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Do Households Benefit from Financial Deregulation and Innovation? The Case of the Mortgage Market

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  • Kristopher Gerardi

    (Federal Reserve Bank of Boston)

  • Harvey S. Rosen

    (Princeton University)

  • Paul Willen

    (Federal Reserve Bank of Boston)

Abstract

The U.S. mortgage market has experienced phenomenal change over the last 35 years. Most observers believe that the deregulation of the banking industry and financial markets generally has played an important part in this transformation. This paper develops and implements a technique for assessing the impact of changes in the mortgage market on individuals and households. Our analysis is based on an implication of the permanent income hypothesis: that the higher a household?s future income, the more it desires to spend and consume, ceteris paribus. If we have perfect credit markets, then desired consumption matches actual consumption and current spending on housing should forecast future income. Since credit market imperfections mute this effect, we can view the strength of the relationship between housing spending and future income as a measure of the ?imperfectness? of mortgage markets. Thus, a natural way to determine whether mortgage market developments have actually helped households by decreasing market imperfections is to see whether this link has strengthened over time. We implement this framework using panel data going back to 1969. We find that over the past several decades, housing markets have become less imperfect in the sense that households are now more able to buy homes whose values are consistent with their long-term income prospects. One issue that has received particular attention is the role that the housing Government Sponsored Enterprises (GSEs), Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, have played in improving the market for housing finance. We find no evidence that the GSEs? activities have contributed to this phenomenon. This is true whether we look at all homebuyers, or at subsamples of the population whom we might expect to benefit particularly from GSE activity, such as lowincome households and first-time homebuyers.

Suggested Citation

  • Kristopher Gerardi & Harvey S. Rosen & Paul Willen, 2007. "Do Households Benefit from Financial Deregulation and Innovation? The Case of the Mortgage Market," Working Papers 61, Princeton University, Department of Economics, Center for Economic Policy Studies..
  • Handle: RePEc:pri:cepsud:141rosen.pdf
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    Cited by:

    1. Jonas D. M. Fisher & Martin Gervais, 2011. "Why Has Home Ownership Fallen Among The Young?," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 52(3), pages 883-912, August.
    2. Tatom, John, 2007. "The foreclosure crisis: a two-pronged attack on the U.S. economy," MPRA Paper 12499, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    3. Rose Cunningham & Ilan Kolet, 2007. "Housing Market Cycles and Duration Dependence in the United States and Canada," Staff Working Papers 07-2, Bank of Canada.
    4. Jan Rouwendal, 2009. "Housing Wealth and Household Portfolios in an Ageing Society," De Economist, Springer, vol. 157(1), pages 1-48, March.
    5. Finn Poschmann, 2011. "What Governments Should Do in Mortgage Markets," C.D. Howe Institute Commentary, C.D. Howe Institute, issue 318, January.
    6. Jonas D. M. Fisher & Martin Gervais, 2007. "First-time home buyers and residential investment volatility," Working Paper Series WP-07-15, Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
    7. Karen E. Dynan & Douglas W. Elmendorf & Daniel E. Sichel, 2006. "Financial innovation and the Great Moderation: what do household data say?," Proceedings, Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, issue Nov.
    8. Morris M. Kleiner & Richard M. Todd, 2009. "Mortgage Broker Regulations That Matter: Analyzing Earnings, Employment, and Outcomes for Consumers," NBER Chapters, in: Studies of Labor Market Intermediation, pages 183-231, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. John A. Tatom, 2008. "The U.S. Foreclosure Crisis: A Two-Pronged Assault on the U.S. Economy," NFI Working Papers 2008-WP-10, Indiana State University, Scott College of Business, Networks Financial Institute.
    10. Elaine Fortowsky & Michael LaCour-Little & Eric Rosenblatt & Vincent Yao, 2011. "Housing Tenure and Mortgage Choice," The Journal of Real Estate Finance and Economics, Springer, vol. 42(2), pages 162-180, February.
    11. Gervais, Martin & Fisher, Jonas, 2009. "Why has home ownership fallen among the young?," Discussion Paper Series In Economics And Econometrics 0907, Economics Division, School of Social Sciences, University of Southampton.
    12. Dimitri B. Papadimitriou & Greg Hannsgen & Gennaro Zezza, 2007. "Cracks in the Foundations of Growth: What Will the Housing Debacle Mean for the U.S. Economy?," Economics Public Policy Brief Archive ppb_90, Levy Economics Institute.
    13. Heilpern, Eliot & Haslam, Colin & Andersson, Tord, 2009. "When it comes to the crunch: What are the drivers of the US banking crisis?," Accounting forum, Elsevier, vol. 33(2), pages 99-113.
    14. Bulent Guler, 2015. "Innovations in Information Technology and the Mortgage Market," Review of Economic Dynamics, Elsevier for the Society for Economic Dynamics, vol. 18(3), pages 456-483, July.
    15. Dimitri B. Papadimitriou & Greg Hannsgen & Gennaro Zezza, 2007. "The Effects of a Declining Housing Market on the U.S. Economy," Economics Working Paper Archive wp_506, Levy Economics Institute.
    16. Michael LaCour‐Little & Jing Yang, 2010. "Pay Me Now or Pay Me Later: Alternative Mortgage Products and the Mortgage Crisis," Real Estate Economics, American Real Estate and Urban Economics Association, vol. 38(4), pages 687-732, Winter.
    17. Daniel J. McDonald & Daniel L. Thornton, 2008. "A primer on the mortgage market and mortgage finance," Review, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, vol. 90(Jan), pages 31-46.
    18. Karen E. Dynan & Donald L. Kohn, 2007. "The rise in U.S. household indebtedness: causes and consequences," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2007-37, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    19. Morris M. Kleiner & Richard M. Todd, 2007. "Mortgage Broker Regulations That Matter: Analyzing Earnings, Employment, and Outcomes for Consumers," NBER Working Papers 13684, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.

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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • D14 - Microeconomics - - Household Behavior - - - Household Saving; Personal Finance
    • G21 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Banks; Other Depository Institutions; Micro Finance Institutions; Mortgages
    • R21 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Household Analysis - - - Housing Demand

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