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9 posts from December 2013

December 30, 2013

Fairfield County Weathers Job Losses in Finance

Jason Bram

Fairfield County, comprising the southwestern corner of Connecticut, is sometimes thought of as an affluent “bedroom community” outside New York City—a place filled with commuters taking home large paychecks. On average, it’s indeed one of the most affluent counties in the United States, with a median household income of $80,000. Yet a fairly small minority of working residents—fewer than one in ten—actually commutes to the Big Apple. Fairfield County has a sizable industry base of its own. In particular, the finance industry, based largely in Stamford and Greenwich, accounts for a disproportionately large 9 percent of the county’s employment and generates 27 percent of aggregate income. These proportions aren’t only well above the respective nationwide averages, but are even slightly higher than they are for New York City. Fairfield is also a major hub for corporate headquarters: The proportion of jobs in management of companies is more than twice the nationwide average and, again, higher than it is for New York City. Manufacturing (largely aircraft) is also somewhat prevalent, though not nearly to the same extent it was a couple of decades ago: It’s fallen by more than half since 1990. An economic and demographic profile of Fairfield County can be found on our District Profile page.


A Tale of Two Cities
While Fairfield County’s average income is among the highest in the nation, so is the degree of income inequality in the county. To illustrate this, let’s consider the two largest cities: Stamford and Bridgeport. Stamford’s median household income, at $76,000, is again half as high as the nation’s. Similarly, its poverty rate is well below the nation’s, and a whopping 43 percent of adults hold college degrees. In contrast, Bridgeport’s median income is $38,000 (half of Stamford’s) and its poverty rate is double that of Stamford’s. Just 15 percent of adult residents hold college degrees—barely more than half the U.S. average and just over a third of Stamford’s rate. Quality-of-life measures show similar differences: The overall crime rate in Bridgeport is roughly three times as high as in Stamford, and its violent crime rate is roughly quadruple Stamford’s.

Continue reading "Fairfield County Weathers Job Losses in Finance" »

Posted by Blog Author at 7:00 AM in Employment, Regional Analysis | Permalink | Comments (0)

December 23, 2013

The Fragility of an MMF-Intermediated Financial System

Marco Cipriani, Antoine Martin, and Bruno Maria Parigi

Since the financial crisis of 2007-09—and, in particular, the run on prime money market funds (MMFs) in September 2008—policymakers have been concerned that the funds’ fragility may render banks themselves more susceptible to risk. For instance, in a recent article and speech arguing in favor of MMF reform, New York Fed President Bill Dudley stated that MMF fragility may contribute to financial market systemic risk. The idea that the susceptibility of MMFs to runs may make the financial system more unstable seems intuitive, but is it correct? In this post, we show that the idea isn’t only intuitively appealing, it’s also sound from an economic theory standpoint: MMF fragility is indeed a concern for the stability of the banking system and a contributing factor to financial market systemic risk.


Continue reading "The Fragility of an MMF-Intermediated Financial System" »

Posted by Blog Author at 7:02 AM in Fed Funds, Financial Institutions, Financial Intermediation | Permalink | Comments (1)

Historical Echoes: Santa, the Grinch, and Scrooge for the Holidays

Amy Farber

The Grinch (from the Dr. Seuss children’s book) and Santa are often invoked to describe what’s happening with consumer spending around the holidays. If consumers are able to spend more, then Santa’s responsible. But if they’re unable to spend more, then they’re forced to be more penny-pinching (which isn’t like the Grinch really, but more like Scrooge; either way, there’s the sense of Christmas being ruined).

Continue reading "Historical Echoes: Santa, the Grinch, and Scrooge for the Holidays" »

Posted by Blog Author at 7:00 AM in Historical Echoes | Permalink | Comments (0)

December 09, 2013

Who’s Borrowing in the Fed Funds Market?

Gara Afonso, Alex Entz, and Eric LeSueur

The federal funds market plays an important role in the implementation of monetary policy. In our previous post, we examine the lending side of the fed funds market and the decline in total fed funds volume since the onset of the financial crisis. In today’s post, we discuss the borrowing side of this market and the interesting role played by foreign banks.


Continue reading "Who’s Borrowing in the Fed Funds Market?" »

Posted by Blog Author at 7:00 AM in Fed Funds, Financial Institutions, Financial Markets, Monetary Policy | Permalink | Comments (2)

December 06, 2013

Introducing the FRBNY Survey of Consumer Expectations: Household Finance Expectations

Olivier Armantier, Giorgio Topa, Wilbert van der Klaauw, and Basit Zafar

Note: We aren’t releasing the underlying data yet, but we’ll be making them available to the public sometime in first-quarter 2014. So please stay tuned.

