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Bank:Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco  Series:Working Paper Series 

Working Paper
Asset price declines and real estate market illiquidity: evidence from Japanese land values

We develop an overlapping generations model of the real estate market in which search frictions and a debt overhang combine to generate price persistence and illiquidity. Illiquidity stems from heterogeneity in agent real estate valuations. The variance of agent valuations determines how quickly prices adjust following a shock to fundamentals. We examine the predictions of the model by studying price depreciation in Japanese land values subsequent to the 1990 stock market crash. Commercial land values fell much more quickly than residential land values. As we would posit that the variance of ...
Working Paper Series , Paper 2004-16

Working Paper
Rational and near-rational bubbles without drift

This paper derives a general class of intrinsic rational bubble solutions in a standard Lucas-type asset pricing model. I show that the rational bubble component of the price-dividend ratio can evolve as a geometric random walk without drift. The volatility of bubble innovations depends exclusively on fundamentals. Starting from an arbitrarily small positive value, the rational bubble expands and contracts over time in an irregular, wholly endogenous fashion, always returning to the vicinity of the fundamental solution. I also examine a near-rational solution in which the representative agent ...
Working Paper Series , Paper 2007-10

Working Paper
Regional Consumption Responses and the Aggregate Fiscal Multiplier

We use regional variation in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (2009-2012) to analyze the effect of government spending on consumer spending. Our consumption data come from household-level retail purchases in Nielsen and auto purchases from Equifax credit balances. We estimate that a $1 increase in county-level government spending increases consumer spending by $0.18. We translate the regional consumption responses to an aggregate fiscal multiplier using a multi-region, New Keynesian model with heterogeneous agents and incomplete markets. Our model successfully generates the ...
Working Paper Series , Paper 2018-4

Working Paper
Monitoring Banking System Fragility with Big Data

The need to monitor aggregate financial stability was made clear during the global financial crisis of 2008-2009, and, of course, the need to monitor individual financial firms from a microprudential standpoint remains. In this paper, we propose a procedure based on mixed-frequency models and network analysis to help address both of these policy concerns. We decompose firm-specific stock returns into two components: one that is explained by observed covariates (or fitted values), the other unexplained (or residuals). We construct networks based on the co-movement of these components. Analysis ...
Working Paper Series , Paper 2018-1

Working Paper
The Fed's Response to Economic News Explains the “Fed Information Effect”

High-frequency changes in interest rates around FOMC announcements are a standard method of measuring monetary policy shocks. However, some recent studies have documented puzzling effects of these shocks on private-sector forecasts of GDP, unemployment, or inflation that are opposite in sign to what standard macroeconomic models would predict. This evidence has been viewed as supportive of a “Fed information effect” channel of monetary policy, whereby an FOMC tightening (easing) communicates that the economy is stronger (weaker) than the public had expected. We show that these empirical ...
Working Paper Series , Paper 2020-06

Working Paper
Measuring the natural rate of interest redux

Persistently low real interest rates have prompted the question whether low interest rates are here to stay. This essay assesses the empirical evidence regarding the natural rate of interest in the United States using the Laubach-Williams model. Since the start of the Great Recession, the estimated natural rate of interest fell sharply and shows no sign of recovering. These results are robust to alternative model specifications. If the natural rate remains low, future episodes of hitting the zero lower bound are likely to be frequent and long-lasting. In addition, uncertainty about the ...
Working Paper Series , Paper 2015-16

Working Paper
The value of knowledge spillovers

This paper aims at quantifying the economic value of knowledge spillovers by exploring information contained in patent citations. We estimate a market valuation equation for semiconductor firms during the 1980s and 1990s, and find an average value in the amount of $0.6 to 1.2 million "R&D-equivalent" dollars for the knowledge spillovers as embodied in one patent citation. For an average semiconductor firm, such an estimate implies that the total value of knowledge spillovers the firm received during the sample period could be as high as half of its actual total R&D expenditures in the same ...
Working Paper Series , Paper 2005-14

Working Paper
Prepayment and delinquency in the mortgage crisis period

We study the interaction of borrower mortgage prepayment and mortgage delinquency during the period between 2001 and 2010. We show that when house prices flattened and began their subsequent decline, borrowers had increasingly slow prepayments and that this decline in prepayment rates roughly coincided with the sharp increase in their delinquency rates. Low credit score borrowers, in particular, display a pronounced negative correlation between default rates and prepayment rates. Shortfalls of actual prepayment rates from predicted rates based on an estimated prepayment model suggest that, in ...
Working Paper Series , Paper 2011-25

Working Paper
Innovations in mortgage markets and increased spending on housing

Over the past several decades, innovations in the mortgage market have benefited consumers through a variety of channels. Innovations include the lowering of down payment requirements, increased flexibility in repayment schedules, and the reduction of costs associated with extracting equity from homes. To ascertain the ways in which these innovations would alter spending on housing, we develop a model of the home buying and mortgage choice decision that produces a number of testable implications. For instance, the lowering of down payment requirements should result in homeownership rates ...
Working Paper Series , Paper 2007-05

Working Paper
When in peril, retrench: testing the portfolio channel of contagion

One plausible mechanism through which financial market shocks may propagate across countries is through the effect of past gains and losses on investors? risk aversion. The paper first presents a simple model examining how heterogeneous changes in investors? risk aversion affects portfolio decisions and stock prices. Second, the paper shows empirically that, when funds? returns are below average, they adjust their holdings toward the average (or benchmark) portfolio. In other words, they tend to sell the assets of countries in which they were ?overweight?, increasing their exposure to ...
Working Paper Series , Paper 2004-28

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