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Systematic mistakes in the mortgage market and lack of financial sophistication

Listed author(s):
  • Agarwal, Sumit
  • Ben-David, Itzhak
  • Yao, Vincent

Institutions often offer a menu of contracts to consumers in an attempt to create a separating equilibrium that reveals borrower types and provides better pricing. We test the effectiveness of a specific set of contracts in the mortgage market: mortgage points. Points allow borrowers to exchange an upfront amount for a decrease in the mortgage rate. We document that, on average, points takers lose about $700. Also, points takers are less financially savvy (less educated, older), and they make mistakes on other dimensions (e.g., inefficiently refinancing their mortgages). Overall, our results show that borrowers overestimate how long they will stay with the mortgage.

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File URL: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0304405X16301258
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Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Journal of Financial Economics.

Volume (Year): 123 (2017)
Issue (Month): 1 ()
Pages: 42-58

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Handle: RePEc:eee:jfinec:v:123:y:2017:i:1:p:42-58
DOI: 10.1016/j.jfineco.2016.01.028
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.elsevier.com/locate/inca/505576

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