We study how homeowners' consumption responds to a negative and anticipated disposable income shock: the beginning of the amortization period on interest-only mortgages. We identify spending behavior through an event study approach, by matching loan-level data that covers the universe of Danish mortgages to detailed administrative registries on borrowers. In response to an average increase in installments worth 9 percent of income, consumption drops by 3 percent of income, when amortization begins. The reduction in expenditure is persistent. Borrowers who fail to smooth consumption are highly leveraged and likely to be denied a new interest-only loan, upon expiration.
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© 2021 by the President and Fellows of Harvard College and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology
The President and Fellows of Harvard College and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology