This paper reviews the main results from randomized evaluations that measure the impact of microcredit and microsavings on business investment and creation, consumption, and household well-being. It also presents evidence from evaluations of products and delivery design and discusses the evidence on microinsurance products.
Ever since microcredit first began to capture public attention 25 years ago, the usual story line has been that it is a tool of extraordinary power to lift poor people—especially women—out of poverty, by funding their microenterprises and raising their incomes.
This paper reviews the mounting body of evidence showing that the availability of financial services for poor households (“microfinance”) is a critical contextual factor with strong impact on the achievement of the Milennium Development Goals.
This paper explores the landscape of measuring financial inclusion in the Arab world. The Arab Monetary Fund and its task force is working with CGAP, the Alliance for Financial Inclusion, and GIZ, among others, to advance measurement of financial inclusion in the Arab world.
Despite significant funding for financial inclusion efforts worldwide—an estimated US$34 billion was committed as of 2015—approximately 2 billion adults remain excluded from the formal financial system. How do funders of financial inclusion programs know if and how development programs are making a difference?
In April 1997, the CGAP Secretariat launched an experiment called the CGAP Pilot Microfinance Capacity-building Initiative in Africa. The initiative spanned East and West Africa and focused primarily on working with African training institutes to provide financial management courses to microfinance institutions (MFIs). The Pilot Initiative sought to build the foundation for the development of a market for quality training and technical assistance services offered on a sustainable basis in the region.