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Jel Classification:R2 

Working Paper
The Impact of Missed Payments and Foreclosures on Credit Scores
This paper debunks the common perception that ?foreclosure will ruin your credit score.? Using individual-level data from a credit bureau matched with loan-level mortgage data, it is estimated that the very first missed mortgage payment leads to the biggest reduction in credit scores. The effects of subsequent loan impairments are increasingly muted. Post-delinquency foreclosures have only a minimal effect on credit scores. Moreover, credit scores improve substantially a year after borrowers experience 90-day delinquency or foreclosure. The data supports one possible explanation of this improvement: the absence of mortgage payments relaxes the borrowers? budget constraint, allowing them to restore other forms of credit.
AUTHORS: Demyanyk, Yuliya
DATE: 2014-10-27

Working Paper
Mortgage Choice in the Housing Boom: Impacts of House Price Appreciation and Borrower Type
The U.S. housing boom during the first part of the past decade was marked by rapid house price appreciation and greater access to mortgage credit for lower credit-rated borrowers. The subsequent collapse of the housing market and the high default rates on residential mortgages raise the issue of whether the pace of house price appreciation and the mix of borrowers may have affected the influence of fundamentals in housing and mortgage markets. This paper examines that issue in connection with one aspect of mortgage financing, the choice among fixed-rate and adjustable-rate mortgages. This analysis is motivated in part by the increased use of adjustable-rate mortgage financing, notably among lower credit-rated borrowers, during the peak of the housing boom. Based on analysis of a large sample of loan level data, we find strong evidence that house price appreciation dampened the influence of a number of fundamentals (mortgage pricing terms and other interest rate related metrics) that previous research finds to be important determinants of mortgage financing choices. With regard to the mix of borrowers, the evidence indicates that, while low risk-rated borrowers were affected on the margin more by house price appreciation, on balance those borrowers tended be at least as responsive to fundamentals as high risk-rated borrowers. The higher propensity of low credit-rated borrowers to choose adjustable-rate financing compared with high credit-rated borrowers in the housing boom appears to have been related to borrower credit risk metrics. Given the evidence related to loan pricing terms, other interest rate metrics and fixed effects, the relation of credit risk to mortgage financing choice seems more consistent with considerations such as credit constraints, risk preferences, and mortgage tenor than just a systematic lack of financial sophistication among higher credit risk borrowers.
AUTHORS: Takhtamanova, Yelena; Furlong, Frederick T.; Lang, David
DATE: 2014-01

Journal Article
Representative neighborhoods of the United States
Many metropolitan areas in the United States display substantial racial segregation and substantial variation in incomes and house prices across neighborhoods. To what extent can this variation be summarized by a small number of representative (or synthetic) neighborhoods? To answer this question, U.S. neighborhoods are classified according to their characteristics in the year 2000 using a clustering algorithm. The author finds that such classification can account for 37 percent of the variation with two representative neighborhoods and for up to 52 percent with three representative neighborhoods. Furthermore, neighborhoods classified as similar to the same representative neighborhood tend to be geographically close to each other, forming large areas of fairly homogeneous characteristics. Representative neighborhoods seem a promising empirical benchmark for quantitative theories involving neighborhood formation.
AUTHORS: Badel, Alejandro
DATE: 2014

Working Paper
Are Central Cities Poor and Non-White?
For much of the 20th century, America's central cities were viewed as synonymous with economic and social hardship, often used as proxy for low-income communities of color. Since the 1990s, however, many metropolitan areas have seen a resurgence of interest in central city neighborhoods. Theoretical models of income sorting lead to ambiguous predictions about where households of different income levels will live within metropolitan areas. In this paper, we explore intra-city spatial patterns of income and race for U.S. metropolitan areas, focusing particularly on the locations of low-income and minority neighborhoods. Results indicate that, on average, income and white population shares increase with distance to city centers. However, many centrally located neighborhoods are neither low-income nor majority non-white, while low-income and minority neighborhoods are spatially dispersed across most metropolitan areas.
AUTHORS: Robles, Barbara J.; Larrimore, Jeff; Gonzalez, Arturo; Schuetz, Jenny; Merry, Ellen A.
DATE: 2017-03

