August 31, 2007

Special HousingPANIC open thread - vent your rage and disgust with George Bush and the US Congress over any attempt to bail out housing gamblers here

We had a hand in stopping the immigration bulls*it and now HP'ers should lead in letting our NAR-funded "leaders" know that any taxpayer bailout of housing gamblers will amount to a declaration of war against us (the taxpayers)

Rage HP'ers - pure, unmitigated (and legal) rage - express it here.

Also send messages to key Senators Clinton, Schumer, Shelby and Dodd, and to George Bush here. No physical threats - just let 'em know your Category Five taxpayer fury.

I also hope right wing radio is in flames tonight as well - call in and vent.

Unleash hell.

Will Bernanke cut rates to bail out mortgage gamblers?

Two words Ben: Moral Hazard.

The Fed chairman made it clear that there would be no rate cuts simply to bail out investors, declaring "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."

Countrywide Mortgage's Orange Mozilo says he did no marketing to potential homebuyers. "They came to us". Sorry, Angelo. Incorrect. Liar.

Here's the Orange One, to Maria Bartiromo in a follow-up interview to the softball piece she did the other day:

Maria Softball:
Did you tailor your business accordingly as this (housing bubble) was happening?

Orange One's Response:
Remember, we didn't reach out to home buyers. They came to us.

Well, that's an interesting thing for the CEO of a publicly traded company to say. You'd have thought he'd have met his own marketing director one day, or approved his massive advertising budget. Guess that slipped his mind.

Folks, Countrywide spent $260,000,000 in 2006 on advertising and promotions (page 179 annual report, and for fun spent $35 million last month on internet ads alone!

"We didn't go to them! They came to us" - come on Angelo, how stupid do you think we are? Too bad Maria isn't a better reporter - she should have called you a bald-faced liar right then and there. Or were you flying her somewhere after the interview?

Boy, the Orange One is gonna have a real tough time in front of Congress answering questions without taking the fifth. Answering a reporter's softballs is one thing - answering under subpoena is another.

Yes, I'm short CFC. What a stinking pile of manure, led by a snake oil salesman who's gonna have some serious trouble staying out of jail. The mug shot will be a hoot though.

George W. Bush, The Worst President Ever, and misguided promoter of "the ownership society" (aka "buy at the peak!") makes matters ever worse today

That's it HP'ers, today's the day. The Worst President Ever steps straight into the subprime disaster wad of dung that he helped create today.

Are you a housing gambler in need of a government bailout? You've come to the right place.

Casey Serin - today's your lucky day

Failed flippers - here comes George, with loads of taxpayer money to the rescue

Housing gamblers - why stop now! Go double down, because if things don't work out, the taxpayers who didn't gamble will bail you out.

Bush Banker Buddies - don't worry, you may own crap loans, but Georgie will do his best to make sure the sheeple don't just turn in the keys and walk away

HP'ers, IF (big IF) one dollar of your taxpayer money goes toward bailing out failed flippers and housing gamblers, the level of rage and distrust for this government should go off the charts.

George W. Bush - The Worst President Ever - and our Nero. We are indeed run by monkeys.

Bush Moves to Aid Homeowners

WASHINGTON -- President Bush, looking for ways to respond to the subprime-mortgage crisis, will outline a series of policy changes and recommendations today to help borrowers avoid default, senior administration officials said.

Among the moves will be an administrative change to allow the Federal Housing Administration, which insures mortgages for low- and middle-income borrowers, to guarantee loans for delinquent borrowers. The change is intended to help borrowers who are at least 90 days behind in payments but still living in their homes avoid foreclosure; the guarantees help homeowners by allowing them to refinance at more favorable rates.

Mr. Bush also will ask Congress to suspend, for a limited period, an Internal Revenue Service provision that penalizes borrowers who refinance the terms of their mortgage to reduce the size of the loan or who lose their homes to foreclosure. And he will announce an initiative, to be led jointly by the Treasury and Housing and Urban Development departments, to identify people who are in danger of defaulting over the next two years and work with lenders, insurers and others to develop more favorable loan products for those borrowers.

I don't think anyone knows just how bad this mortgage meltdown / ARM reset debacle is gonna be

In come the waves....

Millions of homeowners around the nation are now getting the news in the mail: The interest rate on their home loans is going up, possibly to double-digit levels.

The hardest hit are expected to be people who have less-than-stellar credit and cannot afford to make the new payments. An increase of several hundred dollars a month will force them either to get relief or to default. The prospect of significant and growing losses has already rocked Wall Street and shaken up the broader mortgage markets. And, concerned about the human suffering, policymakers are already searching for ways to help people out.

"The meltdown in the subprime market is the biggest threat to the housing market and the broader economy," says Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody's Economy. com. "It is at the vortex of the problem."

Over the next several months, banks will be changing the "teaser rates" that homeowners received two years ago.

The peak for resetting loans will be in October, when the rates on some $50 billion worth of mortgages are likely to rise by 2 percentage points or more. This could mean a rise of several hundred dollars a month for many borrowers.

August 30, 2007

Here's the result of letting your spouse (and a realtor on commission) steer you into a toxic mortgage and the worst financial mistake of your life



hat-tip to Tim at
Seattle Bubble for catching this real-life housing horror story - the wife who pressured her husband into paying way to much for a house, and you know how the sad story ends...

So here's the question HP'ers - did women's nesting instinct help cause the housing bubble? (sorry ladies - just asking the question, feel free to respond yourselves...) Or are men equally guilty - takes two to tango (and sign mortgage docs) after all...

Sen. Schumer threatens Countrywide Mortgage and Orange Mozilo. HP just laughs and laughs and laughs some more

Senator Schumer, you, my friend, are a poodle.

Don't you get it? The cat is already out of the bag. The damage has been done. Your banker buddies got burned. And all your grandstanding and blowharding (is that a word?) isn't gonna help 'em, or America. We're toast.

Sure, go after Countrywide and Orange Mozilo - good luck with that. Once they file for Bankruptcy protection, is there really much you or they can do? (note - I'm short CFC)

Here's Schumer's
money boys FYI. All the big banks and bagholders that got burned by Countrywide's reckless lending. Kinda makes you see things in a different light, eh HP'ers?

Schumer Tells Countrywide To End Lending Practices

WASHINGTON -(Dow Jones)- Countrywide Financial Corp. (CFC) should stop paying brokers higher commissions for steering borrowers to adjustable rate subprime home loans, Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., said Wednesday.

