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Title: Financialisation and the myth of poverty alleviation in Ghana : a theoretical and empirical investigation of the impact of financial liberalisation on sustainable economic development
Author: Frimpong, F.
Awarding Body: University of East London
Current Institution: University of East London
Date of Award: 2020
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The key theme of the thesis is that the rise of finance (financialisation) in Ghana has done very little, if any, in the fight against poverty. It has, however, resulted in rising financial profits, financialising poverty and stagnating the real sector of the economy. The thesis analyses financialisation in a low middle-income country. The focus is to investigate the impact of the exponential growth of finance on poverty alleviation in Ghana. It adopts a political economy approach to the changing behaviour/conduct of banks, industrial enterprises and households. Different strands of thoughts are reviewed in their understanding of financialisation. The theoretical framework is set vis-à-vis the empirical reality to assess whether the Ghanaian economy is financialised. It has been presented in this thesis that Ghana is indeed a financialised economy. However, it demonstrates several unique characteristics for different sectors because of its subordinate/inferior status shaped by imperial relations between states in the world market. The thesis found rising profit for the banking industry, but limited lending to industrial enterprises for long-term investment. However, what is unique in the context of Ghana is excessive lending to the government. The capital structure of firms in Ghana composed of mainly internal funds, as banks are reluctant to lend to firms due to the lucrative returns on less risky government securities. Banks then demand high collateral from firms together with high interests on capital. These obstructive factors, coupled with other contradictions in the political-economic arrangement, impact high cost on firms and therefore limit their ability to make enough profit. Consequently, firms employ less labour and are unable to pay higher wages, resulting in chronic poverty. This thesis presents that financial inclusion policy as a way of empowering the poor makes poverty a financial problem, which requires new credit relation- the financialisation of poverty. The thesis, therefore, argues that poverty should be viewed as a monetary and non-monetary problem.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral