Consumer Finance

Our Consumer Finance Institute researches how people earn, spend, save, and invest, as well as how credit markets and payment systems affect the economy. Our goal is to foster a healthy consumer sector, a stable financial system, and a resilient regional and national economy.

4-in-6 Payment Products — Buy Now, Pay Later: Insights from New Survey Data

Since 2019, buy now, pay later (BNPL) lending products have experienced rapid growth in transaction volume and garnered significant attention from consumers, researchers, and regulators. BNPL products that use an interest-free, 4-payments-in-6-weeks (4-in-6) structure have been examined closely because of concerns that their unique characteristics might pose risks to vulnerable consumers and other providers of consumer credit.

Advancing Fairness in Lending Through Machine Learning

Showcasing the work of Philadelphia Fed researchers, this interactive data visualization explores an approach to credit lending using machine learning and fairness goals that may help address current disparities in credit access.





The Mortgage Market Research Conference


Consumer Credit

Working Paper

CECL Implementation and Model Risk in Uncertain Times: An Application to Consumer Finance

WP 24-03 – I examine the challenges of economic forecasting and model misspecification errors confronted by financial institutions implementing the novel current expected credit loss (CECL) allowance methodology and its impact on model risk and bias in CECL projections.

A person sitting at a desk with an open notebook, entering numbers in to a calculator.

Special Four-Report Series on Student Loan Payments Resumption

In a four-part series of special reports, the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia studies the financial and economic impacts of the federal student loan payments resumption.

An overhead view of a neighborhood next to a wooded area.

Consumer Credit

Working Paper

Housing Speculation, GSEs, and Credit Market Spillovers

WP 24-02 – In 2021, the U.S. Treasury reduced the exposure of government-sponsored enterprises (GSEs) to speculative mortgages. As a result, GSE purchases of these loans fell by about 20 percentage points.

A man reviews bills with a look of concern on his face.

Consumer Credit

Working Paper

Debtor Income Manipulation in Consumer Credit Contracts

WP 22-35/R – We show that forcing insolvent consumer debtors to repay a larger fraction of debt causes them to strategically manipulate the data they report to creditors.