Journal Article

The Impact of Technology and Regulation on the Geographical Scope of Banking

Hans Degryse and Steven Ongena

in Oxford Review of Economic Policy

Published on behalf of The Oxford Review of Economic Policy Ltd

Volume 20, issue 4, pages 571-590
Published in print January 2004 | ISSN: 0266-903X
Published online January 2004 | e-ISSN: 1460-2121 | DOI: https://dx.doi.org/10.1093/oxrep/grh033
The Impact of Technology and Regulation on the Geographical Scope of Banking

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  • Economic Development and Growth
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We review how technological advances and changes in regulation may shape the (future) geographical scope of banking. We first review how both physical distance and the presence of borders currently affect bank lending conditions (loan pricing and credit availability) and market presence (branching and servicing). Next we discuss how technology and regulation have altered this impact and analyse the current state of the European banking sector. We discuss both theoretical contributions and empirical work and highlight open questions along the way. We draw three main lessons from the current theoretical and empirical literature: (i) bank lending to small businesses in Europe may be characterized both by (local) spatial pricing and resilient (regional and/or national) market segmentation; (ii) because of informational asymmetries in the retail market, bank mergers and acquisitions seem the optimal route of entering another market, long before cross-border servicing or direct entry are economically feasible; and (iii) current technological and regulatory developments may, to a large extent, remain impotent in further dismantling the various residual but mutually reinforcing frictions in the retail banking markets in Europe. We conclude the paper by offering pertinent policy recommendations based on these three lessons.

Journal Article.  0 words. 

Subjects: Economic Development and Growth ; Public Economics ; Political Economy ; Public Policy

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