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The Demand for Credit Cards: Evidence from the Survey of Consumer Finances

  • Edward Castronova
  • Paul Hagstrom

We analyze data from the Survey of Consumer Finances estimate the response of credit card demand to standard price and income effects. We model credit card demand as a two-stage process, with consumers obtaining limits in the first stage and then borrowing some fraction of those limits in the second. We estimate this model with a nested tobit procedure. We also treat the demand for limits as one equation in a two-equation supply-demand model. We estimate this model with simple 2SLS, instrumenting for the price variable, the interest rate. The results of the first model suggest that most of the action in the market is in the demand for limits, not the demand for balances. (JEL D1, G0) Copyright 2004, Oxford University Press.

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Article provided by Western Economic Association International in its journal Economic Inquiry.

Volume (Year): 42 (2004)
Issue (Month): 2 (April)
Pages: 304-318

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Handle: RePEc:oup:ecinqu:v:42:y:2004:i:2:p:304-318
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