Informal Credit Markets in India

Timberg, T.A. and Aiyar, C.V. (1984) Informal Credit Markets in India. Economic Development and Cultural Change, 33 (1). pp. 43-59.

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Informal financial markets, those which are not regulated or monitored by the banking authorities, account for much of business credit in developing countries.' These unregulated, informal credit markets (ICM) are important both in their own right, as part of each country's financial system, and because of their reciprocal relations with growing enterprises and the regulated financial sector. In order to study the operations of some of these markets in detail, in urban commercial settings, we conducted an extended survey of some of the informal credit markets of India.2 Based, in some cases, on centuries of operation, these markets proved to be important in the functioning of the contemporary economy. "Indigenous-style bankers," belonging to particular ethnic communities and castes, formerly provided the full range of banking services to their clients.3 With the rise of modern, Western-style banking the indigenous bankers either have transformed themselves to serve sectors, such as wholesale trade, not well served by the modern sector or provide services which the modern bankers cannot provide. Though any estimate is very approximate, it seems that informal credit markets account for as much as 20% of commercial credit outstanding in the various markets surveyed.

Item Type: Article
Author Affiliation: Washington, D.C.
Subjects: Social Sciences
Divisions: General
Depositing User: Mr Siva Shankar
Date Deposited: 14 Oct 2013 04:02
Last Modified: 14 Oct 2013 04:02
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