Historical Echoes: Noir Gold—The Case of the Brasher Doubloon
Whatever the vagaries of the market, gold is a perennially hot commodity in the popular imagination—especially in the minds of authors and screenwriters. In this Historical Echoes post, we take a look at Raymond Chandler’s 1942 Philip Marlowe novel The High Window, which uses a stolen gold coin—the Brasher Doubloon—as a plot device.
QE Frictions: Could Banks Have Favored Refinancing over New Purchase Borrowing?
Quantitative easing (QE)—the Fed Reserve’s effort to provide policy accommodation lowering long-term interest rates at a time when the federal funds rate as near its lower bound—has generated a great deal of research, both about its impact and about the frictions that might limit that impact.
Being Up Front about the FHA’s Up-Front Mortgage Insurance Premiums
The Federal Housing Administration (FHA) played a significant role in maintaining mortgage credit availability following the onset of the subprime mortgage crisis and through the Great Recession.
From the Vault: Factor This In
New York Fed economists Tobias Adrian, Richard Crump, and Emanuel Moench developed a new approach for calculating the Treasury term premium. Their ACM term premia estimates have since become “increasingly canonical” in economic analysis.
The Need for Very Low Interest Rates in an Era of Subdued Investment Spending
Why have interest rates stayed low for so long after the financial crisis—and will they remain low for the foreseeable future?
Money Market Funds and the New SEC Regulation
On October 14, 2016, amendments to Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) rule 2a-7, which governs money market mutual funds (MMFs), went into effect. The changes are designed to reduce MMFs’ susceptibility to destabilizing runs and contain two principal requirements.
Historical Echoes: The Bank That Never Existed, or You Say ‘Immigrant’ and I Say ‘Emigrant’
Just because an entity is referred to all over the place, does that mean it exists? We are not talking about heaven or hell. We are talking about the “Immigrant Savings Bank.”
Historical Echoes: That Pesky, Well-Overdue Library Book
The “extremely overdue library book” has had a long run as a sitcom trope. As a source of humor, the ludicrously large library late fine pays off in at least two ways: first, there’s the enormity of the fine when compared with the insignificant monetary value of the book itself (paving the way for jokes about inflation and compound interest); and second, there’s the idea of the “criminality” of the offender, who is probably unlikely to commit any other kind of crime, with the concomitant image of “library police” (or actual police) coming after the negligent borrower . . . One day, that could be you, dear reader.
Just Released: The Regional Economy Is off to a Good Start in 2017
The New York Fed’s latest Beige Book report, released this afternoon, shows the regional economy gathering steam in early 2017. The report, based on information collected through February 17, suggests the regional economy, which had been essentially flat for the second half of 2016, saw growth pick up to a modest pace at the start of the year. Manufacturers, in particular, note a sharp rise in activity, as do businesses in wholesale distribution and transportation. Consequently, the market for industrial and warehouse space was pretty robust in the opening weeks of 2017. Meanwhile, businesses in most service industries continue to report steady to moderately expanding activity. And even though consumer spending has remained fairly subdued, consumer confidence climbed to highs not seen in more than a decade. All in all, it appears the regional economy has gotten off to a good start in 2017.
When Debts Compete, Which Wins?
When faced with financial hardship, borrowers might choose to repay some debts while falling behind on others—potentially going into default.