September 30, 2007

Housing Crash Poster Child Phoenix Arizona to post nearly 50% drop in home sales for September, and 18 month supply of unwanted homes

Housing Doom posts the shocking numbers for September (which really aren't so shocking, and they're gonna get worse). A 18 month (at least) supply of homes on the market, and a 46% drop in year over year sales for September.

* But what about all those people moving to Phoenix?

* But what about all those idiot Phoenix realtor bloggers who said there was no housing bubble, and people who thought there was were brown shirts and chicken littles?

* But what about the great and balanced Phoenix economy?

Folks, the housing crash underway in Phoenix and cities around the country (and world) will be the most important financial event of your lifetimes. Cities like Phoenix based their fake economies and budgets on homebuilding, home selling, home furnishing, illegal immigrant labor, property taxes, home improvement and always-increasing home prices.

And then the whole Ponzi Scheme caved in.

Phoenix may one day rise from the housing crash ashes, and rise up as a better place, but watch and bewilder as the greatest housing crash in US history unfolds in Housing-Ponzi-Scheme-Central Phoenix Arizona.

The brazen liars at the Federal Reserve put out more laughable bullsh*t today about not cutting rates. But of course, they'll be cutting rates again.

Remember when Helicopter Ben said this on the eve of slashing rates by a shocking 1/2 point:

"It is not the responsibility of the Federal Reserve -- nor would it be appropriate -- to protect lenders and investors from the consequences of their financial decisions."

And a month ago when wimpy Fed Governor Poole said this:

``If the Federal Reserve were to act when it turns out there is no impact, then clearly the market would say these guys really don't have the intelligence they need to have a policy actually based on solid evidence.''

Well, now Poole says this last week. BUT NOBODY BELIEVES HIS BULLSH*T ANYMORE. The Fed has decided to destroy the US dollar and let inflation rage, in order to prop up the banks which are failing or on the brink of failure. It is what it is.

Fed's Poole: mistake to bet on more rate cuts

St. Louis Federal Reserve Bank President William Poole, a voting member of the central bank's rate-setting committee this year, said on Friday it would be a mistake to bet on more interest rate cuts, and that he remained open about future monetary policy decisions.

"It would be a mistake to bake in the cake more rate cuts,"
Poole said in response to a question from the audience on financial markets' rate expectations. "We will go meeting by meeting."

Housing Crash consequence #548: Appraisals aren't dropping as fast as real prices

Since home comps and property taxes are based on the grossly inflated mortgage-fraud-and-failed-flipper-fed appraisals, won't it be funny when agreed sales prices are dramatically below appraised values, and homedebtors demand lower property tax valuations?

We're seeing it a lot now. Appraisals are coming in higher than the contract," said Patrice Yamato, president of Plaza Mortgage Group in Jacksonville, Fla. It's a reversal of the pattern during the housing boom years, when appraisals often came in at or occasionally below the contract price.

The banking system may not survive this housing crash. Hmmm.. wonder why Bernanke panicked and cut 1/2 point now?

When the banks start failing left and right, and the US Taxpayer has to pay out wayyyy beyond their FDIC insurance levels, HP'ers shouldn't be surprised. It hath been foretold.

From last week's hearings on Moody's and S&P's incompetence in letting the toxic loan CDO/SIV problem grow out of control:

At a Congressional hearing yesterday on the malfeasance of ratings agencies, like Standard and Poor's, in hyping the mortgage securities bubble, Rep. Paul Kanjorski (D-PA) repeatedly noted that the mortgage securities blowout is now a "systemic financial crisis." It threatens American banks with failure like that of Britain's Northern Rock and other European banks, Kanjorsky implied in a colloquy with witness Prof. Joseph Mason of Drexel University.

"You say that 10% of U.S. bank assets are based on structured investment vehicles (SIVs), specifically several trillion dollars in CDOs; can these banks survive the collapse of these CDOs? Do they have the capital base to survive that?"

Mason answered, "No, and the FDIC does not have the resources to handle that event either."

Housing Crash Goes Mainstream: Here's the youtube video of Jim Cramer on the Today Show Friday debating the NAR president-elect

You'll come away from this video thinking:

1) homedebtors are PISSED that someone is on national TV saying housing is crashing

2) the NAR is run by discredited monkeys who simply cannot and will not tell the truth. Period.

3) Cramer has the guts to stand up to the REIC. Little late to the party, but nice to see someone of his popularity and stature added to the HP/Peter Schiff/Robert Shiller mix

4) Housewives all over America are now freaking out

5) People don't want to hear the truth. America has based its economy and retirement on housing. When it blows up, the whole thing blows up. Blame the messenger, put your head in the sand, but don't admit the truth: IT WAS A GIANT PONZI SCHEME THAT IS NOW COLLAPSING!!!

6) HousingPANIC has finally gone mainstream

I especially loved it when Matt asked the NAR idiot where would be a good place to buy a home and he couldn't answer the question! He finally and hilariously said Indiana and Michigan and Cramer called him a lying idiot just trying to sell overpriced homes right to his face. Could the NAR be doing a worse job right now? Idiots I tell ya!

The correct NAR answer to the question (while still spinning) would have been "home prices are going to come down so there'll be some great deals out there for buyers, and sellers need to be realistic with their prices if they want to sell"

But that's what an intelligent person would say vs. the idiots the NAR throws out there...

Enjoy the video. I sure did.

September 29, 2007

HousingPANIC Stupid Question of the Day

Where's your money today?

Gonna make any moves?

