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Jel Classification:G21 

Report
Assessing financial stability: the Capital and Loss Assessment under Stress Scenarios (CLASS) model

The CLASS model is a top-down capital stress testing framework that uses public data, simple econometric models, and auxiliary assumptions to project the effect of macroeconomic scenarios on U.S. banking firms. Through the lens of the model, we find that the total banking system capital shortfall under stressful macroeconomic conditions began to rise four years before the financial crisis, peaking in the fourth quarter of 2008. The capital gap has since fallen sharply, and is now significantly below pre-crisis levels. In the cross section, banking firms estimated to be most sensitive to ...
Staff Reports , Paper 663

Report
Evaluating the information in the Federal Reserve stress tests

We present evidence that the Federal Reserve stress tests produce information about both the stress-tested bank holding companies and the overall state of the banking industry. Our evidence goes beyond a standard event study, which cannot differentiate between small abnormal returns and large, but opposite?signed, abnormal stock returns. We find that stress test disclosures are associated with significantly higher absolute abnormal returns, as well as higher abnormal trading volume. More levered and riskier holding companies seem to be more affected by the stress test information. We find no ...
Staff Reports , Paper 744

Working Paper
Is bank debt special for the transmission of monetary policy? Evidence from the stock market

We combine existing balance sheet and stock market data with two new datasets to study whether, how much, and why bank lending to firms matters for the transmission of monetary policy. The first new dataset enables us to quantify the bank dependence of firms precisely, as the ratio of bank debt to total assets. We show that a two standard deviation increase in the bank dependence of a firm makes its stock price about 25 percent more responsive to monetary policy shocks. We explore the channels through which this effect occurs, and find that the stock prices of bank-dependent firms that borrow ...
Working Papers , Paper 13-17

Working Paper
Distant Lending, Specialization, and Access to Credit

Small business lending has historically been very local, but distances between small businesses and their lenders have steadily increased over the last forty years. This paper investigates a new lending strategy made possible by distant small business lending: industry specialization. Using data on all Small Business Administration 7(a) loans from 2001-2017, we document a substantial increase in remote, specialized small business lenders, i.e., lenders that originate many distant loans and concentrate these loans within a small number of industries. These lenders target low-risk industries ...
Working Papers , Paper 2003

Working Paper
The Credit Card Act and Consumer Finance Company Lending

The Credit Card Accountability and Disclosure Act (CARD Act) of 2009 restricted several risk management practices of credit card issuers. Using a quasi-experimental design with credit bureau data on consumer lending, we find evidence consistent with the hypothesis that the act??s restrictions on risk management practices contributed to a large decline in bank card holding by higher risk, nonprime consumers but had little effect on prime consumers. Looking at consumer finance loans, historically a source of credit for higher risk consumers, we find greater reliance on such loans by nonprime ...
Finance and Economics Discussion Series , Paper 2017-072

Report
Regional heterogeneity and the refinancing channel of monetary policy

We argue that the time-varying regional distribution of housing equity influences the aggregate consequences of monetary policy through its effects on mortgage refinancing. Using detailed loan-level data, we show that regional differences in housing equity affect refinancing and spending responses to interest rate cuts but that these effects vary over time with changes in the regional distribution of house price growth. We then build a heterogeneous household model of refinancing with both mortgage borrowers and lenders and use it to explore the aggregate implications for monetary policy ...
Staff Reports , Paper 731

Working Paper
Appraising Home Purchase Appraisals

Home appraisals are produced for millions of residential mortgage transactions each year, but appraised values are rarely below the purchase contract price. We argue that institutional features of home mortgage lending cause much of the information in appraisals to be lost: some 30 percent of recent appraisals are exactly at the home price (with less than 10 percent below it). We lay out a novel, basic theoretical framework to explain how lenders? and appraisers? incentives lead to information loss in appraisals (that is, appraisals set equal to the contract price). Such information loss is ...
Working Papers , Paper 17-23

Working Paper
Endogenous Debt Maturity and Rollover Risk

We challenge the common view that short-term debt, by having to be rolled over continuously, is a risk factor that exposes banks to higher default risk. First, we show that the average effect of expiring obligations on default risk is insignificant; it is only when a bank has limited access to new funds that maturing debt has a detrimental impact on default risk. Next, we show that both limited access to new funds and shorter maturities are causally determined by deteriorating market expectations about the bank's future profitability. In other words, short-term debt is not a cause of ...
Finance and Economics Discussion Series , Paper 2016-074

Report
Peas in a pod? Comparing the U.S. and Danish mortgage finance systems

Like the United States, Denmark relies heavily on capital markets for funding residential mortgages, and the Danish covered bond market bears a number of similarities to U.S. agency securitization. In this paper we describe the key features of the Danish mortgage finance system and compare and contrast it to the U.S. system. We also note characteristics of the Danish model that may be of interest as the United States considers further mortgage finance reform. In particular, the Danish system includes features that mitigate refinancing frictions during periods of falling home prices, and ...
Staff Reports , Paper 848

Working Paper
How Resilient Is Mortgage Credit Supply? Evidence from the COVID-19 Pandemic

We study the evolution of US mortgage credit supply during the COVID-19 pandemic. Although the mortgage market experienced a historic boom in 2020, we show there was also a large and sustained increase in intermediation markups that limited the pass-through of low rates to borrowers. Markups typically rise during periods of peak demand, but this historical relationship explains only part of the large increase during the pandemic. We present evidence that pandemic-related labor market frictions and operational bottlenecks contributed to unusually inelastic credit supply, and that ...
Working Papers , Paper 21-4

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