Journal Article
The Homeownership Experience of Minorities During the Great Recession
It has been argued that during the Great Recession, wealth losses were more concentrated for college-educated Black and Hispanic families than for White and Asian college-educated families and their non-college-educated Black and Hispanic peers. This article explores the extent to which the homeownership experience for families who purchased homes between 2004 and 2008 is a potentially important factor in explaining this finding. During the housing boom, the increase in homeownership for Blacks and Hispanics was very similar, but the second group had a smaller decline. Despite these differences, the Great Recession was far more destructive for these minorities regardless of income. Logit regressions show that underwriting standards and loan structure explain a significant amount of the non-White?White gap in foreclosures. However, geographic concentration was most significant in explaining the gap for Hispanic borrowers. Despite accounting for these factors, sizable gaps in the likelihood of foreclosure remain between Blacks and Hispanics relative to Whites.
AUTHORS: Garriga, Carlos; Ricketts, Lowell R.; Schlagenhauf, Don E.
DATE: 2017

Working Paper
The impact of student loan debt on small business formation
Small businesses are the backbone of the U.S. economy and account for approximately one-half of the private-sector economy and 99% of all businesses. To start a small business, individuals need access to capital. Given the importance of an entrepreneur?s personal debt capacity in financing a startup business, student loan debt, which is difficult to discharge via bankruptcy, can have lasting effects and may have an impact on the ability of future small business owners to raise capital. This study examines the impact of the growth in student debt on net small business formation. We find a significant and economically meaningful negative correlation between changes in student loan debt and net business formation for the smallest group of small businesses, those employing one to four employees. This is important since these small businesses depend heavily on personal debt to finance new business formation. Based on our model, an increase of one standard deviation in student debt reduced the number of businesses with one to four employees by 14% on average between 2000 and 2010. The effect on larger firm formation decreased with firm size, which we interpret to mean that these firms have greater access to outside capital.
AUTHORS: Ambrose, Brent W.; Cordell, Lawrence R.; Ma, Shuwei
DATE: 2015-07-01

Report
Housing markets and residential segregation: impacts of the Michigan school finance reform on inter- and intra-district sorting
Local financing of public schools in the United States leads to a bundling of two distinct choices ? residential choice and school choice ? and has been argued to increase the degree of socioeconomic segregation across school districts. A school finance reform, aimed at equalization of school finances, can in principle weaken this link between housing choice and choice of schools. In this paper, we study the impacts of the Michigan school finance reform of 1994 (Proposal A) on spatial segregation. The reform was a state initiative intended to equalize per-pupil expenditures between Michigan school districts and reduce the role of local financing. We find that Proposal A was responsible for increases in the value of housing stock in the lowest-spending school districts, and for improvements in several socioeconomic indicators in these districts, implying a decline in neighborhood sorting. We also find that the reform affected dispersion of incomes and educational attainment within school districts, increasing within-district heterogeneity in the lowest-spending school districts, while decreasing the same in the highest-spending districts. However, there is continued high demand for residence in the highest-spending communities, suggesting the importance of neighborhood peer effects ("local" social capital) and implying that even a comprehensive government aid program can fail to make a large impact on residential segregation.
AUTHORS: Chakrabarti, Rajashri; Roy, Joydeep
DATE: 2012

Working Paper
A Quantitative Evaluation of the Housing Provident Fund Program in China
The Housing Provident Fund (HPF) is the largest public housing program in China. It was created in 1999 to enhance homeownership. This program involves a mandatory saving scheme based on labor income. Past deposits are refunded when the worker purchases a house or retires. Moreover, the program provides mortgages at subsidized rates to facilitate these home purchases. I calibrate a heterogeneous-agent life-cycle model to quantify the effects of these policies. My analysis shows that a housing program with these features is expected to raise the rate of homeownership by 8.7 percentage points and to increase the average home size by 20%. I discuss the economic mechanisms by which these outcomes are achieved and which features of the HPF program are most effective. I also consider several extensions of the model such as requiring employers to contribute to the program and allowing renters to withdraw funds from the HPF.
AUTHORS: Zhou, Xiaoqing
DATE: 2020-03-19

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