Microfinance, long an international specialty, is starting to expand its sliver of the U.S. lending pie — and at the same time provide a scoop of opportunity for traditional banking institutions here that cannot afford to offer it directly.

This year, as mainstream sources of consumer and small-business credit have continued to contract, microfinance specialists like Accion Texas, Kiva Microfunds and Grameen America Inc. have entered or expanded their operations in the U.S. market. In doing so, they have opened up another point of contact between old-school depositories and the underserved consumers those companies cannot always reach on their own, or can no longer afford to keep.

Subscribe Now

Access to authoritative analysis and perspective and our data-driven report series.

14-Day Free Trial

No credit card required. Complete access to articles, breaking news and industry data.