This paper examines the effects of providing financial services to low-income individuals on entrepreneurial activity, employment, and the income levels of men and women. We exploit cross-time and cross-municipality variation in the opening of Banco Azteca in Mexico to measure these effects with a difference-in-difference strategy. This bank opened over 800 branches simultaneously in 2002, focusing on low-income clients. Our results show that this led to an increase in the number of informal business owners among men and to an increase in wage-earning opportunities for women. Average income levels also increased, with this increase being twofold higher for women than for men.
Small Business Economics – Springer Journals
Published: Oct 8, 2011
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