Abstract

This study employs various bootstrapped Malmquist indices and efficiency scores to investigate the effects of government regulation on the performance of the Iranian banking industry over the period 2003-2008. An alternative decomposition of the Malmquist index, introduced by Simar and Wilson (1998a), is also applied to further decompose technical changes into pure technical change and changes in scale efficiency. A combination of these approaches facilitates a robust and comprehensive analysis of Iranian banking industry performance. While this approach is more appropriate than the traditional Malmquist approach for banking efficiency studies, it has not previously been applied to any developing country’s banking system. The results show that although, in general, the regulatory changes had different effects on individual banks, the efficiency and productivity of the overall industry declined after regulation. We also find that productivity had positive growth before regulation, mainly due to improvements in pure technology, and that government ownership had an adverse impact on the efficiency level of state-owned banks. The bootstrap approach demonstrates that the majority of estimates obtained in this study are statistically significant.

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