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Did affordable housing legislation contribute to the subprime securities boom?

  • Rubén Hernández-Murillo
  • Andra C. Ghent
  • Michael T. Owyang

No. In this paper we use a regression discontinuity approach to investigate whether affordable housing policies influenced origination or affected prices of subprime mortgages. We use merged loan-level data on non-prime securitized mortgages with individual- and neighborhood-level data for California and Florida. We find no evidence that lenders increased subprime originations or altered pricing around the discrete eligibility cutoffs for the Government Sponsored Enterprises (GSEs) affordable housing goals or the Community Reinvestment Act. Our results indicate that the extensive purchases of risky private-label mortgage-backed securities by the GSEs were not due to affordable housing mandates.

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Paper provided by Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis in its series Working Papers with number 2012-005.

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Date of creation: 2012
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Handle: RePEc:fip:fedlwp:2012-005
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  1. Congressional Budget Office, 2010. "Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and the Federal Role in the Secondary Mortgage Market," Reports 21992, Congressional Budget Office.
  2. Ruben Hernandez & Michael Owyang & Andra Ghent, 2011. "Race and Subprime Loan Pricing," ERSA conference papers ersa11p923, European Regional Science Association.
  3. Yuliya Demyanyk, 2009. "Quick exits of subprime mortgages," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, issue Mar, pages 79-94.
  4. Ghent, Andra C. & Hernández-Murillo, Rubén & Owyang, Michael T., 2011. "Differences in subprime loan pricing across races and neighborhoods," Working Papers 2011-033, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, revised 05 Mar 2014.
  5. Charles W. Calomiris, 2009. "Financial Innovation, Regulation, and Reform," Cato Journal, Cato Journal, Cato Institute, vol. 29(1), pages 65-91, Winter.
  6. Stephen L. Ross & John Yinger, 2002. "The Color of Credit: Mortgage Discrimination, Research Methodology, and Fair-Lending Enforcement," MIT Press Books, The MIT Press, edition 1, volume 1, number 0262182289, June.
  7. Ambrose, Brent W. & Thibodeau, Thomas G., 2004. "Have the GSE affordable housing goals increased the supply of mortgage credit?," Regional Science and Urban Economics, Elsevier, vol. 34(3), pages 263-273, May.
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