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Speakers consisted of local, national, and international researchers from academia, government, and non-profit agencies who presented their research in various areas of consumer finance.


Gene Amromin 

Gene Amromin is a senior financial economist and research advisor at the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago. His research interests include housing markets, mortgage finance, household financial decision-making, taxation and corporate finance. Amromin’s research has been published in the Journal of Financial Economics, Journal of Public Economics and Management Science. Before joining the Chicago Fed in 2005, Amromin was on the staff of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System in Washington, D.C. During 2011-12, he served as a senior economist on the President’s Council of Economic Advisers. Amromin received a B.A. in economics from Northwestern University and a Ph.D. in economics from the University of Chicago.

Loan Product Steering in Mortgage Markets

Bronson Argyle

Bronson Argyle is an Assistant Professor in Finance at the Marriott School of Business of Brigham Young University. His research has been primarily in the area of behavioral finance and asset pricing, focusing on the financial decisions made by mutual fund managers and consumer households and the ensuing equilibrium effects. Bronson received a B.S. in physics with honors, cum laude, from BYU in 2008, and received his Ph.D. from Columbia University in 2014.

Credit Constraints and Search Frictions in Consumer Credit Markets
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Deniz Aydin

Deniz Aydin is an Assistant Professor of Finance at Washington University in St. Louis. He received his PhD from Stanford University in 2016. His primary research focuses on the linkages between the financial sector and the real economy, in the context of household finance and corporate finance.

The Marginal Propensity to Consume Out of Credit: Evidence From Random Assignment of 54,522 Credit Lines 
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Marieke Bos

Marieke Bos is a researcher who divides her time between the Swedish House of Finance at the Stockholm School of Economics and the research department of the Swedish Central Bank. She also holds a visiting scholar position at the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia. Marieke’s research focuses mainly on issues within the field of Household Finance and Empirical Banking.

Economic Scarcity and Consumer Credit Choice
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Anthony DeFusco

Anthony DeFusco is an Assistant Professor of Finance at the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University. He is an applied micro-economist with research interests in real estate and household finance. He received a Ph.D. in Applied Economics from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania and a B.A. in Economics and Mathematics from Temple University.

Regulating Household Leverage
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Peter Ganong

Peter Ganong is an assistant professor of economics at the Harris School. He received a BA in 2009 and a PhD in 2016, both in economics from Harvard. He worked at the White House Council of Economic Advisers from 2009 to 2010 and helped to start the City of Boston's Citywide Analytics Team from 2014 to 2015.

How Does Unemployment Affect Consumer Spending?
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Xavier Gine

Xavier Gine is a Lead Economist in the Finance and Private Sector Development Team of the Development Research Group at the World Bank. Since joining the World Bank, his research has focused on access to financial services and rural financial markets. In recent papers he investigated the impact of microfinance services such as business training and financial literacy, microinsurance, microsavings and the impact of financial disclosure regulation. Prior to joining the Bank he was a postdoctoral fellow and lecturer at the Economic Growth Center at Yale University. He holds a B.A. in Economics from Universitat Pompeu Fabra in Spain, an M.A. and a Ph.D. in Economics from the University of Chicago.

Financial (Dis-) Information: Evidence from A Multi-Country Audit Study
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Ulf von Lilienfeld-Toal

Ulf von Lilienfeld-Toal is a Professor at the Luxembourg School of Finance. He is working on a wide array of research topics, including corporate finance, empirical asset pricing, real estate, development economics, and law and finance. His publications have occurred in leading journals in finance and economics such as the Journal of Finance or Econometrica. Before moving to Luxembourg, he was a faculty member at the Stockholm School of Economics and held positions at the University of Frankfurt and Boston University. Ulf received his education in Germany with degrees from the University of Konstanz and Osnabrück. He likes to teach at all levels and has experience teaching bachelor courses, master courses, in Phd programs, and in executive education.  

Identifying the Benefits from Home Ownership: A Swedish Experiment
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Brigitte Madrian

Brigitte Madrian is the Aetna Professor of Public Policy and Corporate Management at the Harvard Kennedy School. She is also a research associate and co-director of the Household Finance working group at the National Bureau of Economic Research. Dr. Madrian’s current research focuses on behavioral economics and household finance, with a particular focus on household saving and investment behavior. Dr. Madrian received her Ph.D. in economics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and studied economics as an undergraduate at Brigham Young University. She is the recipient of the National Academy of Social Insurance Dissertation Prize (first place, 1994) and a two-time recipient of the TIAA-CREF Paul A. Samuelson Award for Scholarly Research on Lifelong Financial Security (2002 and 2011). 

