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Understanding mortgage spreads
Most mortgages in the U.S. are securitized in agency mortgage-backed securities (MBS). Yield spreads on these securities are thus a key determinant of homeowners? funding costs. We study variation in MBS spreads over time and across securities, and document a cross-sectional smile pattern in MBS spreads with respect to the securities? coupon rates. We propose non-interest-rate prepayment risk as a candidate driver of MBS spread variation and present a new pricing model that uses ?stripped? MBS prices to identify the contribution of this prepayment risk to the spread. The pricing model finds ...
Funding Liquidity Risk and the Cross-section of MBS Returns
This paper shows that funding liquidity risk is priced in the cross-section of excess returns on agency mortgage-backed securities (MBS). We derive a measure of funding liquidity risk from dollar-roll implied financing rates (IFRs), which reflect security-level costs of financing positions in the MBS market. We show that factors representing higher net MBS supply are generally associated with higher IFRs, or higher funding costs. In addition, we find that exposure to systematic funding liquidity shocks embedded in the IFRs is compensated in the cross-section of expected excess returns| agency ...
Cheapest-to-Deliver Pricing, Optimal MBS Securitization, and Market Quality
We study optimal securitization and its impact on market quality when the secondary market structure leads to cheapest-to-deliver pricing in the context of agency mortgage-backed securities (MBS). A majority of MBS are traded in the to-be-announced (TBA) market, which concentrates trading of heterogeneous MBS into a few liquid TBA contracts but induces adverse selection. We find that lenders segregate loans of like values into separate pools and tend to trade low-value MBS in the TBA market and high-value MBS outside the TBA market. We then present a model of optimal securitization for agency ...