|29th IBIMA Conference
3 - 4 May 2017
Financial Liberalization and Economic Growth in Nigeria
Isibor Areghan, Okoye Lawrence Uchenna and Modebe Nwanneka J,
The financial liberalization literature assumed that the removal of government control and restrictions on the workings of the financial market would stimulate higher savings as interest rate would be more market driven. The higher savings would enhance greater investment in the classical Keynesian fashion of savings being equal to investment. The increase in investment would lead to economic development and growth all other things being equal. Therefore, according to the main tenets of the financial liberalization literature, we should expect to see higher saving rates (as well as higher levels of investment and economic growth) following financial liberalization. Is this the case in Nigeria? To establish this, the study employs an empirical examination using the Error Correction Mechanism (ECM). Annual time series data were obtained from the Central Bank of Nigeria Statistical Bulletin for the period 1990 to 2015 on the variables used for the study. The result shows the Error Correction Mechanism has a very high coefficient of multiple determinations in both the Over-parameterized and the Parsimonious Models. However, the descriptive statistics shows that financial liberalization has impacted minimally on economic growth in Nigeria for the period under review. The particular sequencing of the liberalization process and the hostile macroeconomic environment in Nigeria over the years has combined to minimize the expected benefits of financial liberalization. The authors recommend that government should promote monetary stability, ensure sound macroeconomic environment and provide critical infrastructures to enable the economy grow in a sustainable manner.