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Microfinance tradeoffs : regulation, competition, and financing

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Author Info

  • Cull, Robert
  • Demirguc-Kunt, Asli
  • Morduch, Jonathan

Abstract

This paper describes important trade-offs that microfinance practitioners, donors, and regulators navigate. Drawing evidence from large, global surveys of microfinance institutions, the authors find a basic tension between meeting social goals and maximizing financial performance. For example, non-profit microfinance institutions make far smaller loans on average and serve more women as a fraction of customers than do commercialized microfinance banks, but their costs per dollar lent are also much higher. Potential trade-offs therefore arise when selecting contracting mechanisms, level of commercialization, rigor of regulation, and the extent of competition. Meaningful interventions in microfinance will require making deliberate choices - and thus embracing and weighing tradeoffs carefully.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by The World Bank in its series Policy Research Working Paper Series with number 5086.

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Date of creation: 01 Oct 2009
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Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:5086

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Keywords: Access to Finance; Debt Markets; Banks&Banking Reform; Emerging Markets; Rural Finance;

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