"Startling reports have shed light on how Countrywide has led the industry in the practice of steering borrowers into risky subprime loans," said Schumer, who is chairman of the Senate Housing Subcommittee. Schumer said that as of June 30, approximately one in four of the subprime loans issued by Countrywide was delinquent.

HousingPANIC Stupid realtor Quote of the Day

"I'm not a real estate bum. I wear diamonds, Rolexes and necklaces. I'm a classy Realtor."

- Liz Seither, President of Executive Preferred Properties

(check out the full article HP'ers - nice to see realtors were among the biggest housing gamblers. Like crack dealers doing crack. Not a good idea.)

FLASH: The Corrupt David Lereah (TCDL) finally admits he f*cked up, housing bubble did exist, crash now underway

That's it folks. Put a fork in it. The housing bubble is dead, and even TCDL (sure miss the little guy eh?) now admits he was spewing lies.

HP note to TCDL: Your lies and spin ruined lives. You are a shameful, corrupt little man who knowingly enriched himself at the expense of America. History will not be kind to you or to your replacement stooge Lawrence Yun.

Perhaps the most prominent housing booster was David Lereah, the chief economist at the National Association of Realtors until April. In 2005, he published a book titled, “Are You Missing the Real Estate Boom?” In 2006, it was updated and rereleased as “Why the Real Estate Boom Will Not Bust.” This year, Mr. Lereah published a new book, “All Real Estate Is Local.”

In an interview, Mr. Lereah, now an executive at Move Inc., which operates a real estate Web site, acknowledged he had gotten it wrong, saying he did not fully realize how loose lending standards had become and how quickly they would tighten up again this summer. But he argued that many of his critics have also been proved wrong, because they were bearish as early as 2002.

“The bears were bears way too early, and the bulls were bulls too late,” he said. “You need to know when you are straying from fundamentals. It’s hard, when you are in the middle of the storm, to know.”

I spent too much this weekend in Prague, even lost $60 at roulette. Can I get a federal government bailout too?

Hey, that $60 meant a lot to me. I was taken advantage of. I didn't read the fine print. And I was led to believe that roulette spins were all winners.

And I didn't mean to spend that much going out to dinners, and shopping. And those Czech bartenders sure took advantage of us.

I want my taxpayer money! I want my bailout too!

Folks, if the US government spends one f*cking taxpayer dollar bailing out failed flippers and housing gamblers, I'll call for the overthrow of the government (peacefully, and at the ballot box of course). And I won't be alone. If the Federal Government gets into the subprime mortgage business, and then the loans don't get paid back, guess who ends up footing the bill? You got it. You do.

Housing Bailout Chatter Gets Louder

Add another surprising name to the housing-bailout chorus.

Punk Ziegel analyst Richard Bove became the latest high-profile market observer Wednesday to predict that the feds will take action to forestall the collapse of the U.S. housing market.

Bad mortgages "have become a major problem," Bove says in a research note Wednesday. He suggests that the government may end up proposing to ease the pressure on the sagging mortgage market by offering low-cost federally backed loans to homeowners whose adjustable-rate mortgages are about to reset to much-higher rates.

HousingPANIC Stupid Question of the Day

What are you?
A) Republican
B) Democrat
C) Awake

As predicted by HP, laid-off homebuilder illegals now fleeing housing-crash-central Arizona in droves. What's that giant sucking sound now?

Gotta love the folks who didn't understand that the housing bubble and illegal immigration were linked at the hip.

If you're still in that camp, hopefully this article will make you understand.

Illegals built the houses. Some illegals bought the houses (using toxic loans of course). And now that the corrupt REIC work has dried up, and home prices are falling, plus the states are making it illegal to hire an illegal, we've got a big stinking mess on our hands.

Will they stay, go underground, and turn to lives of crime?

Will they go home, leaving ghost towns of run down neighborhoods, empty Wal-Mart stores, and a sea of foreclosures?

Or will they rob the banks on the way out (Countrywide and Indymac of course), doing cash-out refis with bloated appraisals, never intending to pay back the loans?

What a mess. Ay caramba. Here's a report from housing-crash and illegal-immigration-hellhole Phoenix Arizona.

New hiring law nears, migrants flee
Immigration hard-liners cheer, but economic fallout begins

Undocumented immigrants are starting to leave Arizona because of the new employer-sanctions law.

The state's strong economy has been a magnet for illegal immigrants for years. But a growing number are pulling up stakes out of fear they will be jobless come Jan. 1, when the law takes effect. The departures are drawing cheers from immigration hard-liners and alarm from business owners already seeing a drop in sales.

Some are moving to other states, where they think they will have an easier time getting jobs. Others are returning to Mexico, selling their effects and putting their houses on the market.

Adrian, a 34-year-old undocumented immigrant from Sonora, plans to move back to Mexico as soon as he can sell a 2-acre tract he owns in Tonopah.

Adrian said his sister also is selling her house with plans to return to Mexico. He knows other undocumented immigrants who are refinancing their houses and getting cash out so they can return right away rather than waiting for their houses to sell.

August 29, 2007

PIMCO's Bill Gross calls for taxpayers to bail out failed housing gamblers. HousingPANIC calls for Bill Gross to pull his head out of his ass

Some days, I can't believe what I read from our "leaders".

For respected bond trader Bill Gross to be calling for a federal housing gambler bailout with taxpayer money is not only pathetic, reckless and wrong, it's actually immoral. Either Gross knows how bad it's gonna get and is in panic stage, or there's some way he'll make money off of a government bailout.

Why should taxpayers who go to work, pay their bills, read fine print, live within their means and make rational financial choices send their hard earned income to others who gamble, live beyond their means and make poor financial choices?


Sign the online petition against this crap here. We can help defeat this stupid thinking, just like the immigration law mess.

If the US government bails out failed flippers and housing gamblers in ANY way, then it will officially be over. Rome will have burned. And the US government will no longer be deserving of your support. But I have faith. Even George Bush and Congress aren't this stupid, reckless and corrupt. Right? If Bush or Congress try to increase their record-low ratings with a housing gambler bailout, my prediction is that it'll backfire worse than Schiavo.

Here's Gross and his "wisdom". I need to go puke now. And I'll also try to figure out how Gross's bailout call might directly financially benefit PIMCO and Bill Gross.

The ultimate solution, it seems to me, must not emanate from the bowels of Fed headquarters on Constitution Avenue, but from the West Wing of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.

Why is it possible to rescue corrupt S&L buccaneers in the early 1990s and provide guidance to levered Wall Street investment bankers during the 1998 LTCM crisis, yet throw 2,000,000 homeowners to the wolves in 2007?

If we can bail out Chrysler, why can’t we support the American homeowner?

