Given significant reforms implemented in the Vietnamese banking system and some similar characteristics in both the economy and banking market between Vietnam, China and India, this thesis aims to comprehensively evaluate the efficiency of Vietnamese banks via the three following studies. The first study investigates the overall level of the cost efficiency of Vietnamese banks and the efficiency effects of two governance reforms, foreign partial acquisition and listing on the stock exchange, using a dataset of 28 local banks over the period 1995- 2011. This study observes that the two-stage SFA (Stochastic Frontier Analysis), the two-stage DEA (Data Envelopment Analysis) and the one-stage SFA approaches produce consistent results regarding the following issues. Firstly, the cost efficiency of Vietnamese banks experienced an upward trend over the analysis period, with the average cost efficiency score of 0.917. State-owned commercial banks are more cost- efficient than joint-stock commercial banks. Secondly, advantageous selection effects occur in the foreign acquisition aspect as banks selected by the foreign institutional investors for partial acquisition are more cost-efficient than those not selected, while adverse selection occurs in the stock listing aspect as banks selected for listing on the stock exchange are less cost-efficient than those not selected. The dynamic effects of foreign partial acquisition and listing on the stock exchange are not significant in the short term, but are significant in the long-term. There is no significant difference in the cost efficiency before and after foreign partial acquisition, and before and after public listing, but foreign partial acquisition leads to cost efficiency losses while public listing results in cost efficiency gains over time. This is the first study to provide insights on the effects of on-going reforms on the cost efficiency of Vietnamese banks. This is also the first study comparing the results obtained from the two-stage SFA approach with those from the two-stage DEA approach and the one-stage SFA approach in Vietnamese banks.
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