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Risk Sharing and Transactions Costs: Evidence from Kenya's Mobile Money Revolution

Listed author(s):
  • William Jack
  • Tavneet Suri
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    We explore the impact of reduced transaction costs on risk sharing by estimating the effects of a mobile money innovation on consumption. In our panel sample, adoption of the innovation increased from 43 to 70 percent. We find that, while shocks reduce consumption by 7 percent for nonusers, the consumption of user households is unaffected. The mechanisms underlying these consumption effects are increases in remittances received and the diversity of senders. We report robustness checks supporting these results and use the four-fold expansion of the mobile money agent network as a source of exogenous variation in access to the innovation.

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    Article provided by American Economic Association in its journal American Economic Review.

    Volume (Year): 104 (2014)
    Issue (Month): 1 (January)
    Pages: 183-223

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    Handle: RePEc:aea:aecrev:v:104:y:2014:i:1:p:183-223
    Note: DOI: 10.1257/aer.104.1.183
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