This rescue, which admittedly might bail out speculators who deserve much worse, would support millions of hard working Americans whose recent hours have become ones of frantic desperation.

More Bailouts Could Bring Disaster Down the Road

In my humble opinion Mr. Gross is right about only one thing: that Mr. Bernanke is unable to eventually stop a destructive housing deflation.

At least now the pundits are admitting that a housing deflation is at the heart of the economic problems. That is a watershed event.

But for the “government”, which I thought was using taxpayer money (except for the $9 trln in debt it has borrowed), to bail out malinvestment is only to increase the problem. If you don’t punish your child for playing with matches, he may one day burn the house down.

Of course Mr. Gross, being worth $500 mln plus, really doesn’t worry about how much of his tax dollars are going into the abyss; he just wants to keep earning his fees.

Are you a Desperate Homedebtor trying to sell your depreciating housing asset for more than $417,000? Good luck with that. Jumbo mortgages now AWOL.

I've got baaaaaaaaaaaaaddd news for anyone who is trying to sell a home for more than the Jumbo max ($417k). Your pool of prospective buyers, already freaked out by collapsing home prices, now can't get a mortgage even if they wanted to. God forbid an interest-only, no-down mortgage either. Those days are O-V-E-R. And so are 2005 prices.

Yes, the housing crash really goes into overdrive now, thank you Mortgage Meltdown, and the realities of Jumbo mortgages and the death of confidence.

Subprime Mortgage Woes Spreading - Subprime Mortgage Crisis Spreading to High-End Housing Market

NEW YORK (AP) -- The subprime mortgage crisis is spreading to a somewhat unexpected place: homes costing more than $500,000.

As lending has rapidly gotten more restrictive for borrowers taking out large loans, sales of expensive homes have fallen sharply around the country during what should be one of the busiest seasons for buyers and sellers, mortgage bankers and real estate agents say.

"Showings are down, contracts written are down, and sellers are just as backed away as buyers are," said Lou Barnes, a partner in mortgage bank and brokerage Boulder West Financial Services in Boulder, Colo. The company arranges for financing on many higher-priced condominiums and houses in the state.

"I think the psychological damage is worse than the financial damage" which is already bad enough, he said. Even for buyers who have plenty of cash or can easily afford higher mortgage rates, the sudden change in the financing environment reduces "the ardor to buy a house unless you have to," he adds.

HousingPANIC Stupid Question of the Day

So, tell us America, what are you thinking about realtors and mortgage brokers these days?

Housing bubble enabler Blanche Evans of Realty Times in an illogical diatribe again blames media for housing panic

Blanche, Blanche, Blanche...

Blanche, Blanche, Blanche...

Panic Working Like A Charm; Home Prices Mostly Down In June
by Blanche Evans Realty Times

Despite positive fundamentals such as low unemployment, rising wages, and low borrowing rates, consumers are panicked about the housing market and sitting out a golden opportunity to buy at low interest rates with plenty of inventory to choose from. One reason is the constant drumbeat that housing prices are softening by the press, but consumers aren't getting much insight or perspective along with the daily drip of bad news.

If the media and economic experts are saying that home prices are going to fall further and then recover, is it so strange that buyers are waiting? My question is why is it "denial" for sellers to wait out the falling prices part to cash in on the recovery part?
That's what makes this whole thing so funny. Somehow it's okay for buyers to panic, but not for sellers to remain cool.

TIME Magazine FINALLY allows a housing crash article into their fine magazine (chuckle chuckle): "The value of our homes is collapsing"

I still can't believe these yahoos at TIME haven't put the housing crash or current debt crisis on their cover yet. Even from a business perspective, since the housing crash effects nearly every person in America, seems like they'd want to sell a few magazines.

But like the NAR, I think TIME is run by monkeys.

Anyway, here's their first article on the housing crash, kinda, since it's listed as "commentary". Hey, it's a first step. Anyone want to guess when we finally get the cover?

Your House Is Worth Less? Good

The last time we had this feeling of financial vertigo was when the Internet bubble popped seven years ago. But this is much worse: the value of our homes is collapsing. For generations, rising home prices have been central to our general sense of well-being.

So why is the real estate collapse a good thing?

First, because the collapse of any financial bubble can be interpreted as a morality play: greed gets its comeuppance. Subprime mortgages play the role that used to be played by junk bonds. They represent easy money--too easy, in retrospect. Borrowed money, if it gets out of hand, puts economic history on speed: everything rises faster, then collapses harder. Foolish lenders become the enablers of foolish borrowers.

In the 1990s, people came to believe that stock prices would rise forever. They learned differently. And now we are learning differently about real estate as well. Whenever the price people will pay today depends on the belief that other people will pay even more tomorrow, you've got a bubble. It takes only a slight letdown in those expectations to send the whole delightful, self-feeding process into reverse.

BUBBLETALK - New thread to talk about the mortgage meltdown and housing collapse

HousingPANIC is here.

Use this thread to post articles (use tinyurl and hit the highlights), talk about random topics, and have a good chat

HousingPANIC Stupid Question of the Day

Is it just me, or does it seem everywhere you look, Housing PANIC is there?

NEW YORK (AP) -- Volatility returned to Wall Street Tuesday, sending stocks plunging as investors grew more uneasy about the economy and whether the Federal Reserve will take the steps needed to prevent credit market problems from spreading further. The Dow Jones industrials fell 280 points.

August 28, 2007

HousingPANIC Thought of the Day

Isn't it kinda funny that the same people who didn't see the NASDAQ bubble (rode it up, rode it down) are the same people who didn't see the Housing Bubble (rode it up, rode it down)?

List dot-com and dot-condo similarities here...

August 27, 2007

ABC Nightline says the P word... "Panic"

Great series on the housing crash underway on Nightline. Here's their story about the condo panic in Miami - "Fools Gold". You're going to see 50%+ drops in real home prices (not "median", but "real" or "marked to market" price) in some of these bubble cities folks - no matter what the government, realtors on commission or the NAR tell you.

Also check out the expose on the mortgage lending meltdown here.

The MSM is good at one thing - reporting on the dead bodies at crime scenes. Too bad they weren't there when the crime was going on.

Real Estate Fool's Gold
Condo Fever in Miami Brings Profits, Then Panic

You can't miss the flocks of cranes that hover over Miami's skyline. They were hatched by a condo fever that seized the city and fueled what is now the biggest construction boom in the country.

