Micro-credit and household productivity : evidence from Bangladesh.
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Kerr, Emily W.
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This paper tests the effect of micro-credit on household productivity to determine whether micro-credit programs facilitate productivity gains through skills transfer and human capital formation in addition to the provision of credit. The data come from two rounds of household surveys in rural Bangladesh conducted by the World Bank and the Bangladesh Institute of Development Studies to analyze the impact of three micro-credit programs: the Rural Development-12 program of the Bangladesh Rural Development Board, the Bangladesh Rural Advancement Committee, and Grameen Bank. Controlling for macro events and household and village characteristics, I find that participating in a micro-credit program increases output per unit labor for household non-farm enterprises in a large and statistically significant way. These increases in productivity can provide the means for sustained improvements in standard of living and contribute to the economic growth of low-income countries.