“This is not business as usual.”

From the Wall Street Journal:

Paulson Shifts on Mortgages
Treasury Secretary Seeks Broad Moves by Lenders;
‘Not Business as Usual’
By DEBORAH SOLOMON
November 21, 2007; Page A8

U.S. Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson, concerned that millions of homeowners aren’t being helped quickly enough, is pressing the mortgage-service industry to help broad swaths of borrowers qualify for better loans instead of dealing with mortgage problems on a case-by-case basis.

In an interview, Mr. Paulson said the number of potential home-loan defaults “will be significantly bigger” in 2008 than in 2007. He said he is “aggressively encouraging” the mortgage-service industry — which collects loan payments from borrowers — to develop criteria that would enable large groups of borrowers who might default on their payments to qualify for loans with better terms.

That’s a shift from his previous view that the problems didn’t warrant a group approach. Mr. Paulson said his outlook has evolved as he has learned more about the problem.

“We’re never going to be able to process the number of workouts and modifications that are going to be necessary doing it just sort of one-off,” Mr. Paulson said. “I’ve talked to enough people now to know there’s no way that’s going to work.”

While he stopped short of endorsing a proposal by Sheila Bair, chairwoman of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp., to have mortgage companies freeze the interest rate on the two million mortgages due to reset to higher rates between now and the end of 2008, he said that’s “one idea.” Mr. Paulson said he supports finding some way to develop “standard criteria that’s going to allow for modification and workouts.”

Mr. Paulson faulted Congress for failing to pass several bills that could potentially provide relief for borrowers, and took aim at a Republican senator who is holding up a piece of legislation that would allow the Federal Housing Administration to play a greater role in the cleanup. While the Bush administration and Democrats in Congress backed the bill, Oklahoma Republican Sen. Tom Coburn objected, saying it will result in additional risky loans for which taxpayers will be liable.

Mr. Paulson said he understands Mr. Coburn’s concerns, but notes: “This is not business as usual. This is an extraordinary situation.”

He also called the Senate’s failure to pass legislation overhauling mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac “very frustrating,” saying that the two government-sponsored entities need to be playing a bigger role in the housing market.

“If we ever need them it’s during times like today, and they’re most valuable when there is distress in the mortgage market,” he said. “I’d like to see them playing an even bigger role.”

Fannie and Freddie, however, have recently posted losses that could hamper their ability to buy mortgages, since they are required to keep a hefty capital cushion.

This entry was posted in Economics, Housing Bubble, National Real Estate. Bookmark the permalink.

325 Responses to “This is not business as usual.”

  1. Essex says:

    “Although a republican government is slow to move, yet when once in motion, its momentum becomes irresistible.” –Thomas Jefferson

  2. grim says:

    From Bloomberg:

    Mitsubishi UFJ Profit Falls on Card, Subprime Losses

    Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group Inc., Japan’s biggest publicly traded bank, posted a 63 percent decline in second-quarter profit on losses at a credit-card unit and investments in the U.S. mortgage market.

  3. grim says:

    Pascack Valley Hospital (Westwood, Bergen Co.) layoffs were scheduled for today according to the WARN notice. Head count was listed at 1006.

  4. Pat says:

    Oops, O.K., that was Pat ;).

    http://www.philly.com/inquirer/business/20071121_Thrifts_anticipate_millions_in_losses.html

    “The nation’s 831 thrifts posted a third-quarter profit of $704 million, a drop of 84 percent from $4.29 billion in the same quarter a year earlier…”

  5. grim says:

    From Bloomberg:

    Freddie Mac May Need to Raise $6 Billion to Stem Capital Slide

    Freddie Mac, the second-largest U.S. mortgage-finance company, may need to raise as much as $6 billion to bolster its capital amid the worst housing slump in at least 16 years.

    The government-chartered company yesterday said it would seek more reserves in a “large transaction,” after reporting its biggest quarterly loss. The amount may be $5.5 billion to $6 billion, according to Fox-Pitt Kelton analyst Howard Shapiro. Friedman Billings Ramsey analyst Paul Miller and Gary Gordon, an analyst at Portales Partners LLC in New York, predict $5 billion.

    “It’s not going to be a small number,” said Gordon, who is advising investors to refrain from buying more of the company’s shares.

  6. grim says:

    From Reuters:

    ResCap swaps imply 72 percent default risk

    Credit derivative traders are pricing in a 72 percent chance that Residential Capital, the second-largest independent U.S. mortgage lender, will default on its debt within one year as its losses mount, raising questions over how long its owners will support it.

    Recovery swaps, the contracts used to hedge or bet on how much principal bondholders will recover in the event a company defaults on its debt, have also been active on ResCap, the mortgage unit of GMAC Financial Services.

    “The market has shifted from a ‘when’ to an ‘if’ situation with ResCap as their exposures to some of the now-defaulted builders and the increasing chance that GMAC/Cerberus lets them go becomes increasingly likely,” said Tim Backshall, chief derivative strategist at independent research firm Credit Derivative Research LLC.

    Swaps are also implying a 54 percent chance the lender will default before June 2008, Backshall said.

  7. grim says:

    3 handle on the 10

  8. njpatient says:

    “rhymingrealtor Says:November 20th, 2007 at 10:06 pmNJPatient,That’s what you’ll be paying per day in car insurance….. if you keep blogging and driving. KL”

    No worries – I was in the back seat.

  9. thatBIGwindow says:

    From NJ.com

    ARENA IS UP. NOW ABOUT THE NEIGHBORHOOD …
    Newark has grand plans for all that blacktop

    Thousands of sports fans and concertgoers have visited the Prudential Center in Newark since it opened last month, and the reviews are mostly positive.

    The area around “the Rock” hasn’t met with the same acclaim, however. While it may not be as bleak as some assessments, the reality is inescapable: There are fewer choices in dining, shopping and entertainment around the arena than there are stretches of blacktop.

    http://www.nj.com/news/ledger/jersey/index.ssf?/base/news-8/11956383067660.xml&coll=1

  10. BC Bob says:

    Clotpoll Says:
    November 20th, 2007 at 10:37 pm
    Oil at $100 will give the PPT something to shoot at on Friday.

    Clot,

    I was planning to go to Brazil, to dig, over the holiday. However, the Caribbean is very tempting.

  11. BC Bob says:

    JB [6],

    Parasites. Cut them now.

  12. BC Bob says:

    tbw [11],

    I have been there. It’s a great arena. I did not seek out any restaurants/bars in the area. Just a 5 minute walk from Penn Station. I have been going to Yankee Stadium for 30 years, never had one incident. The area around the Rock is like nirvana compared to the Bronx, around the Stadium.

  13. BC Bob says:

    Sapes [9],

    Thanks. Great link.

  14. reinvestor101 says:

    Paulson at least is trying to make some sense by telling mortgage servicers to be open to modifying loans for people who are in trouble. However, that’s not all that’s needed. We need new loan products for buyers and criteria thats accepts a broader array of borrowers.

    I hope that Goldman or anyone else who is short the market gets very pinched by a short squeeze.

  15. Rich In NNJ says:

    From MarketWatch:

    SUBPRIME TODAY
    Freddie loss more than doubles; auto loans next?

    Subprime Today is MarketWatch’s daily roundup of news related to the credit crunch. Each weekday morning, we provide a synopsis of our own coverage as well as stories from other news outlets, providing links to those original articles.

    MarketWatch also maintains an updated list of U.S. jobs lost this year in the housing- and mortgage-related industries. (Link provided in article)

  16. BC Bob says:

    “Shares in Swiss-based bank UBS AG fell to a near 2-1/2 year low on Tuesday on renewed fears the group may have to make more hefty writedowns for exposure to assets hit by the subprime crisis.”

    “Speculation also swirled in Zurich that UBS, which ranks eighth in the FTSE Global Banks index by market value, might be forced to cut its dividend, or even resort to a capital increase to protect its Tier 1 capital as a result of any writedown.”

    http://www.ibtimes.com/articles/20071120/ubs-shares.htm

  17. njpatient says:

    “I have been going to Yankee Stadium for 30 years, never had one incident.”

    Same here. I wonder how many times we ran into each other.

  18. grim says:

    From MarketWatch:

    Weekly mortgage applications down 3.6%

    The volume of applications filed for mortgages fell 3.6% last week, the Mortgage Bankers Association reported Wednesday.

    Also on a seasonally adjusted basis, applications to refinance existing mortgages decreased 5.0% on a week-to-week basis in the week ended Nov. 16 , while purchase applications dropped 2.0%, according to MBA’s weekly survey.

