The role of pawnshops in risk coping in early twentieth-century Japan

  title={The role of pawnshops in risk coping in early twentieth-century Japan},
  author={Tatsuki Inoue},
  journal={Financial History Review},
  pages={319 - 343}
  • Tatsuki Inoue
  • Published 11 May 2019
  • Economics, Business
  • Financial History Review
This study examines the role of pawnshops as a risk-coping device in Japan in the early twentieth century, when the poor were very vulnerable to unexpected shocks such as illness. In contrast to European countries, Japanese pawnshops were the primary financial institution for low-income people up to the 1920s. Using data on pawnshop loans for more than 250 municipalities and exploiting the 1918–20 influenza pandemic as a natural experiment, we find that the adverse health shock increased the… 


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