Posts filed under “Think Tank”
The Geography of Student Debt
Andrew Haughwout, Donghoon Lee, Wilbert van der Klaauw, and Joelle Scally
May 14, 2013
This morning, the New York Fed released its Quarterly Report on Household Debt and Credit for 2013 Q1. The report uses the FRBNY Consumer Credit Panel to show that outstanding household debt declined approximately $110 billion (about 1 percent) from the previous quarter. The drop was due in large part to a reduction in housing-related debt and credit card balances. Meanwhile, delinquency rates for each form of consumer debt declined, with the overall ninety-plus day delinquency rate dropping from 6.3 percent to 6.0 percent.
One of the unique aspects of the FRBNY Consumer Credit Panel, which is itself based on Equifax credit data, is the detail we obtain for each kind of household debt. This quarter, we have taken advantage of the geographic information available in the data set and are introducing a set of maps of our student loan data, which indicate regional variation in several dimensions of student debt. They depict:
- Student loan borrowers as a share of the population. The population with active student loan debts, or “SL borrowers,” as a share of the population with a credit record varies substantially over space. For example, in Hawaii, less than 12 percent of people with a credit report have student debt, while in the District of Columbia over 25 percent do.
- Student loan balances per SL borrower. Student indebtedness is significant for SL borrowers in virtually all states. Educational indebtedness per SL borrower ranges from a low of just under $21,000 in Wyoming to a high of over $28,000 in Maryland. Again, Washington, D.C., stands out: the average SL borrower there owes over $40,000. In general, we find SL-borrower debt levels are highest in California and along the Atlantic and Gulf coasts.
- Percent of balance ninety-plus days delinquent. Delinquency rates show a distinct regional pattern, with states in the south and southwest having generally higher rates than those in the north. The lowest delinquency rate is South Dakota, at just over 6.5 percent, while the highest is in West Virginia, at nearly 18 percent.
Student loan indebtedness and delinquency continue to generate intense interest and we look forward to sharing data and perspectives that help define the scope of this important issue.
Category: Think Tank
Here is a good valumentum (value + momentum) screen we came up with using FusionIQ http://www.fusionmarketsite.com/?p=9501 It’s time for another installment of FusionIQ’s Screen Pass. IQ Screen Pass utilizes FusionIO’s proprietary metrics along with widely followed industry metrics to create high level investing and trading screens. Today’s edition of Screen Pass looks for stocks that…Read More
European Union Launches Investigation Into Manipulation of Oil Prices Since 2002 CNN reports: The European Commission raided the offices of Shell, BP and Norway’s Statoil this week as part of an investigation into suspected attempts to manipulate global oil prices spanning more than a decade. None of the companies have been accused of wrongdoing, but…Read More
Economic Prospects for the Long Run
Chairman Ben S. Bernanke
At Bard College at Simon’s Rock, Great Barrington, Massachusetts
May 18, 2013
Let me start by congratulating the graduates and their parents. The word “graduate” comes from the Latin word for “step.” Graduation from college is only one step on a journey, but it is an important one and well worth celebrating.I think everyone here appreciates what a special privilege each of you has enjoyed in attending a unique institution like Simon’s Rock. It is, to my knowledge, the only “early college” in the United States; many of you came here after the 10th or 11th grade in search of a different educational experience. And with only about 400 students on campus, I am sure each of you has felt yourself to be part of a close-knit community. Most important, though, you have completed a curriculum that emphasizes creativity and independent critical thinking, habits of mind that I am sure will stay with you.
What’s so important about creativity and critical thinking? There are many answers. I am an economist, so I will answer by talking first about our economic future–or your economic future, I should say, because each of you will have many years, I hope, to contribute to and benefit from an increasingly sophisticated, complex, and globalized economy. My emphasis today will be on prospects for the long run. In particular, I will be looking beyond the very real challenges of economic recovery that we face today–challenges that I have every confidence we will overcome–to speak, for a change, about economic growth as measured in decades, not months or quarters.
