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Jel Classification:E51 

Working Paper
Lending to unhealthy firms in Japan during the lost decade: distinguishing between technical and financial health
We investigate the misallocation of credit in Japan associated with banks? evergreening loans, distinguishing between two types of firm distress: (perhaps temporary) financial distress and technical distress, which reflects weak operational capabilities, as indicated by low total factor productivity. We show that previous evidence related to firms? financial health is problematic due to the mixing of loan-demand and loan-supply effects. Using a direct measure of operational health, we provide unambiguous, direct evidence of evergreening behavior, as well as confirming evidence based on the relative impacts on subsequent firm viability of loans by bank types with different incentives to evergreen loans.
AUTHORS: Chakraborty, Suparna; Peek, Joe
DATE: 2016-12-01

Working Paper
Embedded Supervision: How to Build Regulation into Blockchain Finance
The spread of distributed ledger technology (DLT) in finance could help to improve the efficiency and quality of supervision. This paper makes the case for embedded supervision, i.e., a regulatory framework that provides for compliance in tokenized markets to be automatically monitored by reading the market?s ledger, thus reducing the need for firms to actively collect, verify and deliver data. After sketching out a design for such schemes, the paper explores the conditions under which distributed ledger data might be used to monitor compliance. To this end, a decentralized market is modelled that replaces today?s intermediary-based verification of legal data with blockchain-enabled data credibility based on economic consensus. The key results set out the conditions under which the market?s economic consensus would be strong enough to guarantee that transactions are economically final, so that supervisors can trust the distributed ledger?s data. The paper concludes with a discussion of the legislative and operational requirements that would promote low-cost supervision and a level playing field for small and large firms.
AUTHORS: Auer, Raphael
DATE: 2019-10-01

Working Paper
The implications of liquidity expansion in China for the US dollar
The value of the US dollar is of major importance to the world economy. Global liquidity has grown sharply in recent years with growing importance of China?s money supply to global liquidity. We develop out-of-sample forecasts of the US dollar exchange rate value using US and non-US global data on inflation, output, interest rates, and liquidity on the US, China and non-US/non-China liquidity. Monetary model forecasts significantly outperform a random walk forecast in terms of MSFE at horizons over 12 to 30 months ahead. A monetary model with sticky prices performs best. Rolling sample analysis indicates changes over time in the influence of variables in forecasting the US dollar. China?s liquidity has a distinct, significant and changing influence on the US dollar exchange rate. Post global financial crisis, increases in the growth rate in China?s M2 forecast a significantly higher value for the US dollar 12 months and 18 months ahead and significantly lower values for the US dollar 24 and 30 months.
AUTHORS: Ratti, Ronald A.; Vespignani, Joaquin L.; Kang, Wensheng
DATE: 2016-01-01

Working Paper
Can't Pay or Won't Pay? Unemployment, Negative Equity, and Strategic Default
This paper exploits matched data from the PSID on borrower mortgages with income and demographic data to quantify the relative importance of negative equity, versus lack of ability to pay, as affecting default between 2009 and 2013. These data allow us to construct household budgets sets that provide better measures of ability to pay. We use instrumental variables to quantify the impact of ability to pay, including job loss and disability, versus negative equity. Changes in ability to pay have the largest estimated effects. Job loss has an equivalent effect on default likelihood as a 35 percent decline in equity.
AUTHORS: Gerardi, Kristopher S.; Herkenhoff, Kyle F.; Ohanian, Lee E.; Willen, Paul S.
DATE: 2013-08-01

Working Paper
Deposit interest rate ceilings as credit supply shifters: bank level evidence on the effects of Regulation Q
Shocks emanating from and propagating through the banking system have recently gained interest in the macroeconomics literature, yet they are not a feature unique to the 2008/09 financial crisis. Banking disintermediation shocks occured frequently during the Great Inflation era due to fixed deposit rate ceilings. I estimate the effect of deposit rate ceilings inscribed in Regulation Q on the transmission of federal funds rate changes to bank level credit growth using a historic bank level data set spanning half a century from 1959 to 2013 with about two million observations. Measures of the degree of bindingness of Regulation Q suggest that individual banks? lending growth was smaller the more binding the legally fixed rate ceiling. Interaction terms with monetary policy suggest that the policy impact on bank level credit growth was non-linear at the ceiling ?kink? and significantly larger when rate ceilings were in place. At the bank level, short-term interest rates exceeding the legally fixed deposit rate ceilings identify bank loan supply shifts that disappeared with deposit rate deregulation and thus weakened the credit channel of monetary transmission since the early 1980s.
AUTHORS: Koch, Christoffer
DATE: 2014-07-14

