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Jel Classification:D14 

Journal Article
Tracking and stress-testing U.S. household leverage

Housing equity is an important component of borrowers? wealth and a critical determinant of their vulnerability to shocks. In this article, the authors use a unique, newly created data set to analyze the evolution of household leverage?defined here as the ratio of housing debt to housing values?over time and across locations in the United States, at the micro level. They find that leverage was at a very low point just prior to the large declines in house prices that began in 2006, and rose very quickly through 2012, in spite of reductions in housing debt. As of early 2017, leverage statistics ...
Economic Policy Review , Issue 24-1 , Pages 35-63

Journal Article
Do we know what we owe? Consumer debt as reported by borrowers and lenders

Household surveys are the source of some of the most widely studied data on consumer balance sheets, with the Survey of Consumer Finances (SCF) generally cited as the leading source of wealth data for the United States. At the same time, recent research questions survey respondents? propensity and ability to report debt characteristics accurately. This study compares household debt as reported by borrowers to the SCF with household debt as reported by lenders to Equifax using the new FRBNY Consumer Credit Panel (CCP). The borrower and lender debt distributions are compared by year, age of ...
Economic Policy Review , Issue 21-1 , Pages 19-44

Journal Article
Understanding the Evolution of Student Loan Balances and Repayment Behavior: Do Institution Type and Degree Matter?

Student loan balances and delinquency rates have soared to unprecedented levels in recent years, forming what many commentators have termed a “student loan bubble” and creating a major public policy issue. Given the importance of student loans for human capital formation and economic growth, understanding student loans and repayment behavior is essential from a policy perspective. Yet research in this area has been limited. The authors seek to fill the gap by examining student loan performance over time by institution type and degree program. Using detailed data collected as part of ...
Economic Policy Review , Volume 25 , Issue Dec

Discussion Paper
Inflation Expectations and Behavior: Do Survey Respondents Act on Their Beliefs?

Surveys of consumers’ inflation expectations are now a key component of monetary policy. To date, however, little work has been done on 1) whether individual consumers act on their beliefs about future inflation, and 2) whether the inflation expectations elicited by these surveys are actually informative about the respondents’ beliefs. In this post, we report on a new study by Armantier, Bruine de Bruin, Topa, van der Klaauw, and Zafar (2010) that investigates these two issues by comparing consumers’ survey-based inflation expectations with their behavior in a financially incentivized ...
Liberty Street Economics , Paper 20110727

Report
How do speed and security influence consumers' payment behavior?

The Federal Reserve Financial Services (FRFS) strategic plan for 2012-2016 named improvements in the end-to-end speed and security of the payment system as two of its policy initiatives. End-to-end in this context means that for the first time end-users are explicitly included. Earlier versions of the strategy plan were circulated for public comment, and the feedback received by FRFS specifically identified a need for further research. This brief draws upon new data from the 2013 Survey of Consumer Payment Choice and employs econometric modeling and simulation to complement FRFS-commissioned ...
Current Policy Perspectives , Paper 15-1

Report
The 2012 diary of consumer payment choice

This paper describes the results, content, and methodology of the 2012 Diary of Consumer Payment Choice (DCPC), the first edition of a survey that measures payment behavior through the daily recording of U.S. consumers? spending by type of payment instrument. A diary makes it possible to collect detailed information on individual payments, including dollar amount, device (if any) used to make the payment (computer, mobile phone, etc.), and payee type (business, person, government). This edition of the DCPC included about 2,500 participants and was conducted in October 2012. During that month, ...
Research Data Report , Paper 18-1

Report
The 2016 and 2017 surveys of consumer payment choice: summary results

Despite the introduction of new technology and new ways to make payments, the Survey of Consumer Payment Choice (SCPC) finds that consumer payment behavior has remained stable over the past decade. In the 10 years of the survey, debit cards, cash, and credit cards consistently have been the most popular payment instruments. In 2017, U.S. consumers ages 18 and older made 70 payments per month on average. Debit cards accounted for 31.8 percent of those monthly payments, cash for 27.4 percent, and credit cards for 23.2 percent. The SCPC continues to measure new ways to shop and pay and found ...
Research Data Report , Paper 18-3

Report
The 2015 and 2016 diaries of consumer payment choice: technical appendix

This document serves as the technical appendix to the 2015 and 2016 editions of the Diary of Consumer Payment Choice (DCPC) administered by the Center for Economic and Social Research. The DCPC is a study designed primarily to collect data on financial transactions over a three-day period by U.S. consumers ages 18 and older. In this data report, we detail the technical aspects of the survey design, implementation, and analysis.
Research Data Report , Paper 18-2

Report
The 2011 and 2012 Surveys of Consumer Payment Choice: technical appendix

This document serves as the technical appendix to the 2011 and 2012 Surveys of Consumer Payment Choice. The Survey of Consumer Payment Choice (SCPC) is an annual study designed primarily to study the evolving attitudes to and use of various payment instruments by consumers over the age of 18 in the United States. The main report, which introduces the survey and discusses the principal economic results, can be found on http://www.bostonfed.org/economic/cprc/SCPC. In this data report, we detail the technical aspects of the survey design, implementation, and analysis.
Research Data Report , Paper 14-2

Report
U.S. consumers' holdings and use of $100 bills

Conventional wisdom asserts that $100 bills are often associated with crime and foreign cash holdings, leading some commentators to call for their elimination; in light of this proposal, it is useful to examine the legal, domestic use of cash. This report uses new data from the 2012 Diary of Consumer Payment Choice (DCPC) to evaluate consumer use of $100 bills as a means of payment.
Research Data Report , Paper 14-3

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