The Financial Development Report measures and analyses the factors enabling the development of financial systems in a number of economies around the world. It aims to provide a comprehensive means for countries to benchmark various aspects of their financial systems and establish priorities for improvement. It is published annually so that countries can benchmark themselves and track their progress over time.
The Report does not attempt to inform current or short-term events, such as the latest developments affecting the eurozone. Rather, it aims to serve decision-makers in developing a balanced perspective as to which aspects of their country's financial system are most important in the long term and empirically calibrate this view relative to other countries.
The Report presents the rankings of the Financial Development Index, developed by the World Economic Forum in collaboration with the academic community, multilateral organizations and business leaders. It assembles a vast amount of data to create an assessment of the different aspects of complex financial systems, including the institutional environment, the business environment, financial stability, banks, capital markets, and overall capital availability and access.
Essay contributions elaborate on a variety of issues. In 2012, for example, the Report shared insights on:
- The debate about regulating traditional, as well as shadow banking systems in light of the financial crisis of 2007-2009
- The rise of emerging market banks, their importance as foreign investors, and how the global financial crisis has allowed these banks to increase their footprint at the regional level.
Data used in the calculation of the Index are fully annotated and clearly presented.
The Report appeals to a large audience such as policy-makers, business leaders, academics and different organizations of civil society. It aims to provide policy-makers with a balanced perspective on which aspects of their country’s financial system are most important and with the ability to empirically calibrate this view relative to other countries.