Jan 17, 2019

The Fed says student loans are smothering the housing market

Photo: Frederic J. Brown/AFP/Getty Images

Buying a house is a terrible investment. That said, a new paper from the Federal Reserve posits the reason young people are buying less than in generations past is not that they're smarter and savvier, but that they are more indebted.

What they're saying: "We estimate that roughly 20 percent of the decline in homeownership among young adults can be attributed to their increased student loan debts since 2005."

  • The reduction in home buyers "represents over 400,000 young individuals who would have owned a home in 2014 had it not been for the rise in debt."
  • "We found that a $1,000 increase in student loan debt ... causes a 1 to 2 percentage point drop in the homeownership rate for student loan borrowers during their late 20s and early 30s."

Yes, but: The Fed argued that student loan debt was an important but not "central cause" of the reduction in home buying. Researchers largely put the onus on tighter bank lending standards.

The bigger picture: The Fed also focused on additional harms from increased student debt.

  • "We show that higher student loan debt early in life leads to a lower credit score later in life, all else equal."

Go deeper: The average U.S. household has 828% more student debt than in 1999

Go deeper

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 2 p.m. ET: 5,453,784 — Total deaths: 345,886 — Total recoveries — 2,191,310Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 2 p.m. ET: 1,651,254 — Total deaths: 97,850 — Total recoveries: 366,736 — Total tested: 14,163,915Map.
  3. World: Top Boris Johnson aide defends himself after allegations he broke U.K. lockdown — WHO suspends trial of hydroxychloroquine over safety concerns.
  4. 2020: Trump threatens to move Republican convention from North Carolina — Joe Biden makes first public appearance in two months.
  5. Public health: Officials are urging Americans to wear masks over Memorial Day.
  6. Economy: White House economic adviser Kevin Hassett says it's possible the unemployment rate could still be in double digits by November's election — Charities refocus their efforts to fill gaps left by government.
  7. What should I do? Hydroxychloroquine questions answeredTraveling, asthma, dishes, disinfectants and being contagiousMasks, lending books and self-isolatingExercise, laundry, what counts as soap — Pets, moving and personal healthAnswers about the virus from Axios expertsWhat to know about social distancingHow to minimize your risk.
  8. Other resources: CDC on how to avoid the virus, what to do if you get it, the right mask to wear.

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Updated 58 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Joe Biden makes first public appearance in over two months

Photo: Oliver Douliery/AFP via Getty Images

Former Vice President Joe Biden made his first in-person appearance in over two months on Monday to honor Memorial Day by laying a wreath at a Delaware veterans park, AP reports.

Why it matters: Biden, the Democratic Party's presumptive nominee, has taken the unprecedented step of campaigning from his home during the coronavirus pandemic, ever since canceling a rally in Cleveland on March 10.

WHO temporarily suspends trial of hydroxychloroquine over safety concerns

Photo: Fabrice Coffrini/AFP via Getty Images

The World Health Organization is temporarily pausing tests of the anti-malarial drug hydroxychloroquine as a coronavirus treatment in order to review safety concerns, the agency's director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesu said Monday.

Why it matters: The decision comes after a retrospective review published in The Lancet found that coronavirus patients who took hydroxychloroquine or its related drug chloroquine were more likely to die or develop an irregular heart rhythm that can lead to sudden cardiac death, compared to those who did nothing.