HP 2.0

I made a few sidebar improvements to HP that I thought some of the long-time readers would enjoy:

* HP Flash Poll - I'll be doing these polls every now to see what the word on the street is amongst the HP community. You can only vote once, and if you have an idea for a poll, put it in BUBBLETALK

* HP Newsreel - updated daily stories from google news on the housing crash, mortgage meltdown and dollar collapse

* HP Hot Links - Text link advertisers for the pub account. If you want to be an advertiser, send me an email for consideration.

* HP Blog Roll - now alphabetical (I know, I moved your cheese) but it was getting unwieldy. But great list I think from the bubblesphere, especially when you compare it to the lame-ass list at Paranoid Ben's Boring Blog. If you have a blog you want considered post to BUBBLETALK or send me a note

* HP Recommended - a few books from I think you should check out. Got any good new reads let me know

* Free Gold - Seriously, you all should go to, register, and they give you a gram of free gold. Take it, even if you never do any business with them. Go here, click register, and the offer code is "welcome"

* HP Funny Titles
- still having fun changing the name of the blog every day. Send me your ideas or post to BUBBLETALK. One day we'll go back to The Housing Bubble and Crash Blog with an Attitude Problem, but for now I think it's funny to mix it up

* HP Monthly Archive - want a blast from the past just click one of the months and take it for a spin. When you find a stupid realtor quote ("bubbles are for bathtubs") denying the bubble, post it to BUBBLETALK

Got any more suggestions send me a note, and hope you like the changes

Shocking BBC Investigation: There's a housing bubble in England! Oh my god, who knew!

Gotta love the Brits. England's the home of one of the biggest housing bubbles / ponzi schemes in the world, and Brit hot money has funded bubbles across Europe.

Let's see, they call it the "Housing Ladder", you can rent a place over here for less than 30% of the cost of "owning", every damn show on TV is about flipping homes, their economy is
based on banking and housing, everyone wants to be a "buy-to-let" landlord, and the average home price is ELEVEN TIMES the average salary.

Now, this SHOCKING BBC investigation which compares the English housing bubble to past manias, including the South Sea Bubble and the dot-com bubble.
Man, that's some great reporting. That's our taxpayer pounds at work over here (did I ever tell you about the TV Tax?).

Welcome to my Brit friends. A bit late to the party, but glad you could come...

Bubble trouble in housing market - Is there a bubble in the British housing market? We may soon find out.

Looking at every investment mania, from the South Sea bubble of the 18th Century to the stock market boom of the 1920s or the dotcom madness of more recent years, you find dubious deals and misleading numbers which helped persuade borrowers and investors to invest more than they should.

Ominously for the British housing market, a File on 4 investigation has highlighted two glaring examples of these bubble characteristics, both of which have encouraged people to borrow more than they should.

On the one hand, there is the overvaluation of buy-to-let properties. On the other hand is a blatant fraud - lying about your income to get a mortgage.

In the classic sign of a boom turning to a bust, the wall of Paula Jones' estate agency branch is covered with the details of properties that other buy-to-let investors are trying to sell.

September 28, 2007

BUBBLETALK - Open thread to talk about the mortgage meltdown, housing crash and run on the banks

Things fall apart. The center will not hold...

Post interesting articles (snippets only), use, let me know what I've missed, chat about random topics, and keep it clean for the kids.





Got some bad news for you everyone. Your US dollars are no longer worth jack sh*t

Hey, congrats on your raise. Congrats on your stock portfolio. Congrats on your savings. Congrats on your housing bubble gains. Congrats on your 401k.

Poof - it's all gone. Slowly and surely, but not so slowly anymore, the US dollar is being intentionally devalued.

For those of you making and holding US dollars, you better figure out what the heck you're going to do about this dollar destruction to protect yourself and protect your wealth. 99% of your fellow sheeple don't pay attention to stuff like this, surprising since this affects every man, woman and child in America. But oh, you should pay attention.

Because as predicted, the US dollar is being destroyed.

Another New Low for the Dollar

Dollar Hits Seventh Consecutive Low With New Data Increasing Odds of US Rate Cut

The dollar hit another new low Friday as U.S. inflation data reinforced expectations that the Federal Reserve may cut interest rates again.

The 13-nation euro reached $1.4207 in late afternoon European trading -- exceeding its previous peak of $1.4189, reached Thursday, and setting the seventh record in as many trading days. The euro had bought $1.4160 in New York late Thursday

Has the monkey-run Pravda-like National Association of REALTORS(R) completely lost control now?

More Jim Cramer on CNBC yesterday, commenting on the monkey-run NAR asking for a "correction" to his report on the Today Show that if you bought a home today you'd lose money:

"Well that's a good organization (the NAR). You know what they remind me of, that organization that wants a correction (from me)? Pravda when they covered the Kremlin. Occasionally there were disputes. But typically Pravda took the Kremlin line. Occasionally someone got out of line, I didn't see it."

"They've got the whole Denny's Grand Slam on their face. They've got the four-stack"

"The National Association of Realtors is saying now's a good time to buy. That's interesting, cause I think they've said that for, how many years have they been in existence?"

FLASH: New home sales plunge again - down 21% vs. last year, prices crash at least 8% but nobody knows...

Everything's fine. Housing is in a soft landing. There was no bubble. Now's a great time to buy! There's never been a drop in the US median home price. Housing is your best investment. Renting is throwing money away.

Remember the idiots who used to post such dribble on this blog? Meanwhile, if you bought a new home in the past couple of years, technically, on paper, you're probably bankrupt.

Hat-tip to Doom for the chart that's worth a million realtors on commission... Too bad we can't get real pricing information though. This report is 100% bullsh*t when it comes to that as they don't include the firesale incentives. Prices are probably down another 20% or more than we're hearing...

