system as a means of getting access to extended markets. The first step was to create sufficient export surplus to maintain full employment in the capitalist world and secondly establishing a globalized economy where the planet would be united in peace and wealth. The idea of interdependence among quite separate and distinct countries is a very important part of talks on globalisation and a significant side of today’s global political economy.