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Working Paper
Improving Sovereign Debt Restructurings

The wave of sovereign defaults in the early 1980s and the string of debt crises in subsequent decades have fostered proposals involving policy interventions in sovereign debt restructurings, and the recent global pandemic crisis has further reignited this discussion. A key question about these policy proposals for debt restructurings that has proved hard to handle is how they influence the behavior of creditors and debtors. We address this challenge by evaluating policy proposals in a quantitative sovereign default model that incorporates two essential features: maturity choice and debt ...
Working Papers , Paper 2019-36

Working Paper
Domestic Policies and Sovereign Default

This paper incorporates fiscal and monetary policies into a model of sovereign default. In addition to the standard present-bias vs default-risk tradeoff faced by governments when choosing debt, distortionary policy instruments introduce an intertemporal tradeoff, which may mitigate or exacerbate the incentives to accumulate debt. Taxation, the money growth rate and currency depreciation all increase with the level of debt. The model reproduces standard business cycle statistics, the response of spreads, inflation and growth to terms-of-trade shocks, and the cyclical properties of fiscal and ...
Working Papers , Paper 2020-017

Working Paper
On Default and Uniqueness of Monetary Equilibria

We examine the role that credit risk in the central bank's monetary operations plays in the determination of the equilibrium price level and allocations. Our model features trade in fiat money, real assets and a monetary authority which injects money into the economy through short-term and long-term loans to agents. Short-term loans are riskless, but long-term loans are collateralized by a portfolio of real assets and are subject to credit risk. The private monetary wealth of individuals is zero, i.e., there is no outside money. When there is no default in equilibrium, there is indeterminacy. ...
Finance and Economics Discussion Series , Paper 2015-34

Working Paper
Assessing Bankruptcy Reform in a Model with Temptation and Equilibrium Default

A life-cycle model with equilibrium default in which agents with and without temptation coexist is constructed to evaluate the 2005 bankruptcy law reform. The calibrated model indicates that the 2005 reform reduces bankruptcies, as seen in the data, and improves welfare, as lower default premia allows better consumption smoothing. A counterfactual reform of changing income garnishment rate is also investigated. Interesting contrasting welfare effects between two types of agents emerge. Agents with temptation prefer a lower garnishment rate as tighter borrowing constraint prevents them from ...
Working Papers , Paper 16-21

Discussion Paper
Do Expansions in Health Insurance Affect Student Loan Outcomes?

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) is arguably the biggest policy intervention in health insurance in the United States since the passage of Medicaid and Medicare in 1965. The Act was signed into law in March 2010, and by 2016 approximately 20 to 24 million additional Americans were covered with health insurance. Such an extension of insurance coverage could affect not only medical bills, but also educational, employment, and broader financial outcomes. In this post, we take an initial look at the relationship between the ACA and higher education financing choices and ...
Liberty Street Economics , Paper 20180328

Working Paper
Debt Deflation Effects of Monetary Policy

This paper assesses the role that monetary policy plays in the decision to default using a General Equilibrium model with collateralized loans, trade in fiat money and production. Long-term nominal loans are backed by collateral, the value of which depends on monetary policy. The decision to default is endogenous and depends on the relative value of the collateral to face value of the loan. Default results in foreclosure, higher borrowing costs, inefficient investment and a decrease in total output. We show that pre-crisis contractionary monetary policy interacts with Fisherian debt-deflation ...
Finance and Economics Discussion Series , Paper 2014-37

Working Paper
The dynamics of subprime adjustable-rate mortgage default: a structural estimation

We present a dynamic structural model of subprime adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) borrowers making payment decisions, taking into account possible consequences of different degrees of delinquency from their lenders. We empirically implement the model using unique data sets that contain information on borrowers' mortgage payment history, their broad balance sheets, and lender responses. Our investigation of the factors that drive borrowers' decisions reveals that subprime ARMs are not all alike. For loans originated in 2004 and 2005, the interest rate resets associated with ARMs as well as the ...
Working Papers , Paper 16-2

Working Paper
Collateral Runs

This paper models an unexplored source of liquidity risk faced by large broker-dealers: collateral runs. By setting different contracting terms on repurchase agreements with cash borrowers and lenders, dealers can source funds for their own activities. Cash borrowers internalize the risk of losing their collateral in case their dealer defaults, prompting them to withdraw it. This incentive creates strategic complementarities for counterparties to withdraw their collateral, reducing a dealer's liquidity position and compromising her solvency. Collateral runs are markedly different than ...
Finance and Economics Discussion Series , Paper 2018-022

Working Paper
Credit, bankruptcy, and aggregate fluctuations

We ask two questions related to how access to credit affects the nature of business cycles. First, does the standard theory of unsecured credit account for the high volatility and procyclicality of credit and the high volatility and countercyclicality of bankruptcy filings found in U.S. data? Yes, it does, but only if we explicitly model recessions as displaying countercyclical earnings risk (i.e., rather than having all households fare slightly worse than normal during recessions, we ensure that more households than normal fare very poorly). Second, does access to credit smooth aggregate ...
Working Papers , Paper 14-31

Working Paper
Optimal Taxation with Endogenous Default under Incomplete Markets

How are the optimal tax and debt policies affected if the government has the option to default on its debt? We address this question from a normative perspective in an economy with noncontingent government debt, domestic default and labor taxes. On one hand, default prevents the government from incurring future tax distortions that would come along with the service of the debt. On the other hand, default risk gives rise to endogenous credit limits that hinder the government's ability to smooth taxes. We characterize the fiscal policy and show how the option to default alters the near-unit ...
International Finance Discussion Papers , Paper 1297


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