Angela Vossmeyer, economics graduate student, is the 2014 recipient of the School of Social Sciences’ Sheen T. Kassouf Fellowship. Named in honor of the highly respected UC Irvine economics scholar and pioneer of modern finance, the $10,000 fellowship recognizes an economics graduate student each year who demonstrates excellence in coursework and research.

Vossmeyer received her undergraduate degree in economics from UC Irvine in 2010. A native of La Crescenta, California, she came to UCI because of the location, but stayed on as a graduate student because of the strong rapport she developed with a number of faculty members, including Ivan Jeliazkov and Gary Richardson, now two of her graduate advisors.

“As an undergrad, I became interested in econometrics while taking Econ 123B (Econometrics II) from Jeliazkov,” she said. “During my last two years, I worked as a research assistant for him. He is the one who really motivated me to pursue a Ph.D. in economics and inspired me to study econometrics.” The two have since worked on a number of projects together that continue to be an integral part of her research.

Her work focuses on developing models and computational methods and implementing them in empirical settings. The lead chapter of her dissertation applies a new methodology to study lender of last resort policies and the effect they have on the probability of bank failure. The modeling strategies in this paper provide a framework for program evaluation, policy analysis and prediction.  

“I’ve always been drawn to the technical and computational aspects of econometrics,” she says. “I enjoy designing efficient estimation algorithms.”

Recently, she had the opportunity to see the important ramifications these new approaches have in banking settings.

“Lender of last resort policies are a topic of interest with regard to the recent financial crisis and it is exciting for me to jump into the discussion with new methodological techniques.”

Her research looks at these banking policies during the Great Depression and draws parallels to today’s crisis, increasing our understanding of how these emergency programs impact the financial system. Her findings indicate that bank recapitalization decreases the probability of bank failure and stimulates bank lending. The results vary for different subgroups of banks, which stresses the importance of the selection procedures adopted by the policy-makers. She currently has two studies in publication – one with the American Economic Review and the other forthcoming in Advances in Econometrics.

She has received the Department of Economics awards for Best Econometrics Paper and Best Teaching Assistant and she is a past recipient of the Art DeVany Prize for Best Presentation, awarded at the department’s annual poster session. Her research has been funded by the All-UC Group in Economic History and through a travel grant from the National Bureau of Economics Research and the National Science Foundation.

After finishing her graduate program in 2015, Vossmeyer plans to go on the job market to continue pursuing research on econometrics and banking.


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