  19. njpatient says:

    16 reinvestor
    Why do you hate the free market? Why do you hate America?

  20. BC Bob says:

    “Paulson at least is trying to make some sense by telling mortgage servicers to be open to modifying loans for people who are in trouble.”

    50.5,

    Paulson can spew all he wants. The bottom line, margins for the service providers are very thin. After all the BS, approx 1% of loans have been modified. The only real solution, open the window and obliterate the dollar. That does not sound like flag waving scenario.

    Let the junk rot, blow them out, put them back in an apartment where they belong and move on. I would agree with a govt sponsored bill to pay for their taxi cab to their new digs. However, no stopping at the 7-11 to buy lottery tickets.

  21. BC Bob says:

    patient [19],

    Stan’s, Billy’s, Yankee Tavern and the bowling alley.

  22. DebtVulture says:

    Paulson has no more credibility. Wasn’t that long ago that he said housing wasn’t in a bubble, then he said there would be no contagion, etc., etc., etc. What a tool.

  23. reinvestor101 says:

    Don’t you ever accuse me of hating America. What I hate is those people, like you, who hate America and all it stands for.

    You and your ilk have done everything you can to undermine this great nation. Some of us have our azzes on the line here in this country and we don’t really need disloyal persons like you running around starting trouble.

    njpatient Says:
    November 21st, 2007 at 8:22 am
    16 reinvestor
    Why do you hate the free market? Why do you hate America?

  24. Kurt says:

    In Milwaukee this week looking at apartments prior to an anticipated move next spring (50 degrees here on Monday and Tues, but storm is coming today…).
    Yesterday after looking at a model 2br/2bath in the pretentious, ‘hip’ third ward section the leasing agent responded to my comment about the glut of unsold downtown condos (2 yrs inventory according to her) with “the government needs to do something to do something to fix the mortage problem”. I asked her “what should they do? The banks who handed out loans to anyone with a pulse, and the people who had no realistic chance to pay the loans back, got us into this mess”. She didn’t know what the governement shoul do, just that they should “fix it”.
    We’ll likely rent at the 70 year old ‘Art Deco’ building overlooking lake Michigan for at least a year. Will be fire-sale prices on condos here soon.
    Neat town BTW – crime is on the rise in the northern part of the city, but really clean, architechually interesting downtown with lots of good restaurants.

  25. John says:

    MUFG owns UBOC so they got Cali Mtg shitbags on their books.

  26. BC Bob says:

    “Some of us have our azzes on the line here”

    50.5,

    As a start, I would suggest a little risk management. Otherwise, bend down and kiss it goodbye.

  27. 3b says:

    #16 No, We just need housing prices to continue to decline, let the casaulties continue to mount.

    Nobody forced cluless dumb AMeicans to go ut an buy houses they could not afford.

  28. x-underwriter says:

    reinvestor101 Says:
    We need new loan products for buyers and criteria thats accepts a broader array of borrowers.

    May I ask what type of loan products you’re proposing here?

  29. BC Bob says:

    Is the SF indicating some major upcoming event?

  30. chicagofinance says:

    Sapiens Says:
    November 21st, 2007 at 7:32 am
    Who is holding the bag?
    http://datadepository.googlepages.com/whoisholdingthebag.pdf

    homo: you are f—ing G-d! Merci beaucoup!

  31. John says:

    Milwaukee compared to NYC is giving it away at first glance but when I was there for six weeks in 2003 and I checked out a few of the downtown warehouses being converted to Apartments that were on sale for 300K and I found out that at NMIS where I was consulting the average employee “makes their age” I could not figure out who the heck would buy them. The sales rep told me well since I am in Milwaukee six to ten weeks a year I should buy, but even then the three hotels walking distance from downtown were the Marriot courtyard at $89, the Residence in at $109 and the Pfister at $129, all us consultants were on the 6am plane out of NYC on Monday and were on the late evening plane on Thursday back home. If I got stuck at the Courtyard my hotel bill was less than $400 for the week. It made no sense to buy even for the Newyorkers let alone the 40 year old who made 40K a year. Milwaukee starts then at 28K out of school and gives them 3-4% raises till they die, how the heck did they join the 10%+ rise in housing each year from 2000-2005 without any income to support it?
    Kurt Says:
    November 21st, 2007 at 8:41 am
    In Milwaukee this week looking at apartments prior to an anticipated move next spring (50 degrees here on Monday and Tues, but storm is coming today…).
    Yesterday after looking at a model 2br/2bath in the pretentious, ‘hip’ third ward section the leasing agent responded to my comment about the glut of unsold downtown condos (2 yrs inventory according to her) with “the government needs to do something to do something to fix the mortage problem”.

  32. 3b says:

    #35 I hate Milwaukee!!

  33. 3b says:

    #32 FREE!!!

  34. Kurt says:

    John – we’re at the Pfister. $130/night for a king room on the 10th fl, very very nice hotel. Prop taxes are steep here, but overly optimistic prices are the real killer. While walking the downtown on monday we popped our heads in City Green condos which are about 80% finished. While looking around the penthouse 2br/2bth (floor to ceiling windowns overlooking DT and the lake) a construction guy gave us the lowdown: 8 out of 44 units sold in the past year. Top floor 2/2 on the market for $700k, this with cheap window fittings and sloppy trim (but marble ct’s!!!). I’m used to renovations/construction in Germany where I lived for 3 years – solid wook windows with hardware that’s made to last 100 years (I rented a beautifully restored 2/2 apt in a 200year old bakery for 480 Euros/month 1 block from the center of the old city from 2002-05).
    3b – what’s your problem with MKE?

  35. Greg says:

    Dodn’t Paulson say last September that subprime situation was under control and would not spread?

  36. bi says:

    here was my predition from 3 months ago:
    1) 10 year treasury under 4%
    2) oil to $40+
    3) some desirable nj towns will appreciate 10% next year.

    here is update:

    1) is insignificant since it is every bear’s prediction now
    2) oil becomes unpredicatable since it is a bubble now. but it will hit hard in coming months
    3) only smart money believe this.

  37. gary says:

    Bloomberg radio reported this morning that a lot of buyers are on the sidelines waiting for further price declines. I suspect this spring we’ll see more movement than spring 2007. I had an adjusted price in my head as far as what I was going to set my house at within the next 6 – 12 months but I think I may be going back to my original price which is higher than I expected. I’m a half block away from a NYC express bus and less than a mile from the train so perhaps my expectations were too low. I’ll see what the most recent comps are and target just under that. There were two similar houses on my street that just sold and I found out they went higher than I thought they would.

    I do see a number of homes that are priced below the peak and, though I still think these prices are absurd, they are considered a bargain compared to what they were. There was an open house in Rutherford this past weekend for a Victorian with a wrap-around porch. From the picture, it looked like it could be a nice home and was listed at 499K. At least it’s more in line with a human price. I would’ve liked to have seen it. There appears to be a ton of starter homes available in mid level towns and I think some can definitely be low-balled. As for that next level up, there’s a huge price jump and I’m banging my head against the wall because with the proceeds from my current home, plus savings, it still seems like a stretch and I suspect this level isn’t going to change much. It’s that price range just above the starter range and the gap is substantial.

  38. Secondary Market says:

    off topic question:
    does any one have an online mba degree or insight on what the perception (through employers eyes)of online degree is?
    i’m toying with the idea but do not want waste time or money in a useless degree.

  39. kettle1 says:

    First…. may everyone here have a pleasant holiday this week :)

    Second…. Investor(failed)101
    You do realize that you seem to have researched the defining characteristics fascism and be doing your best to live up to all of its principles.

    Last…..
    I honestly believed that the US was at least primarily a free market, perhaps a moderated free market, but i really have to accept the truth; we are not. Paulson is a tool and seems to be doing his best to support his political backers regardless of the long term economic impacts that may come from these. On a side note, we are coming surprisingly close to being a fascist state. While fascism may not be inherently bad, just another form of government, it is not how this country is supposed to operate.

    The term fascist is poorly defined and intended to be descriptive, not derogatory. here is what i generally mean by the term facist
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Economics_of_fascism#General_characteristics_of_fascist_economies

  40. outtrade says:

    10 yrs used to mean something, but in times of tight credit, a lower 10 yr yield just means bigger credit spreads. the effect on mortgage rates are diminished.

    saying oil is in a bubble right now is a strong statement, given that the daily supply vs demand is tight, and the dollar weakening every week.

    everyone is looking for a quick fix to lower home prices, lower stock prices, etc. there is no quick fix. age old remedy is to save and spend below your means.

