NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

Regional Redistribution Through the U.S. Mortgage Market

Erik Hurst, Benjamin J. Keys, Amit Seru, Joseph S. Vavra

NBER Working Paper No. 21007
Issued in March 2015
NBER Program(s):   CF   EFG   ME   POL

Regional shocks are an important feature of the U.S. economy. Households' ability to self-insure against these shocks depends on how they affect local interest rates. In the United States, most borrowing occurs through the mortgage market and is influenced by the presence of government-sponsored enterprises (GSEs). We establish that despite large regional variation in predictable default risk, GSE mortgage rates for otherwise identical loans do not vary spatially. In contrast, the private market does set interest rates that vary with local risk. We use a spatial model of collateralized borrowing to show that the national interest rate policy substantially affects welfare by redistributing resources across regions.

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This paper was revised on March 2, 2016

Machine-readable bibliographic record - MARC, RIS, BibTeX

Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w21007

Published: Erik Hurst & Benjamin J. Keys & Amit Seru & Joseph Vavra, 2016. "Regional Redistribution through the US Mortgage Market," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 106(10), pages 2982-3028, October. citation courtesy of

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