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Credit risk analysis in microcredit: How does gender matter?

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  • Helena Marrez
  • Mathias Schmit

Abstract

This paper is the first to analyze the credit risk of a microfinance institution based on the loan portfolio of a leading Maghrebian microfinance institution, both in terms of number of clients served and of portfolio size. This allows us to work with a proprietary data set of 1,144,770 contracts issued between 1997 and 2007. Using a resampling technique, we estimate the probability density function of losses and value-at-risk measures for a portfolio of loans granted to female and male microfinance clients separately. Results show that loss rates are higher for a male client population than for a female client population, both on average as for percentiles 95 to 99.99. We find that this difference is due to lower default probabilities for female clients, while recovery rates for male and female clients are similar. We also analyze diversification effects, where we find that the proportion of diversifiable risk in total risk is bigger for portfolios of loans granted to female clients than for portfolios of loans granted to male clients. Finally we show that capital requirements determined by the 99.9 percentile remain below those required by the Basel 2 Accords, which opens perspectives for a specific treatment of microfinance if financial regulation becomes applicable to the sector.

Suggested Citation

  • Helena Marrez & Mathias Schmit, 2009. "Credit risk analysis in microcredit: How does gender matter?," Working Papers CEB 09-053.RS, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
  • Handle: RePEc:sol:wpaper:09-053
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Mark Carey, 1998. "Credit Risk in Private Debt Portfolios," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 53(4), pages 1363-1387, August.
    2. Schmit, Mathias, 2004. "Credit risk in the leasing industry," Journal of Banking & Finance, Elsevier, vol. 28(4), pages 811-833, April.
    3. Kevane, Michael & Wydick, Bruce, 2001. "Microenterprise Lending to Female Entrepreneurs: Sacrificing Economic Growth for Poverty Alleviation?," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 29(7), pages 1225-1236, July.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Agier, Isabelle & Szafarz, Ariane, 2013. "Microfinance and Gender: Is There a Glass Ceiling on Loan Size?," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 42(C), pages 165-181.
    2. Gaurav Paruthi & Enrique Frias-Martinez & Vanessa Frias-Martinez, 2016. "The Role of Rating and Loan Characteristics in Online Microfunding Behaviors," Papers 1609.09571, arXiv.org.
    3. Isabelle Agier & Ariane Szafarz, 2011. "Credit to Women Entrepreneurs: The Curse of the Trustworthier Sex," Working Papers CEB 11-005, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Microfinance; Credit risk; Gender study; Bank regulation; Capital requirement;

    JEL classification:

    • G21 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Banks; Other Depository Institutions; Micro Finance Institutions; Mortgages
    • G28 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Government Policy and Regulation
    • O16 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Financial Markets; Saving and Capital Investment; Corporate Finance and Governance

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