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Sell Low and Buy High : Arbitrage and Local Price Effects in Kenyan Markets

Author: Marshall Burke; Lauren Falcao Bergquist; Edward Miguel; National Bureau of Economic Research.
Publisher: Cambridge, Mass. : National Bureau of Economic Research, 2018
Series: Working paper series (National Bureau of Economic Research), no. w24476.
Edition/Format:   eBook : Document : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
Abstract: Large and regular seasonal price fluctuations in local grain markets appear to offer African farmers substantial inter-temporal arbitrage opportunities, but these opportunities remain largely unexploited: small-scale farmers are commonly observed to "sell low and buy high" rather than the reverse. In a field experiment in Kenya, we show that credit market imperfections limit farmers' abilities to move  Read more...
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Details

Material Type: Document, Internet resource
Document Type: Internet Resource, Computer File
All Authors / Contributors: Marshall Burke; Lauren Falcao Bergquist; Edward Miguel; National Bureau of Economic Research.
OCLC Number: 1033403438
Notes: April 2018
Description: 1 online resource
Series Title: Working paper series (National Bureau of Economic Research), no. w24476.

Abstract:

Abstract: Large and regular seasonal price fluctuations in local grain markets appear to offer African farmers substantial inter-temporal arbitrage opportunities, but these opportunities remain largely unexploited: small-scale farmers are commonly observed to "sell low and buy high" rather than the reverse. In a field experiment in Kenya, we show that credit market imperfections limit farmers' abilities to move grain inter-temporally. Providing timely access to credit allows farmers to buy at lower prices and sell at higher prices, increasing farm revenues and generating a return on investment of 28%. To understand general equilibrium effects of these changes in behavior, we vary the density of loan offers across locations. We document significant effects of the credit intervention on seasonal price fluctuations in local grain markets, and show that these GE effects shape individual level profitability estimates. In contrast to existing experimental work, the results indicate a setting in which microcredit can improve firm profitability, and suggest that GE effects can substantially shape microcredit's effectiveness. In particular, failure to consider these GE effects could lead to underestimates of the social welfare benefits of microcredit interventions

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Primary Entity<\/h3>\n
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