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Credit Crises, Precautionary Savings, and the Liquidity Trap

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Listed:
  • Veronica Guerrieri
  • Guido Lorenzoni

Abstract

We study the effects of a credit crunch on consumer spending in a heterogeneous-agent incomplete-market model. After an unexpected permanent tightening in consumers’ borrowing capacity, constrained consumers are forced to repay their debt, and unconstrained consumers increase their precautionary savings. This depresses interest rates, especially in the short run, and generates an output drop, even with flexible prices. The output drop is larger with sticky prices, if the zero lower bound prevents the interest rate from adjusting downward. Adding durable goods to the model, households take larger debt positions and the output response can be larger.

Suggested Citation

  • Veronica Guerrieri & Guido Lorenzoni, 2017. "Credit Crises, Precautionary Savings, and the Liquidity Trap," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 132(3), pages 1427-1467.
  • Handle: RePEc:oup:qjecon:v:132:y:2017:i:3:p:1427-1467.
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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • E30 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Prices, Business Fluctuations, and Cycles - - - General (includes Measurement and Data)
    • E44 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Money and Interest Rates - - - Financial Markets and the Macroeconomy
    • D52 - Microeconomics - - General Equilibrium and Disequilibrium - - - Incomplete Markets

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