And I love the MSM reporting the 8.3% drop from LAST MONTH. Uh, MSM, you look at YEAR OVER YEAR in this business. Idiots.

WASHINGTON (AFP) — Sales of new US homes slid 8.3 percent in August to their lowest level in seven years, Commerce Department data showed Thursday in yet another sign of the troubles in the real estate market.

The report showed new-home sales at a seasonally adjusted annual pace of 795,000, worse than market expectations of a decline to a rate of 825,000.

The pace of new-home sales is down 21.2 percent from a year ago.

Also, the median sales price fell to 225,700 dollars, an 8.3 percent decline from the previous month and a level not seen since January 2005.

"This is just hideous," said Ian Shepherdson, chief economist at High Frequency Economics.

September 27, 2007

Jim Cramer goes on Today Show to tell people "don't you dare buy a home - you'll lose money". Hey, nice advice Jimbo. Boo-yah!

Ya think Jimbo will be getting a late-night visit from some "friends" from the NAR? HousingPANIC has gone mainstream. Sell sell sell.

Here's the video

And you just know everyone who works at the Today Show and CNBC "owns" homes and does NOT want this kind of stuff on the air. Instead, they've only got one question on their lips for all guests (pre-scripted): Have we hit bottom?

Nice to have Cramer join the HousingPANIC. And ya gotta believe he's come across this blog a few times. Hey Jimbo - Booyah! Now get your head out of Angelo's ass and talk about what's really going on there...

Have your voices heard HP'ers: CNBC hilariously asks "Should You Believe Real Estate Agents Who Say 'It's a Good Time to Buy?"

Hmmm... I've got a feeling the Cramer Today Show appearance is causing a bit of a stir back home eh? Email your thoughts on the monkeys at the NAR and their discredited hacks Lawrence Yun and David Lereah to

And tell 'em they need to check in with HousingPANIC if they want the truth. Not the NAR or realtors on commission.

"Don't you buy now. Don't you dare buy a home now. You will lose money." Those words of warning from CNBC's Jim Cramer appearing on NBC's Today program have stirred up some Realtors.

The RealSource Association of Realtors sent an email to its members saying, "Such a broad-sweeping statement like this demonstrates Mr. Cramer's ignorance regarding how the real estate market really operates."

HousingPANIC Stupid Question of the Day

So when do HGTV and A&E finally get the picture and come out with

"HousingPANIC - help me I'm a failed flipper"


"HousingPANIC - who ever thought you could lose this much money this fast"

versus the housing porn they're currently running?

There are well over 4.5 million used homes for sale (on the MLS), plus all those new homes and FSBOs. Can you imagine being one of 'em?

Someone try to figure out how many homes are really unwanted and for sale in the US today.

'Cause it's not just the record 4.58 million the NAR reports, it's the investor-owned units being rented out "until the market settles", it's the foreclosures and pre-foreclosures, it's the new homes, it's the spec homes, it's the cancelled contracts returned to market, it's the homes and condos still being built, it's the FSBO and Craigslist homes, and it's all the homes buyers have pulled off the MLS for now waiting to go back on.

It's millions. Millions and millions and millions. And like kudzu or tribbles, they just keep coming.

So, my question: Can you imagine trying to sell a home in this environment? And especially at 2005 or 2006 prices?

Get a grip folks. If you want to move your unwanted home, you're gonna have to slash the price. Just ask the folks at Hovnanian.

Classic mania. Classic crash. And now there's all this inventory that nobody wants and nobody wants to admit to themselves what its true value is.

Damn, this is gonna end ugly.

Bernanke's panicked rate cut is purposefully destroying the dollar to try to save the banks. This will not be pretty.

It's sad watching the dollar die. Especially as an expat. Americans who scrimped and saved and planned for retirement, and didn't or don't diversify out of US$, are gonna get slaughtered. And they have no idea. It's just so easy to trick 'em, ain't it?

The stock market may go up, nominal home prices (not inflation adjusted) may drop less than they would have, but the smart people in the room will know the dirty little secret:
Inflation is raging, an economic collapse is underway, and the buying power of the dollar is being purposefully and expertly destroyed.

BusinessWeek: Does the Fed Care Only for the Street?

Bernanke's belief that the central bank should slash rates at the start of a bear market is untested, inflationary, and bad for the buck

Aside from the dollar and long-term bonds, markets rose last week as the Federal Reserve demonstrated that it is more fearful of a slowing economy and banking woes than inflation. In fact, it is willing to sacrifice the dollar to save the banks. Just last month, the Fed was saying that the threat of inflation is just as great as the threat of a slowdown in the economy. Now it is cutting rates in a huge way as the Dow nears its all-time high, gold is making new highs, and the price of oil is exploding.

The Fed is obviously terrified. It means that he is gravely concerned about the state of real estate and banking in the U.S.

If the credit markets don't revitalize in the next few weeks, you can expect to see the Fed lower rates again by another 50 points at their October Federal Open Market Committee meeting no matter where the dollar, gold, or the Dow are. They have signaled that they don't give a damn about the dollar. All they care about is Wall Street.

Uh, a little late boys: SEC investigating mortgage ratings agencies. Toxic mortgages rated AAA actually should have been ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ. Oopsie!

Strangest thing to see the SEC FINALLY get off their duffs and do a bit of work. Your government at work folks. Investigating how Moody's and S&P gamed the system and lost billions for investors AFTER the fact, is, well, incompetent at best and corrupt at worst.

The ratings agencies were employed by CDO bundlers to rate the toxic mortgage CDO bundles. The better the rating, the more work they got, the more they got paid.

