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The Legacy of Deposit Insurance: The Growth, Spread, and Cost of Insuring Financial Intermediaries

  • Eugene N. White

Without the Great Depression, the United States would not have adopted deposit insurance. While the New Deal's anti-competitive barriers have largely collapsed become" deeply rooted. This paper examines how market and political competition for deposits raised the level of coverage and spread insurance to all depository institutions. A comparison of the cost of federal insurance with a counterfactual of an insurance-free system shows that federal insurance ultimately imposed a" higher cost but achieved political acceptance because of the distribution of the burden.

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Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 6063.

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Date of creation: Jun 1997
Date of revision:
Publication status: published as White, Eugene N. "The Legacy of Deposit Insurance: The Growth, Spread, and Cost of Insuring Financial Intermediaries". The Defining Moment: The Great Depression and the American Economy in the Twentieth Century. Edited by Michael D. Bordo, Claudia Golden, and Eugene N.White, Chicago: The Univeristy of Chicago Press, 1998, pp.87-121.
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:6063
Note: DAE ME
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  1. Matthews, John O., 1994. "Struggle and Survival on Wall Street: The Economics of Competition Among Securities Firms," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780195050639, December.
  2. Elijah Brewer Iii & Thomas H. Mondschean, 1993. "Life Insurance Company Risk Exposure: Market Evidence And Policy Implications," Contemporary Economic Policy, Western Economic Association International, vol. 11(4), pages 56-69, October.
  3. White, Lawrence J, 1989. "The Reform of Federal Deposit Insurance," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 3(4), pages 11-29, Fall.
  4. Hoekman, Bernard M. & Leidy, Michael P., 1992. "Cascading contingent protection," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 36(4), pages 883-892, May.
  5. Arthur B. Kennickell & Myron L. Kwast & Martha Starr-McCluer, 1995. "Households' deposit insurance coverage: evidence and analysis of potential reforms," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 95-5, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
  6. Robert Litan & William Isaac & William Taylor, 1994. "Financial Regulation," NBER Chapters, in: American Economic Policy in the 1980s, pages 519-572 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  7. Grossman, Richard S, 1992. "Deposit Insurance, Regulation, and Moral Hazard in the Thrift Industry: Evidence from the 1930's," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(4), pages 800-821, September.
  8. Wheelock, David C, 1992. "Deposit Insurance and Bank Failures: New Evidence from the 1920s," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 30(3), pages 530-43, July.
  9. Friedman, Milton & Schwartz, Anna J., 1986. "Has government any role in money?," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 17(1), pages 37-62, January.
  10. Calomiris, Charles W., 1990. "Is Deposit Insurance Necessary? A Historical Perspective," The Journal of Economic History, Cambridge University Press, vol. 50(02), pages 283-295, June.
  11. Robert M. Feinberg & Seth Kaplan, 1993. "Fishing Downstream: The Political Economy of Effective Administered Protection," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 26(1), pages 150-58, February.
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