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Access to Financial Services and Financial Infrastructure Withdrawal: Problems and Policies

Andrew Leyshon and Nigel Thrift
Area
Vol. 26, No. 3 (Sep., 1994), pp. 268-275
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/20003457
Page Count: 8
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Access to Financial Services and Financial Infrastructure Withdrawal: Problems and Policies
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Abstract

This paper is concerned with the problem of access to retail financial services. The recession of the early 1990s caused the financial services industry to 'restructure for profit' and become more risk-averse. One of the consequences of this strategy is the retreat of the financial services industry from poorer and more disadvantaged communities. Bank and building society branches have closed in some areas while insurance premiums have reached new heights in others. The financial services industry is retreating to a more affluent customer base at the expense of poorer and less profitable customers. These strategies of financial exclusion are likely to have important implications for the geography of economic development in Britain. Evidence from the United States, where similar processes are more firmly established, points to a relationship between financial infrastructure withdrawal and problems of economic development in communities excluded from the financial system.

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