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Jel Classification:D18 

Working Paper
New Evidence on an Old Unanswered Question : Why Some Borrowers Purchase Credit Insurance and Other Debt Protection and Some Do Not

Credit related insurance and other debt protection are products sold in conjunction with credit that extinguish a consumer?s debt or suspends its periodic payments if events like death, disability, or involuntary unemployment occur. High penetration rates observed in the 1950s and 1960s raised concerns about coercion in the sale of credit insurance. This study presents evidence on credit insurance purchase and debt protection decisions from a new survey. The findings provide little evidence of widespread or systematic coercion in purchases. Instead, findings suggest that risk aversion and ...
Finance and Economics Discussion Series , Paper 2017-122

Working Paper
Liquidity Crises in the Mortgage Market

Non-banks originated about half of all mortgages in 2016, and 75% of mortgages insured by the FHA or VA. Both shares are much higher than those observed at any point in the 2000s. We describe in this paper how non-bank mortgage companies are vulnerable to liquidity pressures in both their loan origination and servicing activities, and we document that this sector in aggregate appears to have minimal resources to bring to bear in a stress scenario. We show how the same liquidity issues unfolded during the financial crisis, leading to the failure of many non-bank companies, requests for ...
Finance and Economics Discussion Series , Paper 2018-016

Working Paper
Hidden Baggage : Behavioral Responses to Changes in Airline Ticket Tax Disclosure

We examine the impact on air travelers of an enforcement action issued by the U.S. Department of Transportation in January 2012 that required U.S. air carriers and online travel agents to incorporate all mandatory taxes and fees into their advertised fares. Exploiting cross-itinerary ticket tax variation within international city market pairs, we provide evidence that the more prominent display of tax-inclusive prices is associated with a significant reduction in tax incidence on consumers and a decline in passenger volume along more heavily-taxed itineraries. Ticket revenues are ...
Finance and Economics Discussion Series , Paper 2018-057

Working Paper
Villains or Scapegoats? The Role of Subprime Borrowers in Driving the U.S. Housing Boom

An expansion in mortgage credit to subprime borrowers is widely believed to have been a principal driver of the 2002?06 U.S. house price boom. Contrary to this belief, we show that the house price and subprime booms occurred in different places. Counties with the largest home price appreciation between 2002 and 2006 had the largest declines in the share of purchase mortgages to subprime borrowers. We also document that the expansion in speculative mortgage products and underwriting fraud was not concentrated among subprime borrowers.
FRB Atlanta Working Paper , Paper 2018-10

Report
Did the Target data breach change consumer assessments of payment card security?

Previous research has found that perceptions of payment security affect consumers? use of payment instruments. We test whether the Target data breach in 2013 was associated with a change in consumers? perceptions of the security of credit cards and debit cards and with subsequent changes in consumers? use of payment cards. Using data from the Survey of Consumer Payment Choice (SCPC), we find that, controlling for possible confounding effects of demographic differences between the two groups, ratings by consumers who assessed the security of personal information of debit cards shortly after ...
Research Data Report , Paper 16-1

Discussion Paper
The Credit CARD Act of 2009: what did banks do?

The Credit CARD Act of 2009 was intended to prevent practices in the credit card industry that lawmakers viewed as deceptive and abusive. Among other changes, the Act restricted issuers? account closure policies, eliminated certain fees, and made it more difficult for issuers to change terms on credit card plans. Critics of the Act argued that because of the long lag between approval and implementation of the law, issuing banks would be able to take preemptive actions that might disadvantage cardholders before the law could take effect. Using credit bureau data as well as individual data from ...
Public Policy Discussion Paper , Paper 13-7

Report
Access to credit and financial health: evaluating the impact of debt collection

Despite the prevalence of debt collection and the intense regulatory activity surrounding this industry, little is known about how these practices impact consumers. This paper conducts an empirical analysis of the effect of debt collection on consumer credit and on indicators of financial health, employing individual credit record data and a difference-in-differences research design that compares outcomes for consumers in states that increased the restrictiveness of legislation with those for consumers in the remaining states. We find consistent evidence that restricting collection activities ...
Staff Reports , Paper 814

Working Paper
Villains or Scapegoats? The Role of Subprime Borrowers in Driving the U.S. Housing Boom

An expansion in mortgage credit to subprime borrowers is widely believed to have been a principal driver of the 2002–2006 U.S. house price boom. By contrast, this paper documents a robust, negative correlation between the growth in the share of purchase mortgages to subprime borrowers and house price appreciation at the county-level during this time. Using two different instrumental variables approaches, we also establish causal evidence that house price appreciation lowered the share of purchase loans to subprime borrowers. Further analysis using micro-level credit bureau data shows that ...
Working Papers , Paper 2013

Report
Defining and detecting predatory lending

Staff Report no. 273 has been removed at the request of the author. See links to related papers.
Staff Reports , Paper 273

Report
Does CFPB oversight crimp credit?

We study the effects of regulatory oversight by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) on credit supply as well as bank risk-taking, growth, and operating costs. We use a difference-in-differences approach, making use of the fact that banks below a $10 billion size cutoff are exempt from CFPB supervision and enforcement activities. We find little evidence that CFPB oversight significantly reduces the overall volume of mortgage lending. However, we find some evidence of changes in the composition of lending?CFPB-supervised banks originated fewer loans to risky borrowers, offset by an ...
Staff Reports , Paper 857

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