Not long ago the only thing going up faster than buildings in Miami was the prices -- and Lucy Blanco wanted in

"It was going up so rapidly that I was fearful that if it went any higher I could not afford it anymore," she said. "So I needed to get it while it was still at a price I could afford…before it went out of my range.
"If we don't hurry up and buy something now," she said, "we're never going to be
able to buy anything."

In February 2006, Blanco bought a preconstruction one-bedroom unit in a condo community called Quantum on the Bay. She paid $465,000. Today, however, Blanco estimates the property is worth $100,000 less than what she agreed to pay.

August 25, 2007

I wonder if these scummy mortgage agents still have their jobs. Doubt it. Good.

America, you got gamed by 20-something call-center-jockey kids pumping mortgages you couldn't afford and even they didn't understand so they could make a quick commission.

Tens of thousands of life's losers - call center jockeys, bartenders, used car salesmen, Herbalife distributors (you get the picture) - found their way into the unregulated and out-of-control REIC over these past few years. The one saving grace is that they're getting canned left and right - the party is over.

I wonder who'll be picking up the bottle service tab in Scottsdale tonight? Anyone? Anyone?

HP message to the realtors of America - Find new work. Move on. It's over. And good luck out there.

The hundreds of thousands of realtors who are no longer making any money won't show up in the government unemployment report, just like the millions of unemployed illegals no longer building homes. But they're still jobless, still unable to earn a living, and it's just gonna get worse.

So HP has a message to the realtors of America - quit being a realtor. Quit paying dues to your corrupt and incompetent masters at the NAR. Quit lying, deceiving and spinning. Quit. And move on.

Mortgage Lending Crisis Puts the Squeeze on Realtors

The National Association of Realtors expects a 4 percent drop in membership this year, the first decline in a decade.

Many Bay Area real estate agents are feeling the squeeze. When the housing market was hot, some people abandoned their jobs to get a real estate license.

"I do the real estate five days a week and then I work part-time three nights a week at a department store," said Crystal Carreno, who got into the Vallejo market three years ago.

American Canyon realtor Erin Heeley said it wasn’t long ago when the city was considered the fastest growing in the Bay Area. She never used to see more than 35 homes on the market at a time, but the glut of foreclosures has now pushed inventory to over 170.

"The sad thing is I also have lender friends and title and escrow friends who have lost their jobs that are out looking for full-time jobs," said Heeley.

Things are tough even on the pricier Peninsula, where realtor Mike Karamitas sold his software consulting company four years ago after the bottom dropped out of the tech market, only to find another bubble bursting in housing.

"I know there's people in our office who are really really in trouble. I'm in trouble. I'm almost living hand to mouth. Some months it's very lean," he said.

California expects to see a 7 percent drop in realtors this year.

HousingPANIC Stupid Question of the Day

For HP'ers - serious question.

What is it about you that made you find your way to HP, and realize a great housing ponzi scheme was happening before the rest of the sheeple figured it out?

Your parents and upbringing?

Your education?

Your life experiences?

Your open mind?

Your bullsh*t detector?

Your work ethic?

Your distrust of the media and people in power?

What is it?

Why were you out putting up sandbags when the sun was shining? Why were you the one warning others when nobody would listen?

Sorry HP'ers I'm gonna be in Prague until Tuesday. Head on over to Blown Mortgage again for great housing crash info and chatter

London weather is awful, so gonna get to Prague for the weekend. I'll be interested to see how overpriced real estate got in this ex-communist city. Maybe I could find something in a Soviet-style junker for a reasonable price. We'll see..

I'll be back Tuesday - post anything here that you want me to look at, use tinyurl, hit the highlights only, and also head on over to HP sub-teacher Blown Mortgage for the next couple of days.

I might get to a 'net cafe in Prague to moderate and post - we'll see.

August 24, 2007

Ask yourselves America why the MSM would report new home sales falling 10% and prices falling as "Home Sales Up!"

Ya wonder if the MSM misses the REIC ads. Or if they're really that dumb.

Or both.

Chart courtesy of Doom. Spin courtesy of the MSM.

Home Sales Rise
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Sales of new homes perked up, while factory orders took off in July, raising hopes that the economy can safely weather financial turmoil that has shaken Wall Street.

HousingPANIC Stupid Question of the Day

What should the hundreds of thousands of unemployed realtors, mortgage brokers, home builders and REIC do next?

A) Do the jobs illegals can't do anymore

B) Paint toys for Mattel (hattip to an HPer for that one)

C) Move to India and work in call centers

D) Rob little children of their lollipops and sell them for cash

E) Other

This about sums it up

Thanks TR for the link

Vulture Financing Alert: Countrywide pays BofA 7.25% until they can pay no more. Then Bof A gets to help wind-up and dissolve Countrywide

Pretty nifty move by BofA, taking over a cash-desperate CFC for $2 Billion with zero risk if they hedged. They're probably betting that once Countrywide's assets are sold off, or this competitor goes away, they'll do OK. Or if they were even smarter, they bought a ton of CFC put options yesterday at the open. Yes, I'm short CFC.

From MarketTicker:

Under the terms of the Convertible Preferred Securities, set forth on the Certificate of Designations of 7.25% Series B Non-Voting Convertible Preferred Stock of Countrywide Financial Corporation (the “Certificate of Designations”), holders are entitled to cash dividends, payable quarterly, at the rate per annum of7.25% of the Liquidation Preference per share of $100,000.

The initial amount of dividends payable on each share of the preferred stock outstanding for each full dividend period will be $1,812.50. Dividends are cumulative and if dividends are not paid for six quarters, holders of the preferred stock are entitled to designate two directors to the Company’s Board of Directors until dividends have been paid for two consecutive quarters.

With respect to dividends and distributions upon the liquidation, winding-up or dissolution of the Company, the Convertible Preferred Securities rank in priority senior to the Company’s common stock and to each other class of capital stock or series of preferred stock (where the terms of the stock do not expressly provide that it ranks senior to or on parity with the preferred stock) and on parity with any additional Convertible Preferred Securities and any other class of capital stock or series of preferred stock.

Convertible Preferred Securities each have a Conversion Price of $18.00, which may be adjusted upon the occurrence of certain events."

Dot-com to dot-condo - here come the massive layoffs

40,000 in the mortgage biz gone already - heck, 25,000 just last week. And 100,000 less realtors. And we're just getting started.

Millions will go unemployed during this bust - and not just REIC. Watch for the investment bankers, Home Depot salesmen, Pottery Barn employees, Lexus salesmen, dry cleaners, and pretty much every industry throughout the land.

Hope it was worth it Greenspan. Hope it was worth it Mozilo. Hope it was worth it Lereah.

