Branching of banks and union decline
This paper proposes a novel explanation for the decline in unions in the United States since the late 1970s: state-by-state removal of geographical restrictions on branching of banks. Bank branch deregulation reduces union membership in the non-banking sectors by intensifying entry of new firms, especially in sectors with high dependence on external finance. New firm entry, in turn, is associated with a reduction in union wage premium, and subsequently leads to adverse union voting. I provide empirical evidence for these channels using repeated cross-sectional and panel data of U.S. workers ...
Household debt repayment behaviour: what role do institutions play?
Household debt repayment behavior has been understudied, especially empirically, despite the heightened debate on rising household debt, personal bankruptcy filings, and arrears. In this paper, we use data from the European Community Household Panel to analyze the determinants of household debt arrears. The paper's primary aim is to understand the role of institutions in household arrears by exploiting cross-country differences and the panel nature of the data set. We start our analysis by showing that falling into arrears has important long-term consequences for employment, self-employment, ...
Unpacking social interactions
As empirical work in identifying social effects becomes more prevalent, researchers are beginning to struggle with identifying the composition of social interactions within any given reference group. In this paper, we present a simple econometric methodology for the separate identification of multiple social interactions. The setting under which we achieve separation is special, but is likely to be appropriate in many applications.
The Shift from Active to Passive Investing: Potential Risks to Financial Stability?
The past couple of decades have seen a significant shift in assets from active to passive investment strategies. We examine the potential effects of this shift on financial stability through four different channels: (1) effects on investment funds? liquidity transformation and redemption risks; (2) passive strategies that amplify market volatility; (3) increases in asset-management industry concentration; and (4) the effects on valuations, volatility, and comovement of assets that are included in indexes. Overall, the shift from active to passive investment strategies appears to be increasing ...
Looking behind the aggregates: a reply to “Facts and Myths about the Financial Crisis of 2008”
As Chari et al (2008) point out in a recent paper, aggregate trends are very hard to interpret. They examine four common claims about the impact of financial sector phenomena on the economy and conclude that all four claims are myths. We argue that to evaluate these popular claims, one needs to look at the underlying composition of financial aggregates. Our findings show that most of the commonly argued facts are indeed supported by disaggregated data.
Your house or your credit card, which would you choose?: personal delinquency tradeoffs and precautionary liquidity motives
This paper finds strong evidence that many individuals choose to pay credit card bills even at the cost of mortgage delinquencies and foreclosures. While the popular press and some recent literature have suggested that this choice may emerge from steep declines in housing prices, we find evidence that individual-level liquidity concerns are at least as important in the decision. That is, choosing credit cards over housing suggests a precautionary liquidity preference. ; By linking the mortgage delinquency decisions to individual-level credit conditions, we are able to assess the compound ...
Monetary Policy Divergence and Net Capital Flows: Accounting for Endogenous Policy Responses
This paper measures the effect of monetary tightening in key advanced economies on net capital flows around the world. Measuring this effect is complicated by the fact that the domestic monetary policies of affected economies respond endogenously to the foreign tightening shock. Using a structural VAR framework with quarterly panel data we estimate the impulse responses of domestic policy variables and net capital flows to a foreign monetary tightening shock. We find that the endogenous response of domestic monetary policy depends on each economy's capital account openness and exchange rate ...
Liquidity Shocks, Dollar Funding Costs, and the Bank Lending Channel during the European Sovereign Crisis
This paper documents a new type of cross-border bank lending channel using a novel dataset on the balance sheets of U.S. branches of foreign banks and their syndicated loans. We show that: (1) The U.S. branches of euro-area banks suffered a liquidity shock in the form of reduced access to large time deposits during the European sovereign debt crisis in 2011. The shock was related to their euro-area affiliation rather than to country- or bank-specific characteristics. (2) The affected branches received additional funding from their parent banks, but not enough to offset the lost deposits. (3) ...
Reach for Yield by U.S. Public Pension Funds
This paper studies whether U.S. public pension funds reach for yield by taking more investment risk in a low interest rate environment. To study funds? risk-taking behavior, we first present a simple theoretical model relating risk-taking to the level of risk-free rates, to their underfunding, and to the fiscal condition of their state sponsors. The theory identifies two distinct channels through which interest rates and other factors may affect risk-taking: by altering plans? funding ratios, and by changing risk premia. The theory also shows the effect of state finances on funds? risk-taking ...
A question of liquidity: the great banking run of 2008?
The current financial crisis has given rise to a new type of bank run, one that affects both the banks' assets and liabilities. In this paper we combine information from the commercial paper market with loan level data from the Survey of Terms of Business Loans to show that during the 2007-2008 financial crises banks suffered a run on credit lines. First, as in previous crises, we find an increase in the usage of credit lines as commercial spreads widen, especially among the lowest quality firms. Second, as the crises deepened, firms drew down their credit lines out of fear that the weakened ...