The role of banks in the transmission of monetary policy
The transmission of monetary policy, especially in light of recent events, has received increased attention, especially with respect to the efficacy of the bank lending channel. This paper summarizes the issues associated with isolating the bank lending channel and determining the extent to which it is operational. Evidence on the effectiveness of the bank lending channel is presented, both in the United States and abroad. The paper then provides observations about the likely consequences for the effectiveness of the lending channel of the changes in the financial environment associated with ...
Why did so many people make so many ex post bad decisions?: the causes of the foreclosure crisis
This paper presents 12 facts about the mortgage market. The authors argue that the facts refute the popular story that the crisis resulted from financial industry insiders deceiving uninformed mortgage borrowers and investors. Instead, they argue that borrowers and investors made decisions that were rational and logical given their ex post overly optimistic beliefs about house prices. The authors then show that neither institutional features of the mortgage market nor financial innovations are any more likely to explain those distorted beliefs than they are to explain the Dutch tulip bubble ...
The stability of prime money market mutual funds: sponsor support from 2007 to 2011
It is commonly noted that in the history of the Money Market Mutual Fund (MMMF) industry only two MMMFs have ?broken the buck,? or had the net asset value per share (NAV) at which they transact fall below $1. While this statement is true, it is useful to consider the role that non-contractual support has played in the maintenance of this strong track record. Such support, which has served to obscure the credit risk taken by these funds, has been a common occurrence over the history of MMMFs. This paper presents a detailed view of the non-contractual support provided to MMMFs by their sponsors ...
Fair value accounting: villain or innocent victim?: exploring the links between fair value accounting, bank regulatory capital, and the recent financial crisis
There is a popular belief that the confluence of bank capital rules and fair value accounting helped trigger the recent financial crisis. The claim is that questionable valuations of long term investments based on prices obtained from illiquid markets created a pro-cyclical effect whereby mark to market adjustments reduced regulatory capital forcing banks to sell off investments which further depressed prices. This ultimately led to bank instability and the credit effects that reached a peak late in 2008. This paper analyzes a sample of large banks to attempt to measure the strength of the ...
How effective were the Federal Reserve emergency liquidity facilities?: evidence from the Asset-Backed Commercial Paper Money Market Mutual Fund Liquidity Facility
Following the failure of Lehman Brothers in September 2008, short-term credit markets were severely disrupted. In response, the Federal Reserve implemented new and unconventional facilities to help restore liquidity. Many existing analyses of these interventions are confounded by identification problems because they rely on aggregate data. Two unique micro datasets allow us to exploit both time series and cross-sectional variation to evaluate one of the most unusual of these facilities - the Asset-Backed Commercial Paper Money Market Mutual Fund Liquidity Facility (AMLF). The AMLF extended ...
Basel and the wider financial stability agenda
Remarks at the 2010 Institute of International Finance Annual Membership Meeting, Washington, D.C.
The recovery and monetary policy
Remarks at the National Association for Business Economics Annual Meeting, New York City.
Dollar illiquidity and central bank swap arrangements during the global financial crisis
While the global financial crisis was centered in the United States, it led to a surprising appreciation in the dollar, suggesting global dollar illiquidity. In response, the Federal Reserve partnered with other central banks to inject dollars into the international financial system. Empirical studies of the success of these efforts have yielded mixed results, in part because their timing is likely to be endogenous. In this paper, we examine the cross-sectional impact of these interventions. Theory consistent with dollar appreciation in the crisis suggests that their impact should be greater ...
Cross-country causes and consequences of the crisis: an update
We update Rose and Spiegel (2010a, b) and search for simple quantitative models of macroeconomic and financial indicators of the "Great Recession" of 2008-09. We use a cross-country approach and examine a number of potential causes that have been found to be successful indicators of crisis intensity by other scholars. We check a number of different indicators of crisis intensity, and a variety of different country samples. While countries with higher income and looser credit market regulation seemed to suffer worse crises, we find few clear reliable indicators in the pre-crisis data of ...
Liquidity and reserve requirements in Brazil
The international reform initiative that followed the global financial crisis of 2008-09 has resulted in the introduction of liquidity requirements for banks. Under one requirement, the Liquidity Coverage Ratio (LCR), banks will need to hold enough highly liquid assets to survive for a month in a stress scenario. Banks' required reserve balances can be used to fulfill this liquidity requirement and this may be seen as an attractive option for emerging market economies, where financial sectors are often underdeveloped. In this paper, I examine the Brazilian experience prior to and during the ...