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Leverage and the Foreclosure Crisis

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Listed:
  • Dean Corbae
  • Erwan Quintin

Abstract

How much of the foreclosure crisis can be explained by the large number of high-leverage mortgages originated during the housing boom? In our model, heterogeneous households select from mortgages with different down payments and choose whether to default given income and housing shocks. The use of low-down payment loans is initially limited by payment-to-income requirements but becomes unrestricted during the boom. The model approximates key housing and mortgage market facts before and after the crisis. A counterfactual experiment suggests that the increased number of high-leverage loans originated prior to the crisis can explain over 60 percent of the rise in foreclosure rates.

Suggested Citation

  • Dean Corbae & Erwan Quintin, 2015. "Leverage and the Foreclosure Crisis," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 123(1), pages 1-65.
  • Handle: RePEc:ucp:jpolec:doi:10.1086/677349
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    File URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1086/677349
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • E44 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Money and Interest Rates - - - Financial Markets and the Macroeconomy
    • G21 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Banks; Other Depository Institutions; Micro Finance Institutions; Mortgages
    • R3 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Real Estate Markets, Spatial Production Analysis, and Firm Location

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