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Private Sector Debt, Financial Constraints, and the Effects of Monetary Policy: Evidence from the US

Max Breitenlechner and Johann Scharler

Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics, 2020, vol. 82, issue 4, 889-915

Abstract: We characterize the response of U.S. real GDP to monetary policy shocks conditional on the level of private sector debt and the degree to which financial constraints are binding. To incorporate state‐dependent effects of monetary policy, we use the local projection framework. We find that although the amount of private sector debt potentially weakens the monetary policy transmission mechanism, policy shocks exert substantially larger effects on output when high private debt coincides with binding financial constraints.

Date: 2020
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Oxford Bulletin of Economics and Statistics is currently edited by Christopher Adam, Anindya Banerjee, Christopher Bowdler, David Hendry, Adriaan Kalwij, John Knight and Jonathan Temple

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