May 31, 2007
Frankly, I feel sorry for the ramen eaters. You can tell they're getting to the breaking point now.
This realtor defense comes from a realtor marketing firm. I guess they're getting hungry too. Got Ramen?
Here's something I've been thinking more and more about - the idea that renting is not only preferable financially today (it's significantly cheaper to rent than buy), but it's also preferential when it comes to job mobility, lifestyle opportunity and globalization.
Same for entrepreneurs - opportunities are breaking out all over the world. Are you going to be free to chase them? Or is your home going to get in the way of pursuing your dreams?
Or the opportunity.
Immigration ‘Compromise’ Sells Out Our Sovereignty
By Congressman Ron Paul, R-Texas, 5/29/2007
The much-vaunted Senate “compromise” on immigration is a compromise alright: a compromise of our laws, a compromise of our sovereignty, and a compromise of the Second Amendment. That anyone in Washington believes this is a credible approach to solving our immigration crisis suggests just how out of touch our political elites really are.
The reality is that this bill will grant amnesty to virtually all of the 12 to 20 million illegal aliens in the country today. Supporters use very creative language to try and convince us that amnesty is not really amnesty, but when individuals who have entered the United States illegally are granted citizenship – regardless of the fees they are charged – what you have is amnesty.
What is seldom discussed in the immigration debate, unfortunately, is the incentives the US government provides for people to enter the United States illegally. As we know well, when the government subsidizes something we get more of it. The government provides a myriad of federal welfare benefits to those who come to the US illegally, including food stamps and free medical care. Is this a way to discourage people from coming to the US illegally?
Additionally, one of the most absurd incentives for people to come to the US illegally is the promise of instant US citizenship to anyone born on our soil. That is why when Congress returns next week I will be re-introducing my Constitutional amendment to deny automatic citizenship to individuals born on US soil to parents who are not US citizens or who do not owe permanent allegiance to the United States .
There are many other very troubling items buried deep in the Senate’s immigration compromise. The bill explicitly calls for an “acceleration” of the March 2005 agreement between the US president, the president of Mexico , and the prime minister of Canada , known as the “Security and Prosperity Partnership (SPP) of North America .” This somewhat secretive agreement – a treaty in all but name – aims to erase the borders between the United States , Canada , and Mexico and threatens our sovereignty and national security. The SPP was agreed by the president without the participation of Congress. It should be eliminated, not accelerated!
According to the pro-Second Amendment Gun Owners of America, the legislation also makes it easier to target gun dealers for prosecution. Even gun clubs could find themselves targeted under this immigration reform legislation.
Immigration reform should start with improving our border protection, yet it was reported last week that the federal government has approved the recruitment of 120 of our best trained Border Patrol agents to go to Iraq to train Iraqis how to better defend their borders! This comes at a time when the National Guard troops participating in Operation Jump Start are being removed from border protection duties in Arizona , New Mexico , and Texas and preparing to deploy to Iraq and Afghanistan ! It is an outrage and it will result in our borders being more vulnerable to illegal entry, including by terrorists.
I will continue to oppose any immigration bill that grants amnesty to illegals or undermines our liberty and sovereignty.
May 30, 2007
This industry is so disgusting folks, I think "mortgage broker" will soon be seen on the level as "crack dealer", "hooker" and "Bush advisor". Careful - you can get an STD from this ad
Chinese Shares Plunge After Government Raises Trading Tax to Cool Market Boom
The main Shanghai Composite Index tumbled 6.5 percent at 4,071.27 after hitting a record high on Tuesday. The Shenzhen Composite Index for China's smaller second market fell even more, closing down 7.2 percent at 1,199.45.
Man, the MSM is going HP it looks like. We've been screaming about this issue forever, and I do believe this is the very first MSM article that I've seen.
Meanwhile, do Americans even care? I think when you say "$59 Trillion" people's eyes gloss over. What's on America's Top Model?
It's sickening that our government so blatantly deceives us, and the MSM goes along for the ride. Bravo to Dennis Cauchon at the USAToday for doing his job. Too bad it's too late, and too bad his MSM peers are so pathetically incompetent.
Folks, we're either going to have to go insolvent, cancel entitlement programs, or print dollars like Wiemar Germany to get out of this mess.
Taxpayers on the hook for $59 trillion
By Dennis Cauchon, USA TODAY
The federal government recorded a $1.3 trillion loss last year — far more than the official $248 billion deficit — when corporate-style accounting standards are used, a USA TODAY analysis shows.
The loss reflects a continued deterioration in the finances of Social Security and government retirement programs for civil servants and military personnel. The loss — equal to $11,434 per household — is more than Americans paid in income taxes in 2006.
"We're on an unsustainable path and doing a great disservice to future generations," says Chris Chocola, a former Republican member of Congress from Indiana and corporate chief executive who is pushing for more accurate federal accounting.
Modern accounting requires that corporations, state governments and local governments count expenses immediately when a transaction occurs, even if the payment will be made later.
The federal government does not follow the rule, so promises for Social Security and Medicare don't show up when the government reports its financial condition.
Bottom line: Taxpayers are now on the hook for a record $59.1 trillion in liabilities, a 2.3% increase from 2006. That amount is equal to $516,348 for every U.S. household. By comparison, U.S. households owe an average of $112,043 for mortgages, car loans, credit cards and all other debt combined.
The cost per U.S. household of unfunded promises made by federal, state and local government:
State and local debt
Federal civil- servant benefits
State and local retiree benefits
Other federal obligations
Sometimes we get comments so stupid, so ignorant, so completely clueless, that they deserve their own thread.
This is one of those cases.
This anonatroll (man, I wish the trolls would pick a user name so we could mock them later) said that you can't have inflation and decreasing asset prices.
Guess what. We do. And we will.
House prices (assets) and rents are falling, while consumable and service prices are increasing. We'll continue to see asset deflation (as they're overpriced and returning to the mean, and people sell their assets to get to cash - read manias, panics and crashes) while we see inflation on other goods and services.
Another anonatroll said don't worry about home prices - they'll increase as the dollar gets more and more worthless.
Uh, got bad news for you. House prices will fall or stay even in real terms for years to come, while the dollar tanks and true inflation roars. In other words, every day your home will fall more in true value, even if its price stays the same for 10 years.
Any other thoughts or gems of wisdom on the inflation / deflation conundrum, please post here. Here's the anonatroll - I think a pretty telling statement of the lack of financial education and knowledge in America today (that helped us get into this mess in the first place).
1,900 more get the axe at Pulte today, but the real story on homebuilder layoffs will never be known, since the people who built all these unwanted homes were never "employees" - just contractors and illegals mainly.
May 29, 2007
* Invade our country by the millions, jump the line, game the system, ruin our cities, and flagrantly break our laws - check
* Wave Mexican flags and "this is our land - not yours" signs at illegal immigration rallies - check
* Steal jobs from working Americans - check
* Don't pay taxes - check
* Plant anchor babies - check
* Create severe burden on American taxpayers - check
* Enable the housing bubble - check
* Demand Spanish language option and don't assimilate - check
* Boo Miss USA at Miss Universe pageant - check
None of the other stuff matters to Americans until you get to that last line. But the booing last night in Mexico for poor Miss USA just shows how much Mexicans hate us, even as they steal across our border and break our laws.
That's it though - their sense of timing couldn't be better. Watch for a lot of new additions to the "deport all the illegals and close the borders" cause. Break our laws, sure, but don't disrespect our girls. Them's fighting words. And immigration reform is doomed. Nice work Mexicans.
Miss USA Rachel Smith was booed and heckled by an audience in Mexico at last night's Miss universe competition. The reason given for her treatment is that the audience in the third world country is unhappy with American immigration policies.
No - I'm not kidding. The people in attendance actually slammed a beauty contestant because they want to be able to use American services and cash American checks without any restrictions.
And let the lemmings do what they're gonna do anyway.
I think the term "realtwhore" is very appropriate here
I'm sorry, doesn't the NAR have an ethics policy? Something about a silly little fiduciary duty to clients?
Guess that section isn't taught anymore...
$1,800 a month disability payment. $150 child support. And yup, $894,000 in Alt-A Liar's Loan debt. Party over.
Just read the whole article in USAToday on Friday. Then ask yourself - how will IndyMac (the Liar's Loan king) ever stay in business? And do you see now how home prices got so wildly and briefly inflated?
"I see the real mortgages and it's apparent to me I got robbed," Hayes says, "but I'm thinking I'm going to make this work."
May 28, 2007
Lots of articles now in Europe about the housing crash underway, I'll post some coming up. Brits losing money in Florida. Brits losing money in Spain. And now Brits predicted to start losing money in ... you guessed it... Britain!
I also saw too many hilarious reports from the US press with analysts and headlines trumpeting the "surge in new home sales" showing how the US market is bottoming. Damn, are they that stupid? Prices collapse, sales tank versus last year, and the media and analysts report increasing sales. Amazing. Absolutely amazing.
Finally, in Old Europe villages and cities, I don't get the sense of a housing ponzi scheme, except in the new-build or "off-plan" developments. Passing by country estates, little villas and farming towns on the train, I get the sense of families who own their homes outright, have owned them for generations, and where houses are just that - a home. A place to live. A place to settle down.
Not lottery tickets and get-rich-quick schemes.
After the crash, after realtors go away, after Congress regulates the REIC and after this crazy lending orgy, that's where we'll be again I hope.
Houses as homes.
Mortgage Slaves are now spending crazy (and ever-increasing) amounts per month, struggling to come up with the monthly house payment (and expenses), with little left to enjoy the things that really matter in life (you know, like actually having a life, experiences, living within your means and saving)
May 27, 2007
Just read this post from HP a few days ago about what's going on in China, the land of 1 billion shoe shine guys.
Get ready. It's tough predicting when bubbles will end, and they go on longer than you ever thought possible. But end they do. Oh yes, end they do.
Greenspan Says China Stocks May Undergo `Dramatic Contraction'
May 23 (Bloomberg) -- Former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan said he was concerned Chinese stocks might undergo a ``dramatic contraction'' after its main stock index jumped more than 90 percent this year.
The benchmark CSI 300 Index, which tracks yuan-denominated A shares listed on China's two exchanges, rose to a record 3938.95 today. The index more than doubled last year as investors bet corporate profits would be boosted by the world's fastest-growing major economy.
``It is clearly unsustainable,'' Greenspan told a conference in Madrid today by satellite. ``There is going to be a dramatic contraction at some point.''
I've been getting a lot of "where does RP stand on the issues"
Here's a good recap, thank you wikipedia. Or just go to Ron Paul 2008.
Man, I can't wait for the first housing crash question to come up in one of these debates. Can't wait.
May 25, 2007
Any homedebtor in America with little or no equity has to be entering panic mode right about now, wouldn't you say? No more housing ATM, no more "real estate always goes up" nonsense, and no more "can't lose" investment opportunities.
Some economists see steeper drop in store for home prices.
Housing prices will suffer from a "significant increase in defaults and foreclosures," he said, with affordability still a major issue. Wyss worried how hard the slump will hit already highly inflated housing markets.
Posted by blogger at 5/25/2007
More and more of my constituents are asking me when Congress will address the problem of illegal immigration. The public correctly perceives that neither political party has the courage to do what is necessary to prevent further erosion of both our border security and our national identity. As a result, immigration may be the sleeper issue that decides the 2008 presidential election.
The problem of illegal immigration will not be solved easily, but we can start by recognizing that the overwhelming majority of Americans – including immigrants – want immigration reduced, not expanded.
Amnesty for illegal immigrants is not the answer. Millions of people who broke the law by entering, staying, and working in our country illegally should not be rewarded with a visa. Why should lawbreakers obtain a free pass, while those seeking to immigrate legally face years of paperwork and long waits for a visa?
We must end welfare state subsidies for illegal immigrants. Some illegal immigrants – certainly not all – receive housing subsidies, food stamps, free medical care, and other forms of welfare. This alienates taxpayers and breeds suspicion of immigrants, even though the majority of them work very hard. Without a welfare state, we would know that everyone coming to America wanted to work hard and support himself.
Our current welfare system also encourages illegal immigration by discouraging American citizens from taking low-wage jobs. This creates greater demand for illegal foreign labor. Welfare programs and minimum wage laws create an artificial market for labor to do the jobs Americans supposedly won’t do.
Our most important task is to focus on effectively patrolling our borders. With our virtually unguarded borders, almost any determined individual – including a potential terrorist – can enter the United States. Unfortunately, the federal government seems more intent upon guarding the borders of other nations than our own. We are still patrolling Korea’s border after some 50 years, yet ours are more porous than ever. It is ironic that we criticize Syria for failing to secure its border with Iraq while our own borders, particularly to the south, are no better secured than those of Syria.
May 24, 2007
UPDATED - chart from housingdoom (that the MSM won't show you)
And to think we're still just getting started. It's a long, long, long, long, long way back down.
However, watch the MSM and NAR spin today's numbers (VS. LAST MONTH) as good news, and that we're "bottoming out". How many times can we "bottom out" until they realize the bottom is not even in sight? And when will they finally think for a change and do year over year comparisons, the only real thing that matters?
Also, keep in mind these numbers from your government are untrustworthy, have a massive margin of error, and don't even include the use of builder incentives, which we know are massive. So take 'em with a grain of salt - even though it's obvious sales are overstated and prices are down much more than reported.
