The impact of Microfinance on employment, income and food security during COVID-19

Last registered on May 21, 2020

Pre-Trial

Trial Information

General Information

Title
The impact of Microfinance on employment, income and food security during COVID-19
RCT ID
AEARCTR-0005879
Initial registration date
May 21, 2020
Last updated
May 21, 2020, 1:30 PM EDT

Locations

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Primary Investigator

Affiliation
RWI - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research

Other Primary Investigator(s)

PI Affiliation
University of Connecticut and RWI – Leibniz Institute for Economic Research

Additional Trial Information

Status
On going
Start date
2019-02-27
End date
2021-12-31
Secondary IDs
Abstract
Low-income households in developing countries often lack the financial tools to deal with shocks. Imperfect credit and insurance markets, highly vulnerable income sources, limited savings, and a lack of adequate safety nets to fall back on, make these households disproportionately vulnerable to aggregate shocks, such as the COVID-19 pandemic. Empirical evidence suggests that access to formal financial services can help households to become better equipped to deal with these shocks when they occur.
In this research, we will look into the impact of access to microfinance on households’ ability to mitigate, adapt to and recover from shocks. The data will be collected during the COVID-19 pandemic. We will survey a sample of 2,035 female entrepreneurs in rural Paraguay and 2,711 farmers and business owners in rural Myanmar.
External Link(s)

Registration Citation

Citation
Fiala, Nathan and Lise Masselus. 2020. "The impact of Microfinance on employment, income and food security during COVID-19." AEA RCT Registry. May 21. https://doi.org/10.1257/rct.5879-1.0
Experimental Details

Interventions

Intervention(s)
Intervention Start Date
2019-02-27
Intervention End Date
2021-12-31

Primary Outcomes

Primary Outcomes (end points)
Employment, income, and food security
Primary Outcomes (explanation)

Secondary Outcomes

Secondary Outcomes (end points)
Subjective resilience, subjective wellbeing, business resilience, farming resilience, safety nets and usage of savings
Secondary Outcomes (explanation)

Experimental Design

Experimental Design
We will survey respondents that are part of a randomized controlled trial where we test whether access to Microfinance improves livelihoods and employment outcomes. The randomization of the microfinance treatment will allow us to causally identify the impact of being linked to a microfinance institute on our primary and secondary outcomes. All respondents were identified as high potential microfinance borrowers.
Experimental Design Details
Not available
Randomization Method
Randomization done in office by a computer
Randomization Unit
The intervention is clustered at the village level.
Was the treatment clustered?
Yes

Experiment Characteristics

Sample size: planned number of clusters
165 clusters in Paraguay, 176 clusters in Myanmar
Sample size: planned number of observations
2035 respondents in Paraguay, 2711 respondents in Myanmar
Sample size (or number of clusters) by treatment arms
Half of the clusters are in the treatment group, the other half in the control group.
Minimum detectable effect size for main outcomes (accounting for sample design and clustering)
IRB

Institutional Review Boards (IRBs)

IRB Name
INNOVATIONS FOR POVERTY ACTION IRB
IRB Approval Date
2020-05-13
IRB Approval Number
14675
Analysis Plan

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