Anyone doubting HP anymore? Chicken Littles right? Brown Shirts right? HousingPANIC is here folks. And it's gonna get ugly.

Mortgage industry job cuts surpass 40,000
Companies stop 'on a dime'; 25,000 positions eliminated so far this month

At the North Carolina offices of mortgage lender HomeBanc Corp., Archie Clark is the only employee left. But in a few days, he’ll be gone, too.
“It’s pretty much a ghost town over there,” Clark said. “Somebody went in and took the furniture from the lobby. I don’t know who did that. I put some of the other stuff in the back and locked it up.”

When Clark finishes helping movers from the company’s Atlanta headquarters collect computers and other property, he’ll join the more than 25,000 workers nationwide who have lost jobs in the financial services industry since the beginning of the month — with more than half coming since last Friday.

August 23, 2007

Here's could-go-bankrupt Countrywide Mortgage's Orange Mozilo on CNBC earlier today


Real smooth.

Man, I'd check my watch after shaking hands with that cat.

Meanwhile, Maria sure is a softball tosser.

What questions would you ask Mozilo HP'ers? I'll see if he'll give us an interview. He he he.

Interesting to hear him say that CFC can't go to the Fed discount window because if I heard him right, THE BANK HAS NO ASSETS or access to Countrywide Home Loan assets.

Break that one down HP'ers. And yes, I'm short CFC. Nice to see the market call BS on this blatant pump and dump today.

Mozilo also called the Merrill analyst who reported that CFC might go bankrupt "irresponsible" who was yelling fire in a crowded theatre, and who (sob sob) negatively effected 61,000 Countrywide employees. Angelo, Angelo, Angelo, don't blame the messenger. Blame yourself for giving loans to liars while selling hundreds of millions of dollars of your sinking ship.

Angelo Mozilo - the new posterboy for greed, housing bubble style. Will he go the way of Ebbers and Lay? Time will tell.

HousingPANIC Stupid Question of the Day

Do you see now how HousingPANIC was a positive force for change, and a better future?

Do you see now how the bursting of the housing bubble and the toxic mortgage meltdown was the best thing that could have happened for America?

Do you see now how exposing the NAR, realtors, builders and mortgage brokers as corrupt liars and conmen only helped?

Do you see now?

HousingPANIC Stupid Question of the Day

What US city was most negatively impacted by the Great Housing Ponzi Scheme (GHPS), Ugly Urban Sprawl (UUS) and Corrupt Real Estate Industrial Complex Infestation (CREICI)?

In other words:

* Pre-bubble: Was a kinda cool city with good prospects, good jobs and high quality of life

* Post-bubble: Pretty much sucks, unemployed illegals and REIC losers, totally screwed

BONUS: What housing-bubble-created factors messed up American towns?

Want to see which banks of mortgage lenders may fail first? Well, here you go..

When you don't adequately set aside loan-loss reserves (helloooo - is anyone auditing these companies?) you get into a heap of trouble right quick.

WaMu - you're next...

BofA pays $2 Billion for a share of could-go-bankrupt, desperate-for-cash Countrywide Mortgage

Kind of a strange deal - they pay $2 Billion and get shares yielding 7.25% that can be converted at $18 worth 15% of the company. And BofA knows that if CFC fails, it takes down the whole sector, so worth a $2 Billion bet. With CFC shares down 53% this year, BofA reaches out and tries to catch the knife... we know how that usually turns out...

And Mozilo, in the middle of a massive dumping of CFC shares, put out this news with some hilarious "vote of confidence" spin, in a desperate attempt to pop the shares and stop the run on his banks.

Uh, Angelo, I think a good vote of confidence would be for you or ANYONE who works for you to buy a share of CFC. Come on Angelo - just one share. Just one? Maybe you should be the one investing in CFC - you got the cash after all after all your well-timed CFC sales.

Bottom line: He needs cash and needs it bad. The deal is at $18 a share. And it puts BofA second in line to the bond holders after the bankruptcy filing as the shares are preferred.

In my personal opinion, if you work for Countrywide, get ready to be laid off. If you bank with Countrywide, get your money out of there NOW.

Note - I'm short CFC via Oct 07 puts. Just a matter of time...

Countrywide Financial Says Bank of America Made Equity Investment of $2 Billion Into Company

LOS ANGELES (AP) -- Countrywide Financial Corp. said Bank of America Corp. made a $2 billion investment in the company Wednesday as the nation's largest mortgage lender tries to weather a credit crunch that's rocked Wall Street and the mortgage industry.

"Bank of America's investment in Countrywide represents a vote of confidence and strengthens our balance sheet, enabling us to position Countrywide for future growth and success," Angelo R. Mozilo, Countrywide's chairman and chief executive, said in a statement.

August 22, 2007

HousingPANIC Thought of the Day

I doubt most folks understand what "Mark to Market" means to them. But then again, most folks don't really understand much of anything, do they.

In finance and accounting, mark to market is the act of assigning a value to a position held in a financial instrument based on the current market price for that instrument or similar instruments. For example, the final value of a futures contract that expires in 9 months will not be known until it expires. If it is marked to market, for accounting purposes it is assigned the value that it would fetch in the open market currently.

HousingPANIC Stupid Question of the Day: Debt

HP'ers - how much debt do you have? (Post as anon)

1) Mortgage

2) Cars

3) Credit cards

4) Student loans

5) Other debt

I think if we asked this question to John Q. Public, versus HP'ers, we'd get vastly different answers. I expect "$0" to be quite common here.

The Economist Magazine launches a nuclear attack on Phoenix Arizona: "Phoenix - Into the Ashes"


In the end, HP'ers, what happened to Phoenix these past six years is truly sad. They had a great canvas to work with, and it could have become a great American city. But the REIC, a corrupted REIC-led government, and its clueless undereducated population simply f*cked it up. I absolutely loved Phoenix in the mid-90s, but it's no longer that town. It changed for the worse - much much worse.

Phoenix, thanks to the housing bubble, quickly became a crime-ridden, fake-economy, uneducated, soulless, cheap, plastic, poser-filled, realtor-infested, illegal-immigration-run-amok hellhole. A perfect example of what happens when the REIC gets hold of a major metropolitan area and uses it for their short-term gain. And a perfect example of horrific urban planning, or lack thereof.

Phoenix may very well become the new Detroit of the Southwest. A town based on a single industry (real estate - 40% of the Phoenix economy) while run by a corrupted government, that slipped into the abyss when the industry blew up.

No matter what clueless Phoenix realtors on commission try to tell you, no one American city will be destroyed by the Housing Crash more than Phoenix, Arizona (and it's urban cancer of suburbs). New Orleans had a hurricane. Phoenix had mortgage brokers and a massive housing bubble and crash. Foreclosures will be everywhere, and the crash in home prices will shock and awe.