Triple A!!! AAA!!!! Safest investment on the planet!!!! (Now pay us)


Man, after China and governments around the world realize how bad they got schooled in this mess, they're gonna be PISSED!!! Too bad they didn't read HousingPANIC...

SEC looks at ‘influence’ in credit ratings

The SEC is investigating whether issuers and underwriters of residential mortgage-backed securities “unduly influenced” credit-ratings agencies to give them higher ratings than warranted, SEC Chairman Christopher Cox said today at a Senate Banking Committee hearing.

The agencies have blamed the unexpectedly large incidence of mortgage delinquencies in the last year on factors including fraud in mortgage originations, deterioration of loan underwriting standards and a faster-than-anticipated adoption of more restrictive lending standards, which made it difficult for overleveraged borrowers to refinance, he said.

The toxic mortgage chickens are coming home to roost. Oh, man, this is gonna be ugly.

September 26, 2007

HousingPANIC Stupid Question of the Day

Did you change your investment strategy after Bernanke panicked, destroyed the dollar, and cut rates 1/2 point?

(Hint... you still have time. And I sure did, that minute to be exact...)

"The world economy 'is probably at its scariest point since the Depression' as fallout from the US subprime mortgage crisis crimps access to credit, said Ethan Penner, a pioneer of the $600 billion commercial mortgage-backed securities market in the early 1990s. 'We're probably at the closest point to a big meltdown, a depression-type meltdown than we have been in our lives,' said Penner ... now a principal at real estate fund management firm Lubert-Adler Partners LP

If your town's housing market had to "mark to market", how steep of a fall from the 2005 peak would it be looking at today?

"Mark to Market" - what is the true price that a seller would expect to realize on the open market to gain a sale TODAY?

Let's hear it. Enough of the BS we hear from the MSM, US government, NAR and homedebtors.

What's the reality on main street today?

Be real.

Countrywide Mortgage's Orangelo Mozilo gets his very own cartoon!

Nice to see the stock market recognize the stench coming from America's Toxic Lender too... (yes, I'm short CFC and The Orangeman)...

Sorry Helicopter Ben. Even you can't save Countrywide!

Thanks frothy for the lead

One week into a historic dollar implosion, not one peep from this administration about protecting the dollar and reassuring foreign reserve holders

In other words, they're just getting started.

The dollar death spiral is firmly underway...

Thank you REIC!

Bubble Sitters and Bitter Renters - will you ever "buy" a home again?

Will you either "buy" or "rent money from the bank" to "own" a home again?




September 25, 2007

Someone tell me how the MSM buys the NAR spin that "home sales are bottoming" and only down 4%. Look at this chart. A historic crash is underway.

At what point does the MSM (and the US Homedebtor) realize they've been had?

Hat-tip to
doom for the chart. Picture is worth 100000000000000000000 NAR words...

And a
special message for Larry Yun and the NAR: PEOPLE AREN'T BUYING YOUR BULLS*IT ANYMORE. And for heaven's sake, why the f*ck is the "Senior Economist" of the NAR also its spokesperson? Don't they have budget for a PR flak?

National Association of realtors Press Release:
For more information, contact:
Walt Molony, 202/383-1177,

August Existing-Home Sales Fall on Temporary Mortgage Problems

WASHINGTON, September 25, 2007 - Existing-home sales fell in August when mortgage availability problems were peaking, according to the National Association of Realtors®.

Total existing-home sales – including single-family, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops – were down 4.3 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate1 of 5.50 million units in August from a level of 5.75 million in July, and are 12.8 percent below the 6.31 million-unit pace in August 2006.

Lawrence Yun, NAR senior economist, expected the decline. “The unusual disruptions in the mortgage market, including a significant rise in jumbo loan rates, resulted in a fairly high number of postponed or cancelled sales, with many buyers having to search for other financing when loan commitments fell through,” he said. “Lower sales contributed to a buildup of unsold inventory.”

Yun expects similar results for home sales in September. “Once we get through these disruptions, we’ll get a better sense of where the actual market is in late fall as conditions begin to normalize,” he said.

HousingPANIC Stupid Question of the Day

Why do people say they "bought" or "own" a home when all they did was take out a massive loan that takes nearly half their life to pay off?

Bubble blogs getting a bit of attention now that the market has crashed. Here's two quotes, try to pick which one is from the idiot

A) "Bubble bloggers weren't taken seriously until six months ago, and now everyone's taking them seriously, which is fantastic," said Brad Inman, founder and publisher of Inman News, a wide-ranging real estate Web site. "They really served a purpose when they were a voice in the wilderness."

B) "I laugh at bubble bloggers," said Matt Lanning, a Realtor with Zephyr Real Estate in San Francisco, whose takes a considerably more upbeat view of the market. "I don't claim the world is always going to be stable, but there is no way the San Francisco market will collapse. It's a lot like the sensational journalism we're seeing with subprime mortgages which are far less of an issue than the media is making them out to be."

OK, which one is from the idiot?

Help me! Help me! I'm dying! I'm dying! Ben Bernanke, why did you kill me?

You bastard Ben Bernanke!

You bastard!

Ruh-Roh: Time to housing panic. "The Roof Is Caving In On the Housing Market" as housing futures collapse

Wow. Take all the above projected (and traded) expected housing price collapses for these US markets, and then also factor in the ravages of inflation, and this thing is gonna get sick. Like it's not sick enough today. Suzannnnneeeee!!!!! But hey, no surprise for HP'ers.

The housing data don't lie: the sky is falling, and the roof is caving in too.

Las Vegas Housing Crash Update: August cancellation rate hits unbelievable 53% in August. Wow.

