This paper examines the overall economic growth effect when the growth in finance and real sector is disproportionate relying on panel data for 29 sub–Saharan African countries over the period 1980–2014. Results from the system generalized method of moments (GMM) reveal that, while financial development supports economic growth, the extent to which finance helps growth depends crucially on the simultaneous growth of real and financial sectors.
The primacy of factors of production, such as labour and capital, over Total Factor Productivity (TFP) in stimulating economic growth, has long been a contentious subject in discussions on the underlying causes of economic growth. While the roles of labour and capital have been exhaustively explored, TFP still has room for further exploration, more specifically in sub-Saharan Africa (SSA).
The role of financial sector development in economic volatility has been extensively studied albeit without informative results largely on the failure of extant studies to decompose volatility into its various components. By disaggregating volatility, this study examines the effect of financial development on volatility as well as channels through which finance affects volatility components in 23 sub-Saharan African countries over the period 1980–2014 using the newly developed panel cointegration estimation strategy.
This study empirically evaluates spatial externalities in financial development in SADC in line with spatial proximity theory, which asserts that externalities increase with proximity. Precisely, the study tests if financially less developed economies in SADC benefit from linkages with and proximity to South Africa, a financially developed economy. The Spatial Durbin Model estimated using GMM and Dynamic Panel Estimations, establishes that financial development in the SADC region is sensitive to space and hence not immune to spatial externalities.
Although the financial sector of Africa has witnessed massive reforms to enhance its ability to support economic activities, reduce poverty and lower income inequality, Africa remains the poorest region and the second most unequal region in the world after Latin America. Despite these established facts, little empirical research exists on the relationship between financial development and income inequality in Africa.
The financial sector of an economy is now widely agreed to constitute a potential important channel for growth. Many regions such as Sub-Saharan Africa, however, have relatively underdeveloped financial sector. Although several policy designs have been used to induce growth in the sector, there has been little or no success in the majority of the countries in the region. Existing theories suggest that inflation has negative effects on financial development. Other theories argue that inflation has a threshold effects on financial development.