nep-afr New Economics Papers
on Africa
Issue of 2016‒10‒09
five papers chosen by
Sam Sarpong
The University of Mines and Technology

  1. Essential Information Sharing Thresholds for Reducing Market Power in Financial Access: A Study of the African Banking Industry By Simplice Asongu; Sara Le Roux; Vanessa S. Tchamyou
  2. Diaspora Remittance Inflow, Financial Development and the Industrialisation of Africa By Efobi Uchenna; Simplice Asongu; Chinelo Okafor; Vanessa Tchamyou
  3. Do political regime transitions in Africa Matter for Citizens’ Health Status By Díaz Serrano, Lluís; Sackey, Frank G.
  4. Reducing crime and violence: Experimental evidence from cognitive behavioral therapy in Liberia [Appendix] By Christopher Blattman; Julian Jamison; Margaret Sheridan
  5. Cash transfers and psychosocial well-being: evidence from four African countries By Ramlatu Attah; Valentina Barca; Andrew Kardan; Ian MacAuslan; Fred Merttens; Luca Pellerano

  1. By: Simplice Asongu (Yaoundé/Cameroun); Sara Le Roux (Oxford Brookes University, Oxford); Vanessa S. Tchamyou (Yaoundé/Cameroon)
    Abstract: This study investigates the role of information sharing offices (public credit registries and private credit bureaus) in reducing market power for financial access in the African banking industry. The empirical evidence is based on a panel of 162 banks from 42 countries for the period 2001-2011. Three simultaneity-robust empirical strategies are employed, namely: (i) Two Stage Least Squares with Fixed Effects in order to account for simultaneity and the observed heterogeneity; (ii) Generalised Method of Moments (GMM) to control for simultaneity and time-invariant omitted variables and (iii) Instrumental Variable Quantile regressions to account for simultaneity and initial levels of financial access. In order to ensure that information sharing offices influence market power for loan price (quantity) to decrease (increase), public credit registries should have between 3.156% and 3.3% coverage, while private credit bureaus should have between 1.443 and 18.4% coverage. The established thresholds are cut-off points at which information sharing offices completely neutralise the negative effect of market power on financial access. The thresholds are contingent on the dimension (loan price versus loan quantity) and distribution (conditional mean versus conditional distribution) of financial access.
    Keywords: Financial access; Market power; Information sharing
    JEL: G20 G29 L96 O40 O55
    Date: 2016–09
  2. By: Efobi Uchenna (Covenant University, Nigeria); Simplice Asongu (Yaoundé/Cameroun); Chinelo Okafor (Covenant University, Nigeria); Vanessa Tchamyou (Yaoundé, Cameroon)
    Abstract: The paper assesses how remittances directly and indirectly affect industrialisation in a panel of 49 African countries for the period 1980-2014. The indirect impact is assessed through financial development channels. The empirical evidence is based on three interactive and non-interactive simultaneity-robust estimation techniques, namely: (i) Instrumental Fixed Effects (FE) to control for the unobserved heterogeneity; (ii) Generalised Method of Moments (GMM) to control for persistence in industrialisation and (iii) Instrumental Quantile Regressions (QR) to account for initial levels of industrialisation. The non-interactive specification elucidates direct effects of remittances on industrialisation whereas interactive specifications explain indirect impacts. The findings broadly show that for certain initial levels of industrialisation, remittances can drive industrialisation through the financial development mechanism. Policy implications are discussed.
    Keywords: Africa; Financial development; Industrialisation; Remittances
    JEL: F24 F43 F63 G20 O55
    Date: 2016–09
  3. By: Díaz Serrano, Lluís; Sackey, Frank G.
    Abstract: Africa’s quest to achieving improved health status and meeting the Millennium Development Goals targets cannot be effectively achieved without examining the quality of leadership, transitions and regimes and how they impact on the decisions and the policy effectiveness that bring about improved health and living standards of the citizenry. In this paper, we study the importance of regime transitions on government’s expenditure in health and on infant mortality, as a development indicator. A unique panel dataset comprising 44 sub-Saharan African countries spanning from 1970 t0 2010 containing information on political regime and leaders was used for the study. To account for the relevance of leader characteristics in regime transitions in our study we control for leader fixed-effects. The overall results are suggestive of a democratic advantage in the process of achieving effective health policy outcomes for promoting health, and hence the wellbeing of the citizens in contemporary sub-Saharan Africa in the long run. Keywords: Africa, health policy, public health, private health, child mortality, democracy, autocracy, political leaders. JEL Codes: I15, H51, O55
    Keywords: Àfrica -- Política sanitària, 338 - Situació econòmica. Política econòmica. Gestió, control i planificació de l'economia. Producció. Serveis. Turisme. Preus,
    Date: 2016
  4. By: Christopher Blattman; Julian Jamison; Margaret Sheridan
    Abstract: We show that a number of "non cognitive" skills and preferences, including patience and identity, are malleable in adults, and that investments in them reduce crime and violence. We recruited criminally-engaged men and randomized half to eight weeks of cognitive behavioral therapy designed to foster self-regulation, patience, and a noncriminal identity and lifestyle. We also randomized $200 grants. Cash alone and therapy alone initially reduced crime and violence, but effects dissipated over time. When cash followed therapy, crime and violence decreased dramatically for at least a year. We hypothesize that cash reinforced therapy's impacts by prolonging learning-by-doing, lifestyle changes, and self-investment.
    Date: 2016
  5. By: Ramlatu Attah (IPC-IG); Valentina Barca (IPC-IG); Andrew Kardan (IPC-IG); Ian MacAuslan (IPC-IG); Fred Merttens (IPC-IG); Luca Pellerano (IPC-IG)
    Abstract: "There is reasonable consensus that development ultimately aims to improve people's well-being. Well-being is a final goal in a way that other traditional developmental outcomes?income, expenditure, education, health etc.?are not. Yet the large majority of cash transfer impact evaluations focus narrowly on these simpler and relatively easy-to-measure indicators". (?)
    Keywords: Cash transfers, psychosocial, well-being, evidence, African countries
    Date: 2016–09

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