8th National Financial Inclusion Report

Mexico’s National Banking & Securities Commission

On 19th June 2017, the National Banking & Securities Commission published its 8th National Financial Inclusion Report (RNIF8). A three-yearly report on the conclusions of the National Financial Inclusion Survey (ENIF) in the second quarter of 2016, on access to and use of different financial services and products.

Gender bias

This is the principal new feature of the RNIF 8. This view stresses the importance of developing mechanisms to make it easier to include women in the financial system, given that they account for more than half the population in Mexico. The report shows a clear gender gap –which narrows as the schooling level rises – in the four dimensions of financial inclusion: access, usage, financial literacy and user protection.

Financial infrastructure

Financial infrastructure (branch offices, agents, ATMs and point-of-sale terminals (dataphones) has increased by 17.8% although it is clear from the report that it still needs to expand. Worth highlighting is the increased use of automatic teller machines, which are one of the most popular access channels, which has had a knock-on effect on the number of Mexicans visiting branch offices, well down from the previous report.

Loans and saving

The number of loans in the loan book has slipped a little. Even so, more than half the adult population has formal or informal credit.

The proportion of MSMEs with loans has grown by 33% in the last 6 years and the amounts borrowed have increased by 130%, while the interest rate is lower. However, even though over 95% of enterprises fall into this category, less than 10% of MSMEs have loans and the figures lent out account for only 25% of all corporate lending.

Another feature that should be highlighted is the recent phenomenon of crowdfunding. In one year, the number of initiatives in this area shot up by 42%, the number of enterprises using this type of financing rose by 38% and the number of people funding these initiatives increased by 41%.

The number of savings contracts grew by 14% in a year. This is 8 percentage points higher than the first results from ENIF. In other words, there is timid progress, but 17.9 million adults still neither have an account in a financial institution nor use formal savings mechanisms.

Transactions and insurance

The number of ATM transactions has increased at an annual rate of 5%, with 98% of these using debit cards. Transfers have grown at the same average annual rate and the most common are online, as a consequence of the 150% rise in the number of online-banking users.

In insurance there has been a slight increase in the percentage of adults with some kind of product in this field, up by 3% over 3 years. Micro-insurance, bearing in mind its link to the microlending supply, is most popular in the life insurance category, associated with a commercial loan.  

We should remind readers that Mexico has the highest penetration of micro-insurance of the 21 countries in Latin America and the Caribbean: 15% of the country’s population has some kind of micro-insurance cover, accounting for 17 million people.