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Abstract

Access to finance has always been a challenge for small and medium enterprises (SMEs), but the need to address this issue became more pronounced after the global financial crisis, as SMEs are perceived as engines of growth and job creation. However, lack of consistent indicators for SME finance at the country level restricts cross-country analyses. The present paper introduces a supply-side data set to fill this gap, and provides the first set of analyses with this new data set. Global SME lending volume is predicted as $US10tn, 70% of which is in high-income OECD countries. On average, SME loans constitute 13 and 3% of GDP in developed and developing countries, respectively.