WASHINGTON, May 24 (Reuters) - Sales of new U.S. homes rose 16.2 percent in April, the sharpest climb in 14 years, while prices fell a record 11 percent, according to a government report on Thursday that showed home builders taking extraordinary steps to move houses.
New single-family home sales rose to an annual rate of 981,000 units from a revised rate of 844,000 in March, the Commerce Department said.
Analysts polled by Reuters were expecting April sales to rise slightly to an 860,000 unit pace from a previously reported rate of 858,000 units in March.
In April, the median sales price of a new home fell $28,500 to $229,100 from $257,600 in March. That's the lowest price for a new home since September 2006 when the median sales price was $226,700.
The previous record decline was a 9.4 percent fall-off in September 1981. Compared with a year ago, April's sales price was off 10.9 percent -- the fourth-largest decline ever. The record 14.6 percent decline was set in July 1970 and the next three largest falls occurred in that same year.
May 23, 2007
Posted by blogger at 5/23/2007
Wouldn't we all be surprised (and sickened) to find out there's 20 million? 30 million? 50 million?
Why it still makes sense to Buy vs. Rent
Nearly a full third of households are still renting...but if you are one of them, you could be paying a hefty price. Additionally, the children of the baby boomer generation are close to or at the home buying age, but these "echo boomers" could mistakenly decide to put off the purchase of a home because of all the noise about a "bubble" in home prices.
Is there a "bubble"? The simple answer is "no".
Even if interest rates move a bit higher, it won't be enough to cause a nationwide slide in home prices.
The key to a healthy housing market is the job market. If the payment on a new home might be slightly higher due to increased interest rates, it generally won't stop someone from purchasing the home of their dreams...but if they feel their job is in jeopardy, it might be enough to stop them from making a move.
So with the currently low levels of unemployment and the beefy gains in job creations, it looks like the housing market will remain vibrant. Although it will be difficult to sustain the double-digit gains that much of the country has seen, price declines are highly unlikely. Expect a more moderate rate of appreciation, perhaps closer to the historical 6-7% range, which is still very good.
May 22, 2007
The Japanese asset price bubble was a time of skyrocketing land and stock prices in the Japanese economy, lasting from 1986 to 1990. It is one of the most famous economic bubbles in the history of modern capitalism.
You watch this guy, and you realize how far ahead of the pack he is. Now if Americans would just see through the MSM spin and religious-whacko cancer within the GOP, they'd take note that Ron Paul is a serious candidate for the presidency.
But I doubt it.
Best post wins and I'll send it to him - keep it short and sweet
May 21, 2007
Home prices are in freefall - just look at the exploding supply, the incredible drop in demand and the surge in how long it takes to sell, and you know what's happening (and what's going to keep happening) with prices. Econ 101.
I like the pledge pin they give out too...
Leased Lexus - check. Hellhole Tampa condo - check. Putting up new "Price Reduced" sign - check. Bodyguard - ???
Maybe Ron Paul will help the GOP remember what it used to be about (before the religious whackos took over)
Watch this Ron Paul dorm-room interview series and enjoy. Four more reasons why Ron Paul is catching fire on the internet and sticking it to the GOP establishment. Could you imagine McCain or Rudy having the imagination to do a doom-room youtube interview?
You know it doesn't matter how many millions Romney and McCain have. The internet and youtube are the great levelers. And RP is breaking out.
Even if he doesn't win I hope he stays in the race all the way to the convention. He may remind the GOP of the party it used to be. Small government. Low taxes. Rational foreign policy. Live and let live. Government off the backs of the people.
In other words, nothing like the GOP of today, a party that I don't even recognize anymore.
May 20, 2007
Another reason why buying a home here in the UK is a fool's game - up to 4% "stamp tax" every time you buy.
So buy that £500,000 home (you know, a 1-bedroom closet), and you're already down £20,000, plus your estate agent fee and other closing costs, say another £20,000.
All this does is makes people less inclined to move (i.e. afraid to move), as they know buying a new place is gonna hurt on taxes and fees. Which helps freeze up the market, likely helping drive up prices to the crazy point they're at today.
Ah, you gotta love it when government policy distorts a market.
Increased stamp duty has made house prices more volatile and reduced property transactions by as much as 500,000, according to research.
May 19, 2007
Great interview on c-span - enjoy
FLASH: OC Register exposes that true subprime ARM default rate is 21.1%, NOT the 13% reported in MSM
Every day it seems another REIC lie is being being exposed. Watch the floodgates really open up now that the MSM has jumped off the REIC tank, put down the rolodex of realtors, and is (finally) doing their damn job.
