Housing policy and poverty in Springfield
This essay considers whether housing policies may have contributed to the concentration of poverty in downtown Springfield, Massachusetts ? a question that emerged in conversations with local leaders. Springfield is not alone in having large numbers of lower income households living downtown. This pattern is common in American cities. Recent research emphasizes the role of public transportation in causing lower income households to live closer to downtown. However, spillover effects and government policies, including housing policies, have reinforced this tendency. The essay reviews federal ...
The national and regional economic outlook
Remarks at Fordham University's Gabelli School of Business, Bronx, New York.
The national and regional economic outlook
Remarks before the Bronx Chamber of Commerce at the New York Botanical Garden, Bronx, New York.
Differences in subprime loan pricing across races and neighborhoods
We investigate whether race and ethnicity influenced subprime loan pricing during 2005, the peak of the subprime mortgage expansion. We combine loan-level data on the performance of non-prime securitized mortgages with individual- and neighborhood- level data on racial and ethnic characteristics for metropolitan areas in California and Florida. Using a model of rate determination that accounts for predicted loan performance, we evaluate the differences in subprime mortgage rates in terms of racial and ethnic groups and neighborhood characteristics. We find evidence of adverse pricing for ...
Did the Federal Reserve's MBS purchase program lower mortgage rates?
We employ empirical pricing models for mortgage-backed security (MBS) yields and for mortgage rates to measure deviations from normal market functioning in order to assess how the Federal Reserve MBS purchase program--a 16 month program announced on November 25, 2008 and completed on March 31, 2010--affected risk premiums that were embedded in mortgage and swap markets. Our pricing models suggest that the announcement of the program, which signaled strong and credible government backing for mortgage markets in particular and for the financial system more generally, reduced mortgage rates by ...
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 ...
The impact of LIHTC program on local schools
The low-income housing tax credit (LIHTC) program has developed over two million rental homes for low-income households since 1986. The perception of deterioration in school quality has been a main reason for community opposition to LIHTC projects in middle-and upper-income areas. In this paper, we examine the impact of LIHTC projects on the nearby school performance. The LIHTC projects tend to have positive and statistically significant impacts on school performance the year they are placed in service and this finding is robust to various specifications. Offsetting these, the one year lag ...
An analysis of the neighborhood impacts of a mortgage assistance program: a spatial hedonic model
Down-payment or closing-cost assistance is an effective program in addressing the wealth constraints of low- and moderate-income homebuyers. However, the spillover effect of such programs on the neighborhood is unknown. This paper estimates the impact of the City of Dallas Mortgage Assistance Program (MAP) on nearby home values using a hedonic model of home sales from 1990 to 2006. We define neighborhoods of 1,000 feet around each sale and estimate the average differences in sales prices between neighborhoods with various numbers of MAP properties before and after their appearance. We find ...
The quality of FHA lending in Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Delaware
The Federal Housing Administration (FHA), an agency within the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), insures mortgage loans made by private lenders. All FHA-insured borrowers pay mortgage insurance as one of the terms of their mortgage loan, and this insurance protects the lender against losses if the borrower defaults. In addition to providing a mortgage guarantee, the FHA single-family loan program has features such as a low down payment and a low minimum credit score that benefit borrowers who may not be able to obtain financing in the conventional market. Because of the FHA?s ...
Conference explores interaction between housing and economy
Economists and housing experts came together recently at the Atlanta Fed to examine how housing finance and policy affect the larger economy and how the larger economy affects housing.