This paper explores the use of informal credit as a strategy for managing risks by market women in northern Ghana. A broad concept of the costs of risk management strategies is introduced and encompasses both a time and monetary dimension. Based on qualitative data, the analysis reveals that market women invest a considerable amount of time in maintaining complex networks of informal credit providers to insure their access to credit once a shock occurs. Informal credit involves high transaction costs and prevents market women from growing out of poverty in the long term.
Africa Ghana informal finance coping strategies intra-household allocation women