Women’s Financial Inclusion
Globally, there is a gender gap in financial inclusion. Women are 7% points less likely than men to have a bank account globally. Further, even when women have full access to banking services, they face much greater challenges in obtaining services that meet their needs. There is an estimated $300 billion credit shortfall for women-owned micro-, small-, and medium-sized enterprises in emerging economies, and women are also more likely to be dissatisfied with banking services worldwide.
Why it matters
Closing the gender gap in financial inclusion could help reduce poverty and foster economic growth worldwide. To achieve this, banks need an accurate picture of the women’s market. While there have been recent significant advances in the collection of demand-side data, sex disaggregated supply-side data remains sparse. Banks struggle to prove the business case for sex-disaggregating their data, in part because women are not seen as a distinct client base. Increasing the production, availability, and use of sex-disaggregated data both on the demand for and supply of financial services will benefit banks and country policymakers and regulators, enabling them to build the business case for serving women and develop effective policies that target them.
Partnering with Data2X
Data2X has partnered with the Global Banking Alliance for Women, the Inter-American Development Bank, the International Finance Corporation, the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank Group, and the Alliance for Financial Inclusion to encourage the widespread production and use of supply- and demand-side sex-disaggregated data on women’s access to and use of financial services.
The partnership project is currently developing a Global Gender Data Strategy – a multi-level and multi-stakeholder approach to incentivize widespread collection and reporting of sex-disaggregated financial inclusion data by banks – as well as engaging financial regulators and policymakers in global advocacy and awareness-building.
 Demirguc-Kunt, Asli, Leora Klapper, Dorothe Singer, and Peter Van Oudheusden. 2015. “The Global Findex Database 2014: Measuring Financial Inclusion around the World.” Policy Research Working Paper 7255, World Bank, Washington, DC.