  41. njpatient says:

    Reinvestor, you made a bad investment and you want a government bailout. Clearly you hate capitalism.

  42. kettle1 says:

    A quote from the wiki page ilinked. Lawrence Britt suggests that protection of corporate power is an essential part of fascism.[17] Historian Gaetano Salvemini argued in 1936 that fascism makes taxpayers responsible to private enterprise, because “the State pays for the blunders of private enterprise… Profit is private and individual. Loss is public and social.”[18]
    I find it …interesting how closely this matches the current behavior of the US government and corporate america currently.

  43. bi says:

    40#, gary, even though we have different persepective, i like your postings since you always give real examples.

  44. grim says:

    From Bloomberg:

    ACA Capital May Get `Thrown to Wolves’ By S&P, JPMorgan Says

    ACA Capital Holdings Inc. will likely be the first bond insurer to have its credit rating cut, forcing banks to take on as much as $60 billion of collateralized debt obligations, JPMorgan Chase & Co. analyst Andrew Wessel said.

    “ACA is a likely candidate to get thrown to the wolves first,” Wessel said in an interview today. Standard & Poor’s on Nov. 9 placed its A rating on ACA’s guaranty business under review for a downgrade, following a $1.04 billion third-quarter loss.

    A downgrade of at least two levels to below A- would force New York-based ACA to post collateral against some of the debt it insures to avoid default, the company said in a filing this week. Banks would likely then be forced to bring their $60 billion of ACA-guaranteed CDOS back onto their books, Wessel said.

  45. gary says:

    bi [46],

    I’m simply calling it as I see it. It’s all subject to change either way and if it does, I’ll adjust accordingly.

  46. njpatient says:

    #9
    wow
    thanks

  47. make money says:

    Take a look at this ad in the USA Today. It definitively David vs Goliath and this like throwing a stone but it all starts with one stone.

    http://www.thewriteagency.com/usatoday.pdf

  48. John says:

    30 BAA3/BBB+ 90 22237LNR9 COUNTRYWIDE HM LN NT 3.250 05/21/08 28.874(M) 89.125

    BOND OF THE DAY – Countrywide bond with a 27% YTM which still has an investment grade rating!!.

  49. 3b says:

    #40 bi Perhaps you can explain to us why house prices in top NJ towns will increase by 10% next year.

    And while you are at it, perhaps you can explain why they did not increase 10% this year.

  50. njpatient says:

    #42 kettle

    agreed, interesting, disappointing.

  51. lisoosh says:

    #45

    “fascism makes taxpayers responsible to private enterprise, because “the State pays for the blunders of private enterprise… Profit is private and individual. Loss is public and social.”

    There’s something I have never come across before. Very interesting. Thanks.

  52. John says:

    Yes they are very usefull. I will send you a MBA from the distinguished and world renowned John University for just $19,999 dollars. Please send the funds to my off shore bank account and you will be fed ex’d your diploma promptly.

    Secondary Market Says:
    November 21st, 2007 at 9:17 am
    off topic question:
    does any one have an online mba degree or insight on what the perception (through employers eyes)of online degree is?
    i’m toying with the idea but do not want waste time or money in a useless degree.

  53. grim says:

    John,

    You jumping in?

  54. pretorius says:

    Kurt and John,

    Thanks for the Milwaukee comments. I have no idea why developers are building condos there. The market for downtown condos is about 50 units deep in most US cities.

    And I don’t know why developers are coming out of the ground with condos around here right now. Most bought the land at peak prices in 2005 and 2006 so will need to hit very high sale prices to make the math work.

    Each morning, I walk by the site of a small factory that was demolished recently. Foundation for a condo building is currently being poured. This guy is probably going to lose $. Maybe I’ll buy a couple units from the bank in 2009

  55. John says:

    The Pfister is the Waldorf Astoria of Milwaukee!!! plus a short walk to the museum by the lake. Did you try that great steakhouse in town?

  56. grim says:

    pre,

    Do you have any data on the current JC/Gold Coast pipeline?

  57. prtraders2000 says:

    OT – Just got the 2007 tax program into the office and decided to plug my numbers in. With just over 110k in income and two kids, we’re set to get banged for $4,000 between AMT and denial of the dependant care credit that goes along with being in AMT. Something is way out of whack when you can’t afford to buy a home in the town you live, but get stuck with the supposed “rich people” tax. And I take the standard deduction. I would have been even more p.o.’d if I owned a home as I would have had my real estate tax deduction nullified by AMT. Congress better approve the “patch” again this year or many middleclass Jerseyans will get stuck too. Rant done.

  58. lisoosh says:

    #50

    Those Ron Paul supporters are absolutely rabid. And myopic. Only read what they want to read into his potential candidacy.

    Funnily enough, most of those I’ve talked to, if Paul is out, would switch to Bloomberg if he chose to run.

    Guess a lot of people just have a desire to shake up the establishment this year.

  59. pretorius says:

    Secondary market,

    If your goal is to get better at finance and earn a credential that can help you get a better job, then go for the CFA.

  60. 3b says:

    #41 gary: First of all Happy Thanksgiving. Second I think you need to chill a little bit if you will.

    Express bus to NYC, train,and all the rest, means nothing in the end, nothing is going to save housing from its path to correction.

    It is the early 90’s all over again, falling prices, falling interest rates, = restoration of housing affordability.

    The Spring 08 market will see the sellers who really want and need to sell capitualte.

    The other dreamers will take their homes off the market, others will have their homess taken from them.

    The NYC area is not immune, and in fact I would argue even more vulnerable due to the now ended real estate hysteria that was present for 5 years or so.

  61. Secondary Market says:

    #55
    i’ll gladly pay you in loonies.

  62. 3b says:

    #38 Kurt: just kidding really i guess. The last tiem I was there about 7 or 8 years ago, I found it very run down and dreary looking. Although the Pfister Hotel was beautiful.

  63. kettle1 says:

    Oh, and for anyone who has doubted my previous assertions that in less then 10 yrs US dollars will no longer be used as the defacto Petrocurrency, explain why opec is openly floating the idea and debating what the next currency will be.

  64. Orion says:

    #9 Sapiens,

    Great link, thanks.

  65. gary says:

    3b,

    Happy Thanksgiving to you also. I am chilled. I’m so chilly, I’m cool. :) Like I said, it’s all subject to change but at the present moment, I’m calling it like I see it. I’m not disagreeing with what you’re saying, I just don’t see it….. yet.

  66. pretorius says:

    Grim,

    I haven’t bothered to put together the #s.

    However, supply of new units is visibly increasing in almost every neighborhood, from downtown Jersey City high rises to Weehawken waterfront townhouses.

    Interesting anecdote from follow-up I did on some condos I sold:

    I flipped a condo in the so-called Gold Coast earlier this year. A few months later, the identical unit above mine was flipped for 10% more than I sold for. Obviously I left some $ on the table there.

    Meanwhile, I sold a condo in the suburbs at about the same time. Amazingly, it was bought by another flipper. I don’t know what he was thinking. He added some paint, nothing more. Then marked it up 20%. It is still on the market, and he will lose $.

    My point is that demand remains strong in Hudson County, compared to the suburbs. The problem with Hudson County is that there is tons of political support for new supply, and it is getting built and hurting prices.

  67. Kurt says:

    John – Haven’t tried a steakhouse yet – Monday was Izumi’s (stamp of approval from my Japanese colleagues), yesterday Mader’s across from Usingers sausage works for lunch and a terrific Indian joint dinner, then saw “before the devil knows you’re dead” at the 80 year old movie theatre uptown.
    Haven’t decided on food for tonight but checking out the ‘Bayside’ area south of third ward where prices are supposed to be still low (and crime according to an ex detective we met at Savoy’s bar last night) so something down there.
    Pret – it’s crazy here, 2 years condo inventorary and they’re STILL breaking ground on new constr. Tail of the tiger indeed!
    3b – how about some details on what exactly you hate about ol Milwaukee??

