Digital Multisided Platforms and Women's Health: An Empirical Analysis of Peer-to-Peer Lending
42 Pages Posted: 5 Jun 2019 Last revised: 24 Sep 2019
Date Written: May 17, 2019
Digital multisided platforms and peer-to-peer marketplaces are increasingly attracting attention from scholars, with a significant amount of work examining their societal implications. Yet, despite such focus, limited work has investigated the social implications of the democratization of capital by peer-to-peer (P2P) lending platforms, particularly in healthcare. In this study, we investigate the effects of P2P lending platforms on local abortion rates, a medical procedure characterized by both significant financial barriers and social stigma. Leveraging the entry of the P2P platform LendingClub into different states at different times, and a differences-in-differences approach, we find that the entry of LendingClub is associated with an increase in the rate at which women chose not to carry to term. Further, results indicate the effects greatly depend on the characteristics of the local area, with stronger effects manifesting in more religious areas and areas with lower levels of education. Theoretical and practical implications are discussed within.
Keywords: multisided platforms, peer-to-peer lending, medical financing, social stigma, medical loans, women’s health
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