The Federal Reserve Is Updating the Community Reinvestment Act. Here’s How You Can Help.
Whether you are a community-service organization member, an economic development professional or simply interested in helping communities in our region thrive, your comments and ideas are a critical part of ensuring an inclusive financial services industry.
A Mixed-Methods Exploration of Consumer Credit Trends by Age in the Third Federal Reserve District
While there is growing awareness of the importance of consumer credit use for the broader economy, less is understood about the full context of borrowers? balance sheets and how financial challenges change over a credit user?s lifecycle. Responding to this knowledge gap, this report takes a comparative look at the use of credit among Third Federal Reserve District residents across three age groups (18 to 34, 35 to 54, and 55 to 84 years). Combining analysis of credit bureau data with insights from interviews with housing and credit counselors, this report provides a comprehensive overview of ...
Household Debt and Local Public Finances
In the wake of the Great Recession, steep declines in state and local government expenditures and employment were a large and persistent source of economic weakness. The business cycle was also characterized by large increases and decreases in household debt. We estimate the extent to which variation in local government revenues and expenditures can be explained by variation in the expansion of household debt from 2002 to 2007, and the contraction thereafter. We merge individual credit balance data with municipal financial data from the Census of Governments. Using Census block indicators, we ...
Screening on Loan Terms: Evidence from Maturity Choice in Consumer Credit
We exploit a natural experiment in the largest online consumer lending platform to provide the first evidence that loan terms, in particular maturity choice, can be used to screen borrowers based on their private information. We compare two groups of observationally equivalent borrowers who took identical unsecured 36-month loans; for only one of the groups, a 60-month loan was also available. When a long-maturity option is available, fewer borrowers take the short-term loan, and those who do default less. Additional findings suggest borrowers self-select on private information about their ...
Consumer Credit with Over-Optimistic Borrowers
Do cognitive biases call for regulation to limit the use of credit? We incorporate over-optimistic and rational borrowers into an incomplete markets model with consumer bankruptcy. Over-optimists face worse income risk but incorrectly believe they are rational. Thus, both types behave identically. Lenders price loans forming beliefs—type scores—about borrower types. This gives rise to a tractable theory of type scoring. As lenders cannot screen types, borrowers are partially pooled. Over-optimists face cross subsidized interest rates but make financial mistakes: borrowing too much and ...
Effects of Wildfire Destruction on Migration, Consumer Credit, and Financial Distress
The scale of wildfire destruction has grown exponentially in recent years, destroying nearly 25,000 buildings in the United States during 2018 alone. However, there is still limited research exploring how wildfires affect migration patterns and household finances. In this study, we evaluate the effects of wildfire destruction on in-migration and out-migration probability at the Census tract level in the United States from 1999 to 2018. We then shift to the individual level and examine changes in homeownership, consumer credit usage, and financial distress among people whose neighborhood ...
A New Look at the Effects of the Interest Rate Ceiling in Arkansas
Arkansas has been a popular place to study the effects of rate ceilings because of its exceptionally low interest rate ceiling. This paper examines the effects of the Arkansas rate ceiling on credit use by risky nonprime Arkansas consumers, which are especially vulnerable to credit rationing because of the low ceiling. We compare the level and composition of consumer debt of nonprime consumers in Arkansas with that of prime Arkansas consumers and also nonprime consumers in the neighboring states. We find that nonprime Arkansas consumers are less likely to have consumer debt and, conditional ...
Tracking Consumer Credit Trends
Troy Davig and William Xu find that a larger share of consumers with low credit scores are increasing their debt than those with high credit scores.
Growing Up without Finance
Early-life exposure to local financial institutions increases household financial inclusion and leads to long-term improvements in consumer credit outcomes. We identify the effect of local financial markets using congressional legislation that led to large and unintended differences in financial market development across Native American reservations. Individuals who grow up on financially underdeveloped reservations enter formal credit markets later than individuals from financially developed reservations and have persistently worse consumer credit outcomes (10 point lower credit scores and a ...
Texas Subprime Borrowers Rely on Unconventional Home Loans
How do low- and moderate-income Texans fare in becoming homeowners?