Financial Inclusion

  • 详情 Digital financial inclusion and air pollution: Nationwide evidence of China
    We provide nationwide causal estimates of digital financial inclusion’s (DFI) effect on air pollution in the short term for China from 2014 to 2018. Using distance to Xihu District as an instrument, 1% gain of DFI increases air pollution by 0.36%. The baseline result is strongly robust to various checks. The coverage breadth and usage depth of DFI increase pollution, with the elasticity of 0.39 and 0.37 respectively, whereas the digitization level of DFI lowers pollution, with the elasticity of -1.42. The heterogeneous short-run effect of DFI can be attributed to a multitude of channels, including pollution standard, geographical factors, population density, development gaps and international trade.
  • 详情 Digital Footprints as Collateral for Debt Collection
    We examine the role of borrowers’ digital footprints in debt collection. Using a large sample of personal loans from a fintech lender in China, we find that the information acquired by the lender through borrowers’ digital footprints can increase the repayment likelihood on delinquent loans by 18.5%. The effect can be explained by two channels: bonding borrowers’ obligations with their social networks and locating borrowers’ physical locations. Moreover, the lender is more likely to approve loan applications from borrowers with digital footprints, even though these borrowers may occasionally have a higher likelihood of delinquency. The use of digital footprints can remain legitimate under stringent privacy protection regulations and fair debt collection practices. Our findings suggest that digital footprints, as a new type of collateral, can ultimately enhance financial inclusion by facilitating the lender’s collection of delinquent loans.