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Micro Finance and Poverty Reduction in Asia: What is the Evidence?

dc.contributor.authorJohn Weiss
dc.contributor.authorHeather Montgomery
dc.contributor.authorElvira Kurmanalieva
dc.date.accessioned2015-04-29T14:29:21Z
dc.date.available2015-04-29T14:29:21Z
dc.date.issued2003-12-15
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/11540/4158
dc.description.abstractDespite the extensive spread of micro finance, studies on the actual impact of MFIs are often more ambivalent about its impact than is the aid community. Much has been written on the range of institutional arrangements pursued in different organizations and countries and in turn a vast number studies have attempted to assess the outreach and poverty impact of such schemes. However, amongst the academic development community there is a recognition that perhaps we know much less about the impact of these programs than might be expected given the enthusiasm for these activities in donor and policy-making circles. In recognition of this uncertainty this paper aims to bring together some of the recent evidence that has been accumulating on the impact of microfinance activities on poverty reduction. In particular we ask what is the evidence on three specific issues: – the extent to which microfinance initiatives have made a lasting difference in pulling households out of poverty on a permanent basis; – the extent to which microfinance programs reach only the better-off amongst the poor, leaving the ‘core poor’ unaffected; – how far micro finance is a cost-effective means of transferring income to the poor. The evidence surveyed here suggests that the conclusion from the early literature, that whilst micro finance clearly may have had positive impacts on poverty it is unlikely to be a simple panacea for reaching the core poor, remains valid. Reaching the core poor is difficult and some of the reasons that made them difficult to reach with conventional financial instruments mean that they may also be high risk and therefore unattractive microfinance clients. Hence there is a need to continually improve design and outreach and to see MFIs as part of the package for targeting the poor, rather than the whole solution.
dc.languageEnglish
dc.publisherAsian Development Bank Institute
dc.rightsCC BY 3.0 IGO
dc.rights.urihttps://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/igo/
dc.titleMicro Finance and Poverty Reduction in Asia: What is the Evidence?
dc.typeWorking Papers
dc.subject.expertEconomic Development
dc.subject.expertEconomic Infrastructure
dc.subject.expertEconomic Policies
dc.subject.expertRegional Economic Development
dc.subject.expertMicrofinance Programs
dc.subject.expertPublic Finance
dc.subject.expertLocal Financing
dc.subject.expertFinancial Stability
dc.subject.expertFinancial Sector Regulation
dc.subject.adbEnterprises
dc.subject.adbFinancial aid
dc.subject.adbEconomies in transition
dc.subject.adbLocal Finance
dc.subject.adbLocal Government
dc.subject.adbInsurance Companies
dc.subject.adbBanks
dc.subject.adbSocial Equity
dc.subject.naturalSocial responsibility of business
dc.subject.naturalAccounting
dc.subject.naturalPersonal budgets
dc.subject.naturalCost and standard of living
dc.subject.naturalBank accounts
dc.subject.naturalCredit control
dc.subject.naturalRegulatory reform
dc.subject.naturalBanks and banking
dc.title.seriesResearch Paper Series
dc.title.volume53
dc.contributor.imprintAsian Development Bank
oar.themeEconomics
oar.themeFinance
oar.adminregionAsia and the Pacific Region
oar.countryBangladesh
oar.countryBhutan
oar.countryIndia
oar.countryMaldives
oar.countryNepal
oar.countrySri Lanka
oar.countryBrunei Darussalam
oar.countryCambodia
oar.countryIndonesia
oar.countryLao People's Democratic
oar.countryMalaysia
oar.countryMyanmar
oar.countryPhilippines
oar.countrySingapore
oar.countryThailand
oar.countryViet Nam
oar.countryCook Islands
oar.countryFiji Islands
oar.countryKiribati
oar.countryMarshall Islands
oar.countryFederated States of Micronesia
oar.countryNauru
oar.countryPalau
oar.countryPapua New Guinea
oar.countrySamoa
oar.countrySolomon Islands
oar.countryTimor-Leste
oar.countryTonga
oar.countryTuvalu
oar.countryVanuatu
oar.countryAfghanistan
oar.countryArmenia
oar.countryAzerbaijan
oar.countryGeorgia
oar.countryKazakhstan
oar.countryKyrgyz Republic
oar.countryPakistan
oar.countryTajikistan
oar.countryTurkmenistan
oar.countryUzbekistan
oar.countryPeople's Republic of China
oar.countryHong Kong
oar.countryChina
oar.countryRepublic of Korea
oar.countryMongolia
oar.countryTaipei,China
oar.identifierOAR-004649
oar.authorWeiss, John
oar.authorMontgomery, Heather
oar.authorKurmanalieva, Elvira
oar.importtrue
oar.googlescholar.linkpresenttrue


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    The Asian Development Bank Institute (ADBI) research paper series disseminate selected work in progress to facilitate an exchange of ideas within academic and policy communities. An objective of the series is to circulate primary findings promptly, regardless of the degree of finish. ADBI’s activities are guided by its three strategic priority themes of inclusive and sustainable growth, regional cooperation and integration, and governance for policies and institutions.

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