Safe and Accessible: Bringing Poor Savers into the Formal Financial System

Poor people’s savings often remain in mattresses, piggybanks, or even holes in the ground. But a new CGAP Focus Note turns the spotlight on those savings and examines why they are so often invisible to financial institutions, while formal deposit services remain inaccessible to most poor savers. The answers have to do with weak institutional capacity, but also incomplete financial infrastructure, unhelpful donor practices, and unbalanced policy frameworks. The good news? Financial institutions, donors, and policy makers all have a role to play in increasing poor people’s access to quality savings services.