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Author:Cordell, Lawrence R. 

Working Paper
Mortgage Loss Severities: What Keeps Them So High?

Mortgage loss-given-default (LGD) increased significantly when house prices plummeted during the financial crisis, but it has remained over 40 percent in recent years, despite a strong housing recovery. Our results indicate that the sustained high LGDs post-crisis is due to a combination of an overhang of crisis-era foreclosures and prolonged liquidation timelines, which have offset higher sales recoveries. Simulations show that cutting foreclosure timelines by one year would cause LGD to decrease by 5 to 8 percentage points, depending on the tradeoff between lower liquidation expenses and ...
Working Papers , Paper 20-37

Working Paper
Inequality in the Time of COVID-19: Evidence from Mortgage Delinquency and Forbearance

Using a novel database that combines mortgage servicing records, credit-bureau data, and loan application information, we show that lower-income and minority borrowers have significantly higher nonpayment rates during the COVID-19 pandemic, even after controlling for conventional risk factors. A difference-in-differences analysis shows how much the pandemic has exacerbated income and racial inequalities. We then find that government and private-sector forbearance programs have mitigated these inequalities in the near term, as lower-income and minority borrowers have taken up the short-term ...
Working Papers , Paper 21-09

Conference Paper
A market evaluation of the importance of considering non-credit risk in setting risk-based capital standards

Proceedings , Paper 353

Working Paper
The trust preferred CDO market: from start to (expected) finish

This paper investigates the development, issuance, structuring, and expected performance of the trust preferred securities collateralized debt obligation (TruPS CDO) market. Developed as a way to provide capital markets access to smaller banks, thrifts, insurance companies, and real estate investment trusts (REITs) by pooling the issuance of TruPS into marketable CDOs, the market grew to $60 billion of issuance from its inception in 2000 through its abrupt halt in 2007. As evidenced by rating agency downgrades, current performance, and estimates from the authors' own model, TruPS CDOs are ...
Working Papers , Paper 11-22

Working Paper
Mortgage Loss Severities: What Keeps Them So High?

Mortgage loss-given-default (LGD) increased significantly when house prices plummeted and delinquencies rose during the financial crisis, but it has remained over 40 percent in recent years despite a strong housing recovery. Our results indicate that the sustained high LGDs post-crisis are due to a combination of an overhang of crisis-era foreclosures and prolonged foreclosure timelines, which have offset higher sales recoveries. Simulations show that cutting foreclosure timelines by one year would cause LGD to decrease by 5?8 percentage points, depending on the trade-off between lower ...
Working Papers , Paper 19-19

Working Paper
The impact of student loan debt on small business formation

Small businesses are the backbone of the U.S. economy and account for approximately one-half of the private-sector economy and 99% of all businesses. To start a small business, individuals need access to capital. Given the importance of an entrepreneur?s personal debt capacity in financing a startup business, student loan debt, which is difficult to discharge via bankruptcy, can have lasting effects and may have an impact on the ability of future small business owners to raise capital. This study examines the impact of the growth in student debt on net small business formation. We find a ...
Working Papers , Paper 15-26

Working Paper
The incentives of mortgage servicers: myths and realities

As foreclosure initiations have soared over the past couple of years, many have questioned whether mortgage servicers have the right incentives to work out troubled subprime mortgages so that borrowers can avoid foreclosure and remain in their homes. Some critics claim that because servicers, unlike investors, do not bear the losses associated with foreclosure, they have little incentive to modify troubled loans by reducing interest rates or principal, or by extending the term. Our analysis suggests that while servicers have substantially improved borrower outreach and increased loss ...
Finance and Economics Discussion Series , Paper 2008-46

Working Paper
Asymmetric Information and the Death of ABS CDOs

A key feature of the 2007 financial crisis is that for many securities trading had ceased; where trading did occur, market prices were well below intrinsic values, especially for ABS CDOs. One explanation is that information had been asymmetric, with sellers having better information than buyers. We first show the information advantages sellers had over buyers in both the issuance of CDOs and, through vertical integration, performance of the CDO collateral that could well have disrupted trading after the onset of the crisis. Using a ?workhorse" model for pricing securities under asymmetric ...
International Finance Discussion Papers , Paper 1075

Working Paper
REGIME SHIFT AND THE POST-CRISIS WORLD OF MORTGAGE LOSS SEVERITIES

The average loss rate for conventional mortgages rose from less than 10% pre-crisis to more than 30% during the crisis, reaching and sustaining greater than 40% post-crisis. Using a novel database that contains the components of mortgage losses, we identify a regime shift in loss severities caused by various government interventions and changes in business practices in the servicing industry. This regime shift helps explain the persistently high loss severities post-crisis, even after a strong recovery in the housing market. Our findings have implications for loss modeling, pricing, and, ...
Working Papers , Paper 17-8

Working Paper
Designing loan modifications to address the mortgage crisis and the making home affordable program

Delinquencies on residential mortgages and home foreclosures have risen dramatically in the past couple of years. The mortgage losses triggered a broad-based financial crisis and severe recession, which, in turn, exacerbated the initial financial distress faced by homeowners. Although servicers increased their loss mitigation efforts as defaults began to mount, foreclosures continued to occur in cases where both the borrower and investor would be better off if such an outcome were avoided. The U.S. government has engaged in a number of initiatives to reduce such foreclosures. This paper ...
Finance and Economics Discussion Series , Paper 2009-43

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