Access to financial services: the case of the ‘Mzansi’ account in South Africa

Kostov, Phillip orcid iconORCID: 0000-0002-4899-3908, Arun, Thankom Gopinath and Annim, Samuel Kobina (2015) Access to financial services: the case of the ‘Mzansi’ account in South Africa. Review of Development Finance, 5 (1). pp. 34-42. ISSN 1879-9337

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The presence of rationing of financial services in the developing countries is a major obstacle to achieving sustainable growth. In recent years there have been co-ordinated efforts to increase the level of financial inclusion, i.e. to reduce the supply-side constraints restricting access to finance. This paper aims to understand household’s latent behaviour decision making in accessing financial services, by analysing an entry level Mzansi account in South Africa. The willingness to access financial services is not taken as given, but it is instead defined by perceptions and attitudes. The Mzansi intervention is appealing to individuals with basic but insufficient financial education. Aspirations seem to be very influential in revealing the choice of financial services and to this end, Mzansi is perceived as a pre-entry account not meeting the aspirations of individuals aiming to climb up the financial services ladder.

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