In this fourth and final post in our series describing the new FRBNY Survey of Consumer Expectations (SCE), we present the final component of the survey, dedicated to household finance. The information collected in the SCE on household income, spending, and access to credit will provide a real-time picture of U.S. households’ situation and perceptions as well as rich and unique data for use by policymakers, researchers, and the public. While other surveys, such as the triennial Survey of Consumer Finances, provide data on the finances of U.S. families, few data sources provide timely information on such a broad set of outcomes.


Continue reading "Introducing the FRBNY Survey of Consumer Expectations: Household Finance Expectations" »

Posted by Blog Author at 7:00 AM in Expectations, Forecasting, Household Finance | Permalink | Comments (3)

December 05, 2013

Introducing the FRBNY Survey of Consumer Expectations: Labor Market Expectations

Olivier Armantier, Giorgio Topa, Wilbert van der Klaauw, and Basit Zafar

Note: We aren’t releasing the underlying data yet, but we’ll be making them available to the public sometime in first-quarter 2014. So please stay tuned.

In the previous two blog postings in this series, we described the goals, structure, and content of the new FRBNY Survey of Consumer Expectations (SCE) and presented some findings regarding inflation expectations. In this third posting, we focus on the labor market component of the SCE.

Continue reading "Introducing the FRBNY Survey of Consumer Expectations: Labor Market Expectations" »

Posted by Blog Author at 7:00 AM in Expectations, Household Finance, Labor Market, Monetary Policy, Wages | Permalink | Comments (0)

December 04, 2013

Introducing the FRBNY Survey of Consumer Expectations: Measuring Price Inflation Expectations

Olivier Armantier, Giorgio Topa, Wilbert van der Klaauw, and Basit Zafar

Note: We aren’t releasing the underlying data yet, but we’ll be making them available to the public sometime in first-quarter 2014. So please stay tuned.

In this second of a series of four blog postings, we discuss the data on inflation expectations collected in our new FRBNY Survey of Consumer Expectations (SCE). Inflation expectations are a key consideration for monetary policy as they are believed to influence consumer behavior, thereby affecting economic activity and actual inflation. The SCE data on inflation expectations represent a major innovation as they contain information not previously collected from consumers on a regular basis. In this post, we provide some background on the survey and present some initial findings.

Continue reading "Introducing the FRBNY Survey of Consumer Expectations: Measuring Price Inflation Expectations" »

Posted by Blog Author at 7:05 AM in Expectations, Forecasting, Household Finance, Inflation, Monetary Policy, Wages | Permalink | Comments (0)

Introducing the FRBNY Survey of Consumer Expectations: Survey Goals, Design, and Content

Olivier Armantier, Giorgio Topa, Wilbert van der Klaauw, and Basit Zafar

Note: We aren’t releasing the underlying data yet, but we’ll be making them available to the public sometime in first-quarter 2014. So please stay tuned.

Starting in the first quarter of 2014, the Federal Reserve Bank of New York (FRBNY) will begin reporting findings from a new national survey designed to elicit consumers’ expectations for a wide range of household-level and aggregate economic and financial conditions. This week, we provide an introduction to the new survey in a series of four blog posts. In this first post, we discuss the overall objectives of the new survey, its sample design, and content. In the posts that follow, we will provide further details and present preliminary findings from the survey on three broad categories of expectations: those relating to inflation, the labor market, and household finance.

Continue reading "Introducing the FRBNY Survey of Consumer Expectations: Survey Goals, Design, and Content " »

Posted by Blog Author at 7:00 AM in Expectations, Forecasting, Household Finance, Inflation, Labor Market, Wages | Permalink | Comments (0)

December 02, 2013

Who’s Lending in the Fed Funds Market?

Gara Afonso, Alex Entz, and Eric LeSueur

The fed funds market is important to the framework and implementation of U.S. monetary policy. The Federal Open Market Committee sets a target level or range for the fed funds rate and directs the Trading Desk of the New York Fed to create “conditions in reserve markets” that will encourage fed funds to trade at the target level. In this post, we use various publicly available data sources to estimate the size and composition of fed funds lending activity. We find that the fed funds market has shrunk considerably since the financial crisis and that lending activity is now dominated by one group of market participants.


Continue reading "Who’s Lending in the Fed Funds Market?" »

Posted by Blog Author at 7:00 AM in Fed Funds, Financial Institutions, Financial Markets, Monetary Policy | Permalink | Comments (2)

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