Financial inclusion is critical in reducing poverty and achieving inclusive economic growth. When people can participate in the financial system, they are better able to start and expand businesses, invest in their children’s education, and absorb financial shocks. Yet prior to 2011, little was known about the extent of financial inclusion and the degree to which such groups as the poor, women, and rural residents were excluded from formal financial systems.
By collecting detailed indicators about how adults around the world manage their day-to-day finances, the Global Findex allows policy makers, researchers, businesses, and development practitioners to track how the use of financial services has changed over time. The database can also be used to identify gaps in access to the formal financial system and design policies to expand financial inclusion.