Groucho Marx in 1969: For the Weekend

Corey Husak: How Not To Help Distressed Mortgage Borrowers: Evidence From The Great Recession In The United States: "The federal government has been criticized by many for failing to provide adequate assistance to U.S. homeowners who were financially devastated by the housing crisis and subsequent Great Recession and its aftermath in the late 2000s. New evidence suggests that even when assistance was given, it was poorly designed...

...to meet the needs of distressed borrowers and, as a result, failed to prevent many defaults and foreclosures. In “Liquidity vs. wealth in household debt obligations: Evidence from housing policy in the Great Recession,” economists Peter Ganong of the University of Chicago and Pascal Noel of Harvard University study the Home Affordable Modification Program, or HAMP, which assisted 1.7 million struggling homeowners beginning in 2009. Ganong and Noel find that the program placed an inefficient emphasis on reducing borrowers’ total mortgage debt, instead of focusing on their liquidity, or the cash they had available to meet everyday needs. They show that the most important factor in preventing defaults is aggressive action to lower borrowers’ immediate monthly payments, not changing the total amount those borrowers owe...


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