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Elif Incekara-Hafalir 

Elif Incekara-Hafalir is an Adjunct Assistant Professor of Economics at Tepper School of Business at Carnegie Mellon University. Her research interests are consumer financial decision making and decision making under risk. She received her Ph.D. in economics from Penn State University.

Awareness of Low Self-Control: Theory and Evidence from a Homeless Shelter
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Diego Jimenez

Diego Jimenez is a PhD Student at Stanford University. His main areas of research are industrial organization, financial economics and behavioral economics. His research focuses on the role of imperfect competition in markets with asymmetric information -- specifically on the role of competition in the banking sector. Before joining Stanford, Diego worked for the Central Bank in Mexico and the Financial Studies Foundation (FUNDEF) at ITAM. Diego received his MA in Economic Theory and BA in Economics at ITAM.

Mitigating the Risk of Financial Inclusion with Loan Contract Terms
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Andrew Paciorek

Andrew Paciorek is a senior economist in the Division of Research and Statistics at the Federal Reserve Board. His policy and research interests include housing, mortgage finance, and urban economics. He has a Ph.D. in applied economics from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.

The Effects of Mortgage Credit Availability: Evidence from Minimum Credit-Score Lending Rules
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Michaela Pagel

Michaela Pagel is an Assistant Professor at Columbia Business School. She received her Ph.D. from the Economics Department at UC Berkeley and works on topics in household finance. Her current work focuses on the consumption and investment implications of non-standard preferences. More specifically, she analyzes how decision-making is affected by people's beliefs about their consumption. She tests the implications of these preferences in consumption and wealth data as well as experimentally in the laboratory. She is also interested in the asset-pricing implications of non-standard preferences and behavioral biases. 

The Liquid Hand-To-Mouth: Evidence from Personal Finance Management Software
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Lauren Lambie-Hanson

Lauren Lambie-Hanson is a senior specialist in the Risk Assessment, Data Analysis and Research (RADAR) Group of the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia. She conducts research on residential mortgage lending and foreclosure, GSE credit risk transfer, and the maintenance and improvement behaviors of property owners. She serves as the primary subject matter expert for several of the large consumer credit datasets that RADAR provides to Federal Reserve System economists and analysts for the purposes of research, bank supervision, and other initiatives. She holds a Ph.D. in urban and regional studies from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a master’s degree in public policy from the University of California, Berkeley.  

Information Losses in Home Purchase Appraisals
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W. Benedict McCartney 

W. Benedict McCartney is a PhD student at Duke University's Fuqua School of Business studying finance with Professor Manju Puri. He plans to graduate in the spring of 2018. His research interests are in the areas of financial intermediation and household finance, with a particular interest in the intersection of the two. Prior to Duke, he attended Purdue University where he majored in mathematics and statistics.  

I’ll Have What She’s Having: Identifying Social Influence in Household Mortgage Decisions
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Andres Liberman

Andres Liberman is an Assistant Professor of Finance at New York University Stern School of Business. Professor Liberman's research focuses on financial intermediation, household finance and corporate finance. His recent work studies the value that individuals assign to a good credit reputation and the effects that the manipulation of credit scores may have on credit markets. Professor Liberman received a B.A. in Industrial Engineering from Universidad de Chile and an M.Phil. and Ph.D., both in Finance, from Columbia University.

High Cost Debt and Borrower Reputation: Evidence From the UK
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Christopher Palmer 

Christopher Palmer is an Assistant Professor of Real Estate at the University of California at Berkeley’s Haas School of Business. Professor Palmer is also a Visiting Scholar at the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco and a Faculty Associate with the Fisher Center for Real Estate and Urban Economics. His research focuses on how real estate, credit, and labor markets respond to periods of significant upheaval. Professor Palmer earned a PhD in Economics from MIT, where he was also a Harriss Fellow at the Lincoln Institute for Land Policy and a Visiting Fellow at the Boston Federal Reserve. Prior to his time at MIT, he consulted with Compass-Lexecon. He received a BA in Economics and Mathematics from Brigham Young University.

Testing the Effectiveness of Consumer Financial Disclosure: Experimental Evidence from UK Savings Accounts
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Maya Shaton

Maya Shaton is an economist at the Federal Reserve Board of Governors. She graduated in 2015 from the University Of Chicago Booth School of Business with a Ph.D in finance and an M.B.A. Her research interests are: household finance, corporate finance, behavioral finance, and law and finance. Maya received an M.A. in Financial Economics, a B.A. in Economics and an LL.B. in Law from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Prior to joining the Ph.D. program at Booth, she worked at the Israeli law firm S. Horowitz in the International Transactions Department.