Into the ashes - PHOENIX

From The Economist print edition

Phoenix was once hailed as a model city. It grew fast. Its streets were new and shiny, and housing was cheap. Beginning in 1950, the National Civic League voted Phoenix an “All-American City” four times. In 1993 an international competition rated Phoenix, along with Christchurch, New Zealand, the world's best-governed city. Forbes recently ranked it as America's second-best job market, thanks to its buoyant property market and rapid urban growth. In the past five years metropolitan Phoenix's population has grown by almost a fifth, to over 4m.

But in the past few years the awards have mostly dried up and things have started to go wrong. Burglary, theft and car crime are among the highest in the country. Newcomers who left Los Angeles to avoid smog and commuter traffic find that both are little better in Phoenix, and the area scores embarrassingly low in national education ratings. In October the Morgan Quitno Press, a research group, credited Arizona with the worst public education in the country, thanks to overcrowded classrooms, poor test scores and low salaries for teachers.

Phoenix's Native-American art shops and taco restaurants offer pockets of variety, but generic food chains such as International House of Pancakes and Pizza Hut still dominate. The property market is white-dominated too, Ms Koptiuch says, with its suburbs policed by homeowners' associations which insist on a certain uniformity of style.

I thought it'd be fun to put these two videos together

Want to see the housing version of f* Just go to the data section at National Mortgage News

Thought you'd find these numbers and charts interesting. What's most amazing about the charts is how the MSM and NAR spin these housing numbers as "down slightly" or "bottoming" or even "improving". Man, my eyes must deceive.

Keep in mind on the lenders that in many cases, the lender is not the bag-holder. Take Wells Fargo, who makes the loan then gets rid of it as fast as they can like a toxic hot potato. So yes, now that these types of loans are no longer being made, their lending business will collapse, destroying their revenue and profits, but it's the bag-holders that are really gonna take it in the shorts.

August 21, 2007

HousingPANIC Thought of the Day

It's time like these it kinda sucks we've lost our
manufacturing base, eh?

The manufacturing sector and its workers were hardest hit by the growth of Wal-Mart’s imports. Wal-Mart’s increased trade deficit with China eliminated 133,000 manufacturing jobs, 68% of those jobs lost from Wal-Mart’s imports. Jobs in the manufacturing sector pay higher wages and provide better benefits than most other industries, especially for workers with less than a college education.

Our corrupt and pathetic Congress hits all-time low approval rating at a shocking 18%. And the housing crash is just gonna make it worse.

People of America this isn't their fault - its your fault.

You vote for boobs. Party boobs. Dem and Rep boobs.

You get your news from Faux News and Daily Kos. You listen to Rush Limbaugh and Al Franken. You don't think for yourselves. You stupidly believe what the government and your media source tells you. You don't ask yourself why you're a Dem or a Rep - you just are because you always were.

You vote for Democrats who have no platform except raise taxes, allow illegal immigration and hate Republicans

You vote for Republicans who have no new ideas except blowing holes in our deficit, launching stupid wars, codifying their religious beliefs and hating Democrats.

Meanwhile, NAR and NAHB money pours into their corrupted coffers, they talk about home flipper bailouts and we sink $50 Trillion plus into debt.

It's your fault Americans. Keep it up.

Or not.


And for President?

In the GOP primary, Ron Paul of course. In the Democratic primary, you're on your own. And in the general election, vote for the
Independent. Send a message. And this year, the Independent can win. The two-party system is yesterday's news. Just like the NAR and MLS. And the housing crash will be the catalyst.

Congress Approval Rating Matches Historical Low
Just 18% approve of job Congress is doing

PRINCETON, NJ -- A new Gallup Poll finds Congress' approval rating the lowest it has been since Gallup first tracked public opinion of Congress with this measure in 1974. Just 18% of Americans approve of the job Congress is doing, while 76% disapprove, according to the August 13-16, 2007, Gallup Poll.

That 18% job approval rating matches the low recorded in March 1992, when a check-bouncing scandal was one of several scandals besetting Congress, leading many states to pass term limits measures for U.S. representatives (which the Supreme Court later declared unconstitutional). Congress had a similarly low 19% approval rating during the energy crisis in the summer of 1979.

Ron Paul on the Mortgage Meltdown, Bond Market Blowup and Incompetent Federal Reserve

"More inflation is, however, never the answer to inflation.

The truth is that business involves risk, and businesses that miscalculate risk should be liquidated, so their assets can be reallocated to businesses that correctly judge risk and make profits.

Instead, the Fed has injected $64 billion into the jittery markets, effectively amounting to a bailout that keeps these malinvestments afloat, but eventually they will become the undoing of our economy."

-Ron Paul August 2007

HousingPANIC Stupid Question of the Day

Sadly, how screwed are the retiring Baby Boomers who counted on the proceeds from their house to fund their retirement?

Bonus Question: Will there be some sort of Baby-Boomer-Bailout to make up for the shortfall in savings (you know, one more AARP big wet kiss)?

Comparing results from the biennial University of Michigan Health and Retirement study, researchers found that, excluding home and business equity, 51- to 56-year-olds hold less wealth than the same age group did in 1992.

"These boomers look richer, but a lot of that wealth is because one asset [their house] revalued," says co-author Annamaria Lusardi, a professor of economics at Dartmouth. "Excluding housing, people have very little in other wealth components."

Think you're safe putting your cash into money market funds? Think again - they're CDO mortgage investors, and they ain't FDIC insured

The biggest problem with the CDO con-game is that S&P and Moody's hilariously gave this toxic loan cancer AAA or investment grade ratings, so "safe" funds (money markets, pensions, etc) could barrel in.


"Cash is King" means one thing. But damn, if cash isn't safe (goodbye dollar) and money markets aren't safe (hello subprime), every asset class is being liquidated to raise cash, and even gold is dropping (hedge fund selling to pay debt) then it's getting tougher and tougher to find safety. Watch the US T-bills be the last island, which in itself is kinda funny since we're $50 trillion in the hole and essentially bankrupt.

Amazing. Good luck out there.
Aug. 20 (Bloomberg) -- Money market funds were invented 37 years ago to offer investors better returns than bank savings accounts while providing a high degree of safety. Most of the $2.5 trillion sitting in these funds is invested in such assets as U.S. Treasury bills, certificates of deposit and short-term commercial debt.

Unlike bank accounts, money market funds aren't insured by the federal government. They almost never fail.

