The effect of the financial crisis on credit scoring in the retail credit market in South Africa
Van der Walt, Andries Jacobus
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This study follows a three–pronged approach to investigate the effects of the global financial crisis on the South African retail credit market (using Woolworths as subject). These three prongs, or areas, include a literature study, step–by–step credit scoring guide and an application of this guide in an empirical study. To achieve this goal, credit scoring was selected as the quantitative tool to illustrate these effects. Two different periods were chosen to supply a snapshot of the retail credit industry, namely the retail credit situation before and during the global financial crisis. To correctly define and understand the mechanics affecting South Africa's retail credit industry, a literature review was conducted to investigate the global financial crisis, the South African retail credit market and credit scoring itself. The literature investigation explains the global financial crisis and identifies some of the primary drivers behind it. These drivers included the US housing bubble, the introduction of subprime loans and the securitisation of these loans (mortgage backed securities). The study found that these drivers, especially the securitisation of subprime loans, were the vehicle used to enable the crisis to spread globally. The ultimate goal of the study was to provide the individual, and companies, with an understanding of the global financial crisis' effects on the consumer specifically through their credit worthiness and retail credit behaviour. Through the use of credit scoring, the study found that at least one retailer (Woolworths) in the retail industry was affected. Woolworths placed a stronger emphasis on reducing their credit exposure whilst consumers were steadily increasing their facility utilisation.