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We investigate whether saving Wall Street through TARP really saved Main Street during the recent financial crisis. Our difference-in-difference analysis suggests that TARP statistically and economically significantly increased net job creation and net hiring establishments and decreased business and personal bankruptcies. The results are robust, including accounting for endogeneity. The main mechanisms driving the results appear to be increases in commercial real estate lending and off-balance-sheet real estate guarantees. These results suggest that saving Wall Street via TARP may have helped save Main Street, complementing the TARP literature and contributing to the cost–benefit debate.
We investigate whether the Troubled Assets Relief Program (TARP) gave recipients competitive advantages. Using a difference-in-difference (DID) approach, we find that: i) TARP recipients received competitive advantages and increased both their market shares and market power; ii) results may be driven primarily by the safety channel (TARP banks may be perceived as safer), which is partially offset by the cost-disadvantage channel (TARP funds may be relatively expensive); and iii) these competitive advantages are primarily or entirely due to TARP banks that repaid early. These results may help explain other findings in the literature, and yield important policy implications.
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