Working Paper
Credit booms, banking crises, and the current account
What is the marginal effect of an increase in the private sector debt-to-GDP ratio on the probability of a banking crisis? This paper shows that the marginal effect of rising debt levels depends on an economy's external position. When the current account is in surplus or in balance, the marginal effect of an increase in debt is rather small; a 10 percentage point increase in the private sector debt-to-GDP ratio increases the probability of a crisis by about 1 to 2 percentage points. However, when the economy is running a sizable current account deficit, implying that any increase in the debt ratio is financed through foreign borrowing, this marginal effect can be large. When a country has a current account deficit of 10% of GDP (which is similar to the value in the Eurozone periphery on the eve of the recent crisis) a 10 percentage point increase in the private sector debt ratio leads to a 10 percentage point increase in the probability of a crisis.
AUTHORS: Davis, J. Scott; Mack, Adrienne; Vandenabeele, Anne; Phoa, Wesley
DATE: 2014-05-13

Working Paper
Optimal monetary policy in a currency union with interest rate spreads
We introduce ?financial imperfections? - asymmetric net wealth positions, incomplete risksharing, and interest rate spread across member countries - in a prototypical two-country currency union model and study implications for monetary policy transmission mechanism and optimal policy. In addition to, and independent from, the standard transmission mechanism associated with nominal rigidities, financial imperfections introduce a wealth redistribution role for monetary policy. Moreover, the two mechanisms reinforce each other and amplify the effects of monetary policy. On the normative side, financial imperfections, via interactions with nominal rigidities, generate two novel policy trade-offs. First, the central bank needs to pay attention to distributional efficiency in addition to macroeconomic (and price level) stability, which implies that a strict inflation targeting policy of setting union-wide inflation to zero is never optimal. Second, the interactions lead to a trade-off in stabilizing relative consumption versus the relative price gap (the deviation of relative prices from their efficient level) across countries, which implies that the central bank allows for less flexibility in relative prices. Finally, we consider how the central bank should respond to a financial shock that causes an increase in the interest rate spread. Under optimal policy, the central bank strongly decreases the deposit rate, which reduces aggregate and distributional inefficiencies by mitigating the drop in output and inflation and the rise in relative consumption and prices. Such a policy response can be well approximated by a spreadadjusted Taylor rule as it helps the real interest rate track the efficient rate of interest.
AUTHORS: Bhattarai, Saroj; Lee, Jae Won; Park, Woong Yong
DATE: 2013

Working Paper
Beyond the Doomsday Economics of “Proof-of-Work” in Cryptocurrencies
This paper discusses the economics of how Bitcoin achieves data immutability, and thus payment finality, via costly computations, i.e., ?proof-of-work.? Further, it explores what the future might hold for cryptocurrencies modelled on this type of consensus algorithm. The conclusions are, first, that Bitcoin counterfeiting via ?double-spending? attacks is inherently profitable, making payment finality based on proof-of-work extremely expensive. Second, the transaction market cannot generate an adequate level of ?mining? income via fees as users free-ride on the fees of other transactions in a block and in the subsequent blockchain. Instead, newly minted bitcoins, known as block rewards, have made up the bulk of mining income to date. Looking ahead, these two limitations imply that liquidity is set to fall dramatically as these block rewards are phased out. Simple calculations suggest that once block rewards are zero, it could take months before a Bitcoin payment is final, unless new technologies are deployed to speed up payment finality. Second-layer solutions such as the Lightning Network might help, but the only fundamental remedy would be to depart from proof-of-work, which would probably require some form of social coordination or institutionalisation.
AUTHORS: Auer, Raphael
DATE: 2019-02-01

Working Paper
Historical Patterns of Inequality and Productivity around Financial Crises
To understand the determinants of financial crises, previous research focused on developments closely related to financial markets. In contrast, this paper considers changes originating in the real economy as drivers of financial instability. Based on long-run historical data for advanced economies, I find that rising top income inequality and low productivity growth are robust predictors of crises ? even outperforming well known early-warning indicators such as credit growth. Moreover, if crises are preceded by such developments, output declines more during the subsequent recession. In addition, I show that asset booms explain the relation between income inequality and financial crises in the data.
AUTHORS: Paul, Pascal
DATE: 2017-09-25

Working Paper
The Long-Run Effects of Monetary Policy
Is the effect of monetary policy on the productive capacity of the economy long lived? Yes, in fact we find such impacts are significant and last for over a decade based on: (1) merged data from two new international historical databases; (2) identification of exogenous monetary policy using the macroeconomic trilemma; and (3) improved econometric methods. Notably, the capital stock and total factor productivity (TFP) exhibit hysteresis, but labor does not. Money is non-neutral for a much longer period of time than is customarily assumed. A New Keynesian model with endogenous TFP growth can reconcile all these empirical observations.
AUTHORS: Singh, Sanjay R.; Jordà, Òscar; Taylor, Alan M.
DATE: 2020-01-16

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