University of Pennsylvania
Philadelphia, PA 19104
NBER Working Papers and Publications
|October 2015||Phasing Out the GSEs|
with Vadim Elenev, Stijn Van Nieuwerburgh: w21626
We develop a new model of the mortgage market where both borrowers and lenders can default. Risk tolerant savers act as intermediaries between risk averse depositors and impatient borrowers. The government plays a crucial role by providing both mortgage guarantees and deposit insurance. Underpriced government mortgage guarantees lead to more and riskier mortgage originations as well as to high financial sector leverage. Mortgage crises occasionally turn into financial crises and government bailouts due to the fragility of the intermediaries' balance sheets. Increasing the price of the mortgage guarantee "crowds in" the private sector, reduces financial fragility, leads to fewer but safer mortgages, lowers house prices, and raises mortgage and risk-free interest rates. Due to a more robust ...
Published: Elenev, Vadim & Landvoigt, Tim & Van Nieuwerburgh, Stijn, 2016. "Phasing out the GSEs," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 81(C), pages 111-132. citation courtesy of
|August 2015||Mortgage Refinancing, Consumer Spending, and Competition: Evidence from the Home Affordable Refinancing Program|
with Sumit Agarwal, Gene Amromin, Souphala Chomsisengphet, Tomasz Piskorski, Amit Seru, Vincent Yao: w21512
Using proprietary loan-level data, we examine the ability of the government to impact mortgage refinancing activity and spur consumption by focusing on the Home Affordable Refinancing Program (HARP). The policy relaxed housing equity constraints by extending government credit guarantee on insufficiently collateralized mortgages refinanced by intermediaries. Difference-in-difference tests based on program eligibility criteria reveal a significant increase in refinancing activity by HARP. More than three million eligible borrowers with primarily fixed-rate mortgages refinanced under HARP, receiving an average reduction of 1.4% in interest rate that amounts to $3,500 in annual savings. Durable spending by borrowers increased significantly after refinancing, with larger increase among more ind...
|January 2012||The Housing Market(s) of San Diego|
with Monika Piazzesi, Martin Schneider: w17723
This paper uses an assignment model to understand the cross section of house prices within a metro area. Movers' demand for housing is derived from a lifecycle problem with credit market frictions. Equilibrium house prices adjust to assign houses that differ by quality to movers who differ by age, income and wealth. To quantify the model, we measure distributions of house prices, house qualities and mover characteristics from micro data on San Diego County during the 2000s boom. The main result is that cheaper credit for poor households was a major driver of prices, especially at the low end of the market.
Published: “The Housing Market(s) of San Diego” (with Tim Landvoigt and Martin Schneider) American Economic Review, vol. 105, no. 4, April 2015 (pp. 1371-1407)