  68. kettle1 says:

    Lisoosh # 61

    Glad i could offer an interesting tidbit for you.
    Regarding Ron Paul, I honestly believe that the perfect platform would be him and Kuchinich running togather, he has even stated that he would consider it. I think that the reason that his supporters are so rabid ( which is not a bad thing in my opinion) is that when you look at the presidential field, Paul and Kuchinich are the only 2 options who are not completely owned by/beholden to the establishment. While i do not agree with 100% of either candidates policies i do believe that either of them would be the best real opportunity for America to halt out current decadence

  69. kettle1 says:

    Another fun quote from the wiki i linked…

    Finally, fascism was highly militaristic. As such, fascists often increased military spending significantly, and their main reason for economic development was the wish to have a strong economy backing a strong military. Fascist governments encouraged the pursuit of private profit and offered many benefits to large businesses, but they demanded in return that all economic activity should serve the “national interest”

    sound familiar? Someone should see how often the white house IP address accesses that wiki page. wait does GW know how to use the web?

  70. njpatient says:

    “wait does GW know how to use the web?”

    I think so. He’s mentioned that he is aware of the “internets” and that he likes to use “The Google”.

  71. Confused In NJ says:

    Be interesting to see if the economy collapses completely, if more than 5% of the US population even recognizes it. We have the greatest amount of Formal Education in the Countries History, and the least amount of Common Sense. One wonders what the schools teach today. The start of Irrational Investment (Government sanctioned Gambling) began with JFK’s “Great Society”, Taxing Interest on Savings Accounts. It ended with King George failing to prop up the Market with Social Security Dollars, and Fictitious Mortgages being used in lieu of that. The Market Rocket needs perpetual fuel. The “Needs of the Few, take precedence over the Needs of the Many”. I guess King George & the Senate “House of Lords” have finally reversed 1776.

  72. 3b says:

    371 kurt; Love Chicago, do not like Milwaukee, just a personal preference.

  73. 3b says:

    375 njpatient: He also said during the Dubai ports contorversey, that he did not understand what the problem was with a foreign entity controlling the ports, as they are now controlled by a Great British company.

  74. kettle1 says:

    #74

    But remember, “the Internet is not something that you just dump something on. It’s not a big truck. It’s a series of tubes”

    courtesy of Sen Stevens ;)

  75. John says:

    I brought back Usingers from Milwaukee and I get home my wife has it in the fridge already as they sell it at Traders Joe. But the Stinky cheese at the airport is the best!!! Doubled wrapped. The steak place is called Mo’s. Expensive, in fact only expensive steak house in Milwaukee, use the company card it is great. Another tip is there are some good old italian restaurants in town, being near chicago they have one that I forgot the name that dates to the days of Al Capone, plus ask the hotel for a real old time German resturant there are a few left.

    Funniest part of Milwaukee somtimes I would get bumped and have to stay at the marriot courthouse which has no room service or dinner menu and the only place right near by that is open late is Hooters, so I was forced to eat the chicken wings, plus Hootes had a deal with the hotel so they delivered to your room.

    The rock concert by the lake in the Spring totally rocks, I saw like 20 big name bands in one night for like $20 bucks. In the summer on Thursday night they have outdoor areas where you can drink outside and go bar to bar. It is as if Miller wrote beer laws.
    I spent six weeks each year in milwaukee for three years in a row from 2001 to 2003 so I know it well. Go on the Harley and Miller tour and catch a game, I loved it when the Big hot dog and big hamburger would chase each other around the field while I was eating sausage on a stick with a huge miller in my hand, oh yea and they played a baseball game too. Right now you have to see the bucks.

    18 weeks in one city on an expense account you get to know it pretty well.

  76. BLB says:

    #72 – you’re inches from invoking Godwin’s Law.

  77. Shore Guy says:

    Sapiens Says:
    November 21st, 2007 at 7:32 am
    Who is holding the bag?

    Thanks! There is a lot to chew over in the document you posted. It seemes to have presaged the Ohio court’s ruling that Duetche Bank could not foreclose because the structuring of the debt left doubt as to who held the mortgage.

  78. Rich In NNJ says:

    From MarketWatch:

    U.S. Oct. leading indicators down 0.5% vs 0.1% rise in Sept.

    Slower growth for the economy may be on the horizon, continuing after the holidays, the Conference Board said Wednesday, reporting that a gauge of future economic growth fell 0.5% in October. Only three of the 10 leading economic indicators rose in October, with the largest positive contribution from stock prices. Building permits were the largest negative contributor. “Business confidence could edge lower, with unrelenting concerns about price increases not keeping up with wage pressures,” said Ken Goldstein, labor economist at the Conference Board. “At the same time, consumers worry about wages not keeping up with price increases.”

  79. schlivo says:

    Kurt,
    Is Mader’s still serving up decent German food & bier?

  80. kettle1 says:

    #75 Confused

    Be interesting to see if the economy collapses completely, if more than 5% of the US population even recognizes it.

    I agree it is truly terrifying how many people take what they hear on CNN and Faux as their 100% accurate and relevant news/info source. and if you challenge them they just say that “CNN/FOX says different”. I actually think that corporations deserve most of the credit, instead of the government. The corporate advertisers have become so sophisticated. that most of their ads now effect you on a subconscious level ( my psychologist wife has studied this and it really is scary how effective they can be !)of course the Government has been more then happy to support this, a zombie consumer population is much easier to control then and intellectually engaged society. On a side note have you guys seen the “Fox News Porn” Bit?

  81. kettle1 says:

    #75 Confused

    Be interesting to see if the economy collapses completely, if more than 5% of the US population even recognizes it.

    I agree it is truly terrifying how many people take what they hear on CNN and Faux as their 100% accurate and relevant news/info source. and if you challenge them they just say that “CNN/FOX says different”. I actually think that corporations deserve most of the credit, instead of the government. The corporate advertisers have become so sophisticated. that most of their ads now effect you on a subconscious level ( my psychologist wife has studied this and it really is scary how effective they can be !)of course the Government has been more then happy to support this, a zombie consumer population is much easier to control then and intellectually engaged society. On a side note have you guys seen the “Fox News Pron” Bit?

  82. grim says:

    #80 – We’ve reached that point before

  83. Rich In NNJ says:

    MarketWatch’s Subprime Today

    10-year note yields below 4%, 1st time in two years
    Weekly mortgage applications down 3.6%
    Deutsche Bank’s Ackermann sees limited impact from financial crisis
    BlackRock seen as main asset manager for $75 bln SIV fund: New York Times
    Credit Suisse cut at Goldman; investors seen more skeptical
    Paulson Shifts on Mortgages
    U.S. mortgage-related losses likely up to $300 billion: OECD
    No early end to the credit squeeze

    More at link above

  84. lisoosh says:

    kettle1 Says:
    November 21st, 2007 at 10:09 am
    “Regarding Ron Paul, I honestly believe that the perfect platform would be him and Kuchinich running togather, he has even stated that he would consider it.”

    Ugh. No. No no no. The revenge of the midgets.

  85. x-underwriter says:

    x-underwriter Says:
    November 21st, 2007 at 8:52 am
    reinvestor101 Says:
    We need new loan products for buyers and criteria thats accepts a broader array of borrowers.

    May I ask what type of loan products you’re proposing here?

    Reinvestor101,
    You obviously don’t have any answers to your problems so please, stop spouting your useless melodrama here

  86. skep-tic says:

    joke? (from Craigslist)

    **********

    BEST MOBILE HOME THIS SIDE OF THE HUDSON

    DECORATED BY MY COUSIN WHOS IN DECORATION SCHOOL

    NEED CASH DEAL 650,000- FIRM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  87. Kurt says:

    John the only time I ever go to a steakhouse is when the company pays :) If it’s my dime, a couple choice NY strips on the BBQ or a slow cooked rib roast from Acme gives me my red meat fix.

    schlivo – ‘decent’ german food is about how I’d describe it. The spaetzel was pretty sad and while the sauerbraten was above average forthe US it didn’t blow me away.
    Best part of the meal was the plaque above our table that said “Gerald Ford dined at this table on April 2 1976”. The waitress didn’t appreciate much my impression of him while ordering our meal…

  88. grim says:

    From Marketwatch:

    Consumer sentiment hits lowest level in two years

    Consumer sentiment fell in November from the prior month, reaching its lowest level in two years, according to a monthly survey released Wednesday.

    The Consumer Sentiment index was 76.1 in November, down from 80.9 in October, and “significantly” below the 92.1 during the same period in the prior year, according to the Reuters/University of Michigan Surveys of Consumers.

    “Rising prices for fuel and food had a devastating impact on household budgets, and falling home prices have diminished consumers’ sense of financial security,” said Richard Curtin, director of the survey.

    November’s level was revised up from an earlier estimate of 75.0, which was the lowest reading since October 2005. Wall Street economists had expected sentiment to hit 74.5.

