Greater Inequality and Household Borrowing: New Evidence from Household Data

Olivier Coibion, Yuriy Gorodnichenko, Marianna Kudlyak, John Mondragon

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


Using household-level debt data over 2000-2012 and local variation in inequality, we show that low-income households in high-inequality regions (zip codes, counties, states) accumulated less debt relative to their income than low-income households in lower inequality regions. We also find evidence that low-income households face higher credit prices and reduced access to credit as inequality increases. We argue that these patterns are consistent with inequality tilting credit supply away from low-income households and toward high-income households, which may have long-run implications for outcomes like homeownership or entrepreneurship.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2922-2971
Number of pages50
JournalJournal of the European Economic Association
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 1 2020

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Economics, Econometrics and Finance(all)


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