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Microfinance and Household Poverty Reduction: New evidence from India

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  • Katsushi Imai
  • Thankom Arun
  • Samuel Kobina Annim

Abstract

The objective of the present study is to examine whether household access to microfinance reduces poverty. Using national household data from India, treatment effects model is employed to estimate the poverty-reducing effects of MFIs loans for productive purposes, such as investment in agriculture or non-farm businesses on household poverty levels. These models take into account the endogenous binary treatment effects and sample selection bias associated with access to MFIs. Despite some limitations, such as those arising from potential unobservable important determinants of access to MFIs, significant positive effect of MFI productive loans on multidimensional welfare indicator has been confirmed. The significance of treatment "effects" coefficients have been verified by both Tobit and Propensity Score Matching models. In addition, we found that loans for productive purposes were more important for poverty reduction in rural than in urban areas. However in urban areas, simple access to MFIs has larger average poverty-reducing effects than the access to loans from MFIs for productive purposes. This leads to exploring service delivery opportunities that provide an additional avenue to monitor the usage of loans to enhance the outreach.
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Suggested Citation

  • Katsushi Imai & Thankom Arun & Samuel Kobina Annim, 2010. "Microfinance and Household Poverty Reduction: New evidence from India," The School of Economics Discussion Paper Series 1008, Economics, The University of Manchester.
  • Handle: RePEc:man:sespap:1008
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    File URL: http://hummedia.manchester.ac.uk/schools/soss/economics/discussionpapers/EDP-1008.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. John Weiss & Heather Montgomery, 2005. "Great Expectations: Microfinance and Poverty Reduction in Asia and Latin America," Oxford Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 33(3-4), pages 391-416.
    2. Basu, Priya & Srivastava, Pradeep, 2005. "Scaling-up microfinance for India's rural poor," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3646, The World Bank.
    3. Shahidur R. Khandker, 2005. "Microfinance and Poverty: Evidence Using Panel Data from Bangladesh," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 19(2), pages 263-286.
    4. Heckman, James, 2013. "Sample selection bias as a specification error," Applied Econometrics, Publishing House "SINERGIA PRESS", vol. 31(3), pages 129-137.
    5. Menno Pradhan & Martin Ravallion, 2000. "Measuring Poverty Using Qualitative Perceptions Of Consumption Adequacy," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 82(3), pages 462-471, August.
    6. Katsushi Imai & Thankom Arun, 2008. "Does Microfinance Reduce Poverty in India?," The School of Economics Discussion Paper Series 0814, Economics, The University of Manchester.
    7. Robert Cull & Asli Demirgüç-Kunt & Jonathan Morduch, 2009. "Microfinance Meets the Market," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 23(1), pages 167-192, Winter.
    8. Suresh Sundaresan (ed.), 2008. "Microfinance," Books, Edward Elgar Publishing, number 13148, December.
    9. P. Mosley, 2001. "Microfinance and Poverty in Bolivia," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 37(4), pages 101-132.
    10. Adams, Alayne M. & Evans, Timothy G. & Mohammed, Rafi & Farnsworth, Jennifer, 1997. "Socioeconomic stratification by wealth ranking: Is it valid?," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 25(7), pages 1165-1172, July.
    11. Amemiya, Takeshi, 1984. "Tobit models: A survey," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 24(1-2), pages 3-61.
    12. Angus Deaton & Valerie Kozel, 2005. "Data and Dogma: The Great Indian Poverty Debate," World Bank Research Observer, World Bank Group, vol. 20(2), pages 177-199.
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • C21 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Cross-Sectional Models; Spatial Models; Treatment Effect Models
    • I30 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - General
    • I38 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Government Programs; Provision and Effects of Welfare Programs
    • O16 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Financial Markets; Saving and Capital Investment; Corporate Finance and Governance
    • R51 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Regional Government Analysis - - - Finance in Urban and Rural Economies

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