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125 Results

Markups and inflation during the COVID-19 pandemic

Staff Analytical Note 2023-8 Olga Bilyk, Timothy Grieder, Mikael Khan
We find that prices and costs for consumer-oriented firms moved roughly one-for-one during the COVID-19 pandemic. This means firms fully passed rising costs through to the prices they charged. However, our results are suggestive, given data limitations and the uncertainty associated with estimating markups.
Content Type(s): Staff research, Staff analytical notes Topic(s): Firm dynamics, Inflation and prices JEL Code(s): D, D2, D4, E, E2, E3, L, L1

Cost Pass-Through with Capacity Constraints and International Linkages

How are regional cost shocks passed through into global prices? We investigate the role of short-run capacity constraints and show that they can induce stark non-linearities in the pass-through. We highlight this effect for the market for ammonia, a commodity produced largely from natural gas.

The Role of Intermediaries in Selection Markets: Evidence from Mortgage Lending

This paper looks at the role mortgage brokers play in helping borrowers generate quotes and qualify for credit. We find that, on average, borrowers that engage with a mortgage broker pay lower interest rates. However, in about 15% of cases, borrowers are steered towards longer amortizing mortgages than they would have chosen absent a broker. Since mortgages with longer amortization have higher total interest costs over the entire life of the mortgage, this steering is expensive.

Central Bank Digital Currencies and Banking: Literature Review and New Questions

We review the nascent but fast-growing literature on central bank digital currencies (CBDCs), focusing on their potential impacts on private banks. We evaluate these impacts in three areas of traditional banking: payments, lending and liquidity and maturity transformation. We also take a broader look at CBDCs and highlight two promising directions for future research.

The 2021–22 Merchant Acceptance Survey Pilot Study

Staff Discussion Paper 2023-1 Angelika Welte, Joy Wu
The rise in digital payment innovations has spurred a discussion about the future of cash at the point of sale. The Bank conducted the 2021–22 Merchant Acceptance Survey Pilot Study to study trends in merchant cash acceptance and monitor conditions for the potential issuance of a central bank digital currency.

Potential benefits and key risks of fiat-referenced cryptoassets

Staff Analytical Note 2022-20 Hugh Ding, Natasha Khan, Bena Lands, Cameron MacDonald, Laura Zhao
Cryptoassets that reference a national currency (commonly known as stablecoins) aim to peg their value to the reference currency and typically use a reserve of traditional financial assets to maintain the peg. The market value of these fiat-referenced cryptoassets has grown more than thirtyfold between early 2020 and mid-2022. We explore some of their potential benefits and key risks.

PayTech and the D(ata) N(etwork) A(ctivities) of BigTech Platforms

Staff Working Paper 2022-35 Jonathan Chiu, Thorsten Koeppl
Why do BigTech platforms introduce payment services? We explore this using a model in which a monopoly platform faces a trade-off between the costs associated with privacy concerns and the revenue from data services. We then analyze the feedback effects between data and payments.

Fixed-income dealing and central bank interventions

Staff Analytical Note 2022-9 David Cimon, Adrian Walton
We summarize the theoretical model of central bank asset purchases developed in Cimon and Walton (2022). The model helps us understand how asset purchases ease pressures on investment dealers to restore market conditions in a crisis.

Equilibrium in Two-Sided Markets for Payments: Consumer Awareness and the Welfare Cost of the Interchange Fee

Staff Working Paper 2022-15 Kim Huynh, Gradon Nicholls, Oleksandr Shcherbakov
We construct and estimate a structural two-stage model of equilibrium in a market for payments in order to quantify the network externalities and identify the main determinants of consumer and merchant decisions.
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