Heterogeneous Intermediary Asset Pricing
Journal of Financial Economics, Revise and Resubmit
Abstract: I show that the composition of the financial sector has important asset pricing implications beyond the health of the aggregate financial sector. To assess the impact of massive balance sheet adjustments within the intermediary sector during the Great Recession and resolve conflicting asset pricing evidence, I propose a dynamic asset pricing model with heterogeneous intermediaries facing financial frictions. Asset flows between intermediaries are quantitatively important for both level and variation of risk premia. An empirical measure of the composition of the intermediary sector negatively forecasts future excess returns and is priced in the cross-section with a positive price of risk.
Student Loans, Marginal Costs, and Markups: Estimates From the PLUS Program (with William Mann)
Review of Financial Studies, Revise and Resubmit
Coverage at Forbes.com
Abstract: We estimate small marginal costs and large markups at private colleges in the United States, and discuss implications for the design of financial aid. For identification, we exploit a tightening of credit standards in the PLUS loan program, which decreased enrollment, revenues, and expenditures at private colleges with low-income students. We estimate that markups represented more than half of charges for students disqualified by the change. Markups were higher at for-profit schools, and in states with fewer public schools and lower education spending. Our results complement prior evidence on the Bennett Hypothesis, and contrast prior estimates of small markups.
Corporate Bond Liquidity During the COVID-19 Crisis (with Benjamin Lester, David Lindsay, Shuo Liu, Pierre-Olivier Weill, and Diego Zuniga)
A non-technical summary from the UCLA Anderson Review
Abstract: We study liquidity conditions in the corporate bond market since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. We find that in mid-March 2020, as selling pressure surged, dealers were wary of accumulating inventory on their balance sheets, perhaps out of concern for violating regulatory requirements. As a result, the cost to investors of trading immediately with a dealer surged. A portion of transactions migrated to a slower, less costly process wherein dealers arranged for trades directly between customers without using their own balance sheet space. Interventions by the Federal Reserve appear to have relaxed balance sheet constraints: soon after they were announced, dealers began absorbing inventory, bid-ask spreads declined, and market liquidity started to improve. Interestingly, liquidity conditions improved for bonds that were eligible for the Fed’s lending/purchase programs and for bonds that were ineligible. Hence, by allowing dealers to unload certain assets from their balance sheet, the Fed’s interventions may have helped dealers to better intermediate a wide variety of assets, including those not directly targeted.
Inventory, Market Making, and Liquidity: Theory and Application to the Corporate Bond Market (with Benjamin Lester and Pierre-Olivier Weill)
Presentation Video at the Search and Matching in Macro and Finance Virtual Seminar Series
Who Pays for Underfunded Pensions? Evidence From Homeowners (with Darren Aiello, Asaf Bernstein, Ryan Lewis, and Michael Schwert)