As in wow, I can't believe 47% of the fools who had new home contracts actually went ahead and CLOSED!

Also note in the article that Vegas is the #1 most overbuilt housing market in America. Uh, ya think? HP poster children Phoenix, Miami and Orlando and West Palm are also up there.

Bottom line - there are millions of homes out there that we simply don't need. And even with new home builders going to fire sale prices, the units still aren't moving, since people can no longer get a mortgage.
Classic end to a classic mania. Why are some idiots still debating us? It's over. O-V-E-R. The sheeple don't believe the lies anymore.

Home Builders Research released its stats Monday that show the cancellation rate on purchases of new homes in the valley jumped to 53 percent in August.

The rate had been closer to 30 percent two months ago before lenders starting tightening credit. Lenders are requiring higher credit scores, and those who don't have good credit are required to put down a greater down payment or pay higher interest rates.

Even people with good credit are finding it harder to get jumbo loans of $417,000 and above. Those who can't document their income are also having difficulty getting loans.

"Buyers are certainly not canceling because they are changing their minds," said Dennis Smith, president of Home Builders Research. "They are canceling because something has changed in their monthly payments."

The cancellation rates have been evident in homebuilders drastically dropping their prices in the last two to three months.

September 24, 2007

GM workers who went on strike today have over $51 billion in unfunded retiree costs. Care to guess how much the US government has unfunded?

GM is smartly trying to get this $51 Billion growing disaster off its books, otherwise sure bankruptcy is around the corner. So GM workers, not understanding that they make crap cars for a crap company who has no future, went on strike today. Good luck with that. Not smart.

But folks, the US government doesn't even bother to put the future costs of retirement and health care liabilities on its books, or even have a discussion about the issue. That's right - what US corporations have to do per GAAP, the US government doesn't have to do. Or even talk about.

So that $9 Trillion debt you think we owe and are about to possibly default on? Not even close. Try $50 Trillion, per the US Comptroller report (not a stat you'll find on Fox News for sure).

So what does the future hold for America? Bankruptcy, default or dollar destruction around the corner, and radical change to our "promised" yet unfunded benefits programs and tax rates.

Thank you Democrats. Thank you Republicans. Thank you ignorant voters. You fuc*ed America. And you immorally and selfishly screwed generations of Americans to come.

You thought the housing crash was big. You ain't seen nothin' yet.


HousingPANIC Stupid Question of the Day

Do you understand how the dollar's collapse affects you?

Do you?

Good article on why you need to be invested in foreign stocks as the US dollar collapses

I'll call this highlight from the Motley Fool article the donut example. Pretty easy to understand. If you haven't moved your holdings out of US$, better hurry. It's getting ugly and it's only gonna get worse (thank you Ben Bernanke you fu*king traitor idiot)

For example, U.S.-based investors in Canadian doughnut slinger Tim Hortons (NYSE: THI) have profited mightily over the past year as the greenback swooned against the loonie. And guess what? With U.S. interest rates declining, chances are that the dollar will continue to be weak.

The difference is dramatic: U.S. shareholders have seen Tim Hortons rise from US$25.15 to its current price of US$34.14. Canadian investors have seen the price go from CAD$28.00 to CAD$34.59.

In Canada, Tim Hortons shareholders have gained 24%. For U.S-based investors it was 36%. The difference? The dollar's slide.

Now, I'm not saying that the dollar will continue to go down. What I am saying is that investors who diversify away from their home currency do themselves a huge favor by looking overseas for investments. I'm also saying that a lower interest rate environment in the United States suggests that the trend isn't changing.

FLASH: American homedebtors even dumber than I thought possible, homes won't be selling again for quite some time

Supply, demand, price, right? Wrong. There is no demand, there is huge supply, but 74% of dumb homedebtors still don't get it, and aren't lowering their prices (mark to market anyone?), so therefore homes won't be selling.

And you'll see supply continue to build and build, while sales continue to fall.
And then, one day, maybe years from now, homedebtors will get it. Like Hovnanian got it the other day with their hilarious firesale. And the desperate homedebtors will FINALLY lower their prices, FINALLY mark to market, FINALLY leave denial behind. But by then, it'll be too late.

Here's CNBC's Diana Olick:

Homeowners Just Don't Understand Value Of Homes

A new survey out today from Reuters/University of Michigan looks at homeowners’ perceptions of their own homes’ values. When the survey flashed over the wires this morning, my email lit up with all the “Alert” desk folks at CNBC saying, “Omigod, this is huge.” I don’t agree. I say it’s not huge enough.

The survey’s headline says, “A record 26% of U.S. homeowners say the value of their homes has fallen during the past year.” Further, 21% of homeowners polled in September expect the value of their home to decline in the year ahead. The survey finds even bigger numbers if you look at folks just in the West, but that’s an overall national picture.

Ok, so 26% is a record, but I have to ask, why isn’t it higher??
So why do 74% of American’s not get it?

Pick HousingPANIC's new name for a day

I like playing with the HP tagline - The Housing Bubble Blog with an Attitude Problem.

Let's have some fun - funniest tagline wins, and it'll be the name of the blog on Wednesday.

I'm thinking - HousingPANIC - The Housing Crash, Yahoo Search Sucks and Angelo Mozilo is Orange Blog with an Attitude Problem

But I figure you all can come up with something even better...

First we had the whore-house mortgage brokers. Now we got the realtor caught with 21 marijuana grow-houses. Gotta love the REIC!!!

Read more about it here

realtors - making the NAR proud every day

he he he he he

thanks ms for the tip...

September 23, 2007

A HousingPANIC Public Service Announcement: Desperate Homedebtors, put down the matches and just walk away! Foreclosure yes, arson no!

Well, one way we can get rid of these millions of unwanted, not-needed, toxic-loan or investor-owned homes is to just burn 'em down, one by one. And trust me, that's happening all over America. But come on people! Wise up! Even if you burn the damn thing down you won't be any better off. Just walk away.

Whenever you see the words "suspicious house fire", just follow the money. It's not too suspicious as to why it got torched. Something to do with a homedebtor being over his head.
But as they say today, you make your bed, you sleep in it, until it's foreclosed on, or you burn it down.

Kent County Deputies have arrested the homeowner for the September 1st fire at 6825 Deer Cove Drive.

Cheryl Marie Christman, 38, was arrested and is being lodged in the Kent County Jail for intentionally setting fire to her home. Fire investigators believe that Christman was attempting to collect insurance money because the home was going to be foreclosed four days later.

Christman was arraigned this afternoon for the arson charges. Bail was set at $20,000. Her preliminary court date is set for Oct. 1st at 2 p.m.

"Ben Bernanke’s 50 basis point cuts in the Fed funds and discount rates this week may go down as the most irresponsible move in Fed history"

Peter Schiff nails Bernanke's move to the wall.

History will not be kind. Bernanke has destroyed the US dollar, and made a bad situation worse. Think mortgage rates were too high? Wait until burned foreigners start selling their US bonds, driving up interest rates even higher. Think inflation is tame? Wait until those imports you're addicted to soar in price as the dollar tanks.

When the Fed should have been raising, they lowered.

And now we're fu*cked. Here's Schiff:

Helicopter Ben Earns His Wings

Coming at a time when rate increases were needed to combat the sinking dollar and surging gold, oil and other commodity prices, Ben Bernanke’s 50 basis point cuts in the Fed funds and discount rates this week may go down as the most irresponsible move in Fed history.

To America’s creditors around the world, whose mountains of dollar reserves will be debased by lower rates in the U.S., this action amounts to the monetary equivalent of “let them eat cake.” My prediction is that rather than doing so, they will just throw it back in our faces, and refuse to continue funding our deficits.

Furthermore, a fifty basis point cut was not an act of bravery but one of cowardice. The brave thing to do would have been to raise rates and allow market forces to purge the economy of the imbalances built up during the Greenspan bubbles. It would have taken some real courage to level with the American public and let them know that our profligacy has consequences, rather than pretending it can ride to the rescue with a wave of its magic wand and a crank of the printing press.

Countrywide has HousingPANIC Censored!!! HP Removed from Yahoo seach listings by the Big Orange Advertiser

That's my theory...

Many HP'ers have emailed in the past month letting me know that one night a few weeks ago Yahoo removed HousingPANIC from its search listings. Right after we really went after the corrupt Orange Man Angelo Mozilo and his insider dealings at soon-to-go-bankrupt Countrywide. Gee, maybe something to do with the millions of dollars of ads that Countrywide does on Yahoo? Ya think?

Type in "housingpanic" in google (a real search engine, vs. yahoo's corrupted bulls*it) and guess what, you get as the #1 result. Of course you do. Any search engine who didn't give that the #1 slot isn't worth your time.

Type that into Yahoo what do you get? Not HP. Not to be found. It's like we've never existed. Like we don't have over 3,500 posts and 5.6 million page views. Nope, it's like Mozilo and Countrywide want. Silence.

Here's a few more tests of where HP rates at random - do your own test too for fun:

"countrywide mozilo corrupt" - google #6, yahoo not in top 50
"countrywide housing crash" - google #2, yahoo not in top 50
"housing bubble blog" - google #3, yahoo not in top 50
"housing crash mozilo" - google #1, yahoo not in top 50
"housing panic blog" - google #1, yahoo not in top 50
"angelo mozilo is orange" - google #1 (of course!), yahoo not in top 50

If you'd like fight the evildoers at Countrywide and Yahoo, report this unfairness and censorship here

I made sure HP was on the Yahoo domain register (it is), and sent a note to Yahoo and got back a note that everything was fine. I sent them back an email that they're corrupted and a bogus search engine that deserves to get clobbered by google. Needless to say the as*holes didn't respond.

And here's a personal note from HP to Angelo Mozilo at Countrywide - that you'll find one day only if you google it:


Note I'm short CFC and think Angelo Mozilo and Yahoo suck. If you use yahoo search, stop it, and switch to google. Fu*k 'em.

September 21, 2007

Funny youtube video on the mortgage meltdown and housing crash - "There's a Fine Fine Line Between a Gain and a Painful Decline"

Hat-tip to Doom for the find. Hilarious (and pretty catchy). You'll be singing this one in the shower. Very Avenue Q for those of you in the know...

Well, here's why housing crashed, mortgages melted down, and the world financial system has imploded. Thank you Ditech!

Tell us about the dumbest person you know

Here's mine:

* Doesn't believe in the Big Bang or evolution

* Doesn't understand global warming science

* Supports George Bush no matter what he does

* Doesn't think Social Security has problems

* Only watches Fox News

* Didn't think there was a housing bubble

* Bought Phoenix investment property in 2005

'Nuff said.

September 20, 2007

Ben Bernanke proves once again he's never read HousingPANIC

"Global financial losses have far exceeded even the most pessimistic estimates of the credit losses on these loans," the Fed chairman said. The situation, he acknowledged, "has created significant market stress."


FLASH: Moody's forecasts 86 US housing markets will crash by over 10%, with Phoenix crashing 18% and Stockton 25%. A little conservative I'd say...

