Displaying all posts by Daniel Rozas
March 27, 2013
A month ago I wrote a post singling out the Mexican state of Chiapas as a potential site of a coming repayment crisis. No, this is not a follow-up announcing that it has begun, nor am I rooting for one to start. In my next post, I will review the options that the Mexican microfinance sector has to avoid it, and what the global microfinance community can do to help.
February 14, 2013
It's been over two years since the start of the great India insolvency. Four years since the Bosnia blight and No Pago Nicaragua. And nearly six years since the Morocco microfinance meltdown.
At this point, it's reasonable to say that the first global crisis in microfinance has passed. Life is on the mend.
November 16, 2012
If there’s one issue that’s most difficult for microfinance practitioners to explain to the lay public, it’s high interest rates. As Elisabeth Rhyne describes it, at some point the numbers get so high that people become outraged and stop listening altogether. Most recently, the issue was put back in the public eye through Hugh Sinclair’s Confessions of a Microfinance...
September 13, 2012
I have written before how tiny Zidisha Microfinance is challenging long-held assumptions by leveraging internet social media and mobile payments like M-PESA to lend to clients without the help of loan officers or local staff. Since then, Zidisha has grown from tiny to small, with a portfolio now at $200,000, over 430 active borrowers, and 1400+ lenders.
It’s the microfinance bête noire. The great unspeakable. The furtive shadow slinking down the narrow alleys of poverty. Yes, the consumer loan. Has microfinance really come to this, we ask? Helping the poor buy a TV? Charging 40% interest for the couch to go in front of that TV? And what about family celebrations, festivals, dowries? Is that really what microcredit is for?
February 13, 2012
Part 1 ("The Economics of Microsavings") of this brief exploration into the economics of savings-driven microfinance looked at the role of microsavings at microfinance institutions. In one large study, poor borrowers, despite accounting for 75% of active accounts, only contributed 3% of total deposits mobilized, mainly because they maintain low balances.
February 6, 2012
I have a confession to make. When I began composing this blog, I approached it with a fairly simple hypothesis: Microfinance institutions (MFIs) that engage in large-scale deposit taking must likewise grow their loan portfolios. After all, deposits are a source of funding with high operational cost that must be appropriately offset by growing revenue, and only microfinance portfolios provide yields high enough to achieve that.
If there’s one microfinance word that rose above all others in 2011, it’s overindebtedness. As of the time of writing, it racks up the highest count on CGAP blog’s tag cloud (not counting generic terms like “microfinance”). It seems fitting, then, to start 2012 with a blog post on this very subject.
September 14, 2011
Some time ago, I had a conversation with a microfinance investor. What is the greatest challenge facing the sector? – I asked. His answer: multiple borrowing – multiple borrowing was getting people into too much debt; multiple borrowing was transforming micro-enterprise lending into consumer finance; and multiple borrowing was rewriting the traditional relationship between MFIs and their clients.