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Why do markets freeze?

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  • Yaron Leitner

Abstract

In normal times, investors buy and sell financial assets because there are gains from trade. However, markets do not always function properly — they sometimes “freeze.” An example is the collapse of trading in mortgage-backed securities during the recent financial crisis. Why does trade break down despite the potential gains from trade? Can the government intervene to restore the normal functioning of markets? In “Why Do Markets Freeze?,” Yaron Leitner explains what a market freeze is and some of the theories as to why these freezes occur.

Suggested Citation

  • Yaron Leitner, 2011. "Why do markets freeze?," Business Review, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia, issue Q2, pages 12-19.
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:fedpbr:y:2011:i:q2:p:12-19
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    File URL: http://www.philadelphiafed.org/research-and-data/publications/business-review/2011/q2/brq211_why-do-markets-freeze.pdf
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    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Ricardo J. Caballero & Arvind Krishnamurthy, 2008. "Collective Risk Management in a Flight to Quality Episode," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 63(5), pages 2195-2230, October.
    2. Shleifer, Andrei & Vishny, Robert W, 1992. " Liquidation Values and Debt Capacity: A Market Equilibrium Approach," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 47(4), pages 1343-1366, September.
    3. Gary Gorton, 2008. "The Panic of 2007," Yale School of Management Working Papers amz2372, Yale School of Management.
    4. Jensen, Michael C. & Meckling, William H., 1976. "Theory of the firm: Managerial behavior, agency costs and ownership structure," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 3(4), pages 305-360, October.
    5. Douglas W. Diamond & Raghuram G. Rajan, 2009. "Fear of Fire Sales and the Credit Freeze," NBER Working Papers 14925, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    6. Myers, Stewart C., 1977. "Determinants of corporate borrowing," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 5(2), pages 147-175, November.
    7. Gorton, Gary B., 2008. "The panic of 2007," Proceedings - Economic Policy Symposium - Jackson Hole, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, pages 131-262.
    8. Easley, David & O'Hara, Maureen, 2010. "Liquidity and valuation in an uncertain world," Journal of Financial Economics, Elsevier, vol. 97(1), pages 1-11, July.
    9. Todd C. Pulvino, 1998. "Do Asset Fire Sales Exist? An Empirical Investigation of Commercial Aircraft Transactions," Journal of Finance, American Finance Association, vol. 53(3), pages 939-978, June.
    10. George A. Akerlof, 1970. "The Market for "Lemons": Quality Uncertainty and the Market Mechanism," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 84(3), pages 488-500.
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    Cited by:

    1. Bluhm, Marcel & Krahnen, Jan Pieter, 2014. "Systemic risk in an interconnected banking system with endogenous asset markets," Journal of Financial Stability, Elsevier, vol. 13(C), pages 75-94.
    2. W. Scott Frame & Andreas Fuster & Joseph Tracy & James Vickery, 2015. "The Rescue of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, pages 25-52.

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    Keywords

    Financial markets;

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