March 25, 2006

The NAR is responsible the existing home sales report. The Fed is responsible for the inflation report... Are we really this dumb and gullible?












Main Entry: gull·ibleVariant(s): also gull·able /'g&-l&-b&l/Function: adjectiveDate: 1818: easily duped or cheated

Isn't this like Katherine Harris being responsible for the Florida vote?

Bottom line, it's all lies folks. The ones cooking the books aren't the ones who should be responsible for reading us the books

The NAR number on Thursday is looking reallllllllyyyy suspect given Friday's horrific new home numbers. And the Fed benign inflation numbers are realllllllyyyyy suspect given your pocketbook, eh?

"Statistical Corruption"

Thornburg, echoing Pimco bond guru William Gross, believes one reason the official inflation number is held down is a statistical corruption in putting the CPI together called "hedonic adjustments." Say a new computer with extra power and memory costs $100 more than last year's model. That computer nevertheless might, for CPI purposes, show a price decline, since the add-on goodies supposedly are worth much more than the retail increase.

Nonsense, Thornburg says: "It still just does what a computer is supposed to, and if you're paying more for it, that's inflation."

Equally bogus, says Thornburg, is the notion of excluding food and energy prices from the so-called core CPI, the one everyone looks at. "Yeah, they're volatile, but so what?" Thornburg says of energy and food. "People need to drive to work, and they need to eat."

Thornburg also finds that housing costs, which make up 22% of the CPI, are undercounted in the index. They are based on how much a homeowner supposedly would pay to rent his house if he were a tenant. While U.S. home prices surged 13% in 2004, the CPI housing component went up just 2.4%.

49 comments:

Anonymous said...

The more you lose focus the more you look like an idiot!

Anonymous said...

Don't criticize the lovely and talented Ms. Harris--you'll get the Busheviki all flustered!

Anonymous said...

Who could expect those libtards to figure out those confusing butterfly ballots. They expected those poor people to punch out the chad next to the name of the person they wanted to note for. Only a rocket scientist could figure out something so complicated.

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Personal bankruptcies soar to all-time high
Bankruptcies jumped 30% to nearly 2.1 million last year as debtors rushed to file petitions before new restrictions took effect.
March 24, 2006: 4:36 PM EST


NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) - The number of Americans filing for bankruptcy jumped 30 percent last year to the highest on record as debtors rushed to file petitions before new restrictions took effect, according to the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts.

Personal bankruptcies filed in the federal courts totaled 2,078,415 in 2005, up from 1,597,462 petitions filed in 2004, the office said in a statement on its Web site Friday.


It was the largest number of bankruptcy petitions ever filed in any 12-month period in the history of the federal courts, according to the office, which collects information for the federal judiciary.

Bankruptcy filings for the period between Oct. 1 and Dec. 31, 2005, also hit a record high for any quarter, the office said.

The increase was largely in response to the passage of the Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act of 2005, which went into effect on Oct. 17, 2005.

Under the new law, it became harder for individuals to file for bankruptcy under Chapter 7, which would let them clear their debts and get what's known as a "fresh start."

The law made it more likely that debtors file under Chapter 13, which requires them to repay at least some of their debts within five years.

In a Chapter 7 bankruptcy, your assets, minus those exempted by your state, are liquidated and given to creditors, and many of your remaining debts are cancelled. Since many Chapter 7 filers don't have assets that qualify for liquidation, credit-card companies and other creditors can get nothing.

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Of the total number of bankruptcy filings, there were 1.7 million Chapter 7 filings, up 46 percent from 1.1 million in 2004. Chapter 13 filings fell 8 percent.

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keith said...

republicans, democrats, I could care less.

the point any sane person would see is that you don't allow such an obvious conflict of interest, whether it's a candidate's campaign manager in charge of certifying an election or conducting a recount, or the national assoc. of realtors in charge of housing data.

I swear, politics and religion have brainwashed some of you so much that you can no longer look at anything objectively, it always has to be through the clouded lens of your particular dogma.

wake up. next time it might be a democratic sec. of state putting the fix in for a democratic candidate, or it might be the fed saying that they'll stop reporting M3 so that they can run the presses.

oh, wait, the fed already did that!

Dogcrap Green said...

Thornburg also finds that housing costs, which make up 22% of the CPI, are undercounted in the index. They are based on how much a homeowner supposedly would pay to rent his house if he were a tenant. While U.S. home prices surged 13% in 2004, the CPI housing component went up just 2.4%.

Kieth I'm not so sure you understand this so I will be as simplistic as possible.

