Session by Christian Kastrop, Director, Policy Studies Branch, OECD Economics Department The OECD’s research on Finance and Inclusive Growth has shown that over the past fifty years, credit by banks and other intermediaries to households and businesses has grown three times as fast as economic activity. While greater levels of stock market financing can boost growth, at today’s level of financial development further expansion of bank credit to the private sector is shown to not only slow growth in most OECD countries but also contribute to inequality as better-off households tend to benefit more from financial leverage. Therefore, policy makers should i.a. implement measures to reduce explicit and implicit subsidies to too-big-to-fail financial institutions and reduce the tax bias against equity. To make the financial sector more inclusive and work for people, we must also ensure that companies invest in the real economy. Data analysis of 11 000 of the world’s largest companies has shown that there is a misallocation of capital that needs to be improved in order to foster productivity growth and long-term value creation that can allow for inclusive growth. Promoting competition can support such efforts and also limit unproductive concentration of profits and wealth. New analysis also shows a fragmentation of productivity that needs to be addressed, with a majority of companies sitting in a ‘trough’ of low productivity levels and moderate growth from which it is hard to exit. The current low-interest, low-growth environment makes it also more difficult for pension funds and life insurers to keep their financial promises of providing adequate retirements incomes. These institutional investors are thus driven to pursue higher-risk investment strategies that could ultimately undermine their solvency. This potentially jeopardises the secure retirement especially of the poorest of our citizens.