The financial crisis: imperfect markets and imperfect regulation
AbstractPurpose – This paper seeks to examine the role that regulation and regulatory agencies played in the creating of the subprime mortgage market, and the subsequent crash of the mortgage market. The paper has two goals. First, it seeks to document the degree to which the US housing markets, and the US housing finance market, were regulated prior to the crash. Second, it seeks to show that regulatory bodies set policies which created both incentives and explicit requirements for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, as well as depository institutions, to enter the subprime market. Design/methodology/approach – The paper examines the regulatory environment of the subprime market. It uses regulatory filings and other documents as primary sources. Findings – The popular perception that the subprime mortgage market arose because housing finance was largely unregulated is incorrect. In point of fact, the housing finance market was very heavily regulated. Indeed, the paper shows that the creation of the subprime market was a formal goal of the federal government, and that federal regulatory agencies explicitly required participation by the Government Sponsored Enterprises (GSEs). Originality/value – The paper's primary implication is that incentive conflicts within the US housing finance system significantly contributed to the mortgage crisis. These incentive conflicts were not just within private firms, but also extend to the GSEs and regulatory agencies. Regulatory agencies not only failed to anticipate the crisis; they actively encouraged the policies which created it. As a result, the primary focus of reform efforts should be on identifying and eliminating such conflicts.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoArticle provided by Emerald Group Publishing in its journal Journal of Financial Economic Policy.
Volume (Year): 3 (2011)
Issue (Month): 1 (February)
Contact details of provider:
Web page: http://www.emeraldinsight.com
Postal: Emerald Group Publishing, Howard House, Wagon Lane, Bingley, BD16 1WA, UK
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Richard Roll, 2003. "Benefits to Homeowners from Mortgage Portfolios Retained by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac," Journal of Financial Services Research, Springer, vol. 23(1), pages 29-42, February.
- Giang Ho & Anthony Pennington-Cross, 2007. "The varying effects of predatory lending laws on high-cost mortgage applications," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue Jan, pages 39-60.
- Brent W. Ambrose & Richard J. Buttimer Jr., 1998.
"Embedded Options in the Mortgage Contract,"
Zell/Lurie Center Working Papers
305, Wharton School Samuel Zell and Robert Lurie Real Estate Center, University of Pennsylvania.
- Black, Fischer & Scholes, Myron S, 1973. "The Pricing of Options and Corporate Liabilities," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 81(3), pages 637-54, May-June.
- John M. Quigley, 2006.
"Federal credit and insurance programs: housing,"
Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue Jul, pages 281-310.
- Quigley, John M., 2006. "Federal Credit and Insurance Programs: Housing," Berkeley Program on Housing and Urban Policy, Working Paper Series qt41d5k3bd, Berkeley Program on Housing and Urban Policy.
- Adam B. Ashcraft & Til Schuermann, 2008.
"Understanding the securitization of subprime mortgage credit,"
318, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
- Ashcraft, Adam B. & Schuermann, Til, 2008. "Understanding the Securitization of Subprime Mortgage Credit," Foundations and Trends(R) in Finance, now publishers, vol. 2(3), pages 191-309, June.
- James F. Epperson & James B. Kau & Donald C. Keenan & Walter J. Muller, 1985. "Pricing Default Risk in Mortgages," Real Estate Economics, American Real Estate and Urban Economics Association, vol. 13(3), pages 261-272.
- Bucks, Brian & Pence, Karen, 2008. "Do borrowers know their mortgage terms?," Journal of Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 64(2), pages 218-233, September.
- Buttimer, Richard Jr. & Lin, Che-Chun, 2005. "Valuing US and Canadian mortgage servicing rights with default and prepayment," Journal of Housing Economics, Elsevier, vol. 14(3), pages 194-211, September.
- Luci Ellis, 2008.
"The housing meltdown: Why did it happen in the United States?,"
BIS Working Papers
259, Bank for International Settlements.
- Luci Ellis, 2010. "The Housing Meltdown: Why Did It Happen in the United States?," International Real Estate Review, Asian Real Estate Society, vol. 13(3), pages 351-394.
- Glenn B. Canner & Elizabeth Laderman & Andreas Lehnert & Wayne Passmore, 2002. "Does the Community Reinvestment Act (CRA) cause banks to provide a subsidy to some mortgage borrowers?," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2002-19, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
- Ambrose, Brent W & Buttimer, Richard J, Jr & Capone, Charles A, 1997. "Pricing Mortgage Default and Foreclosure Delay," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 29(3), pages 314-25, August.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Jade Turvey).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.