Douglas Diamond, 08 April 2019

Douglas Diamond of the University of Chicago Booth School of Business warns that covenant-lite loans, which proliferate in high-liquidity periods with their cheap and easy lack of restrictions, make the whole system more liable to imbalances of fragility if a market shock occurs.

Björn Richter, Moritz Schularick, Ilhyock Shim, 21 September 2018

Central banks have increasingly relied on macroprudential measures to manage the financial cycle, but their effects on the core objectives of monetary policy to stabilise output and inflation are largely unknown. This column shows that the output costs of changes in maximum loan-to-value ratios are rather small, especially in advanced economies. At the same time, such policies successfully reduce household and mortgage credit growth. The results suggest that central banks could be in a position to use macroprudential instruments to manage financial booms without interfering with the core objectives of monetary policy in a major way. 

Jan-Emmanuel De Neve, Michael Norton, 08 October 2014

How do macroeconomic changes affect people’s wellbeing?  This column presents evidence that the life satisfaction of individuals is between two and eight times more sensitive to negative economic growth than it is to positive economic growth. Engineering economic ‘booms’ that risk even short ‘busts’ is unlikely to improve social wellbeing in the long run.

Eduardo Olaberría, 07 December 2013

Policymakers have long been concerned that large capital inflows are associated with asset-price booms. This column presents recent research showing that the composition of capital inflows also matters. The association between capital inflows and asset-price booms is about twice as strong for debt-related than for equity-related investment. Policymakers should therefore pay attention to the composition of capital inflows, since debt-related inflows may still undermine financial stability even if they do not result in an overall current-account deficit.

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