Research & Analysis

Country-Level Savings Assessment Tool

CGAP produced this Country-Level Savings Assessment (CLSA) Tool to help guide analysts and researchers who wish to undertake CLSAs and to guide governments and donors who wish to commission CLSAs. This Technical Guide explains the areas of analysis covered in a CLSA, the methodology used, and how the CLSA can be tailored to meet the needs of the commissioning agency.

What is a Country-Level Savings Assessment?
CLSAs are financial sector studies that identify opportunities for, and obstacles to, increasing poor people’s access to formal sector deposit services. CGAP developed and refined the CLSA methodology over the course of savings assessments in Benin, Bosnia, Mexico, the Philippines, and Uganda. These countries were chosen because they are diverse in terms of regulatory regimes, prevalent institutional models, and geographic location. This diversity helped ensure the methodology addressed variables that influence access to deposit services as comprehensively as possible. Examples from these assessments will be used to illustrate points throughout this guide.

ACLSA first examines the demand for savings mechanisms among poor clients, and then it evaluates the ability of the financial sector to meet that demand. The supply-side evaluation proceeds at three levels: micro (retail institutions), meso (financial sector infrastructure), and macro (policy).

This approach helps analysts make recommendations that address weaknesses and build on strengths that exist at all three levels to improve the supply of deposit services available to poor people. The CLSA does not include primary data collection among clients.

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