Monday, November 08, 2010

A really nice paper on the Home Owners Loan Corporation

This morning I read a July 2010 NBER paper from Charles Courtemanche and Kenneth Snowden.  The abstract:

The Home Owners’ Loan Corporation purchased more than a million delinquent mortgages from private lenders between 1933 and 1936 and refinanced the loans for the borrowers. Its primary goal was to break the cycle of foreclosure, forced property sales and decreases in home values that was affecting local housing markets throughout the nation. We find that HOLC loans were targeted at local (county-level) housing markets that had experienced severe distress and that the intervention increased 1940 median home values and homeownership rates, but not new home building.

Unfortunately, the paper is behind the NBER firewall, but if you belong to a subscribing university, you can get a link to a downloadable version sent to you.