Rent is driving by capital produced through earnings and savings. Real Estate value on the other hand have the ability to inflating in value based on trading. I think this is called a bubble. You really should research the concept.

Rent being driven by wages and savings is the COST index that need to be watch for the ability to live off of your wages and savings. This would be the more steady number and the own that can best measure whether cost are being driven beyond earnings.

Relax little man. I once heard that bubbles deflats. The Feds won't claim deflation because of this.

monkey boy said...

When you understand inflation. You understand the value of homeownership.

My largest expense - my housing hasn't inflated in 10 years.

No better way to beat inflation than to buy a house.

Heck I might buy three.

Anonymous said...

Amen Keith,

They are all gorramned liars. I personally have become a political agnostic.

M.Reynolds

Joe Zychik said...

To dogcrap green:

I think you're saying the cpi measures what it would cost to rent the house one lives in, as opposed to actual purchase price, mortgage, taxes, insurance, etc.

Question: How does the cpi pick up the increased costs that many homeowners incur to own rather than rent? Does real homeowner cost reflect anywhere in the cpi?

keith said...

here's the problem dogcrap with your statement

rents are artificially low, as 30% of homes purchased during the bubble were by investors, many of these units being rented out now, so supply went way up. At the same time, rent demand dropped significantly as 5% of Americans who were renters bought homes, so less renters.

Supply up. Demand down. Thus rents down. Looks great on the inflation numbers.

But it's pretty obvious when housing prices soar over 50% in five years that housing costs went up for many folks, way way way up, especially as a % of income. Thus serious inflation that was not accounted for in the Fed's bogus numbers.

It'd be pretty easy for them to have a basket of housing costs, rolled into the housing component, which I believe is 30% of the inflation number. What does the US expend on shelter, period, then compare that to the prior period. Add in real estate taxes (which have soared), condo and home association fees (which have soared), P&I and PMI.

This is how you get an accurate number. BUT, the Fed doesn't want an accurate number.

And they count on folks like you to not understand. Mission achieved.

moman said...

What's even scarier is the common assumption among economists that the CPI overstates inflation by ~ 1%.

The only good thing about the inflation numbers is it makes me feel a little better about receiving a piddly raise last year.

Dogcrap Green said...

Housing Panic,

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Anonymous said...

rents in LA are way up not down and its difficult to find a place to rent.

Awaiting Bubble Rubble said...

Ummm... there are nearly 3,000 rentals listed for under $1800 on Craig's List in LA. Rental rates have risen maybe 10% in the past two years (I've researched this), higher than the official inflation numbers but far lower than the hyped up housing bubble appreciation rates. Multi-unit buildings for under $1M are starting to flood the market. I see this as a good precursor to the housing bubble here imploding because these owners are investors and a bit more informed than home "owners," who react to emotional sales hype and $250 worth of paint slapped on the trim.

The CPI should be calculated differently now to more accurately weigh how new realities like housing cost as a percentage of monthly expense. They did change it some years back when it was determined that processed food was no longer a huge part of the average family's budget. However, it will always be hokey, like the official unemployment number that stops counting half the people who are actually unemployed. As a rule of thumb, I just double both numbers and see we're usually on par with France and other countries that make an attempt to measure these things accurately. The government will never try this here, too many pension indexes and so forth are tied to the CPI.

dotherobot said...

Gosh, I'd forgotten about her...now you have to bring back all those horrible memories of that communist Katherine Harris...Oh no! Don't even mention Janet Reno please....

back on topic..yeah, I never believe any of the bullsh--'ers. None of 'em

foobeca said...

moman:

The CPI methodology was changed in the early 90's. Prior to that, the consensus among economists was that the CPI *was* overstating inflation by 1%.

Now, the consensus is that it is understating inflation. The reason that the govt. wants to understate inflation is to delay the inevitable with socialist stupidity and mediscare.

Anonymous said...

Hey Keith,

Katherine Harris isn't so bad. What Democrats fail to mention, if they even know it, is that when she appeared before the Florida State Legislature in its first session after the election, everyone present, every Republican and every Democrat, gave her a standing ovation. Why? Because she'd followed the letter of the law THEY HAD WRITTEN. She couldn't have done any anything other that what she'd done, or she would have been liable for prosecution, and I have no doubt somebody on one side or the other would have made sure she she was charged with something.

