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The Impact of Consumer Credit Access on Unemployment

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  • Kyle F. Herkenhoff

Abstract

Unemployed households' access to unsecured revolving credit more than tripled over the last three decades. This paper analyzes how both cyclical fluctuations and trend increases in credit access impact the business cycle. The main quantitative result is that credit expansions and contractions have contributed to moderately deeper and more protracted recessions over the last 40 years. As more individuals obtained credit from 1977 to 2010, cyclical credit fluctuations affected a larger share of the population and became more important determinants of employment dynamics. Even though business cycles are more volatile, newborns strictly prefer to live in the economy with growing, but fluctuating, access to credit markets.

Suggested Citation

  • Kyle F. Herkenhoff, 2018. "The Impact of Consumer Credit Access on Unemployment," NBER Working Papers 25187, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:25187
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    1. repec:eee:dyncon:v:100:y:2019:i:c:p:47-69 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Cortes, Kristle Romero & Glover, Andrew & Tasci, Murat, 2019. "The Unintended Consequences of Employer Credit Check Bans for Labor Markets," Working Papers 190500, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland.
    3. Enoch Hill & Kai Ding, 2016. "Cautious Hiring," 2016 Meeting Papers 291, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    4. Bednarzik, Robert W. & Kern, Andreas & Hisnanick, John J., 2017. "Displacement and Debt: The Role of Debt in Returning to Work in the Period Following the Great Recession," IZA Discussion Papers 10764, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
    5. repec:ebl:ecbull:eb-18-00441 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Karahan, Fatih & Rhee, Serena, 2019. "Geographic reallocation and unemployment during the Great Recession: The role of the housing bust," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 100(C), pages 47-69.

    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • E2 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment
    • E24 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Employment; Unemployment; Wages; Intergenerational Income Distribution; Aggregate Human Capital; Aggregate Labor Productivity
    • J01 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - General - - - Labor Economics: General
    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • J6 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers
    • J64 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Mobility, Unemployment, Vacancies, and Immigrant Workers - - - Unemployment: Models, Duration, Incidence, and Job Search

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