Impact of Micro-Credit on Business Income: A Case Study of Women in the Agona Districts in Central Region, Ghana

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Access to adequate and affordable credit for businesses remains one of the key challenges to local economic development in Ghana, despite efforts by both government and private sector organisations since independence in 1957 to address the problem. The study examines women’s access to micro credit and impact of credit on income from formal financial institution in Agona East and West districts of the Central Region of Ghana. A set of questionnaire was administered to 200 women. In addition, managers and credit officers of formal financial institutions operating in these districts were interviewed. Focus group discussion was used to supplement the questionnaires. Data analysis followed a two prong approach by making use of both qualitative and quantitative techniques. For the qualitative analysis, descriptive statistics such as percentages, means, frequencies and cross tabulations were used. In the case of quantitative analysis logit, and propensity score matching were employed. The result revealed that formal education, perception of application procedures, level of income, farm size, membership to economic associations, savings with financial institutions the type of business, the perception of interest charged and the distance from respondents’ residence to the financial institutions, are the factors that influence respondents’ probability of access to micro credit from the financial institutions. Furthermore, access to credit has significant impact on income.  
A thesis submitted to the Institute of Distance Learning, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology in partial fulfilment of the requirement for the award of Master of Science degree in Industrial Mathematics.