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Sensitivity of loan size to lending rates: Evidence from Ghana’s microfinance sector

  • Annim, Samuel Kobina

Recent evidence from the microfinance industry reveals increase in sources of funding which anecdotally links to the profits of institutions. This phenomenon has evoked concerns for the responsiveness of the poor to credit market operational policies such as loan pricing. This paper integrates the poor’s characteristics into a loan size equation to estimate influence on interest rate stimulus. Using data from Ghana, we test the hypothesis of loan price inelasticity using quantile regression and the interaction procedure. The quantile regression shows pronounced variations in responsiveness of loan size to interest rate changes at different percentiles. In contrast to an inverse relationship depicted between the 20th and 40th quantiles, we observe positive and fairly flat curvatures at the extremes and around the median. Motivated by this finding, the interaction procedure is employed for household poverty scores and lending rates at varied statistic to identify differences in clients’ responsiveness. The semi-elasticity of loan amount responsiveness to a unit change in interest rate is more than proportionate and significant for the poorest group. In a broader context, the need for market segmentation based on socio-economic well-being is suggested in the paper in pursuance of the ‘win-win’ objective of poverty reduction and financial sustainability.

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Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 21280.

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Date of creation: Nov 2009
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Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:21280
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  1. Dehejia, Rajeev & Montgomery, Heather & Morduch, Jonathan, 2012. "Do interest rates matter? Credit demand in the Dhaka slums," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 97(2), pages 437-449.
  2. Levine, Ross & Loayza, Norman & Beck, Thorsten, 2000. "Financial intermediation and growth: Causality and causes," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 46(1), pages 31-77, August.
  3. Malika Anand & Richard Rosenberg, 2008. "Are We Overestimating Demand for Microloans?," World Bank Other Operational Studies 9521, The World Bank.
  4. Stiglitz, Joseph E & Weiss, Andrew, 1981. "Credit Rationing in Markets with Imperfect Information," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 71(3), pages 393-410, June.
  5. Dean S. Karlan & Jonathan Zinman, 2008. "Credit Elasticities in Less-Developed Economies: Implications for Microfinance," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 98(3), pages 1040-68, June.
  6. Morduch, J., 1998. "The Microfinance Schism," Papers 626, Harvard - Institute for International Development.
  7. Briones, Roehlano, 2007. "Do Small Farmers Borrow Less when the Lending rate Increases? The Case of Rice Farming in the Philippines," MPRA Paper 6044, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  8. J. D. Von Pischke, 1996. "Measuring the trade-off between outreach and sustainability of microenterprise lenders," Journal of International Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 8(2), pages 225-239.
  9. Dehejia, Rajeev & Montgomery, Heather & Morduch, Jonathan, 2005. "Do interest rates matter? credit demand in the Dhaka Slums," MPRA Paper 33146, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  10. repec:ner:tilbur:urn:nbn:nl:ui:12-3125519 is not listed on IDEAS
  11. Carla Henry & Manohar Sharma & Cecile Lapenu & Manfred Zeller, 2003. "Microfinance Poverty Assessment Tool," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 15065, October.
  12. Morduch, Jonathan, 1999. "The role of subsidies in microfinance: evidence from the Grameen Bank," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(1), pages 229-248, October.
  13. Sharma, Manohar, 2000. "Microfinance," MP05 briefs 0, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
  14. Jonathan Morduch, 1999. "The Microfinance Promise," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 37(4), pages 1569-1614, December.
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