    Consumer spending growth will “nearly come to a halt” for the rest of 2007 and into the first few months of 2008, according to the survey, which added that the “risk that a recession develops is uncomfortably large.”

    “The primary risks reflect how low home prices will ultimately sink and how far fuel prices will ultimately climb,” Curtin said.

  89. kettle1 says:

    #80

    I am not trying to imply anything about Nazi germany, i am discussing the historical economic characteristics of fascism. I am not attempting to correlate the political agendas of infamous past regimes with current groups. My point here is meant to be observation of current economic and political trends that do not match with what our traditonal standards have been. Any similarities between past regimes and the current situation is for another discussion

  90. skep-tic says:

    another one… awesome:

    ******

    Nice mobile Home by owneer
    DOUBLE WIDE – MOBILE HOME
    SEE IT TO BELIEVE IT-
    we are leavin’ the prty curtainz and the dogz -no charge

    Serious ONLY

    Asking 500,000 but a little negotiablle

  91. njpatient says:

    #73 John

    per NAR: “Some metro areas bucked the national trend. In the heartland, Bismarck, N.D. prices were strongly positive with a growth rate of 15.1 percent to $161,600 compared with a year ago”

    Must be the proximity to NYC….

    As bi says, all RE is local…

  92. kettle1 says:

    you know, as wacky as ssome of Bi’s arguments may be, at least he offers arguments ( on occasion) and doesnt just cry about how this board is destroying the market. Investor101, you are boring, support your assertions with data or go away!

  93. njpatient says:

    “It ended with King George failing to prop up the Market with Social Security Dollars”

    I had forgotten about this, but you’re right – the idea wasn’t so much that it was good for Social Security as that it was good for the Street.

  94. BC Bob says:

    Is BB getting itchy?

  95. njpatient says:

    78 kettle
    That Stevens quote was a beaut!
    How long before he lands in jail?

  96. kettle1 says:

    #94 skeptic, that has to be a joke!?!?

  97. Happy Camper says:

    #84
    kettle1 Says:
    November 21st, 2007 at 10:32 am
    #75 Confused

    Be interesting to see if the economy collapses completely, if more than 5% of the US population even recognizes it…
    ….zombie consumer population… ”

    A population that supports WARS for no reason other than to enrich no other than the pockets of the private military industry.
    A War which was fed on the back of EASY credit.

  98. kettle1 says:

    99 NJ Patient,

    Stevens isnt going anywhere:( They cant even convict the Lousianan senator/congressman that they have on videotape taking a bribe. they also found bundles of cash wrapped in tinfoil stashed in his home freezer, and they still cant touch him. Once you are entrenched in the US political system you are very close to untouchable….

  99. skep-tic says:

    #100

    let me hear you say war, huh, good God y’all.

  100. bergenbuyer says:

    #50, I won’t tell anyone who they should vote for, but you should definitely look into Ron Paul, he seems to have the right agenda and his hisotrical record of voting for bills, etc. backs it up. FYI, for the hard core democrats, you may like him too.

  101. skep-tic says:

    France or any northeastern state in the U.S. in 5 years (you be the judge):

    “As France’s national transit strike entered its eighth day, the standoff is shaping up as a contest over whom French people detest more: their new president or the entrenched labor unions that have ground the country to a near halt.

    Railway, bus and metro workers are protesting a government plan to curtail special pension benefits that allow them to retire at ages from 50 to 55 rather than the minimum cutoff of 60 that applies to most other French people.”

  102. Happy Camper says:

    #102
    skep-tic Says:
    November 21st, 2007 at 11:23 am
    #100

    let me hear you say war, huh, good God y’all.”

    It is one and the same, Zombie. Bad economic and bad political policies go hand in hand. You allowed both.

  103. kettle1 says:

    Skeptic 103

    i dont understand??? (note kettle1 may have consumed to much of his name sake last night…)

  104. bergenbuyer says:

    Secondary Market- MBA question.

    Online degrees are becoming more accepted, but don’t think you can get an online MBA and then get into banking on the same tier as the guy who went to Wharton.

    Online degrees have definitely seemed to have taken off for teachers and others (maybe unions?) where the school doesn’t matter as much as the degree. If you’re a teacher and you go get a masters, you get a raise. It doesn’t matter if you went to Montclair State, Rutgers or Princeton.

    If you want to go online, I think there are now multiple players, but I think one of the more prestigious is Capella University.

    My 2 pennies.

  105. skep-tic says:

    kettle– Sarkozy is trying to make France’s transportation unions accept a later retirement that is commensurate with the rest of the population’s. It’s the first step in trying to shore up France pension system more generally, which is deeply in the red over the long term.

    I personally can easily see such drama playing out in many northeastern states over the coming years as massive pension obligations (for which there are no adequate reserves) come due.

    Minor agitation among state workers is already starting to emerge in Rhode Island, for one.

  106. Secondary Market says:

    107
    thanks. it’s more a function of applying my time effectively. i recently lost my job and a looking at ways to get a leg up.

  107. kettle1 says:

    Skeptic

    Actually i understood the france thing and think you may be making a surprisingly accurate prediction. I didnt understand your previous post

    # skep-tic Says:
    November 21st, 2007 at 11:23 am

    #100

    let me hear you say war, huh, good God y’all.

  108. Clotpoll says:

    grim (6)-

    “Freddie Mac, the second-largest U.S. mortgage-finance company, may need to raise as much as $6 billion to bolster its capital amid the worst housing slump in at least 16 years.”

    And Paulson wants these guys and Fannie to get even more involved in the FB bailout effort? Isn’t that like making a bank robber chief of police?

    We’re circling the drain & headed straight down the crapper. If this is the best that Paulson & co can come up with, it underlines the severity of the problem.

  109. njpatient says:

    “Once you are entrenched in the US political system you are very close to untouchable…”

    Keep the faith, and remind yourself of Duke Cunningham, Bob Ney, Tom Delay, Steven Griles, Claude Allen, Bernard Kerik, Jack Abramoff, Dusty Foggo, Lester Crawford and David Safavian. Jefferson and Stevens will be gone soon enough, as will others who are officially and publicly under investigation (Don Young, John Doolittle, Jerry Lewis, Rick Renzi and Tom Feeney) or who will collapse under the weight of their own criminal hypocrisy (Larry Craig)

  110. kettle1 says:

    So when was the last meet up done? Any plans for one in the near future?

  111. Bystander says:

    Secondary market,

    I am almost finished with an online degree through a big, state university. I learned a lot from fellow students and many of my project centerd classes were great. Overall, I think the quality is below par. Professors do not respond quickly or supply substantial feedback. Alot of them are degree mills. Obviously do not go with University of Phoenix or similar garbage; rather choose an accredited name institution.

  112. Clotpoll says:

    BC (12)-

    If you go to the Carribbean, drop in on the PPT’s roast buzzard dinner.

    I hear buzzard goes very nicely with Red Stripe or North Sea Brent.

  113. kettle1 says:

    who will collapse under the weight of their own criminal hypocrisy (Larry Craig)

    The media cant make up stuff like this guys fiasco.

    CLot: In my opinion the Fannie mae/freddie Mac route is the only way that they have come up with in order to achieve a large scale bailout of the banks involved in the mortgage fiasco. while still making some sort of attempt to still claim its not a bailout.

  114. Clotpoll says:

    25.25 (16)-

    “I hope that Goldman or anyone else who is short the market gets very pinched by a short squeeze.”

    I have no doubt Goldman can make it thru a short squeeze better than your investments can make it thru their mortgage resets.

    Advice: don’t develop a taste for buzzard. You can’t afford it.

  115. Clotpoll says:

    kettle (116)-

    Yeah. Too bad, though, that Freddie and Fannie are quasi-criminal, gubmint-sponsored shell games.

    All this would be easier to swallow if the workout vehicles at least had the veneer of legitimacy. I fear that what’s to come will make the Enron guys look squeaky-clean in comparison.

