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Estimating the long-run impact of microcredit programs on household income and net worth

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  • Woutersen, Tiemen
  • Khandker, Shahidur R.

Abstract

This paper investigates whether the utilization of microcredit programs has a significant impact on the income and net worth of the participants. Several micro finance institutes are optimistic on the beneficial effects of microcredit programs. Others describe microcredit with interest rates in excess of 20 percent as a poverty trap. This paper uses more than 20 years of panel data on households in Bangladesh to estimate bounds on the causal effects of microcredit programs. The analysis rejects the hypothesis that these microcredit programs are a poverty trap. Moreover, the paper finds moderately positive effects of such programs.

Suggested Citation

  • Woutersen, Tiemen & Khandker, Shahidur R., 2014. "Estimating the long-run impact of microcredit programs on household income and net worth," Policy Research Working Paper Series 7040, The World Bank.
  • Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbrwps:7040
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Joseph G. Altonji & Todd E. Elder & Christopher R. Taber, 2005. "Selection on Observed and Unobserved Variables: Assessing the Effectiveness of Catholic Schools," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 113(1), pages 151-184, February.
    2. Mark M. Pitt, 2014. "Response to 'The Impact of Microcredit on the Poor in Bangladesh: Revisiting the Evidence'," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 50(4), pages 605-610, April.
    3. Dean Karlan & Jonathan Zinman, 2010. "Expanding Credit Access: Using Randomized Supply Decisions to Estimate the Impacts," Review of Financial Studies, Society for Financial Studies, vol. 23(1), pages 433-464, January.
    4. Dujardin, Claire & Goffette-Nagot, Florence, 2010. "Neighborhood effects on unemployment?: A test à la Altonji," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 40(6), pages 380-396, November.
    5. Suresh de Mel & David McKenzie & Christopher Woodruff, 2009. "Returns to Capital in Microenterprises: Evidence from a Field Experiment," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 124(1), pages 423-423.
    6. Mark M. Pitt & Shahidur R. Khandker, 1998. "The Impact of Group-Based Credit Programs on Poor Households in Bangladesh: Does the Gender of Participants Matter?," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 106(5), pages 958-996, October.
    7. Abhijit Banerjee & Esther Duflo & Rachel Glennerster & Cynthia Kinnan, 2015. "The Miracle of Microfinance? Evidence from a Randomized Evaluation," American Economic Journal: Applied Economics, American Economic Association, vol. 7(1), pages 22-53, January.
    8. Coleman, Brett E., 2006. "Microfinance in Northeast Thailand: Who benefits and how much?," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 34(9), pages 1612-1638, September.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Access to Finance; Debt Markets; Rural Poverty Reduction; Microfinance; Poverty Monitoring&Analysis;

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