• Financial Efficiency and Social Impact of Microfinance Institutions

      Louis, Philippe; Seret, Alex; Baesens, Bart (World development, 2013)
      This paper contributes to the literature by investigating whether the increased focus on financial self-sustainability of microfinance institutions has been disadvantageous to the target audience. We investigate the association between social efficiency and financial performance using a comprehensive data set that includes 650 microfinance institutions. A self-organizing map methodology is used to fully capture the existing heterogeneity among institutions. The results show that we cannot support the hypothesis that there exists a trade-off. On the contrary, we find evidence of a significant, positive relationship between social efficiency and financial performance.
    • Understanding and predicting bank rating transitions using optimal survival analysis models

      Louis, Philippe; Van Laere, Elisabeth; Baesens, Bart (Economics Letters, 2013)
      In the aftermath of the financial crisis, this study investigates which underlying determinants cause bank rating transitions. We develop survival analysis models to explain credit transition hazards using macroeconomic factors and the rating history. We find that there exists a significant dependence of rating upgrade or rating downgrade transition hazards on rating-specific covariates and macro-economic covariates. Our results confirm the momentum effect, meaning that a financial institution that has been recently upgraded/downgraded has a higher chance of being upgraded/downgraded again. The predictive performance of the developed models turns out to be satisfactory.