West African Economic and Monetary Union: Financial Depth and Macrostability

Author/Editor: Patrick A. Imam ; Christina Kolerus
Publication Date: October 22, 2013
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Summary: The financial system in the WAEMU remains largely bank-based. The banking sector comprises 106 banks and 13 financial institutions, which together hold more than 90 percent of the financial system’s assets (about 54 percent of GDP at end-2011). Five banks account for 50 percent of banking assets. The ownership structure of the sector is changing fast, with the rapid rise of foreign-owned (pan-African) banks. This contributes to higher competition but also rising heterogeneity in the banking system, with large and profitable cross-country groups competing with often weaker country-based (and sometime government-owned) banks. Nonbank financial institutions are developing quickly, notably insurance companies, but remain overall small. This paper presents a detailed analysis of the banking system.
Series: African Departmental Paper No. 13/6
Subject(s): Financial systems | West African Economic and Monetary Union | Banking sector | Microfinance | Financial institutions | Monetary policy | Macroprudential Policy | Cross country analysis | West Africa

Publication Date: October 22, 2013
ISBN/ISSN: 9781484348222 Format: Paper
Stock No: WFEMUEA Pages: 45
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