Unbeknownst to most investors, some of the largest money market funds today are putting part of their cash into one of the riskiest debt investments in the world: collateralized debt obligations backed by subprime mortgage loans.

Under SEC rules, money market managers must invest in securities with ``minimal credit risks.'' Joseph Mason, a finance professor at Drexel University in Philadelphia and a former economist at the U.S. Treasury Department, says subprime debt in money market funds is far from safe.

``This creates tremendous risk for today's money market investors,'' says Mason, who wrote an 84-page report on CDOs this year. ``Right now, I'm not comfortable investing anything in CDOs.''

August 20, 2007

And then the housing rage started... And it got really ugly out there

Damn, this is one good rant. Dude's a bit nuts, but he hit it out of the park.

There's gonna be rage out there HP'ers. Real, tangible rage.

Rage against lying ignorant realtors on commission

Rage against corrupt lenders and bankers

Rage against Congress and Bush and Greenspan and Bernanke

Rage against home builders

Rage against bubble blogs.

Rage. Pure housing rage.

Didn't have to be this way.

Want to see what "Cash is King" and "Flight to Safety" look like during a period of financial panic and fear? Here you go...

Reading the headlines is like reading "Manias, Panics and Crashes". If ANYONE doubts what happened, what's happening and what's going to happen, then you only have yourselves to blame. This is all just so damn obvious. The canary didn't make it. Meanwhile the lender of last resort, The Fed, is taking mortgage backed securities as collateral. Damn, this is gonna end ugly.

From MPC:

· 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.

From reality today:

Aug. 20 (Bloomberg) -- Yields on U.S. Treasury bills fell the most in two decades on demand for the safest securities amid concern over a widening credit crunch.

Three-month yields dropped the most since the stock market crash of 1987 and more than in the wake of the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks in the U.S, as funds shunned assets that may be linked to a weakening mortgage market.

``The market is totally, absolutely, completely in fear mode,'' said John Jansen, who sells Treasuries at CastleOak Securities LP in New York. ``People are afraid that lots and lots of mortgage paper and mortgage paper derivatives of all sorts is completely opaque and they can't price it.''

HousingPANIC Stupid Question of the Day

When will Bernanke and the Fed panic and cut the Fed funds rate?

A) By next week
B) September
C) October - December
D) Not gonna cut until next year
E) Next move will be a rate hike

Bonus Question: Inflation, Stagflation, Deflation, Reflation or Desperation?

FLASH: And then right on schedule the layoffs started at could-go-bankrupt Countrywide Mortgage

Yup, still short CFC...

Hope Angelo can unload a few hundred more million dollars of shares QUICK!!

Report: Countrywide laying off loan originatorsMonday August 20, 12:36 pm ET

Countrywide Financial Corp. has started laying off loan originators, according to a report in Monday's Wall Street Journal, as the credit crunch continues to impact the nation's largest mortgage lender.

The layoffs hit the company's Full Spectrum unit, which handles "Alt-A" loans, which fall between the prime and subprime categories and often are for those applying for loans that don't document their income.

The number of employees laid off was not disclosed. Full Spectrum employed a sales force of about 6,800, with Countrywide as a whole sporting a loan-origination sales force of about 18,000

The monkey-run National Association of Realtors STILL has their anti-bubble talking points up

Monkeys I tell ya. The NAR is run by monkeys...

NAR Anti-Bubble Q&A:

Since 1968, the national median existing-home price has increased an average of 6.4 percent per year

Most metropolitan areas, especially in the Midwest and South, have not experienced price declines in the era of modern recordkeeping

Should we be concerned that home prices are rising faster than family income?

No. There are three components to housing affordability: home prices, income, and financing costs – the latter are historically low.

Overall housing affordability remains favorable in historic terms.

There is virtually no risk of a national housing price bubble

It is possible for local bubbles to surface under the right circumstances, but that also is unlikely in the current environment

The strong underlying demand for homes results from the simple fact that the population is growing faster than the supply of homes

Baby boomers remain in their peak earning years. Echo boomers – the children of the baby boom generation – are just entering the period of life in which people typically buy their first home.

If conditions become unfavorable, home buying may be postponed, but a general price decline remains highly unlikely.

Discredited REIC hack Nicholas Retsinas of the Harvard Joint Center for Housing Studies gets slapped with cold hard housing reality

I guess now that the checks (and cash?) he was receiving from his failing REIC masters (homebuilders, lenders, etc) are bouncing, he feels like he should try to gain back some credibility and admit to the crash underway. Nick - nice try. Too late.

But still good progress since just a few months ago, when this discredited hack was calling HP'ers "Chicken Littles" and "Cassandras", and telling anyone who'd listen that the housing market would be A-OK.

Here's the hack a few months ago, perhaps at REIC gunpoint:

The headline hints of catastrophe: a dot-com repeat, a bubble bursting, an economic apocalypse. Cassandra, though, can stop wailing: the expected price corrections mark a slowing in the rate of increase - not a precipitous decline. This will not spark a chain reaction that will devastate homeowners, builders and communities. Contradicting another gloomy seer, Chicken Little, the sky is not falling.

Idiot. Guess Econ 101 wasn't part of his education.

Now here's Retsinas and his new post-crash spin:

"The housing market faced a series of body blows over the past year: overbuilding, overappreciation, investors, tightening credit and the subprime-loan implosion," said Nicholas Retsinas, director of the Joint Center for Housing Studies at Harvard University. "No question, the last shoe to drop is going to be foreclosures."

Welcome to HP Retsinas. And oh, we're still waiting for an apology...

August 19, 2007

Major mortgage lenders, big homebuilders or the chief ponzi scheme enablers - who goes bankrupt first?

Who goes bankrupt first:

1) Countrywide

2) IndyMac

3) Toll Brothers

4) KB Home

5) Fannie Mae

6) The US Government

Make your bets!

(I'm short CFC, FNM and IMB, should be short KBH, TOL and US$)

HousingPANIC Quote of the Day

"This will go down as one of the biggest financial illusions the world has EVER seen"

- Randall W. Forsyth, writing in Barron's - Aug 2007

For you wonks, here's a bit more from the Barron's piece, care of WC:

How did this all come about? A (bearish) hedge-fund operator, in a letter to his investors, describes how a senior Wall Street marketing director recounted the genesis of the current situation:

"'Real money' (U.S. insurance companies, pension funds, etc.) accounts had stopped purchasing mezzanine tranches of U.S. subprime debt in late 2003 and [Wall Street] needed a mechanism that could enable them to 'mark up' these loans, package them opaquely, and EXPORT THE NEWLY PACKAGED RISK TO UNWITTING BUYERS IN ASIA AND CENTRAL EUROPE!!!!

