Estimating the Number of Microfinance Clients Who Crossed $1/day in 1990 to 2006: An Example Using Survey Data for Grameen Bank and BRAC

Monitoring poverty changes among microfinance clients
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This article presents a practical methodology to monitor poverty changes among microfinance clients using available household panel data. As an example, it presents an estimation of the net number of people that rose above the $1/day poverty line while members of Grameen Bank and BRAC during 1990 to 2006. The proposed method contributes to on-going efforts from microfinance practitioners to verify whether their clients are moving out of poverty and validate management strategies aiming to target new poor clients, and increase their share of poor clients over time. Estimates show that about 6.6 million people rose above the $1/day poverty line in 1990-2006 while members of Grameen or BRAC. This represents about 40 percent of the total number of poor people that crossed this poverty line during the same time period at the national level, which validates targeting strategies to reach the poor. However, further research is needed to quantify how much of this reduction in poverty was due to the services provided by Grameen and BRAC.