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Modeling the Revolving Revolution: The Debt Collection Channel

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  • Lukasz A. Drozd
  • Ricardo Serrano-Padial

Abstract

We investigate the role of information technology (IT) in the collection of delinquent consumer debt. We argue that the widespread adoption of IT by the debt collection industry in the 1990s contributed to the observed expansion of unsecured risky lending such as credit cards. Our model stresses the importance of delinquency and private information about borrower solvency. The prevalence of delinquency implies that the costs of debt collection must be borne by lenders to sustain incentives to repay debt. IT mitigates informational asymmetries, allowing lenders to concentrate collection efforts on delinquent borrowers who are more likely to repay.

Suggested Citation

  • Lukasz A. Drozd & Ricardo Serrano-Padial, 2017. "Modeling the Revolving Revolution: The Debt Collection Channel," Working Papers 17-2, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.
  • Handle: RePEc:fip:fedpwp:17-2
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    Cited by:

    1. Gordon, Grey, 2017. "Optimal bankruptcy code: A fresh start for some," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 85(C), pages 123-149.
    2. Exler, Florian & Tertilt, Michèle, 2020. "Consumer Debt and Default: A Macroeconomic Perspective," CEPR Discussion Papers 14425, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    3. Gajendran Raveendranathan & Georgios Stefanidis, 2020. "The Unprecedented Fall in U.S. Revolving Credit," Department of Economics Working Papers 2020-05, McMaster University.
    4. Kyle F. Herkenhoff & Gajendran Raveendranathan, 2019. "Who Bears the Welfare Costs of Monopoly? The Case of the Credit Card Industry," Working Papers 2019-071, Human Capital and Economic Opportunity Working Group.
    5. Satyajit c & Dean Corbae & Kyle Dempsey & Jose-Victor Rios-Rull, 2020. "A Quantitative Theory of the Credit Score," PIER Working Paper Archive 20-030, Penn Institute for Economic Research, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania.
    6. Pattison, Nathaniel, 2020. "Consumption smoothing and debtor protections," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 192(C).
    7. Kim, Hyeongjun & Cho, Hoon & Ryu, Doojin, 2018. "An empirical study on credit card loan delinquency," Economic Systems, Elsevier, vol. 42(3), pages 437-449.
    8. Jessica LaVoice & Domonkos F. Vamossy, 2019. "Racial Disparities in Debt Collection," Papers 1910.02570, arXiv.org.
    9. Exler, Florian & Tertilt, Michèle, 2020. "Consumer Debt and Default: A Macro Perspective," IZA Discussion Papers 12966, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    10. Lukasz A. Drozd & Ricardo Serrano-Padial, 2017. "Modeling the Revolving Revolution: The Debt Collection Channel," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 107(3), pages 897-930, March.
    11. Johannes Kriebel & Kevin Yam, 2020. "Forecasting recoveries in debt collection: Debt collectors and information production," European Financial Management, European Financial Management Association, vol. 26(3), pages 537-559, June.
    12. Raveendranathan, Gajendran, 2020. "Revolving credit lines and targeted search," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 118(C).
    13. Lukasz Drozd & Michal Kowalik, 2019. "Credit Cards and the Great Recession: The Collapse of Teasers," 2019 Meeting Papers 1047, Society for Economic Dynamics.

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    More about this item

    Keywords

    debt collection; credit cards; consumer credit; unsecured credit; revolving credit; moral hazard; costly state verification; informal bankruptcy; information technology;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • D91 - Microeconomics - - Micro-Based Behavioral Economics - - - Role and Effects of Psychological, Emotional, Social, and Cognitive Factors on Decision Making
    • E21 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Consumption; Saving; Wealth
    • G20 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - General

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