I agree with the earlier writer who said the people who couldn't figure out the ballots were stupid. Incredibly stupid, given that they were the same kind of ballots Floridians had been using for decades without problem. Some of these voters appeared to be dead; their grown children "voted" for them, while they sat propped up in wheelchairs. Tens of thousands had already "voted" in New York. Also, Gore wanted to be very selected with which votes were recounted, skipping all the counties where errors might have penalized Bush. Finally, the idiots "recounting" the votes had no way of knowing what the voters intended. If the punch holes were not punched next to a presidential candidate, then they didn't vote for one. Period. That had always been taken for granted till Gore's team decided to change the rules.

Bush is a terrible president, but the election fight is a joke. All the Fla. newspapers got together and "recounted" the votes, and still came to the conclusion that Bush won. Who cares? I think all the Democrats from New York who voted twice should be in jail, but are they?

Katherine Harris is not a good example of the fox watching the hen house. I think the Mayor of New Orleans overseeing its reconstruction is much better one. Talk about a crook milking a situation for all its worth. How many millions do you supposed he's going to be hiding in off-shore accounts?

I agree with you that both parties suck. Politicians are not, in general, trustworthy, and almost all of them cheat. This isn't a gross generalization; it's a life-time observation.

Anonymous said...

Please excuse typos. "Also, Gore wanted to be very SELECTIVE with which votes were recounted . . . ."

Thanks
Anon

Anonymous said...

Bush won FL both times, dumbass. It has been proven.

Anonymous said...

Keith,

I don't know much about economics, but it sounds like inflation will be a factor in housing and potential recession.

My question is: if the real inflation number is higher than officially stated, then the housing crash might not be as dramatic at least in nominal figures?

But those who are not a homeowner yet, we still have to take out a mortgage based on the nominal value of a property (and a higher interest rate), and I expect it'll take longer than 1-2 years for our wage increase to catch up. (I've heard that the housing crash of the 70's was much cushioned by the inflation.)

If a hyperinflation is to become a reality like some people say, aren't those renters who's not sitting on a lot of cash just as screwed? That includes me.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...

"Bush won FL both times, dumbass. It has been proven."

Nobody said he didn't, at least not here. Didn't you read the letter above that says he won?

Katherine Harris has some problems with contributors, but I don't think she's a bad person. Given how she was treated by the Press and comedians, and vilified by conspiracy fanatics, I think she showed amazing dignity. And she never looked the way they portrayed her.

Anonymous said...

Katherine Harris gives me nightmares...

Anonymous said...

Coming soon to a state near you:

Immigration March Draws 500,000 in L.A. By PETER PRENGAMAN


LOS ANGELES - Immigration rights advocates more than 500,000 strong marched in downtown Los Angeles, demanding that Congress abandon attempts to make illegal immigration a felony and to build more walls along the border.

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The massive demonstration, by far the biggest of several around the nation in recent days, came as President Bush prodded Republican congressional leaders to give some illegal immigrants a chance to work legally in the U.S. under certain conditions.

Wearing white shirts to symbolize peace, marchers chanted "Mexico!" "USA!" and "Si se puede," an old Mexican-American civil rights shout that means "Yes, we can." They waved the flags of the U.S., Mexico and other countries, and some wore them as capes.

Saturday's march was among the largest for any cause in recent U.S. history. Police came up with the crowd estimate using aerial photographs and other techniques, police Cmdr. Louis Gray Jr. said.

Other demonstrations drew 50,000 people in Denver and several thousand in Sacramento and Charlotte, N.C.

Many protesters said lawmakers were unfairly targeting immigrants who provide a major labor pool for America's economy.

"Enough is enough of the xenophobic movement," said Norman Martinez, 63, who immigrated from Honduras as a child and marched in Los Angeles. "They are picking on the weakest link in society, which has built this country."

The U.S. House of Representatives has passed legislation that would make it a felony to be in the U.S. illegally, impose new penalties on employers who hire illegal immigrants, require churches to check the legal status of people they help, and erect fences along one-third of the U.S.-Mexican border.

Elger Aloy, 26, of Riverside, a premed student, pushed a stroller with his 8-month-old son at Saturday's Los Angeles march and called the legislation "inhumane."

"Everybody deserves the right to a better life," he said.

The Senate is to begin debating the proposals on Tuesday.

President Bush on Saturday called for legislation that does not force America to choose between being a welcoming society and a lawful one.

"America is a nation of immigrants, and we're also a nation of laws," Bush said in his weekly radio address, discussing an issue that had driven a wedge into his own party.

Bush sides with business leaders who want legislation to let some of the estimated 12 million undocumented immigrants stay in the country and work for a set period of time. Others, including Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist, say national security concerns should drive immigration reform.

"They say we are criminals. We are not criminals," said Salvador Hernandez, 43, of Los Angeles, a resident alien who came to the United States illegally from El Salvador 14 years ago and worked as truck driver, painter and day laborer.

Francisco Flores, 27, a wood flooring installer from Santa Clarita who is a former illegal immigrant, said, "We want to work legally, so we can pay our taxes and support the country, our country."

In Denver, police said more than 50,000 people gathered downtown at Civic Center Park next to the Capitol to urge the state Senate to reject a resolution supporting a ballot issue that would deny many government services to illegal immigrants in Colorado.

Elsa Rodriguez, 30, a trained pilot who came to Colorado in 1999 from Mexico to look for work, said she just wants to be considered equal.

"We're like the ancestors who started this country, they came from other countries without documents, too," the Arvada resident. "They call us lazy and dirty, but we just want to come to work. If you see, we have families, too."

Between 5,000 and 7,000 people gathered Saturday in Charlotte, carrying signs with slogans such as "Am I Not a Human Being?" In Sacramento, more than 4,000 people protested immigration legislation at an annual march honoring the late farm labor leader Cesar Chavez.

About 200 people protested outside a town hall-style meeting held by Rep. James Sensenbrenner, R-Wis., a leading sponsor of the House bill. He defended the legislation, saying he's trying to stop people from exploiting illegal immigrants for cheap labor, drug trafficking and prostitution.

"Those who do that are 21st-century slave masters, just like the 19th-century slave masters that we fought a civil war to get rid of," Sensenbrenner said at the meeting. "Unless we do something about illegal immigration, we're consigning illegal immigrants to be a permanent underclass, and I don't think that's moral."

Since Thursday tens of thousands of people have joined in rallies in cities including Milwaukee, Los Angeles, Phoenix and Atlanta, and staged school walkouts, marches and work stoppages.

The demonstrations are expected to culminate April 10 in a "National Day of Action" organized by labor, immigration, civil rights and religious groups.

Saturday, March 25, 2006 10:00:36 PM

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...

"Katherine Harris gives me nightmares... "

Then perhaps you should do some real research on her, and stop reading Democrat Party libel. Remember Clinton's smear troops. There is nothing political fanatics won't do or say to get and keep power, and Liberal Democrats are notorious for believing the ends justify the means.

Destroying the reputations of people because they don't do what want them to do is beyond comprehension.

Melody said...

Read about Gore won.

Anonymous said...

Sorry Melody..GW won both sucka...go get an abortion or something.

Awaiting Bubble Rubble said...

Bu$hco won Floriduh just as surely as there IS NO GLOBAL WARMING, and old Jews in Palm Beach voted for Buchanen at three times the state median, and evolution is a faulty theory, the earth was created 6,000 years ago and might = right. . . yadayada. Yes, the entire world is amazed at the stupidity of Americans, but simultaneously silenced by fear of their murderous rage that has now responded to 9/11 by murdering 30 times as many people as were murdered on Sept. 11. A jihad for a jihad. Brilliant!

To Bu$hco supporters, it's all a matter of faith, not open for reasoned discussion. They don't use science, or new fangled post Enlightenment methods to solve problems.

Let's talk about the housing bubble. The CPI has long understated inflation, the govt unemployment rate has also long understated unemployment. I think pretty much anybody who looks around at reality on the ground and then sees what is excluded from these calculations can acknowledge this. But they always will paint a fake picture. Kind of like the cost of Bu$hco's $300B (and counting) Iraq jihad being excluded from the exploding Bu$hco budget deficit. And the cost created by the thousands and thousands of new jihadists Bu$hco is creating weekly due to its foreign policy. They won't be 20 guys with boxcutters this time, they'll be much much worse. Bu$hco has not only increased their numbers and wealth more drastically than anybody named bin Laden possibly could, but ensured they'll have much deadlier weapons, intelligence, and training in the future. But that cost won't be included either, and the inevitible next attack will be blamed on Bu$hco's replacements. However, when a major US city is hit with WMDs it will affect housing. Since Bu$hco has made this pretty much inevitable, perhaps Bu$hco's nightmarishly bad and expensive foreign policy IS a valid topic for discussion.

PolishKnight said...

I find it puzzling to see so much angst from the left over GW Bush. As many right-wingers will acknowledge, he's actually a moderate (and has spent trillions on education, medicaid, etc.) (It was funny to hear some leftists use the traditional line "GW is trying to cut education!") Sheesh, check where you knee jerks before you embarass yourselves already.

Ultimately, guys, all this viotrol directed at ANY republican candidate is going to help drive away moderates such as GW and Nixon and help put another Reagan into office sooner or later. And that will end the socialist paradise for everyone's benefit...

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