BigTech Credit and Monetary Policy Transmission: Micro-level Evidence from China
IWH Discussion Papers,
This paper studies monetary policy transmission through BigTech and traditional banks. By comparing business loans made by a BigTech bank with those made by traditional banks, it finds that BigTech loans tend to be smaller, and the BigTech bank grants credit to more new borrowers compared with conventional banks in response to expansionary monetary policy. The BigTech bank‘s advantages in information, monitoring, and risk management are the potential mechanisms. The analysis also finds that BigTech and traditional bank credits to firms that have already borrowed from these banks respond similarly to changes in monetary policy. Overall, BigTech credit amplifies monetary policy transmission mainly through the extensive margin. In addition, monetary policy has a stronger impact on the real economy through BigTech lending than traditional bank loans.
Expectations, Infections, and Economic Activity
NBER Working Paper,
The Covid epidemic had a large impact on economic activity. In contrast, the dramatic decline in mortality from infectious diseases over the past 120 years had a small economic impact. We argue that people's response to successive Covid waves helps reconcile these two findings. Our analysis uses a unique administrative data set with anonymized monthly expenditures at the individual level that covers the first three Covid waves. Consumer expenditures fell by about the same amount in the first and third waves, even though the risk of getting infected was larger in the third wave. We find that people had pessimistic prior beliefs about the case-fatality rates that converged over time to the true case-fatality rates. Using a model where Covid is endemic, we show that the impact of Covid is small when people know the true case-fatality rate but large when people have empirically-plausible pessimistic prior beliefs about the case-fatality rate. These results reconcile the large economic impact of Covid with the small effect of the secular decline in mortality from infectious diseases estimated in the literature.
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