NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

NBER Working Papers by Simon R. Quinn

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July 2011When is capital enough to get female microenterprises growing? Evidence from a randomized experiment in Ghana
with Marcel Fafchamps, David McKenzie, Christopher Woodruff: w17207
Standard models of investment predict that credit-constrained firms should grow rapidly when given additional capital, and that how this capital is provided should not affect decisions to invest in the business or consume the capital. We randomly gave cash and in-kind grants to male- and female-owned microenterprises in urban Ghana. Our findings cast doubt on the ability of capital alone to stimulate the growth of female microenterprises. First, while the average treatment effects of the in-kind grants are large and positive for both males and females, the gain in profits is almost zero for women with initial profits below the median, suggesting that capital alone is not enough to grow subsistence enterprises owned by women. Second, for women we strongly reject equality of the cash and in-...

Marcel Fafchamps, David McKenzie, Simon Quinn, and Christopher Woodruff, "Female Microenterprises and the Fly-paper Effect: Evidence from a Randomized Experiment in Ghana", Journal of Development Economics, 2014 (forthcoming)

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