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Author:Wong, Russell 

Briefing
Should Central Banks Worry About Facebook's Diem and Alibaba's Alipay?

Alibaba — an e-commerce platform in China similar to Amazon — has created its own payment system (Alipay) to provide currency-like services: facilitating transactions, supporting peer-to-peer transfers and paying interest. Platforms like Facebook and Amazon are also researching creating their own digital currencies, but so far they have relied primarily on existing payment methods. What drives platforms to develop their own digital currency rather than use existing cash and card options? And should central banks and financial regulators worry about platforms issuing their own currency?
Richmond Fed Economic Brief , Volume 21 , Issue 17

Working Paper
Lending Relationships and Optimal Monetary Policy

We construct and calibrate a monetary model of corporate finance with endogenous formation of lending relationships. The equilibrium features money demands by firms that depend on their access to credit and a pecking order of financing means. We describe the mechanism through which monetary policy affects the creation of relationships and firms' incentives to use internal or external finance. We study optimal monetary policy following an unanticipated destruction of relationships under different commitment assumptions. The Ramsey solution uses forward guidance to expedite creation of new ...
Working Paper , Paper 20-13

Briefing
Should the Fed Issue Digital Currency?

The United States might benefit from eventually replacing most physical cash with central bank digital currency (CBCD), but first the Federal Reserve must resolve several key policy and implementation issues, such as establishing comparative advantage over private issuers and ensuring safety and soundness.
Richmond Fed Economic Brief , Volume 21 , Issue 10

Briefing
How Do Small Business Finance and Monetary Policy Interact?

Richmond Fed Economic Brief , Volume 20 , Issue 11 , Pages 6 pgs.

Working Paper
Payments on Digital Platforms: Resiliency, Interoperability and Welfare

Digital platforms, such as Alibaba and Amazon, operate an online marketplace to facilitate transactions. This paper studies a platform’s business model choice between accepting cash and issuing tokens, as well as the implications for welfare, resiliency, and interoperability. A cash platform free rides on the existing payment infrastructure and profits from collecting transaction fees. A token platform earns seigniorage, albeit bearing the costs of setting up the system and holding reserves to mitigate the cyber risk. Tokens earn consumers a return, insulating transactions from the ...
Working Paper , Paper 21-04

Working Paper
A Tractable Model of Monetary Exchange with Ex-Post Heterogeneity

We construct a continuous-time, New-Monetarist economy with general preferences that displays an endogenous, non-degenerate distribution of money holdings. Properties of equilibria are obtained analytically and equilibria are solved in closed form in a variety of cases. We study policy as incentive-compatible transfers financed with money creation. Lump-sum transfers are welfare-enhancing when labor productivity is low, but regressive transfers achieve higher welfare when labor productivity is high. We introduce illiquid government bonds and draw implications for the existence of ...
Working Paper , Paper 17-6

Working Paper
Contingent Debt and Performance Pricing in an Optimal Capital Structure Model with Financial Distress and Reorganization

Building on the trade-off between agency costs and monitoring costs, we develop a dynamic theory of optimal capital structure with financial distress and reorganization. Costly monitoring eliminates the agency friction and thus the risk of inefficient liquidation. Our key assumption is that monitoring cannot be applied instantaneously. Rather, transitions between agency and monitoring are subject to search frictions. In the optimal contract, the firm seeks a monitoring opportunity whenever it is financially distressed, i.e., when the risk of liquidation is high. If a monitoring opportunity ...
Working Paper , Paper 18-17

Working Paper
Optimal Incentive Contracts with Job Destruction Risk

We study the implications of job destruction risk for optimal incentives in a long-term contract with moral hazard. We extend the dynamic principal-agent model of Sannikov (2008) by adding an exogenous Poisson shock that makes the match between the firm and the agent permanently unproductive. In modeling job destruction as an exogenous Poisson shock, we follow the Diamond-Mortensen-Pissarides search-and-matching literature. The optimal contract shows how job destruction risk is shared between the rm and the agent. Arrival of the job-destruction shock is always bad news for the rm but can be ...
Working Paper , Paper 17-11

Journal Article
Self-Insurance and the Risk-Sharing Role of Money

Overcoming the lack of coincidence of wants is a well-acknowledged role of money. In this review, I illustrate that the use of money also promotes risk-sharing in the society: when individuals hold money, it helps other individuals mitigate their own liquidity risks.
Economic Quarterly , Issue 1Q , Pages 35-52

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