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Dealing with consumer default: Bankruptcy vs garnishment

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  • Chatterjee, Satyajit
  • Gordon, Grey

Abstract

What are the positive and normative implications of eliminating bankruptcy protection for indebted individuals? Without bankruptcy protection, creditors can collect on defaulted debt to the extent permitted by wage garnishment laws. The elimination lowers the default premium on unsecured debt and permits low-net-worth individuals suffering bad earnings shocks to smooth consumption by borrowing. There is a large increase in consumer debt financed essentially by super-wealthy individuals, a modest drop in capital per worker, and a higher frequency of consumer default. Average welfare rises by 1% of consumption in perpetuity, with about 90% of households favoring the change.

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  • Chatterjee, Satyajit & Gordon, Grey, 2012. "Dealing with consumer default: Bankruptcy vs garnishment," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 59(S), pages 1-16.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:moneco:v:59:y:2012:i:s:p:s1-s16
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jmoneco.2012.10.021
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Carlos Hatchondo, Juan & Martinez, Leonardo & Sánchez, Juan M., 2015. "Mortgage defaults," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 76(C), pages 173-190.
      • Hatchondo, Juan Carlos & Martinez, Leonardo & Sánchez, Juan M., 2011. "Mortgage defaults," Working Papers 2011-019, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, revised 31 Jul 2015.
      • Leonardo Martinez & Juan Carlos Hatchondo & Juan M. Sanchez, 2012. "Mortgage Defaults," IMF Working Papers 12/26, International Monetary Fund.
      • Juan Carlos Hatchondo & Leonardo Martinez & Juan M. Sanchez, 2011. "Mortgage defaults," Working Paper 11-05, Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond.
      • Juan Carlos Hatchondo & Leonardo Martinez & Juan M. Sanchez, 2015. "Mortgage Defaults," Caepr Working Papers 2015-011 Classification-D, Center for Applied Economics and Policy Research, Economics Department, Indiana University Bloomington.
    2. Gordon, Grey, 2017. "Optimal bankruptcy code: A fresh start for some," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 85(C), pages 123-149.
    3. Kyle Herkenhoff & Gordon Phillips & Ethan Cohen-Cole, 2016. "The Impact of Consumer Credit Access on Employment, Earnings and Entrepreneurship," NBER Working Papers 22846, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    4. Kartik Arthreya & Juan Sanchez & Xuan Tam & Eric Young, 2015. "Labor Market Upheaval, Default Regulation, and Consumer Debt," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 18(1), pages 32-52, January.
    5. Hülya Eraslan & Gizem Koşar & Wenli Li & Pierre‐Daniel Sarte, 2017. "An Anatomy Of U.S. Personal Bankruptcy Under Chapter 13," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 58, pages 671-702, August.
    6. Will Dobbie & Jae Song, 2015. "Debt Relief and Debtor Outcomes: Measuring the Effects of Consumer Bankruptcy Protection," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 105(3), pages 1272-1311, March.
    7. Kartik Athreya & Juan M. Sánchez & Xuan S. Tam & Eric R. Young, 2018. "Bankruptcy And Delinquency In A Model Of Unsecured Debt," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 59(2), pages 593-623, May.
    8. Satyajit Chatterjee, 2010. "An Equilibrium Model of the Timing of Bankruptcy Filings," 2010 Meeting Papers 1282, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    9. Jason Allen & Kiana Basiri, 2016. "The Impact of Bankruptcy Reform on Insolvency Choice and Consumer Credit," Staff Working Papers 16-26, Bank of Canada.
    10. repec:tpr:restat:v:99:y:2017:i:5:p:853-869 is not listed on IDEAS
    11. Igor Livshits, 2015. "Recent Developments In Consumer Credit And Default Literature," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 29(4), pages 594-613, September.
    12. Will Dobbie & Paul Goldsmith-Pinkham & Crystal S. Yang, 2017. "Consumer Bankruptcy and Financial Health," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 99(5), pages 853-869, December.
    13. Don Schlagenhauf & Carlos Garriga, 2017. "Identifying "Default Thresholds" in Consumer Liabilities Using High Frequency Data," 2017 Meeting Papers 1305, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    14. repec:inu:caeprp:2014002 is not listed on IDEAS
    15. Exler, Florian, 2015. "Personal bankruptcy and wage garnishment," Annual Conference 2015 (Muenster): Economic Development - Theory and Policy 113219, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    16. repec:red:issued:18-178 is not listed on IDEAS
    17. Nadja König, 2016. "Household Debt and Macrodynamics - How do Income Distribution and Insolvency Regulations interact?," Macroeconomics and Finance Series 201603, University of Hamburg, Department of Socioeconomics.
    18. Nadja König, 2016. "Personal Insolvency Dynamics in Germany and the UK -- A SUR-TAR Approach," Macroeconomics and Finance Series 201602, University of Hamburg, Department of Socioeconomics.

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