In news– World Bank has released the Global Findex Database 2021 recently.
About the database-
- The database is titled as The Global Findex Database 2021: Financial Inclusion, Digital Payments, and Resilience in the Age of COVID-19.
- It has surveyed how people in 123 economies use financial services throughout 2021.
- It contains updated indicators on access to and use of formal and informal financial services and digital payments, and offers insights into the behaviors that enable financial resilience.
- The data also identify gaps in access to and usage of financial services by women and poor adults.
- Since 2011 the Global Findex Database has been the definitive source of data on global access to financial services from payments to savings and borrowing.
Following are the key fings of the database-
- Worldwide account ownership has reached 76 percent of the global population and 71 percent of people in developing countries
- The gender gap in account ownership across developing economies has fallen to 6 percentage points from 9 percentage points, where it hovered for many years.
- Receiving digital payments such as a wage payment, a government transfer, or a domestic remittance, catalyzes the use of other financial services, such as storing, saving, and borrowing money.
- In developing economies, 40 percent of adults who paid utility bills (18 percent of adults ) did so directly from an account.
- In China, 80 percent of adults made a digital merchant payment, whereas in other developing economies 20% of adults did so.
- COVID-19 boosted the adoption of digital financial services: 40 percent of adults in developing economies excluding China who made a digital merchant payment using a card, phone, or the internet, and one-third of adults in developing economies who paid a utility bill directly from an account, did so for the first time after the start of the pandemic.
- Mobile money has become an important enabler of financial inclusion in Sub-Saharan Africa—especially for women, both as a driver of account ownership and of account usage through mobile payments, saving, and borrowing.
- About half of adults in developing economies could access extra funds within 30 days if faced with an unexpected expense.
- As per this report, India is among seven countries home to half the world’s 1.4 billion adults without access to formal banking.
- People without an account at a financial institution or a mobile money service provider have been classified as unbanked.
- Large shares of the global population without formal banking (130 million and 230 million, respectively) lives in India and China because of their size.
- Pakistan, with 115 million unbanked adults and Indonesia, with 100 million, have the next-largest population without banking access.
- These four countries, together with Bangladesh, Egypt and Nigeria, have 54 per cent or 740 million people of the global unbanked population.
- It has found that women are more likely to be unbanked than men.
- Larger gender gaps among the unbanked with no ID were observed in Benin, Cote d’Ivoire and Liberia.
- Brazil, China, Kenya, Russia and Thailand have relatively high account ownership rates, yet a majority of those still unbanked are women.