Post-houisng-bubble regulation: Will the REIC and MSM have to expose conflict of interest in the future?
One good thing that came out of the dot-com collapse is that analysts and media have to expose when they have any potential conflict of interest - stock holdings, investment banking relationships, etc.
May 18, 2007
Ron Paul on Tucker - probably making way too much sense for brain-dead Dem/Rep Americans to understand
I have no idea how the realtortrolls, permabulls and NAR can spin their way out of this one: Unsold Home Inventory Soars as Housing Bubble Deflates
Some of the markets ZipRealty covers suffered far bigger inventory expansions than the total jump. Los Angeles reported a 39.7 percent leap since April of 2006, Miami climbed 53.9 percent and Seattle soared 63.2 percent.
The year-over-year stats only tell part of the story. Many of the areas covered had already experienced a significant sales slowdown and an expansion of the number of homes for sale well before April 2006.
Nicholas Retsinas, Harvard Joint Center for Housing Studies REIC poodle, must be feeling stupid right about now
I thought it was about time to revisit the words of REIC poodle Nicholas Retsinas, saying how there was no housing bubble bursting, and calling HP'ers "Cassandra's" and "Chicken Little". He wrote this article last fall, which led to HP calling for his firing, which of course didn't happen because Harvard is a corrupted institution addicted to REIC $$$$
This guy is just waaaaaaaaaaaaaayyyyyyyyyyy to honest for the GOP. And for America. Too bad, 'cause a little honesty seems to be what's sorely needed right about now.
Ignorance is not bliss.
Think real estate clerks and mortgage brokers who steered Desperate Homedebtors into depreciating assets they couldn't afford (while earning their big commissions) are getting a few angry phone calls and emails these days?
If I paid half a mill to live in a dump like this, I'd have to question my sanity.
You get one life folks. Working like a slave and spending 50% of your income (or more) to live in a hellhole is folly. You don't have to live in towns like this, you don't have to work for companies who are based in towns like this, and you definitely don't have to spend $500,000 to live in dumps like this.
There's a better way.
May 17, 2007
Deal Struck on Immigration Bill
WASHINGTON (AP) - Key senators in both parties announced agreement with the White House Thursday on an immigration overhaul that would grant quick legal status to millions of illegal immigrants already in the U.S. and fortify the border.
FLASH: Bernanke - "we do not expect significant spillovers from the subprime market to the rest of the economy or to the financial system"
FLASH: HousingPANIC says - "Wanna bet?!".
Either Bernanke is as incompetent and clueless as other Bush appointees, or he's just lying through his teeth to try to calm down the situation.
Either way, he's wrong. Why our leaders think Americans need everything sugar-coated I'll never understand. Just tell it how it is. We can handle it. Even if it sucks.
Fed: Mortgage Defaults Won't Hurt Economy
Fed Chief Says He Doesn't Believe Growing Number of Mortgage Defaults Will Seriously Harm Economy
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke said Thursday that he did not believe the growing number of mortgage defaults would seriously harm the economy.
Facing criticism from members of Congress about lax regulation, Bernanke also promised that the Fed would do everything possible to crack down on abuses that have put millions of homeowners in jeopardy of defaulting on their mortgages.
"We at the Federal Reserve will do all that we can to prevent fraud and abusive lending and to ensure that lenders employ sound underwriting practices and make effective disclosures to consumers," Bernanke said in remarks prepared for a financial conference in Chicago.
However, Bernanke in his remarks did not detail any specific tightening of regulations, saying only that the Fed would hold hearings in coming weeks on the matter.
Bernanke said while it was likely that there would be further increases in mortgage delinquencies and foreclosures this year and in 2008, he did not believe this problem would be enough to derail the overall economy.
"We believe the effect of the troubles in the subprime sector on the broader housing market will be limited and we do not expect significant spillovers from the subprime market to the rest of the economy or to the financial system," Bernanke said in his remarks, copies of which were distributed in Washington.
I'm hoping this illegal immigrant amnesty bill is a terrible joke. If not, then the USA will become a terrible joke.
One section of the proposal grants these “Z” non-immigrants four-year visas for an indefinite period of time. These visas would be given to people not currently in the United States if they are related to a current illegal worker.
Faux News blames HP and other "online communities" for messing with GOP debate poll outcome where Ron Paul kicks butt
I guess Rudy, John, Mitt, Tommy, Jim and the rest have no "online community" support. Maybe that should tell the MSM something?
If you didn't hate Faux News before, I hope this helps. And it's so funny to see the right wing GOP turn so harsh on Ron Paul. I guess they forgot what it meant to be a true Republican somewhere along the way.