  116. skep-tic says:

    kettle– I was quoting the song below, by Edwin Starr:

    War, huh, yeah
    What is it good for
    Absolutely nothing
    Uh-huh
    War, huh, yeah
    What is it good for
    Absolutely nothing
    Say it again, y’all

    War, huh, good God
    What is it good for
    Absolutely nothing
    Listen to me

    Ohhh, war, I despise
    Because it means destruction
    Of innocent lives

    War means tears
    To thousands of mothers eyes
    When their sons go to fight
    And lose their lives

    I said, war, huh
    Good God, y’all
    What is it good for
    Absolutely nothing
    Say it again

    War, whoa, Lord
    What is it good for
    Absolutely nothing
    Listen to me

    War, it ain’t nothing
    But a heartbreaker
    War, friend only to the undertaker
    Ooooh, war
    It’s an enemy to all mankind
    The point of war blows my mind
    War has caused unrest
    Within the younger generation
    Induction then destruction
    Who wants to die
    Aaaaah, war-huh
    Good God y’all
    What is it good for
    Absolutely nothing
    Say it, say it, say it
    War, huh
    What is it good for
    Absolutely nothing
    Listen to me

    War, huh, yeah
    What is it good for
    Absolutely nothing
    Uh-huh
    War, huh, yeah
    What is it good for
    Absolutely nothing
    Say it again y’all
    War, huh, good God
    What is it good for
    Absolutely nothing
    Listen to me

    War, it ain’t nothing but a heartbreaker
    War, it’s got one friend
    That’s the undertaker
    Ooooh, war, has shattered
    Many a young mans dreams
    Made him disabled, bitter and mean
    Life is much to short and precious
    To spend fighting wars these days
    War can’t give life
    It can only take it away

    Ooooh, war, huh
    Good God y’all
    What is it good for
    Absolutely nothing
    Say it again

    War, whoa, Lord
    What is it good for
    Absolutely nothing
    Listen to me

    War, it ain’t nothing but a heartbreaker
    War, friend only to the undertaker
    Peace, love and understanding
    Tell me, is there no place for them today
    They say we must fight to keep our freedom
    But Lord knows there’s got to be a better way

    Ooooooh, war, huh
    Good God y’all
    What is it good for
    You tell me
    Say it, say it, say it, say it

    War, huh
    Good God y’all
    What is it good for
    Stand up and shout it
    Nothing

  117. grim says:

    A little T-Day surprise from Fitch..

    Derivative Fitch cuts $29.8 bln of subprime CDOs

    Derivative Fitch cut $29.8 billion worth of structured finance collateralized debt obligations and affirmed $3.8 billion of the securities, the rating company said on Wednesday.

    Fitch’s global review of such CDOs tied to deteriorated subprime mortgage debt resulted in aggregate downgrades of $67 billion, including affirmations of $10.7 billion of structured finance CDOs across 158 deals, Fitch said.

  118. Clotpoll says:

    Kurt (27)-

    Don’t be surprised. Wisconsin is a closet s0ci@list republic, just like here.

    Go to Madison sometime. What a city full of commie losers.

  119. njpatient says:

    118 ” I fear that what’s to come will make the Enron guys look squeaky-clean in comparison.” i fear the same

    119 – skep – gee, not Frankie Goes to Hollywood?? ;)

  120. Clotpoll says:

    bi (46)-

    “gary, even though we have different persepective, i like your postings since you always give real examples.”

    They are an excellent counterpoint to your fantasy examples.

  121. StephenS says:

    NO COMPENSATION FOR HIGHLANDS LAND OWNERS!!!!!

    (Sorry, I did not get a chance to respond to this yesterday.)

    If my town put a height restriction on buildings, they would not pay me millions of dollars because I can no longer build a high-rise of luxury condos.

    There are a lot of things the town could do that would reduce the value of my property. They could raise property taxes, let school rankings slide, allow a cell tower next to my home, rezone the neighborhood, allow my neighbor to paint their house an ugly color and leave a rusty old car in their driveway etc.

    If I purchase two adjacent half-acre lots in separate transactions and my town implemented one-acre zoning, they could merge my two lots into one. If I owned 25 acres, the town could switch from quarter-acre zoning to 25-acre zoning, and I could only build one house instead of 100.

    Yes, it is unfair and unfortunate to property owners that the government can devalue their property, but they have ALWAYS been able to do it. Unless the government takes away full ownership of your property, they do not have to compensate you.

    By stopping development in the area, a lot of this land becomes MORE valuable. They do not have to worry about what will be built on adjacent property. They will always have the open fields and mountain views they currently enjoy. There are a lot of people with a lot of money who will buy hundreds of acres for their own enjoyment, especially if they know that the surrounding land can never be developed.

    The smart landowners in the highlands sold their development rights before the state ran out of money. The people that remain are being greedy and will say anything to get as much money as possible. Don’t let them fool you. Once this land is developed with strip malls, condos in the middle of nowhere, and congested roads with motor oil running into our drinking water, then we are stuck with it and can never get back what we once had.

  122. Clotpoll says:

    vodka (72)-

    Bush has mentioned on several occasions that he is aware of the internets.

  123. SG says:

    PAUL B. FARRELL, on Marketwatch,

    17 reasons America needs a recession

    we can’t reverse Greenspan’s excessive rate cuts that created the housing/credit crisis.

    I guess MSM is starting to blame Greenspan for the mess.

  124. John says:

    Re: Be interesting to see if the economy collapses completely, if more than 5% of the US population even recognizes it.

    Actually, most people won’t know or care. Not many busy stay at home Mom’s follow this type of news, the cops, firemen and teachers with job security and guaranteed pensions don’t care and the retirees in their paid off capes and money in savings banks could care less. At parties outside of wall street in the surburbs except for the few guys in FS and some flippers no one cares. Most people I know bought their house pre 2002 and only look at their 401K statements when they get them in the mail either quarterly or yearly. I am the only hyper FS nut in the room.

  125. John says:

    Re zoning. Way back I had a chance to buy a plot in the Hamptons cheap. No bank would give me a loan. Bank told me that the town could change zoning restrictions at any time and make that lot unbuildable. Plus it is harder to sell a plot and if they got stuck with it they can’t even rent it out as their is no house one it. Plot was 120K for five acres!!! Cash only and I did not have it. Boo Hoo.

    Often you seel plots for sale with the words “plan approved” they have permission from town approved so new owner can build right away and take out the zoning risk.

  126. BC Bob says:

    “Actually, most people won’t know or care.”

    John,

    True, many think that credit crunch refers to a cereal. However, they can pick their poison; energy prices, slowing growth, falling dollar, further collapse in housing prices, inflation, auto loan defaults and the next subprime, cc receivables.

    If they still don’t have a clue, they may notice rising beer prices. Got barley?

  127. bi says:

    today is capitulation point for short-term stock market. we should see nice rally to year end

  128. njpatient says:

    “If they still don’t have a clue, they may notice rising beer prices. Got barley?”

    my bro lives in the woods, going off grid, and he’s got barley and knows what to do with it

  129. 3b says:

    #131 bi Why?

  130. bergenbuyer says:

    Bystander,

    Hopefully you can answer a few ?’s as I find online ed interesting.

    Why did you go with “big state U” vs. a pure online player? To get the name on the degree?

    What will your degree say? Will anyone know that you went online vs. on campus?

    This is just a guess, but maybe the prof’s were less responsive becuase it’s new to them. They have an on campus course load and then they have this online course too, maybe it’s new to them and they’re not used to devoting any time to responding to emails. I really have no idea, just guessing.

    Maybe a true online player has prof’s that would be more responsive since that’s all they do?

  131. bi says:

    132#, just gut feeling. don’t forget contribution to beartrap.bi

  132. grim says:

    From the Star Ledger:

    NJ home sales plunge, but prices level off

    Home prices in New Jersey leveled off during the third quarter despite a double-digit plunge in sales, according to a report by the National Association of Realtors.

    Home sales in the state fell 13.4 percent compared with the same period a year ago, following a 6.2 percent decline during the second quarter.

    Nationwide, the median price of homes fell 2.0 percent to $220,800 during the third quarter, down from $225,300 a year ago.

    In New Jersey, home prices varied by region. The Wayne and White Plains, N.Y, region, which includes Bergen, Hudson and Passaic counties, had a 3.6 percent increase, and the Newark region, which includes Essex, Somerset, Hunterdon, Morris, Sussex and Union counties, was up 0.9 percent. The Trenton-Ewing region of Mercer County jumped 6.0 percent.

    However, the Edison region that includes Middlesex, Monmouth, Ocean and parts of Somerset counties, fell 5.7 percent, and the North Jersey and Long Island region dropped 0.6 percent.

  133. Aaron says:

    Imagine if Ron Paul was elected, cuts spending 30% and disbanded the IRS… that would save the housing market.

  134. bergenbuyer says:

    2dary Mkt,

    Want a leg up, enroll in school and get started. That alone will show an employer that you’re (A) a go getter that is ambitious and (B) you’re furthering your education that they’re hoping they’ll benefit from as you’ll bring some of what you’re learning to the job each day.

  135. 3b says:

    #128 John: Perhaps for now, But at soem point they will care.

