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Current Research

"Capturing the Illiquidity Premium" (with  Nathan Foley-Fisher  and Stéphane Verani)

PE Controlled Insurer Assets


This paper studies the restructuring of financial intermediation in the United States since the 2007-09 financial crisis. We show that the largest U.S. life insurers have entered private debt markets as banks refocused on commercial banking, against a backdrop of unconventional monetary policies and tighter bank regulations. Through complex on- and off-balance sheet arrangements, these insurers, many of whom are controlled by private equity firms, are acquiring and deploying vast amounts of annuity capital to capture the illiquidity premium. The new architecture of the financial system features novel forms of lending. That said, life insurers have become more vulnerable to an aggregate shock to the corporate sector.

Current Version: February 2020 [PDF] [preliminary and incomplete]

Research Interests

Chinese Housing Boom

Credit Expansion
Chinese State-Owned Enterprise Reform
Life/Social Insurance and Long-Term Care for Elderly in China
China in World Politics

My colleague Jon Formella co-authored a few essays in 2015 on the future of China in international relations. You can read these essays here.

Financial Intermediation and Liquidity, Maturity Transformations in Shadow Banking

Credit Default Swaps and Derivatives Markets


I enjoy the thought-provoking discussion provided by Nate Silver's The Signal and the Noise. It is impressive how advanced forecasting is in some areas, such as meterology, and how artificial intelligence was able to best one of the world's best chess players. How can we integrate the advances of these other fields into economics and finance? The chapter on forecasting in economics is a very difficult read. Leading up to the last recession and financial crisis, some economists were even heralding the end of recessions/financial crises. What can the field do to better predict and prepare for adverse economic outcomes in the future?

Networks and Interconnectedness in Economics and Finance

Disclaimer: Please kindly note that the views on this page and website are solely my own and should not be interpreted as reflecting the views of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System or of any other person associated with the Federal Reserve.