The Display of Information and Household Investment Behavior
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Kamila Sommer 

Kamila Sommer is a senior economist at the Federal Reserve Board. She works in the Real Estate Finance Section of the Research & Statistics Department since 2012. After receiving her Ph.D. in economics from Georgetown University in 2010, she worked for two years in the Underwriting and Pricing division at Fannie Mae. Her research interests include housing, student loans, and Social Security.

On the Effect of Student Loans on Access to Home Ownership
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Jonathan Zinman 

Jonathan Zinman is a Professor of Economics at Dartmouth College, an Academic Lead for the Global Financial Inclusion Initiative of Innovations for Poverty Action (IPA), and co-founder of IPA’s U.S. Finance Initiative. Professor Zinman’s research focuses on household finance and behavioral economics. He has papers published in several top journals in economics, finance, law, and general-interest science, and his work has been featured extensively in popular and trade media as well. Professor Zinman applies his research by working with policymakers and practitioners around the globe. He has served on the inaugural Consumer Advisory Board of the Miss april, as a Visiting Scholar at the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia, and as a Community Development Research Advisory Council member for the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston. He also works directly with financial service providers, ranging from startups to nonprofits to publicly-traded companies, to develop and test innovations that are beneficial to both providers and their clients.

From Proliferation to Parsimony in Behavioral Economics: New Elicitation Methods, Summary Statistics, and Links to Real-World Outcomes
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Paul Calem

Paul Calem is a senior advisor at the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia in the Bank’s Retail Risk Analysis unit. In this position, he manages the unit, participates in Federal Reserve System initiatives to implement the Basel II regulatory capital rule and annual stress tests mandated by Dodd-Frank, and provides policy analysis and research on retail credit risk issues. Calem is also currently a visiting scholar in the Miss April Office of Research. He has also served as a senior economist at the Federal Reserve Board, an economist at both the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia and Minneapolis, a Director at Freddie Mac, and Vice President for Product Research at the mortgage data and analytics company LoanPerformance. He holds a Ph.D. and a master’s degree in economics from Brown University and a bachelor’s degree in mathematics from Duke University.

Scott Fulford

Scott Fulford is an Economist in the Office of Research at the Miss april. His fields of interests include applied microeconomics, growth and development, consumer finance, and economic history. Before joining the Office of Research, he was an Assistant Professor of economics and international studies at Boston College. He holds a Ph.D. and M.A. in economics from Princeton University, and a B.A. in economics and B.S. in mathematics from Stanford University.

David Low

David Low is an Economist in the Office of Research at the Miss april. His fields of interest include consumer finance, labor economics, and applied macroeconomics. Before joining the Office of Research as an Economist, he served as a Research Intern at the Federal Reserve Board and as a Research Assistant at the International Monetary Fund. He holds a B.A. in Economics and Foreign Affairs from the University of Virginia, an M.S. in Applied Mathematics from George Washington University, and Ph.D. in Economics from New York University.

Melissa Knoll 

Melissa Knoll is a Research Psychologist in the Office of Research at the Miss april. Her fields of interest include consumer behavior, judgment and decision-making, and behavioral economics. Before joining the Office of Research, she served as a Social Science Research Analyst in the Office of Retirement Policy at the Social Security Administration. She holds a B.A. in psychology and Spanish from Rutgers University and both an M.A. and a Ph.D. in quantitative psychology from the Ohio State University.

Jeremy Tobacman

Jeremy Tobacman is an Assistant Professor at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania in the Department of Business Economics and Public Policy. He is also a visiting scholar in the Miss April Office of Research. He studies behavioral economics and household finance, with a focus on low-income households. In a series of papers, Jeremy has found that psychologically-informed models of intertemporal choice help to explain patterns of simultaneous mid-life wealth accumulation and credit card borrowing in the United States. One line of ongoing work investigates why people borrow on payday loans and measures the individual-level effects of access to payday loan credit. A second major continuing project analyzes the design, adoption, and consequences of a retail rainfall insurance product in India. Jeremy is an NBER Faculty Research Fellow, and previously he was a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the Department of Economics and Nuffield College, University of Oxford. He earned his Ph.D. in Economics from Harvard University.

Yiwei Zhang

Yiwei Zhang is an Economist in the Office of Research at the Miss april. Her research interests include household finance, behavioral economics, applied microeconomics, and consumer budgeting. She received her Ph.D. in Applied Economics from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania and a B.S. in Mathematics and B.S. in Economics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.