    I know cops, firemen, teachers and others with job security, they may be OK from that perspective, But they all drank heavily from the home equity extraction pool, and at some point it will kick in that this money has to be paid back.

  136. reinvestor101 says:

    Let me tell you something. You need to develop some damn patience. I don’t have time to sit around typing on this damn board all day. Some of us have to work for a living. That means that I just can’t drop everything just because you have a question. Besides, I already answered this question in the first place.

    We need mortgage products with a longer amortization period with government backing. Very much related to this is gaining some control over longer term rates. To do that, we have to deal with a couple of individuals who are trying to undermine us in OPEC; Ahminidiot and Hugo Pineapple Face. These tin horn dictators have tried to convince OPEC to move away from pricing oil in USD. WE CAN’T HAVE THAT. It is well past time to assert some control over the “discussion”

    x-underwriter Says:
    November 21st, 2007 at 10:45 am
    x-underwriter Says:
    November 21st, 2007 at 8:52 am
    reinvestor101 Says:
    We need new loan products for buyers and criteria thats accepts a broader array of borrowers.

    May I ask what type of loan products you’re proposing here?

    Reinvestor101,
    You obviously don’t have any answers to your problems so please, stop spouting your useless melodrama here

  137. Bystander says:

    bergenbuyer,

    Yes, I went with a name school because it provides a level of connectivity that helps in the business world. I doubt many prospesctive employers are going to say “hey, I went to the Cappella University too”. The diploma is the same as any other university degree. Nothing will identify it as on-line. Also, you want an accredited instituion because if you don’t like the classwork you may want to transfer credits to another university. I think this is critical if spending big bucks. Regarding the teachers, I think you are right. They probably have a heavy courseload but that does not excuse the university from scr$wing online students. We deserve the same attention as any other student. Again, I am paying big $ for minimal teacher involvement. They have offered the online program for 5 years so hard to believe this is new to them. It is about $ for good old state u.

  138. Aaron says:

    To do that, we have to deal with a couple of individuals who are trying to undermine us in OPEC; Ahminidiot and Hugo Pineapple Face.

    And who is going to pay for that?

  139. grim says:

    Amortization periods longer than 30 years do little to reduce cost. The only party that benefits from longer amortization periods are the lenders. Take some time to calculate the monthly payment and total interest paid over the life of the loan for 30, 40 and 50 years.

    A small drop in monthly payment is traded off for a massive increase in interest paid.

  140. njpatient says:

    “Let me tell you something. You need to develop some damn patience. ”

    I know you’re not talking to me….

  141. reinvestor101 says:

    Hey chicken little, the sky’s not falling.

    Let me ask you, who do you work for? It’s safe to say that you probably work for a large corporation like 90% of the people who post here. I suppose it’s just fine if you lost your job tomorrow and couldn’t find another one. Don’t you eat at the corporate trough? Of course you do. Saving corporations, investors and our economic advantages is in the interest of everyone here, including you. Stop moaning and get with the program.

    kettle1 Says:
    November 21st, 2007 at 9:28 am
    A quote from the wiki page ilinked. Lawrence Britt suggests that protection of corporate power is an essential part of fascism.[17] Historian Gaetano Salvemini argued in 1936 that fascism makes taxpayers responsible to private enterprise, because “the State pays for the blunders of private enterprise… Profit is private and individual. Loss is public and social.”[18]
    I find it …interesting how closely this matches the current behavior of the US government and corporate america currently

  142. skep-tic says:

    #144

    more importantly, who does number 2 work for?

  143. grim says:

    Since you won’t do the math, I’ll do it for you.

    $400k – 30y @ 6.5%
    Monthly mortgage payment – $2,528
    Total Interest Paid – $510,164

    $400k – 40y @ 6.5%
    Monthly mortgage payment – $2,342
    ($186 monthly savings)
    Total Interest Paid – $724,077

    $400k – 50y @ 6.5%
    Monthly mortgage payment – $2,255
    ($273 monthly savings)
    Total Interest Paid – $952,920

  144. njpatient says:

    “Aaron Says:
    November 21st, 2007 at 12:55 pm
    To do that, we have to deal with a couple of individuals who are trying to undermine us in OPEC; Ahminidiot and Hugo Pineapple Face.

    And who is going to pay for that?”

    Pay for it, my left foot!! Reinvestor needs to enlist right now to join the invasions of Iran and Venezuela unless he wants to admit that he’s not a True Patriot.

  145. John says:

    If they are like my retired in-laws they don’t drive much and have a tiny cape so not much energy costs, don’t work anyhow, don’t travel, don’t buy cars and are never selling their house and never go out to eat.

    In fact for the most part 90% of my neighbors have civil service jobs, live in paid off houses and drive their cars for 10 years plus. This will hit the trade up crowd with leased cars and expensive tastes. The average joe blow is already broke and has no savings to lose anyhow.

    True, many think that credit crunch refers to a cereal. However, they can pick their poison; energy prices (little capes), slowing growth (what), falling dollar (don’t travel), further collapse in housing prices (don, inflation, auto loan defaults and the next subprime, cc receivables.

    If they still don’t have a clue, they may notice rising beer prices. Got barley?

  146. njpatient says:

    “grim Says:
    November 21st, 2007 at 1:02 pm
    Since you won’t do the math, I’ll do it for you.”

    OK, now you’re being unfair. It’s not that he WON’T do the math…

  147. reinvestor101 says:

    Are you paying for anything now? Have your taxes gone up due to the Iraq war? No, they have not. I’d say that the Iraq war has been pretty painless for most and our incursion into Iran will be much the same.

    On the other hand, the benefit of removing these terrorists is huge. Get with the program.

    Aaron Says:
    November 21st, 2007 at 12:55 pm
    To do that, we have to deal with a couple of individuals who are trying to undermine us in OPEC; Ahminidiot and Hugo Pineapple Face.

    And who is going to pay for that?

  148. BC Bob says:

    “Get ready for wide gaps in how the big banks compensate their employees this year.”

    “The ever-shifting financial markets always produce front-runners and also-rans. But bank results are diverging to an exceptionally wide degree in the second half of 2007. That may be why, with just two weeks left before many institutions close their books on the fiscal year, industry observers remain sharply divided about the outlook for year-end payouts. Indeed, even speaking of “the outlook” may be indulging in an illusion. Instead, it may be necessary to formulate distinctly separate outlooks for each major investment and commercial bank.”

    “Of course, the year-to-date figures do not yet reflect 2007’s final quarter, when discretionary bonuses are determined. And there’s a great deal of uncertainty about how the industry will fare, since most banks have ongoing exposure to sub-prime mortgages, leveraged loans, and various structured bonds they would not – or could not – unload.”

    http://news.efinancialcareers.com/NEWS_ITEM/newsItemId-11932

  149. Aaron says:

    I don’t know who is more brain-dead; you, or me for trying to reason with you.

  150. BC Bob says:

    “Are you paying for anything now?”

    50.5,

    Do you have a brain cramp or do you constantly carry on with a half a liter?

  151. reinvestor101 says:

    Hey, I see at nearly a $ 300 savings in monthly carrying charges between a 30 and 50 year note. That ain’t chicken feed. That’s enough for something like a car payment, food and etc.

    grim Says:
    November 21st, 2007 at 1:02 pm
    Since you won’t do the math, I’ll do it for you.

    $400k – 30y @ 6.5%
    Monthly mortgage payment – $2,528
    Total Interest Paid – $510,164

    $400k – 40y @ 6.5%
    Monthly mortgage payment – $2,342
    ($186 monthly savings)
    Total Interest Paid – $724,077

    $400k – 50y @ 6.5%
    Monthly mortgage payment – $2,255
    ($273 monthly savings)
    Total Interest Paid – $952,920

  152. grim says:

    I need to revise my math to make an appropriate example. No lender is going to charge the same rate for a longer amortization term. If the 30y is priced out at 6.5%, the 40y will be higher, and the 50y higher still. So lets revisit the example using more realistic terms.

    $400k – 30y @ 6.5%
    Monthly mortgage payment – $2,528
    Total Interest Paid – $510,164

    $400k – 40y @ 6.75%
    Monthly mortgage payment – $2,413
    ($115 monthly savings)
    Total Interest Paid – $758,455

    $400k – 50y @ 7.00%
    Monthly mortgage payment – $2,406
    ($122 monthly savings)
    Total Interest Paid – $1,044,052

    Would you trade a lifetime of debt servitude for a $100 reduction in your monthly mortgage payment?

