New York Times: The Role of Microfinance

Does the aid world exaggerate the benefits of microloans? How much do they help? Here’s a thoughtful, evidence-based analysis by three economics professors: Abhijit Vinayak Banerjee and Esther Duflo of M.I.T, and Dean Karlan of Yale. Their work is sometimes cited in critiques of microlending, so here’s their take:
Microcredit is undoubtedly the most visible innovation [...]

MIX Market Partners with The MasterCard Foundation for Re-Launch…

Next generation mixmarket.org features expanded data set
WASHINGTON, Dec. 21 — The Microfinance Information Exchange, Inc. (MIX) announced the re-launch of MIX Market (www.mixmarket.org), the global platform for microfinance data, analytics and business information. The website was redesigned and the underlying database rebuilt to allow for the rapidly expanding network of microfinance institutions and their broader [...]

Grameen: Using Technology to Advance the Fight against Global Poverty

Microfinance has grown tremendously in the last decade, moving from little NGOs working in tiny villages to large institutions providing loans, savings accounts and insurance to hundreds of thousands of poor women and men.  Grameen Bank in Bangladesh alone has more than seven million clients, while institutions like Grameen Koota in India serve more than [...]

WSJ: Microfinance’s Financial and Social Objectives

Wall Street Journal
According to the 2009 Microfinance India State of the Sector (MISS) Report, the microfinance industry’s client outreach has grown by 30% over the last year to 76.6 million and the total outstanding loan portfolio has grown by a staggering 56% to INR 359 Billion over the same period.
The growing integration of the sector [...]

WSJ: As Microfinance Grows in India, So Do Its Rivals

Mahabubnagar, India
The practice of making tiny loans to poor people, or microfinance, was supposed to help drive traditional village moneylenders from rural India.
Instead, traditional moneylenders, who typically charge high interest rates, are thriving, even in areas most heavily targeted by microfinance, which was begun as a way to help combat poverty by granting the poor [...]

BBC: Lessons from microfinance…

Nils Blythe
Business Correspondent, BBC News
It is hard to imagine that a £12 loan can be life-changing.
But for Margaret Chunga, living in the tiny village of Chipepete in central Malawi, a tiny loan has made a huge difference.
She used the loan to buy wheat flour, salt and sugar in order to set up a road-side [...]

Study: Size does matter when it comes to microfinance…

Kolkata: Size does matter when it comes to microfinance. That and the pace of expansion mark the difference between success and failure, according to a study into the industry.
One out of three microfinance institutions (MFI) in India made losses in fiscal 2009, says a study of some 230 lenders conducted by ACCESS Development Services, a [...]

Microfinance “no big deal”?

Official Financial Times Posting and Accion response:
Perhaps microfinance isn’t such a big deal after all
By Tim Harford
Published: December 5 2009 00:10
Last December, I showed some unwitting prescience by worrying about a backlash against microfinance, the practice of providing small loans – or perhaps savings products or insurance – to poor people. I fretted that there was [...]

WWB: The tradeoff between commercialization and women’s empowerment…

No one better understands the paradoxes and potential of microfinance as vehicles for empowering women and lifting communities out of poverty than Mary Ellen Iskenderian. As President and CEO of Women’s World Banking (WWB, www.swwb.org) – the World’s largest network of microfinance institutions (MFIs) and banks across 30 countries, spanning 4 continents – she knows [...]

Citi today announced that its partnership with ACCION Texas has made a significant impact at the one-year mark despite the economic downturn and weak small business sector performance. Citi’s partnership with ACCION Texas generated $6 million in loans to help finance small business investments in underserved communities, which allows ACCION Texas to further expand its business [...]

THE Central Bank of Nigeria, CBN, says an apex association for microfinance banks in Nigeria will not only strengthen and boost rural economy but is capable of strengthening the national economy, generally.
Speaking at the recent harmonization of two strong microfinance banking associations in the country into the National Association of Microfinance Banks (NAMB) from the [...]

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