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Bankruptcy and Debt Portfolios

  • Winfried Koeniger

    (Queen Mary, University of London)

  • Thomas Hintermaier

    (Institute for Advanced Studies, Vienna (IHS))

We use a heterogeneous-agent model, in which labor income is risky and markets are incomplete, to analyze consumer debt portfolios of secured and unsecured debt in the US. Compared with previous research, we emphasize the role of durables which not only generate utility but also serve as debt collateral. This allows a meaningful joint analysis of secured and unsecured debt and introduces endogenous bankruptcy costs: durables need to be sold to service secured debt in bankruptcy procedures which implies forgone durable utility since adjusting durables is costly. We solve the model numerically and apply it to understand bankruptcy and consumer debt portfolios in the US and their evolution over time.

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Paper provided by Society for Economic Dynamics in its series 2009 Meeting Papers with number 348.

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Date of creation: 2009
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:red:sed009:348
Contact details of provider: Postal: Society for Economic Dynamics Marina Azzimonti Department of Economics Stonybrook University 10 Nicolls Road Stonybrook NY 11790 USA
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  1. Pavan, Marina, 2008. "Consumer durables and risky borrowing: The effects of bankruptcy protection," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 55(8), pages 1441-1456, November.
  2. Kartik Athreya, 2008. "A Quantitative Theory of Information and Unsecured Credit," 2008 Meeting Papers 68, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  3. Caporale, Tony & Grier, Kevin B, 2000. "Political Regime Change and the Real Interest Rate," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 32(3), pages 320-34, August.
  4. Hintermaier, Thomas & Koeniger, Winfried, 2010. "On the Evolution of the US Consumer Wealth Distribution," CEPR Discussion Papers 7850, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
  5. Fabrizio Zampolli & Matt Waldron, 2006. "Household debt, house prices, and consumption in the UK: a theoretical analysis of recent developments," Computing in Economics and Finance 2006 431, Society for Computational Economics.
  6. Nobuhiro Kiyotaki & Alexander Michaelides & Kalin Nikolov, 2011. "Winners and Losers in Housing Markets," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 43, pages 255-296, 03.
  7. Mateos-Planas, Xavier, 2009. "A model of credit limits and bankruptcy with applications to welfare and indebtedness," Discussion Paper Series In Economics And Econometrics 0910, Economics Division, School of Social Sciences, University of Southampton.
  8. Igor Livshits & James MacGee & Michele Tertilt, 2005. "Consumer Bankruptcy: A Fresh Start," Discussion Papers 04-011, Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research.
  9. Angus Deaton, 1989. "Saving and Liquidity Constraints," NBER Working Papers 3196, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  10. Kehoe, Timothy J & Levine, David K, 2001. "Liquidity Constrained Markets versus Debt Constrained Markets," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 69(3), pages 575-98, May.
  11. Igor Livshits & James MacGee & Michèle Tertilt, 2007. "Accounting for the Rise in Consumer Bankruptcies," NBER Working Papers 13363, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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