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Author:Whitaker, Stephan 

Journal Article
12 Facts about Temporary Urbanists

Urban areas seem to be enjoying a renaissance of sorts due in part to the many young professionals who have moved into central neighborhoods since the 2000s. Many of these young professionals are thought to move back out after they have started families, but the details of these migration patterns are not well-known. I analyze data from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York/Equifax Consumer Credit Panel to answer 12 questions about these temporary urbanists?those who choose to move into an urban neighborhood and spend part of their early adulthood there.
Economic Commentary , Issue May

Working Paper
Private-activity municipal bonds: the political economy of volume cap allocation

State governments allocate authority, under a federally imposed cap, to issue tax-exempt bonds that fund ?private activities? such as industrial expansion, student loans, and low-income housing. This paper presents political economy models of the allocation process and an empirical analysis. Due to an idiosyncrasy of the tax code, the annual per capita volume cap varies widely across states. I estimate that, on average, there is an additional $0.80 per capita per year of borrowing for each additional dollar per capita of volume cap. This confirms that the cap is a binding constraint in most ...
Working Papers (Old Series) , Paper 1013

Journal Article
The Evolution of Household Leverage during the Recovery

Recent research has shown that geographic areas that experienced greater household deleveraging during the recession also experienced relatively severe economic contractions and slower recoveries. This analysis explores geographic variations in household debt over the past recession and recovery. It fi nds that regions that had very high household leverage at the start of the recession have shifted back toward national norms, while the variation of leverage within metro areas has maintained steady relationships with neighborhood characteristics such as location,demographics, and the age of ...
Economic Commentary , Issue Sept

Working Paper
Financial Innovations and Issuer Sophistication in Municipal Securities Markets

When local governments default or file for bankruptcy, it is often because public officials misunderstood the risks associated with innovative financial products. If unsophisticated municipal bond issuers were to widely adopt a high risk financial product, this could harm taxpayers and investors, as well as destabilize the financial system. This analysis uses municipal bond issuers? total debt outstanding as a proxy for their sophistication and investigates the relationship between sophistication and adoption of financial innovations. Using comprehensive data on securities issued between 1992 ...
Working Papers (Old Series) , Paper 1404

Working Paper
The effect of local housing ordinances

The housing and economic crises have exerted a strong and lingering impact on housing markets across the nation. In this paper, we assess the degree to which local anti-blight policies have infl uenced housing market outcomes following the crises. The analysis is performed for cities in Cuyahoga County, Ohio. We measure outcomes that characterize market distress and that may be influenced by local housing ordinances including foreclosure, bulk sales, flipping, vacancy, and tax delinquency. Using matching procedures on linked data containing property, loan, and transaction characteristics, we ...
Working Papers (Old Series) , Paper 1240

Migrants from High-Cost, Large Metro Areas during the COVID-19 Pandemic, Their Destinations, and How Many Could Follow

This data brief presents estimates of the number of people who have already migrated from the high-cost, large population centers to lower-cost and less-populated regions during the pandemic. It also presents the potential impacts on lower-cost regions that might receive more remote workers.2 Migration away from high-cost, large metro areas did spike during the pandemic. Even if the percentage of remote workers following these recent migration patterns is small, the number of these workers may be large enough to provide other regions the opportunity to substantially grow their workforces.
Cleveland Fed District Data Brief

Discussion Paper
A conference on consumer protection in financial product markets

A conference organized by the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland engendered an informative discussion of consumer protection in financial products markets. Anticipating significant changes in financial regulation, the conference asked the question, "How could regulators successfully protect consumers?" It intentionally looked beyond the existing institutions. The first of three panels discussed how consumers gather information and process it to make purchase decisions. Lessons learned from research on food labeling and shopping were discussed. Another panel examined the roles of ...
Policy Discussion Papers , Issue May

Journal Article
Population, Migration, and Generations in Urban Neighborhoods

The number of people living in urban neighborhoods has been rising in recent decades. This Commentary investigates changes in the number, ages, and financial status of those who have been moving into and out of urban neighborhoods, using data from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York/Equifax Consumer Credit Panel. I find that since 2000, the increase in urban populations is the result of young adults migrating into urban neighborhoods and senior citizens aging in place. Urban populations have also become more educated and well to do. While declining urban neighborhoods may still outnumber ...
Economic Commentary , Issue May

Working Paper
Internal Migration in the United States: A Comparative Assessment of the Utility of the Consumer Credit Panel

This paper demonstrates that credit bureau data, such as the Federal Reserve Bank of New York Consumer Credit Panel/Equifax (CCP), can be used to study internal migration in the United States. It is comparable to, and in some ways superior to, the standard data used to study migration, including the American Community Survey (ACS), the Current Population Survey (CPS), and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) county-to-county migration data. CCP-based estimates of migration intensity, connectivity, and spatial focusing are similar to estimates derived from the ACS, CPS, and IRS data. The CCP can ...
Working Papers (Old Series) , Paper 1804

Journal Article
Raising the college degree share: How nongraduates figure into it

In their search for strategies to spur economic development, one statistic civic leaders and researchers invariably use to identify the cities to emulate is the share of college graduates. That is because the college degree share of a region is highly correlated with its economic performance. But too narrow a focus on the graduates can lead to misguided policies. A more thorough analysis suggests that the reason some areas pull ahead and some fall behind in their college degree shares may be due to trends in nongraduate population growth that regional leaders either cannot or would not ...
Economic Commentary , Issue June

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