Microfinance and Gender: Is There a Glass Ceiling on Loan Size?
AbstractMost of the customers of microfinance institutions are female. But do men and women benefit from the same credit conditions? We investigate this issue by presenting an original model and testing its predictions on an exceptional database comprising 34,000 loan applications from a Brazilian microfinance institution. The model determines the optimal loan size fixed by a gender-biased lender, depending on the borrower’s creditworthiness and the intensity of the lender’s bias. The empirical analysis detects no gender bias in loan denial, but uncovers disparate treatment with regard to credit conditions. In particular, we find a “glass ceiling” effect. The gender gap in loan size increases disproportionately with respect to the scale of the borrower’s project. The results are insensitive to the loan officer’s gender.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles in its series ULB Institutional Repository with number 2013/149090.
Date of creation: 2013
Date of revision:
Publication status: Published in: World development (2013) v.42,p.165-181
microcredit; microfinance; gender discrimination; women entrepreneurs; Latin America; Brazil;
Other versions of this item:
- Agier, Isabelle & Szafarz, Ariane, 2013. "Microfinance and Gender: Is There a Glass Ceiling on Loan Size?," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 42(C), pages 165-181.
- Isabelle Agier & Ariane Szafarz, 2010. "Microfinance and Gender: Is There a Glass Ceiling in Loan Size?," Working Papers CEB 10-047, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
- O16 - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Financial Markets; Saving and Capital Investment; Corporate Finance and Governance
- D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design
- J33 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Wages, Compensation, and Labor Costs - - - Compensation Packages; Payment Methods
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