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Financial innovation and the Great Moderation: what do household data say?

Author

Listed:
  • Karen E. Dynan
  • Douglas W. Elmendorf
  • Daniel E. Sichel

Abstract

Aggressive deregulation of the household debt market in the early 1980s triggered innovations that greatly reduced the required home equity of U.S. households, allowing them to cash-out a large part of accumulated equity. In 1982, home equity equaled 71 percent of GDP; so this generated a borrowing shock of huge macroeconomic proportions. The combination of increasing household debt from 43 to 56 percent of GDP with high interest rates during the 1982-1990 period is consistent with such a shock to households’ demand for funds. This paper uses a quantitative general equilibrium model of lending from the wealthy to the middle class to evaluate the positive and normative aspects of the transition to a high debt economy. Using the model, we interpret evidence on the changing distribution of assets and debt as well as macro time series since 1982.

Suggested Citation

  • Karen E. Dynan & Douglas W. Elmendorf & Daniel E. Sichel, 2006. "Financial innovation and the Great Moderation: what do household data say?," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, issue Nov.
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:fedfpr:y:2006:i:nov:x:2
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Douglas Sutherland & Peter Hoeller & Balázs Égert & Oliver Röhn, 2010. "Counter-cyclical Economic Policy," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 760, OECD Publishing.
    2. Pengfei Wang & Yi Wen & Zhiwei Xu, 2018. "Financial Development and Long-Run Volatility Trends"," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 28, pages 221-251, April.
    3. Antonella Tutino, 2013. "Rationally inattentive consumption choices," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 16(3), pages 421-439, July.
    4. Balázs Égert & Douglas Sutherland, 2014. "The Nature of Financial and Real Business Cycles: The Great Moderation and Banking Sector Pro-Cyclicality," Scottish Journal of Political Economy, Scottish Economic Society, vol. 61(1), pages 98-117, February.
    5. By James Feigenbaum & Geng Li, 2015. "Household income uncertainties over three decades," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 67(4), pages 963-986.
    6. Shalini Mitra, 2012. "Does Financial Development Cause Higher Firm Volatility and Lower Aggregate Volatility?," Working papers 2012-07, University of Connecticut, Department of Economics.
    7. Claudia M. Buch, 2013. "Has Labor Income Become More Volatile? Evidence from International Industry-Level Data," German Economic Review, Verein für Socialpolitik, vol. 14(4), pages 399-431, November.
    8. Pengfei Wang & Yi Wen & Zhiwei Xu, 2018. "Financial Development and Long-Run Volatility Trends"," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 28, pages 221-251, April.
    9. Kristopher S. Gerardi & Harvey S. Rosen & Paul S. Willen, 2006. "Do households benefit from financial deregulation and innovation?: the case of the mortgage market," Public Policy Discussion Paper 06-6, Federal Reserve Bank of Boston.
    10. Mark Doms & Frederick T. Furlong & John Krainer, 2007. "Subprime mortgage delinquency rates," Working Paper Series 2007-33, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.

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    Keywords

    Households - Economic aspects;

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