Got some bad news for idiot realtor bloggers in Phoenix and around country, and for any of the sheeple who believed the housing cheerleaders and bought a house these past couple of years:

Leverage sucks on the way down.

Also, after being in Vegas for the week, one thing stands out about the new homes they've built in the Southwest during the bubble:

Damn these garages, err, I mean homes, are butt-ugly.

Here's the down and dirty. Look out below. And watch out for falling knives.

Double digit home price drops coming

Over the next few years, more than three-quarters of the nation's housing markets will suffer some decline in home prices. Many will experience double-digit hits in a forecast that has worsened considerably in recent months.

According to an analysis conducted by Moody's, declines will exceed 10 percent in 86 of the 379 largest housing markets. And 290 of the cities will experience price drops of 1 percent or more.

The Stockton, Calif., metro area, where Moody's predicts a 25 percent price drop, will be the hardest hit among the 100 most populated cities surveyed.

Just a tick or two behind Stockton in the Moody's survey were two Florida metro areas, Palm Bay/Melbourne (down 24.9 percent) and Sarasota/Bradenton (down 24.8 percent).

Six of the nation's 10 biggest cities face price declines of 1 percent or more with Phoenix, at a 17.8 percent loss, undergoing the worst reversal. The San Diego area will suffer through a 10.9 percent fall, Los Angeles (down 10.6 percent), New York, (down 5.3 percent), San Jose, (down 4.4 percent) and Philadelphia (down 3.1 percent) will also fall.

Hilarious and strangely honest Homebuilder Quote of the Day

"Anything I say should be viewed with suspicion. Use your mind. Don't believe me"

- Bob Toll, famously optimistic about a housing rebound that has yet to materialize, poking fun at himself, September 2007

Moved your assets out of US Dollar holdings yet? Better hurry. Saudis and China in dollar panic, watch the dominos now fall...

"It can't happen here" they said.

Wanna bet?

This is gonna get really real really quick. Get ready. Thank you Ben Bernanke. You just f*cked America.

Fears of dollar collapse as Saudis take fright

Saudi Arabia has refused to cut interest rates in lockstep with the US Federal Reserve for the first time, signalling that the oil-rich Gulf kingdom is preparing to break the dollar currency peg in a move that risks setting off a stampede out of the dollar across the Middle East.

China threatens 'nuclear option' of dollar sales

The Chinese government has begun a concerted campaign of economic threats against the United States, hinting that it may liquidate its vast holding of US treasuries if Washington imposes trade sanctions to force a yuan revaluation.

Did the US Fed and Bank of England just sink into a housing crash moral hazard abyss?

Have the recent moves of the US Fed and Bank of England to bail out failed mortgage gambler banks at taxpayer expense left you with a sickening feeling in the pit of your stomach that nobody competent is minding the store?

Here's the word on the street from the UK, where moral hazard is raging and a great collapse is now assured.

The first thing to remember about the collapse and de facto nationalisation of Northern Rock is that it was essentially about house prices. Since ministers have done so much to inflate those prices, it is understandable that they should feel obliged to relieve Northern Rock's depositors of any risk.

I repeat, this all began with houses. For half a century home ownership in Britain - termed a "right" by Brown - has been indulged beyond economic reason. It has sucked savings out of the productive sector. It has tied up pension money that should be helping the economy in the stock market. Its tax reliefs have immobilised young people who, in most countries, remain in the more fluid rented sector until later in life. It has led to mass hysteria with every price rise or fall. Housing sees the British, their rulers and their newspapers, at their most innumerate and irrational.

I bet the Japanese thought lowering rates to near zero would help avoid a stock and housing meltdown. Didn't quite work out like that

The Japan crash was child's play compared to this epic Ponzi Scheme. And for those out there calling "soft landing" (if there's any of those idiots still left), thinking Ben's panicked 1/2 point cut will help end the crisis, or thinking that we'll "bottom out" in just a few months, got some advice for ya.. Look to Japan. And pass the ramen noodles please.

September 19, 2007

CNBC's Diana Olick and others on the Fed cut and the "mortgage despair cycle"

I know the housing cheerleaders are all excited, and desperate homedebtors looking to unload are all in a tizzy, but sorry, bad news. The Fed could (and might) cut to zero, but it ain't gonna help. China and hedge funds ain't gonna buy the CDO's anymore, the Fed funds rate does not set mortgage rates, the toxic mortgages are still gonna reset, foreclosures are still gonna soar, and housing is still wildly overvalued.

And remember, as the stock market soars - stocks ain't houses. Mutually exclusive investment classes. Invest accordingly.

Diana Olick: Since we’re all "Fed, Fed, Fed," it behooves me to weigh in on how a Fed rate cut would affect mortgage interest rates, not to mention the current mortgage despair spiral, as lenders run for cover and investors turn up their collective noses. From everything I hear, it’s not going to do much in the short term, but rather than hear it from me, I thought I’d pose the question to some of my fave experts and let you hear from them:

Bill Seidman/Fmr. Head of FDIC, CNBC Chief Commentator: "If credit is bad, rates don’t count. I don’t care if you lower the rate 100 basis points. It may improve some of the profits of those institutions that lost a lot of money due to bad credit, but it does not address itself to the real problem, which is bad lending. And let me emphasize: it’s not just subprime, it’s substandard lending."

Jay Brinkmann/Mortgage Bankers Assoc.: "The Fed rate cut has already been priced in."

Howard Glaser/Fmr. HUD Official, Mortgage Industry Consultant: "My view is that the effect is likely to be limited – probably a short -term psychological boost more than a fix for mortgage market liquidity... You could lower the rate to zero and those loans (subprime, alt-a) are still not coming back."

