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Issue #11 | January 16, 2018

Recently, from the Cleveland Fed

  • A look back at the financial crisis: What did we learn? What’s changed?

    A look back at the financial crisis: What did we learn? What’s changed?

    Ten years after the start of the nation’s unprecedented financial crisis, Cleveland Fed examiners and others reflect on what happened and detail how things have changed in response to it. Explore “The Crisis, the Fallout, the Change: The Great Recession in Retrospect.”

  • Home loan outcomes in Ohio’s Montgomery County vary by race and income

    Home loan outcomes in Ohio’s Montgomery County vary by race and income

    In the most recent in a series of analyses of Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA) data, Cleveland Fed researchers examine trends in mortgage lending in Montgomery County, home to the city of Dayton, from 1990 to the present. Their findings reveal disparities in outcomes by borrower and neighborhood race and income. Read the Montgomery County HMDA analysis.

Graphic of the Month

Jobless rates are on the decline

It’s been 10 years since the start of the Great Recession, and nationwide jobless rates are nearing the lowest they’ve been since 2007.

Jobless rates are on the decline

By the Numbers

Ask the Expert

Question:

We are all aware that the Great Recession had a negative impact on the economy. What do you feel are the most positive regulatory changes to come from the crisis?

Jenni:

We’re always looking for improvement opportunities. One lesson we learned from the financial crisis is that weaknesses can spread from one firm to other firms quickly because of the interconnectedness of the financial system. When weaknesses spread, that has a potentially large impact on the health of the financial system.

The Federal Reserve and lawmakers made several important changes after the Great Recession. The Fed now looks at similar risks across bank holding companies (BHCs) in addition to focusing on individual BHCs. We’ve strengthened our focus on BHCs’ financial condition in the face of an economic downturn or other stressful event. You can see this in our Comprehensive Capital Analysis and Review, whose results are publicly available. These stress tests require each BHC to consider the risks it is exposed to, financial or otherwise, and to hold sufficient capital to withstand severe stress. The tests should give the public more confidence in a company’s ability to withstand an economic downturn and continue to lend and serve its customers.

There are a couple of reasons why banks may have gaps they don’t identify before banking supervisors do. Sometimes, it’s a cost issue; it costs money to implement strong internal controls, whether they be systems or people. Sometimes, it’s inexperience of the bankers. They may not have experienced the consequences of something to know they should have a policy in place or a risk limit. Examiners, having the perspective of seeing many companies, can provide that insight.

Another example of our focus on continuing to learn and make changes is the large financial institution rating system. That rating system, if implemented in its proposed form, would help us assess large firms—those with $50 billion or more in assets—in the areas of capital (banks’ cushion for losses), liquidity (funds necessary in the short term for a bank to meet its obligations), and governance (how a bank is managed).

Jenni Frazer

Jenni Frazer

is group vice president of large bank supervision at the Cleveland Fed. In the Bank’s recently published recession retrospective, Jenni and 9 other sources discuss what happened during the financial crisis that began in 2007 and what we learned from it.

On the Calendar

From around the Federal Reserve System

What debt wins (and loses) when financial stressors strike?

The Federal Reserve Bank of New York has analyzed data to uncover which debts get paid and which remain unpaid when borrowers face financial hardship. In this blog entry, researchers review the prioritization of debt before, during, and after the recession.

What debt wins (and loses) when financial stressors strike?

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