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The empirics of microfinance: what do we know?

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  • Niels Hermes
  • Robert Lensink

Abstract

Microfinance has received a lot of attention recently, both from policy makers as well as in academic circles. Two of the main topics that have been hotly debated are explaining joint liability group lending and its implications for reducing information asymmetries, and the trade-off between the financial sustainability and outreach of microfinance programmes. This Feature contains three novel empirical contributions providing new insights with respect to why and how joint liability group lending works. It also contains the first large-scale systematic analysis of the trade-off between financial performance and outreach of microfinance institutions. Copyright 2007 The Author(s). Journal compilation Royal Economic Society 2007.

Suggested Citation

  • Niels Hermes & Robert Lensink, 2007. "The empirics of microfinance: what do we know?," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 117(517), pages 1-10, February.
  • Handle: RePEc:ecj:econjl:v:117:y:2007:i:517:p:f1-f10
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