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Social Identity and Group Lending

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  • Prabirendra Chatterjee
  • Sudipta, Sarangi

Abstract

The success of joint liability programs depends on nature and composition of borrowing groups. Group formation is a costly process and in our model these costs vary with the social identity of group partners. We show that risk heterogeneity in a borrowing group may arise due to the social identity of the agents. The presence of caste and gender bias may not resolve the adverse selection and moral hazard problems created by information asymmetry between the borrowers and the lender. We also find that with costly group formation and state verification, individual liability lending may be better than joint liability lending. Thus ignoring social identity and group formation costs can lead to the failure of a joint liability program. Finally, the paper also suggests that targeting different social groups requires the use of a menu of joint liability costs.

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Paper provided by University of Washington, Department of Economics in its series Working Papers with number UWEC-2005-06-R.

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Handle: RePEc:udb:wpaper:uwec-2005-06-r

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References

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  1. Alberto Alesina & Eliana La Ferrara, 1999. "Participation in Heterogeneous Communities," NBER Working Papers 7155, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Udry, Christopher, 1994. "Risk and Insurance in a Rural Credit Market: An Empirical Investigation in Northern Nigeria," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 61(3), pages 495-526, July.
  3. Jonathan Morduch, 1999. "The Microfinance Promise," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 37(4), pages 1569-1614, December.
  4. Beatriz Armendáriz de Aghion & Jonathan Morduch, 2000. "Microfinance Beyond Group Lending," The Economics of Transition, The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development, vol. 8(2), pages 401-420, July.
  5. Ghatak, Maitreesh & Guinnane, Timothy W., 1999. "The economics of lending with joint liability: theory and practice," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(1), pages 195-228, October.
  6. George A. Akerlof & Rachel E. Kranton, 2000. "Economics And Identity," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 115(3), pages 715-753, August.
  7. de Janvry, Alain & Sadoulet, Elisabeth & Winters, Paul C. & Murgai, Rinku, 2000. "Localized and Incomplete Mutual Insurance," Working Papers 12905, University of New England, School of Economics.
  8. Mark M. Pitt & Shahidur R. Khandker, 1998. "The Impact of Group-Based Credit Programs on Poor Households in Bangladesh: Does the Gender of Participants Matter?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 106(5), pages 958-996, October.
  9. George J. Mailath & Andrew Postlewaite, 2003. "The Social Context of Economic Decisions," Levine's Working Paper Archive 506439000000000315, David K. Levine.
  10. Morduch, Jonathan, 1999. "The role of subsidies in microfinance: evidence from the Grameen Bank," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(1), pages 229-248, October.
  11. Khandker, S.R. & Khalily, B. & Khan, Z., 1995. "Grameen Bank: Performance and Sustainability," World Bank - Discussion Papers 306, World Bank.
  12. La Ferrara, Eliana & Alesina, Alberto, 2000. "Participation in Heterogeneous Communities," Scholarly Articles 4551796, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  13. Bardhan, Pranab, 1993. "Analytics of the institutions of informal cooperation in rural development," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 21(4), pages 633-639, April.
  14. Marcel Fafchamps & Bart Minten, 2000. "Returns to Social Network Capital among Traders," Development Working Papers 145, Centro Studi Luca d\'Agliano, University of Milano.
  15. Akerlof, George A, 1976. "The Economics of Caste and of the Rat Race and Other Woeful Tales," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 90(4), pages 599-617, November.
  16. Amin, Sajeda & Rai, Ashok S. & Topa, Giorgio, 2003. "Does microcredit reach the poor and vulnerable? Evidence from northern Bangladesh," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 70(1), pages 59-82, February.
  17. Ghatak, Maitreesh, 1999. "Group lending, local information and peer selection," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(1), pages 27-50, October.
  18. Masahiro Okuno-Fujiwara, 2002. "Social Relations and Endogenous Culture," The Japanese Economic Review, Japanese Economic Association, vol. 53(1), pages 1-24.
  19. Rahman, Aminur, 1999. "Micro-credit initiatives for equitable and sustainable development: Who pays?," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 27(1), pages 67-82, January.
  20. De Weerdt, Joachim, 2002. "Risk-Sharing and Endogenous Network Formation," Working Paper Series UNU-WIDER Research Paper , World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
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Cited by:
  1. Fernando Aguiar & Pablo Branas-Garza & Maria Paz Espinosa & Luis M. Miller, 2007. "Personal Identity in the Dictator Game," Jena Economic Research Papers 2007-007, Friedrich-Schiller-University Jena, Max-Planck-Institute of Economics.
  2. Chowdhury, Prabal Roy, 2007. "Group-lending with sequential financing, contingent renewal and social capital," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 84(1), pages 487-506, September.
  3. repec:ebl:ecbull:v:15:y:2005:i:9:p:1-8 is not listed on IDEAS
  4. Sudipta Sarangi & Prabirendra Chatterjee, 2005. "Enforcement with Costly Group Formation," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 15(9), pages 1-8.

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