Publications

The Global Findex Database 2014: Measuring Financial Inclusion around the World

27 Apr 2015
  • Asli Demirguc-Kunt
  • Leora Klapper
  • Dorothe Singer
  • Peter Van Oudheusden

The Global Financial Inclusion (Global Findex) database, launched by the World Bank in 2011, provides comparable indicators showing how people around the world save, borrow, make payments, and manage risk. The 2014 edition of the database reveals that 62 percent of adults worldwide have an account at a bank or another type of financial institution or with a mobile money provider. Between 2011 and 2014, 700 million adults became account […]

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The Business Case for Branchless Banking – What's Missing?

18 Apr 2015
  • Ann-Byrd Platt

This MicroSave Briefing examines the problems that prevent branchless banking from becoming sustainable and profitable. Branchless banking is not sustainable despite world wide increase in active users. The paper states that current models are unlikely to solve this problem.Banks and regulators seldom pay attention to the three factors necessary for the success of branchless banking, namely, new and active accounts, optimal technology pricing and collaboration, and a highly motivated agent […]

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bKash Bangladesh: A Fast Start for Mobile Financial Services

18 Apr 2015
  • Gregory Chen
  • Stephen Rasmussen

The first mobile financial service deployments were launched in Bangladesh in mid-2011, and by the end of 2013 they were being used by 22 percent of the adult population (Intermedia 2014)—a fast start for a large country of 160 million inhabitants. In 2013 registered mobile financial services accounts in Bangladesh grew faster than in any other country. Even though Bangladesh’s central bank has approved more than 20 licenses to offer […]

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Sustainable Energy & Water Access through M2M Connectivity

18 Apr 2015
  • Michael Nique
  • Firas Arab

From urban to rural areas, mobile networks have become the predominant infrastructure in emerging markets and more people are now covered by mobile networks than have access to energy and water. Increased GSM coverage and growing mobile handset ownership in developing countries have become tools of inclusion for the underserved population often lacking access to basic yet critical infrastructure. Beyond voice and SMS, the maturity and cost decrease of Machine […]

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How M-Shwari Works: The Story So Far

15 Apr 2015
  • Tamara Cook
  • Claudia McKay

M-Shwari represents the next frontier of digital financial services as it demonstrates that mobile money infrastructure can be leveraged to offer higher value financial products at scale. “Shwari” means calm in Kiswahili, yet M-Shwari, a bank account offering a combination of savings and loans, has taken the Kenyan market by storm. Offered as a collaboration between the Commercial Bank of Africa (CBA) and mobile network operator (MNO) Safaricom through its […]

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Protecting the poor: A microinsurance compendium

09 Apr 2015
  • Craig Churchill
  • Michal Matul

“Protecting the Poor: A microinsurance compendium, volume II”, is a unique collection of recent practices and emerging ideas in microinsurance. It covers the numerous innovations that have emerged in recent years to meet the challenges of providing insurance to low-income people, from new products and delivery channels to consumer education tools, while examining institutional changes in regulations, providers and schemes. As the microinsurance community dramatically evolves and millions more low-income households […]

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Social Performance Indicators for Microinsurance

09 Apr 2015

This note presents the social performance indicators for microinsurance, which are designed by and developed for microinsurance practitioners to monitor, improve and champion social performance. Why is social performance important? Microinsurance targets vulnerable and financially excluded people who are exposed to relatively high levels of risk, such as illness, death, natural disaster, crime or crop failure. If well designed and delivered, microinsurance can provide a formal and dependable coping mechanism […]

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Lessons Learned and Recommendations for Donors Supporting Microinsurance

09 Apr 2015
  • Taara Chandani

Microinsurance is the provision of insurance services to low‐income people, who typically do not have access to insurance or to adequate social security services. Microinsurance is receiving increasing attention from donors as an effective strategy for helping the poor to cope with risks, reduce vulnerability, and build their asset base. This Note offers operational guidelines for donors as they construct a road map for entering or for getting more deeply […]

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Performance Indicators for Microinsurance

09 Apr 2015
  • John Wipf
  • Denis Garand

Microinsurance is regarded by some as a risk management mechanism that the poor can use to compensate for the lack of appropriate state-sponsored social protection programmes. Alternatively, it is viewed by others as an opportunity to provide financial services to the low-income market at a profit. Regardless of where the emphasis is placed, all microinsurance programmes should aim to become viable since donor or government subsidies are either only temporary […]

Financial Inclusion and Global Regulatory Standards: An Empirical Study across Developing Economies

08 Apr 2015
  • Mariana Magaldi de Sousa

Developing global regulatory standards for financial inclusion in developing economies This paper assesses to what extent differences in the adoption of post-crisis global regulatory standards can explain cross-country variation in financial inclusion. It enquires into whether implementation of global regulatory standards hampered financial inclusion or helped it. It also evaluates whether national regulators in developing countries have been able to apply international regulatory recommendations in a proportionate manner. The paper […]

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