Political Influence and Banks: Evidence from Mortgage Lending
54 Pages Posted: 28 Nov 2018 Last revised: 10 Jul 2022
Date Written: June 20, 2022
We show that banks expand mortgage lending in the home states of Senate Banking Committee chairs, and the effect is more pronounced in counties where the incumbent senator faces a competitive re-election race. Banks strategically target politically active borrowers. Consequently, banks' profitability increases after favoring the incumbent politicians' constituents, but they suffer a deterioration in mortgage asset quality in the long run. Our findings imply that political power could distort private capital allocation beyond conventional political contribution channels.
Keywords: Political Influence, Mortgage Lending, Senate Banking Committee, HMDA
JEL Classification: D72, G21, G28
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation