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The Role of Technology in Mortgage Lending

Andreas Fuster (), Matthew Plosser (), Philipp Schnabl () and James Vickery ()

No 24500, NBER Working Papers from National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc

Abstract: Technology-based ("FinTech") lenders increased their market share of U.S. mortgage lending from 2% to 8% from 2010 to 2016. Using market-wide, loan-level data on U.S. mortgage applications and originations, we show that FinTech lenders process mortgage applications about 20% faster than other lenders, even when controlling for detailed loan, borrower, and geographic observables. Faster processing does not come at the cost of higher defaults. FinTech lenders adjust supply more elastically than other lenders in response to exogenous mortgage demand shocks, thereby alleviating capacity constraints associated with traditional mortgage lending. In areas with more FinTech lending, borrowers refinance more, especially when it is in their interest to do so. We find no evidence that FinTech lenders target marginal borrowers. Our results suggest that technological innovation has improved the efficiency of financial intermediation in the U.S. mortgage market.

JEL-codes: G21 G23 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-ban, nep-pay and nep-ure
Date: 2018-04
Note: CF
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Published as Andreas Fuster & Matthew Plosser & Philipp Schnabl & James Vickery, 2019. "The Role of Technology in Mortgage Lending," The Review of Financial Studies, vol 32(5), pages 1854-1899.

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