Financial Inclusion as a Strategy for Enhanced Economic Growth and Development
The paper investigates the effect of financial inclusion on economic growth and development in Nigeria over the period 1986-2015 using the Ordinary Least Squares technique. Financial inclusion was measured in the study using loan to deposit ratio, financial deepening indicators, loan to rural areas, and branch network. Measures of financial deepening adopted in the study are ratios of private sector credit to GDP and broad money supply to GDP. Economic growth was proxied as growth in GDP over successive periods while per capita income was adopted as a measure of poverty, hence an index of development. The study shows that (i) credit delivery to the private sector has not significantly supported economic growth in Nigeria (ii) financial inclusion has promoted poverty alleviation in Nigeria through rural credit delivery. The monetary authorities should deepen financial inclusion efforts through enhanced credit delivery to the private sector as well as strengthen the regulatory framework in order to ensure efficient and effective resource allocation and utilization.
Lawrence Uchenna Okoye, kehinde A Adetiloye, Olayinka Erin, Nwanneka J. Modebe