Summary of Confessions of a Microfinance Heretic

How Microlending Lost Its Way and Betrayed the Poor

Berrett-Koehler, more...

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Confessions of  a Microfinance Heretic book summary
Interest rates of 100% and heavy-handed repayment methods? Welcome to the world of microfinance.

Rating

9 Overall

9 Importance

10 Innovation

8 Style

Recommendation

In this well-sourced and highly readable memoir, investment banker Hugh Sinclair – who worked in the microfinance sector from 2002 to 2012 – offers a scathing indictment of how microfinance institutions (MFIs) really operate. His exposé arises from his experiences working deep inside the $70 billion microfinance industry and from his exploits traveling around the world for various MFIs and the funds that invest in them. In short, Sinclair knows what he’s talking about, and he has learned that the microlending world does not take warmly to criticism. He’s received numerous complaints from insiders that his relentless criticism borders on blasphemy and risks undermining any good the industry is doing for the poor. Sinclair even received a death threat for bringing this information to light. Though acknowledging that not all MFIs are guilty of injurious activities, getAbstract recommends this insightful but damning report to policy makers, regulators, activists, industry insiders, investors, and readers with an economic interest in microfinance and a social interest in addressing global poverty.

In this summary, you will learn

  • How microfinance works
  • What major problems it faces
  • How to overcome them
  • How to invest in microfinance
 

Summary

Inside the Microfinance Industry
The goals of microfinance are clear, but the ways in which microfinance institutions (MFIs) operate isn’t so transparent. Their glossy brochures and glitzy websites would have you believe that you can help eliminate poverty. In theory, with even a $25 donation...
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About the Author

Hugh Sinclair is an economist and investment banker. He worked in the microfinance industry for more than 10 years and now provides consulting services on microfinance strategy and portfolio management.


Comment on this summary

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    Eva Berriman 1 year ago
    Does the WBG/IFC report or track how we are positively impacting the microfinance sector to reduce such practices?
    • Avatar
      Julia Rodriguez 1 year ago
      Hello Eva,
      I am responding to you via email.
      Thank you,
      Julia

More on this topic

Contained in Knowledge Pack:

  • Knowledge Pack
    Microfinance
    How to save the world one village, one family, one cow, one kiln, at a time. Inside the innovative altruism of microlending, where a little loan can make a huge difference.

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