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Did consumers want less debt? Consumer credit demand versus supply in the wake of the 2008-2009 financial crisis

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  • Gropp, Reint
  • Krainer, John
  • Laderman, Elizabeth

Abstract

We explore the sources of household balance sheet adjustment following the collapse of the housing market in 2006. First, we use microdata from the Federal Reserve Board's Senior Loan Officer Opinion Survey to document that banks cumulatively tightened consumer lending standards more in counties that experienced a house price boom in the mid-2000s than in non-boom counties. We then use the idea that renters, unlike homeowners, did not experience an adverse wealth shock when the housing market collapsed to examine the relative importance of two explanations for the observed deleveraging and the sluggish pickup in consumption after 2008. First, households may have optimally adjusted to lower wealth by reducing their demand for debt and implicitly, their demand for consumption. Alternatively, banks may have been more reluctant to lend in areas with pronounced real estate declines. Our evidence is consistent with the second explanation. Renters with low risk scores, compared to homeowners in the same markets, reduced their levels of nonmortgage debt and credit card debt more in counties where house prices fell more. The contrast suggests that the observed reductions in aggregate borrowing were more driven by cutbacks in the provision of credit than by a demand-based response to lower housing wealth.

Suggested Citation

  • Gropp, Reint & Krainer, John & Laderman, Elizabeth, 2014. "Did consumers want less debt? Consumer credit demand versus supply in the wake of the 2008-2009 financial crisis," SAFE Working Paper Series 42, Research Center SAFE - Sustainable Architecture for Finance in Europe, Goethe University Frankfurt.
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:safewp:42
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Veronica Guerrieri & Guido Lorenzoni, 2017. "Credit Crises, Precautionary Savings, and the Liquidity Trap," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 132(3), pages 1427-1467.
    2. Midrigan, Virgiliu & Philippon, Thomas, 2011. "Household Leverage and the Recession," CEPR Discussion Papers 8381, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
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    6. Damar, H. Evren & Gropp, Reint & Mordel, Adi, 2013. "Bank's financial distress, lending supply and consumption expenditure," SAFE Working Paper Series 39, Research Center SAFE - Sustainable Architecture for Finance in Europe, Goethe University Frankfurt.
    7. Sumit Agarwal & Chunlin Liu & Nicholas S. Souleles, 2007. "The Reaction of Consumer Spending and Debt to Tax Rebates-Evidence from Consumer Credit Data," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 115(6), pages 986-1019, December.
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    9. Meta Brown & Sarah Stein & Basit Zafar, 2015. "The Impact of Housing Markets on Consumer Debt: Credit Report Evidence from 1999 to 2012," Journal of Money, Credit and Banking, Blackwell Publishing, vol. 47(S1), pages 175-213, March.
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    Cited by:

    1. Yuriy Gorodnichenko & Marianna Kudlyak & John Mondragon & Olivier Coibion, 2014. "Does Greater Inequality Lead to More Household Borrowing? New Evidence from Household Data," 2014 Meeting Papers 402, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    2. Steven Laufer & Andrew D. Paciorek, 2016. "The Effects of Mortgage Credit Availability : Evidence from Minimum Credit Score Lending Rules," Finance and Economics Discussion Series 2016-098, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (U.S.).
    3. Saadi, Vahid, 2016. "Mortgage supply and the US housing boom: The role of the Community Reinvestment Act," SAFE Working Paper Series 155, Research Center SAFE - Sustainable Architecture for Finance in Europe, Goethe University Frankfurt.
    4. Wix, Carlo & Schüwer, Ulrich, 2016. "Monetary Policy and Bank Lending: A Natural Experiment from the US Mortgage Market," Annual Conference 2016 (Augsburg): Demographic Change 145943, Verein für Socialpolitik / German Economic Association.
    5. Tripathy, Jagdish, 2017. "Cross-border effects of regulatory spillovers: evidence from Mexico," Bank of England working papers 684, Bank of England.
    6. Saadi, Vahid, 2016. "Mortgage supply and the US housing boom: The role of the community reinvestment act," IWH Discussion Papers 32/2016, Halle Institute for Economic Research (IWH).
    7. Arora, Vipin, 2015. "Oil prices and the US economy: Where is the boom?," Economics Discussion Papers 2015-48, Kiel Institute for the World Economy (IfW).
    8. Christophe André, 2016. "Household debt in OECD countries: stylised facts and policy issues," Chapters from NBP Conference Publications, Narodowy Bank Polski, Economic Research Department.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    credit supply; deleveraging; households; financial crisis;

    JEL classification:

    • E21 - Macroeconomics and Monetary Economics - - Consumption, Saving, Production, Employment, and Investment - - - Consumption; Saving; Wealth
    • G21 - Financial Economics - - Financial Institutions and Services - - - Banks; Other Depository Institutions; Micro Finance Institutions; Mortgages

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