Banks in general do not see women as a distinct segment because they lack market size and segmentation information. They are also not able to prove the business case internally and therefore cannot get the internal resources they need. Although there has been an increased focus on the collection and use of demand-side customer data, data on the supply side remains sparse.

Why it matters

Access to and use of sex-disaggregated data is essential to increasing women’s access to financial services. Around the world, women are un-served and under-served by financial institutions. Women face both an access and a service gap: There is an estimated $300 billion credit shortfall for women-owned micro-, small- and medium-sized enterprises in emerging economies; in addition, women are more likely to be dissatisfied with banking services worldwide.

Partnering with Data2X

The Global Banking Alliance for Women, an international consortium of financial institutions interested in building women’s wealth worldwide, is partnering with the Inter-American Development Bank and Data2X to develop a multi-level and multi-stakeholder approach to incentivize the widespread collection and reporting of sex-disaggregated data by banks.

Stakeholders will include banks, banking associations, international and national regulators, development finance institutions, and coalitions involved in promoting full financial inclusion. The initiative will be bank-driven, and will start with a Data Working Group and a dialog to understand how all stakeholders can support banks in this process. Recommendations for what data should be collected and proposals for how best to support this will be presented and discussed at a Global Data Symposium, to take place September 2015 in São Paulo, Brazil, coinciding with the 2015 GBA Annual Summit, hosted by Itaú Unibanco. Lessons learned will be integrated and adopted by key international stakeholders, helping to close the gender data gaps for financial services globally.