"He told me with a straight face that these CDOs were the only way to get rid of the riskiest tranches of subprime debt. Interestingly enough, these buyers (mainland Chinese banks, the Chinese Government, Taiwanese banks, Korean banks, German banks, French banks, U.K. banks) possess the 'excess' pools of liquidity around the globe. These pools are basically derived from two sources: 1) massive trade surpluses with the U.S. in U.S. dollars, 2) petrodollar recyclers. These two pools of excess capital are U.S. dollar-denominated and have had a virtually insatiable demand for U.S. dollar-denominated debt... until now."

These investors then had standing orders on Wall Street desks for any U.S. debt rated triple-A. Through the "alchemy of CDOs" and "the help of the ratings agencies," the CDO managers collected triple-B and triple-B-minus subprime and repackaged them so the top tier got paid out first. Then leverage the lower mezzanine tranches by 10-20 times and, "POOF... you magically have 80% of the structure rated 'AAA' by the ratings agencies, despite the underlying collateral being a collection of BBB and BBB- rated assets."

The letter concludes: "This will go down as one of the biggest financial illusions the world has EVER seen."

HousingPANIC Stupid Question of the Day

What are the chances you'll lose your job or income stream during this economic downfall?

What do you do?

Per, guess which two (soon to be bankrupt) companies have the highest paying 1-year CD's? Yup, Mozilo's Countrywide and IndyMac banks

Hey, who cares if the taxpayer (FDIC) will be left holding the bag? Get those high rates up there, attract some last few suckers with 5.6%, meanwhile dump shares like crazy, and then hit the road!

Countrywide and IndyMac. Posterboys of the Great Housing Crash and Ponzi Scheme. Anyone want to bet which company announces Chapter 11 first? The one Angelo currently runs (into the ground) Countrywide, or the one he founded and is now racing CFC into the ground - IndyMac.

Yup, I'm short 'em both, and the above is 100% personal opinion and free speech. Damn folks, get your money out of these two banks! Hurry!

Countrywide: 5.49% 1-Year CD
IndyMac: 5.41% 1-Year CD
P.T. Barnum Bank: 100% 1-Year CD

(BONUS: Oh, what do you think of the picture? Good point of reference. Anyone catch Mozilo and Michael Jackson together send me the snap. Man, that guy cracks me up. And guess what HP'ers - the guy on the right is Eric Mozilo, less-orange brother of Angelo. So guess where he used to work? You got it - INDYMAC. He was VP of Biz Dev there.. Small world eh?)

How bad is the housing crash getting in Phoenix? Here's a home $220,000 below appraisal - yours to buy or maybe even commit mortgage fraud!

Hell, you find a home in housing-crash-central-Phoenix listed at $220,000 below appraisal, just go get yourself a loan for the appraised amount with no down and no doc (IndyMac might be able to help you there if you hurry), move in, then do the American thing and NEVER MAKE A PAYMENT.

Meanwhile, take the $220,000 and transfer it to your Swiss bank account, and just walk away.


Or if you really want to "own" it, go ahead and buy. And see how quick you can lose another $220,000. Or try to rent it out, and ask yourself why renters would only pay 30% of what your cost to "own" would be.

Welcome to HousingPANIC.

$900000 $220k below RECENT appraisal, builder desperate

Priced to move, this WEEK! Not in MLS. No agents please. This is a Pre-foreclosure.

This home is really just one of about 11 other high-end foreclosure or pre-foreclosure homes in the Desert Hills, Cave Creek, or Carefree areas. What is it you are exactly looking for? We can send you a detailed list of all “instant equity on the buy - value purchases” in the area.

August 18, 2007

People of the world it's time to listen. Housing PANIC is here. The time is nigh. The Greatest Ponzi Scheme is over.

HP has been a cute little blog these past couple of years, seeking to warn, inform and entertain. We talked in theory, we debated in potentials.

No more.

The Great Housing Crash and the Great Unwinding are now here.

If you haven't sold your home yet, and you need to, put it on the market now - as in today - and put it out at "drama price" - undercut your neighbors by at least 10% and get the hell out of dodge. Take any offer. But don't hold your breath - it's already too late.

If you're thinking of listening to a realtor on commission and buying a home (renting money from a bank), DON'T. Homes will be cheaper, SIGNIFICANTLY cheaper, months and years from now. We're in the early innings of the greatest crash of all time.

If you're invested in the stock market, GET OUT. The Fed Bump will be oh so brief. A meltdown awaits.

If you have all your assets in US dollars, SPREAD THE RISK.

If your job is tied in any way to housing, get ready to lose it.

And if you don't believe us, just go read the blog, from start to finish, all 3,300 posts. We've been mocked, we've been slandered, we've been criticized and we've been defamed.

But we were right.

And now housing PANIC is here.

And there's nothing you can do about it. This crash will be a crash of necessity. We got off the track. And after it's over, we'll be better off.

Good luck out there. You're gonna need it.

HousingPANIC Stupid Question of the Day

Do you think even the realtors understand now?

Come on! Work with me people! Fear has to be here by now, eh? Let's get this crash over already and move on.

As the CEPR pointed out in their housing crash report the other day, Americans will be best off if we get this housing crash over quickly, versus the 10+ years Japan wasted.

If home prices are simply "Marked to Market", the old prices and expectations thrown away, then we could move on.

Home would start selling again. Builders could eventually start building again. Losses would be known, retirees would be able to prepare, new home buyers wouldn't go bankrupt, and existing home debtors wouldn't go out spending money they don't really have.

Or we can do this the long and painful way.

So work with me, people of America. Your home isn't worth anywhere near what it would have sold for in 2005. The funny money days are over. "Liar's Loans" are no more. Housing speculation is dead for a generation. The Ponzi Scheme is over.

And your house is worth what it was in 2000, at best.

Now deal with it.

Here's the thinking from the CEPR on this:

It is worth noting that from the standpoint of current homeowners and prospective homebuyers a quick unraveling is more desirable than a gradual one, even if the macroeconomic consequences may be more severe.

If a homeowner has a house that will lose a substantial portion of its value over the near future, then she will be better situated to deal with this loss of wealth if it happens sooner rather than if it is delayed for a substantial period of time.

For example, if the homeowner is preparing for retirement, she would benefit from knowing sooner rather than later how much equity she can actually expect to have accumulated from her house. This would allow her to plan her savings, and possibly her retirement decision based on her actual wealth rather than wealth that is only a bubble illusion.