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Financial Services Experiment in Ghana

Two major research efforts on financial service incorporating household surveys are either being undertaken or about to be undertaken.  The FINMARK Trust, established by the UK Government's Department for International Development (DfID), is designed to ‘make financial markets work for the poor’.  One of the activities financed by this Trust is to carry out approximately 20 surveys in the Africa region.  To date, six of these surveys have already been implemented.  The surveys collect detailed financial services data from one, randomly-selected member for each household included in the sample.  These initial surveys did not collect any household level data but doing so is under discussion for the next batch of surveys. 

A second initiative to collect household and individual level financial service data is being launched by the World Bank.  Building upon the efforts of the Financial Sector in the World Bank (both the network and regions), and partnerships established outside the World Bank, Development Economics Research Group (DECRG) researchers and operational colleagues are undertaking a major effort to survey individuals and households in developing countries concerning their use of financial services.  The goal of this effort is to understand the demand and supply of such services and to harmonize measures across countries for cross-country comparability.  It is expected that some thirty surveys, throughout the developing world, will be carried out as part of this project.  The Financial Sector Surveys (FSS) will collect both individual level and household level data.

For the Ghana Finance Survey the households will be divided into 6 groups, each made up of 385 households distributed evenly among the zones of the country.  In Groups 1 and 2, only the head of household will be interviewed. Group 1 will be rural and Group 2 urban.  In Groups 3 (rural) and 4 (urban) a randomly selected adult (non-head of household) will be selected to be interviewed.  In these four groups the questionnaire that will be administered will be the same (Questionnaire Adult).

In the final two groups (Group 5 rural and Group 6 urban) a different questionnaire will be used (Questionnaire Total) and all adults (over age 15) will be interviewed.

The Working Paper "Measuring household usage of financial services : does it matter how or whom you ask ?" is available for downloading.

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