Graduation Year

Spring 2011

Document Type

Open Access Senior Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts



Reader 1

Darren Filson

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© 2011 Benjamin Hudgens


Version:1.0 StartHTML:0000000183 EndHTML:0000003190 StartFragment:0000002393 EndFragment:0000003154 SourceURL:file://localhost/Users/benjaminhudgens/Desktop/Final%20Thesis.docx This thesis will use data from 2009 to examine two questions about the Microfinance industry. First, why do firms charge interest rates well beyond their cost of funds and second, are there important differences at the national level that can help us to understand the high interest rates in Microfinance? I find that interest rates are primarily a result of operating expenses, but profit-status has large effects in developed Microfinance markets. I also find that the Economist Intelligence Unit’s measures of regulatory environment and industrial development explain a large portion of the variation in interest rates across countries.