Live Chat: Do Financial Markets Work for the Poor?
Imagine a life without access to financial services: no deposit account, no debit card, no fire insurance, no college savings plan, and no home mortgage. Life would be an incredibly stressful roller coaster ride, and most dreams would remain unfulfilled. For us, life without access to financial services is unimaginable.
The microfinance sector now reflects the multidisciplinary intersection of finance, technology, and development, where new ideas are changing the art of what is possible. The actors reflect this diverse ecosystem and include everything from mobile operators to microfinance institutions to community networks.
On 10 April, Joanna Ledgerwood, microfinance expert and editor of The New Microfinance Handbook, and Steve Rasmussen, Manager of Technology and Business Model Innovation at CGAP, took questions during a live web chat addressing the evolving understanding of financial inclusion, the demands of clients, how financial markets can work better for the poor, and the role of new technology in expanding financial access.
A transcript of this chat follows.