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House price booms, current account deficits, and low interest rates

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  • Andrea Ferrero

Abstract

One of the most striking features of the period before the Great Recession is the strong positive correlation between house price appreciation and current account deficits, not only in the United States but also in other countries that have subsequently experienced the highest degree of financial turmoil. A progressive relaxation of credit standards can rationalize this empirical observation. Lower collateral requirements facilitate access to external funding and drive up house prices. The current account turns negative because households borrow from the rest of the world. At the same time, however, the world real interest rate counterfactually increases. The two key ingredients that reconcile a demand-based explanation of house price booms and current account deficits with the evidence on real interest rates are nominal interest rates lower than the predictions of a standard monetary policy rule in leveraged economies and foreign exchange rate pegs in saving countries.

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  • Andrea Ferrero, 2012. "House price booms, current account deficits, and low interest rates," Staff Reports 541, Federal Reserve Bank of New York.
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:fednsr:541
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    Cited by:

    1. Boz, Emine & Mendoza, Enrique G., 2014. "Financial innovation, the discovery of risk, and the U.S. credit crisis," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 62(C), pages 1-22.
    2. Stephane Auray & Aurelien Eyquem, 2017. "Heterogeneity, Convergence and Imbalances in the Euro Area," Working Papers 2017-64, Center for Research in Economics and Statistics.
    3. Ambrogio Cesa-Bianchi & Andrea Ferrero & Alessandro Rebucci, 2017. "International Credit Supply Shocks," NBER Chapters,in: NBER International Seminar on Macroeconomics 2017 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    4. Cerutti, Eugenio & Dagher, Jihad & Dell'Ariccia, Giovanni, 2017. "Housing finance and real-estate booms: A cross-country perspective," Journal of Housing Economics, Elsevier, vol. 38(C), pages 1-13.
    5. François Geerolf & Thomas Grjebine, 2013. "House Prices Drive Current Accounts: Evidence From Property Tax Variations," Working Papers 2013-18, CEPII research center.
    6. Yilmaz Akyüz, 2012. "The Staggering Rise of the South?," Working Papers 2012/3, Turkish Economic Association.
    7. Giri, Federico & Riccetti, Luca & Russo, Alberto & Gallegati, Mauro, 2016. "Monetary policy and large crises in a financial accelerator agent-based model," FinMaP-Working Papers 65, Collaborative EU Project FinMaP - Financial Distortions and Macroeconomic Performance: Expectations, Constraints and Interaction of Agents.
    8. Antonakakis, Nikolaos & Chatziantoniou, Ioannis & Floros, Christos, 2015. "Dynamic Connectedness of UK Regional Property Prices," MPRA Paper 68421, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    9. Rangan Gupta & Christophe André & Luis Gil-Alana, 2015. "Comovement in Euro area housing prices: A fractional cointegration approach," Urban Studies, Urban Studies Journal Limited, vol. 52(16), pages 3123-3143, December.
    10. Coeurdacier, Nicolas & Guibaud, Stéphane & Jin, Keyu, 2015. "Credit constraints and growth in a global economy," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 62016, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.
    11. Sophie Piton, 2017. "Economic Integration and the Non-tradable Sector: The European Experience," 2017 Papers ppi361, Job Market Papers.
    12. Nocera, Andrea & Roma, Moreno, 2017. "House prices and monetary policy in the euro area: evidence from structural VARs," Working Paper Series 2073, European Central Bank.
    13. Bian, Timothy Yang & Gete, Pedro, 2015. "What drives housing dynamics in China? A sign restrictions VAR approach," Journal of Macroeconomics, Elsevier, vol. 46(C), pages 96-112.
    14. Paul Corrigan, 2017. "Terms-of-Trade and House Price Fluctuations: A Cross-Country Study," Staff Working Papers 17-1, Bank of Canada.

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    Keywords

    Housing - Prices ; Credit ; Interest rates ; Monetary policy ; Balance of payments;

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