Complex Mortgages*

Complex Mortgages* Abstract Complex mortgages became a popular borrowing instrument during the bullish housing market of the early 2000s but vanished rapidly during the subsequent downturn. These non-traditional loans, including interest-only and negative-amortization mortgages, enable households to postpone loan repayment in contrast to fully-amortizing traditional mortgages. Contrary to common perception, complex mortgages are used by households with high income levels and prime credit scores, quite unlike the low-income population targeted by subprime mortgages. Nonetheless, we find that complex-mortgage borrowers become delinquent on their mortgages at rates twice as high as borrowers with plain-vanilla fixed-rate contracts even after controlling for household and loan characteristics. Our findings suggest a link between innovations in mortgage markets focused on prime borrowers and the financial crisis. © The Author(s) 2018. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the European Finance Association. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com This article is published and distributed under the terms of the Oxford University Press, Standard Journals Publication Model (https://academic.oup.com/journals/pages/about_us/legal/notices) http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Review of Finance Oxford University Press

Complex Mortgages*

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Publisher
Oxford University Press
Copyright
© The Author(s) 2018. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the European Finance Association. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com
ISSN
1572-3097
eISSN
1573-692X
D.O.I.
10.1093/rof/rfy016
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Abstract Complex mortgages became a popular borrowing instrument during the bullish housing market of the early 2000s but vanished rapidly during the subsequent downturn. These non-traditional loans, including interest-only and negative-amortization mortgages, enable households to postpone loan repayment in contrast to fully-amortizing traditional mortgages. Contrary to common perception, complex mortgages are used by households with high income levels and prime credit scores, quite unlike the low-income population targeted by subprime mortgages. Nonetheless, we find that complex-mortgage borrowers become delinquent on their mortgages at rates twice as high as borrowers with plain-vanilla fixed-rate contracts even after controlling for household and loan characteristics. Our findings suggest a link between innovations in mortgage markets focused on prime borrowers and the financial crisis. © The Author(s) 2018. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the European Finance Association. All rights reserved. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com This article is published and distributed under the terms of the Oxford University Press, Standard Journals Publication Model (https://academic.oup.com/journals/pages/about_us/legal/notices)

Journal

Review of FinanceOxford University Press

Published: May 23, 2018

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