What effect (if any) will the Fed's desperate rate cut have on the housing crash?

Have at it...

Fed cut impact on housing

The Fed Funds rate affects a range of consumer loans, including home equity and mortgages. Lower mortgage rates would add to the number of home buyers able to afford to make purchases, increasing demand for properties and buoying home prices. Buyers generally care less about the actual purchase price than they do about the size of their payments. If rates drop, so will monthly debt obligations.

However, the real problem in the housing market is not interest rates, according to Keith Gumbinger, vice president for HSH Associates, a mortgage industry publisher. It is that there is not enough money available for making loans.

"The liquidity problem hasn't changed," Gumbinger said. "The primary issue is trust between buyers and holders of debt." Investors holding worthless or heavily discounted paper are not eager to buy more.

Home prices in many parts of the country remain out of reach for average Americans, leading to slow sales and lengthening inventories of houses on the market. Also adding to listings is a flood of new foreclosures hitting the market.

HousingPANIC Stupid Question of the Day

Regarding the "cash is king" mantra, as written about in Manias, Panics and Crashes:

The final phase is a self-feeding panic, where the bubble bursts. People of wealth and credit scramble to unload whatever they have bought at greater and greater losses, and cash becomes king.

Is "cash is king" still relevant today (especially non-US$ cash)? Or, because of an incompetent, negligent and corrupted Fed, is it truly gonna be "different this time",

September 18, 2007

On Helicopters and Moral Hazard

HP'ers now we know what The Fed is going to do to counter the inevitable housing crash. They're going to cut rates aggressively, all the way to zero if they have to (and they'll have to), and they're going to destroy our currency and prop up our dollar-denominated stock prices.

Killing the dollar also solves the trade imbalance, even though inflation will rage, and devalues the present value of retirement obligations (indexed at bogus inflation rates).

Invest accordingly. Wall Street has their man installed at The Fed, and don't fight it, and especially don't fight oil, gold, international stocks and multinationals who get the majority of their profits from overseas markets. Should be no surprises for HP'ers from here on out, after today's shocker which really wasn't that shocking.

Moral hazard in finance

Financial bail-outs of lending institutions by governments, central banks or other institutions can encourage risky lending in the future, if those that take the risks come to believe that they will not have to carry the full burden of losses.

Lending institutions need to take risks by making loans, and usually the most risky loans have the potential for making the highest return. A moral hazard arises if lending institutions believe that they can make risky loans that will pay handsomely if the investment turns out well but they will not have to fully pay for losses if the investment turns out badly.

Bernanke on Helicopters and Deflation

Sustained deflation can be highly destructive to a modern economy and should be strongly resisted.

Moreover, as I have discussed today, a variety of policy responses are available should deflation appear to be taking hold. Because some of these alternative policy tools are relatively less familiar, they may raise practical problems of implementation and of calibration of their likely economic effects.

I hope to have persuaded you that the Federal Reserve and other economic policymakers would be far from helpless in the face of deflation, even should the federal funds rate hit its zero bound.

The United States Dollar: 1785 - 2007, RIP

The Fed just housing panicked...

Fed cuts rates by a half point The Federal Reserve lowers the target on a key short-term interest rate for the first time in four years from 5.25% to 4.75%

The Federal Reserve cut the target on a key short-term interest rate by a half of a percentage point Tuesday to 4.75%, further acknowledgment from the central bank that the mortgage meltdown plaguing Wall Street and Main Street could have a negative impact on the economy.

The cut to the federal funds rate, the first since June 2003, was widely anticipated by investors and followed a surprise cut to the Fed's discount rate on August 17. The only question was whether the Fed would lower the federal funds rate by 25 basis points or 50 basis points.

Ben Bernanke: Bald-faced liar, or scared out of his wits by the housing crash and mortgage meltdown underway?

"It is not the responsibility of the Federal Reserve -- nor would it be appropriate -- to protect lenders and investors from the consequences of their financial decisions."

- Ben Bernanke, August 31, 2007

Open thread to talk about the Fed's move

Gonna be an interesting day around the world

I'm in Housing-Crash-Central Las Vegas for a conference but should be able to keep up with the craziness. Wonder if CNBC will be on at the sportsbooks...

The most anticipated, and arguable most important Fed meeting in US history.

Bernanke shows his cards today.

Heroic Bubble Buster?
Hedge Fund Poodle?
REIC-Bailout Buddy?
Dollar Destroyer?
Moral Hazard Disbeliever?

Should we feel sorry for panicked mortgage brokers?

Supply and Demand, Meet Price - Hovnanian firesale moves homes with 30% off, $100,000+ discounts

Gee, imagine that. You slash prices, and you move dead inventory.

Retail 101 folks. This ain't brain surgery.

Meanwhile, Hovnanian just reset the comps for years to come... And they'll never sell another house at the inflated price - can you imagine the Hovnanian sales rep trying to explain to a buyer that the $150,000 off deal was only last weekend, and that they'd have to pay the higher price? Not a chance.

And the funniest thing about this story is that Hovnanian was (illegally) calling on his other builder buddies to RAISE prices just a few weeks ago. Suckers!

Hovnanian Spurs Home Sales With Price Cuts of Up to 30%

72-hour promotion by Hovnanian Enterprises Inc. designed to jump-start sagging home sales exceeded the company's expectations, resulting in more than 2,100 gross sales, the homebuilder said.

The figure included more than 1,700 contracts and more than 400 sales deposits. In its fiscal third quarter ended July 31, Hovnanian recorded 2,539 signed contracts, excluding unconsolidated joint ventures.