Many factors affect the development of the economy, notably among them a nation’s economic and political institutions, but over long periods probably the most important factor is the pace of scientific and technological progress. Between the days of the Roman Empire and when the Industrial Revolution took hold in Europe, the standard of living of the average person throughout most of the world changed little from generation to generation. For centuries, many, if not most, people produced much of what they and their families consumed and never traveled far from where they were born. By the mid-1700s, however, growing scientific and technical knowledge was beginning to find commercial uses.
Since then, according to standard accounts, the world has experienced at least three major waves of technological innovation and its application. The first wave drove the growth of the early industrial era, which lasted from the mid-1700s to the mid-1800s. This period saw the invention of steam engines, cotton-spinning machines, and railroads. These innovations, by introducing mechanization, specialization, and mass production, fundamentally changed how and where goods were produced and, in the process, greatly increased the productivity of workers and reduced the cost of basic consumer goods.
The second extended wave of invention coincided with the modern industrial era, which lasted from the mid-1800s well into the years after World War II. This era featured multiple innovations that radically changed everyday life, such as indoor plumbing, the harnessing of electricity for use in homes and factories, the internal combustion engine, antibiotics, powered flight, telephones, radio, television, and many more. The third era, whose roots go back at least to the 1940s but which began to enter the popular consciousness in the 1970s and 1980s, is defined by the information technology (IT) revolution, as well as fields like biotechnology that improvements in computing helped make possible. Of course, the IT revolution is still going on and shaping our world today.
5 Reasons that Both Mainstream Media – and Gatekeeper “Alternative” Websites – Are Pro-War Why There Is So Much Pro-War Reporting There are five reasons that the mainstream media and the largest alternative media websites are both pro-war. 1. Self-Censorship by Journalists Initially, there is tremendous self-censorship by journalists. A survey by the Pew Research…Read More
Fiscal Policy. Oy!
(With Reference to Ben Bernanke, Ken Arrow, Thomas Jefferson, William Shakespeare and the Oracle of Omaha)
Richard W. Fisher
Remarks at the 2013 National Association for Business Economics
Houston, TX · May 16, 2013
Thank you, Ken (Simonson). I am delighted that the National Association for Business Economics (NABE) has chosen the Dallas Fed’s Houston Branch as the venue for this meeting on the oil and gas boom as a possible engine for “Reigniting the Economy.” As you will shortly hear from my Dallas Fed colleague, Mine Yücel; my wise old colleague from my days at Treasury in the 1970s, Phil Verleger; the incoming chairman of our San Antonio Branch, Curt Anastasio; and others, this is an intriguing proposition. The technical and entrepreneurial genius of Houston and Texas is playing a key role in unlocking our nation’s energy potential. Indeed, there are many here in Texas and abroad—in places as distant as Illinois, Michigan and New York—who argue that reigniting their local economies and the nation’s economy calls for more “Texification,” above and beyond the frontiers of energy.
But I am not here today to discuss oil and gas or engage in “Texas brag.” I have been asked to provide a broader perspective on the nation’s economic and monetary policy.
Current Predicament of Monetary Policy: A Grand Experiment
I’ll begin with a summary of the current predicament of monetary policy.
The Federal Reserve has undertaken a grand experiment to reignite the economy through unprecedented monetary accommodation. We cut to zero the base rate that anchors the yield curve and have pursued a policy aimed at driving rates throughout the curve to historic lows by buying Treasuries and mortgage-backed securities (MBS). Our portfolio totals about $3 trillion, which we have recently been expanding at a rate of $85 billion per month.
Here is a picture of the domestic securities of the current System Open Market Account (SOMA) portfolio. 
Click to enlarge ~~~ I am a sucker for a good piece of digital media, and CoreLogic hits me right in the sweet spot. The map and chart above provide some great context on the state of the Housing market — were we have been, how silly things got circa early 2000s, how bad…Read More