  153. Frank says:

    Is this a big deal??

    “European banks agreed to suspend trading in the $2.8 trillion market for mortgage debt known as covered bonds to halt a slump that has closed the region’s main source of financing for home lenders.”

    http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601087&sid=aLzGEmrjr0fA&refer=home

  154. BC Bob says:

    JB, Pre,

    Regarding that pipeline. Troubling, at least a cause of concern, if you own along the coast and plan to sell within a couple of years.

    “Jonathan Masland, an official at Dartmouth’s Tuck School of Business, outlined a ripple effect that may curtail campus job offers. Private equity firms are hiring fewer analysts from banks, Masland told BusinessWeek. That leaves fewer full-time openings for MBAs within the banks. He explained: “some of these (openings) are now being filled by the promotion of an analyst into an associate role, where in the past these people left and went to private equity firms.”

    “The story also quotes Tulane’s business school Career Management Director Edmund Hughes saying, “there are warnings on the horizon.” The number of offers in structured finance and real estate is sure to shrink, and Morgan Stanley and Deutsche Bank recently canceled second-year MBA recruiting events at Carnegie Mellon’s Pittsburgh campus.”

    http://news.efinancialcareers.com/NEWS_ITEM/newsItemId-11867

  155. grim says:

    Hey, I see at nearly a $ 300 savings in monthly carrying charges between a 30 and 50 year note.

    Funny, because I see 20 more years of debt burden and a half of a million dollars in added interest payments.

  156. njpatient says:

    “I’d say that the Iraq war has been pretty painless for most and our incursion into Iran will be much the same.”

    enlist.

  157. kettle1 says:

    # 126

    I think stevens may have sent GW an internet once, but it got stuck in the tubes because cheney was sending an internet to gonzales about new “swimming” techniques at the same time

  158. grim says:

    I’d say that the Iraq war has been pretty painless for most and our incursion into Iran will be much the same.

    njpatient,

    Amazing that he puts so little value on the life of an American soldier and the sacrifices that their families have made. The cost has been tremendous, and those who have served deserve better.

    re101,

    Nice to know that your patriotism is nothing more than a shroud you hide behind, something to be used to support your own position when it benefits you.

  159. reinvestor101 says:

    Grim,

    I’m surprised at you playing around with these numbers. I’ll have to check your math here to verify.

    grim Says:
    November 21st, 2007 at 1:15 pm
    I need to revise my math to make an appropriate example. No lender is going to charge the same rate for a longer amortization term. If the 30y is priced out at 6.5%, the 40y will be higher, and the 50y higher still. So lets revisit the example using more realistic terms.

    $400k – 30y @ 6.5%
    Monthly mortgage payment – $2,528
    Total Interest Paid – $510,164

    $400k – 40y @ 6.75%
    Monthly mortgage payment – $2,413
    ($115 monthly savings)
    Total Interest Paid – $758,455

    $400k – 50y @ 7.00%
    Monthly mortgage payment – $2,406
    ($122 monthly savings)
    Total Interest Paid – $1,044,052

    Would you trade a lifetime of debt servitude for a $100 reduction in your monthly mortgage payment?

  160. bi says:

    here is my call again. long tech short oil. let me know 5 days from now

  161. skep-tic says:

    #157

    strong employment was the only remaining support for the local housing market. just in the last couple of weeks, you can see more desperation in the ads for houses for sale. inventory is high, credit is much harder to come by and now people are losing good jobs (or unable to find new ones coming out of school). 2008 looks like it’s going to be much, much worse for housing than 2007.

  162. lisoosh says:

    Aaron Says:
    November 21st, 2007 at 12:40 pm
    “Imagine if Ron Paul was elected, cuts spending 30% and disbanded the IRS… that would save the housing market.”

    No it wouldn’t.

    Cut the IRS and the US still has enormous costs and debt repayments to cover. The money has to come from somewhere.
    Cut Federal money to the States and the states will extract more from their populations.
    Add in that the housing market is dead because the FTB is priced out – and they pay less income tax per capita – and housing will still drop like a stone. It is inevitable.

  163. reinvestor101 says:

    The question revolved around taxes paid to finance the war. There have been no tax increases.

    grim Says:
    November 21st, 2007 at 1:27 pm
    I’d say that the Iraq war has been pretty painless for most and our incursion into Iran will be much the same.

    njpatient,

    Amazing that he puts so little value on the life of an American soldier and the sacrifices that their families have made. The cost has been tremendous, and those who have served deserve better.

    Nice to know that your patriotism is nothing more than a shroud you hide behind.

  164. pretorius says:

    BC Bob,

    Thanks for the link. I agree that hiring for financial jobs will soften from the solid 2003-2006 pace.

    But that won’t stop thousands of Ivy League grads from settling in the New York metro area in 2008. These people don’t stay in places like Philly or Ithaca.

    For Hudson County condos, I think accelerating supply growth is a bigger problem than slowing demand growth.

  165. BC Bob says:

    Sorry for the long post, no link.

    Yesterday’s earnings news from Freddie Mac was nothing short of dramatic. It posted a $2.02 billion loss, which was three times what analysts had expected, and it also disclosed that it needs to raise more capital to meet regulatory requirements. In order to raise that capital, it was considering cutting its dividend by 50%. That news sent Freddie’s stock down almost 30% yesterday.

    But while the market seemed fixated on the dividend news, the far more important news went largely unnoticed. If market conditions continue to deteriorate and the dividend cut failed to raise enough capital to meet regulatory requirements, Freddie said it would consider slowing purchases in its mortgage portfolio .

    Whoa! That is a very big deal for the housing market. Ever since the secondary market for mortgage-backed securities dried up over the summer, Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae have been the reliable and countercyclical sources of liquidity that have kept a pulse going in the mortgage market. Now Freddie is telling us that if conditions continue to deteriorate it may have to purchase fewer mortgages, effectively making fewer mortgages available in the largest segment of the mortgage market.

    This is earthshaking news, because up to this point, even as the availability of nonconforming mortgages (jumbo loans, no-doc loans, interest-only loans, and various adjustable-rate products) became scarce, there was some comfort in knowing that Freddie and Fannie would always be there to buy standard full-documentation loans for amounts less that $417,000.

    However, if Freddie and Fannie were forced to curtail their purchasing of mortgages, this would take even more homebuyers out of the market by restricting the availability of even standard conforming mortgages. Up to now, these types of mortgages have been freely available.

    It’s no surprise that Countrywide also declined on the news, and there were rumors during the day that it might file for bankruptcy. (However, after the market close, it released a statement that it had “ample liquidity and capital and will be a beneficiary of ongoing mortgage market consolidation.”) Since Countrywide can no longer sell mortgage-backed bonds to the market itself, it has depended on access to the secondary markets through Freddie and Fannie. But if Freddie and Fannie cut back on their activity and that access becomes restricted, it may prove too much for Countrywide to bear.

    The potential for reduced access to funding from Freddie and Fannie is certainly a hard place to be in, but the rock for Countrywide is likely to be a downgrade of its debt rating to “junk” status. In a recent filing, the company said such a downgrade would have a severe impact on its ability to do business — meaning it would likely be unable to continue as a going entity.

    So from just about every angle you look, it appears the mortgage market is going to continue getting worse and that conditions for companies like Countrywide will become critical — either they start to improve right away or too many doors will have closed. And needless to say, this is not a positive development for the housing market. No matter how you slice it, fewer mortgages mean fewer homebuyers, and that means lower home prices.

    We survivors can all be thankful this holiday that we have avoided (and even profited from) these extraordinary events. So we hope those of you in the U.S. have a nice Thanksgiving tomorrow, and for those outside the U.S., we hope you enjoy a day of rest from the U.S. markets.

    Until next week,

    Brian & Mish

  166. John says:

    Well we all read the story about the antics during halftime at the JETS games this season in which fans reportedly line the circular Gate D ramp, shouting at passing women to expose their breasts. Well the female fans have reached a settlement and the male fans better be prepared for the next home game.

    http://www.slideshare.net/EGK/funny-pictures-34632/

  167. kettle1 says:

    # reinvestor101 Says:
    November 21st, 2007 at 1:05 pm

    Are you paying for anything now? Have your taxes gone up due to the Iraq war? No, they have not. I’d say that the Iraq war has been pretty painless for most and our incursion into Iran will be much the same.

    On the other hand, the benefit of removing these terrorists is huge. Get with the program.

    Cat-like Typing Detected
    hmmm someone needs to keep their cat off the keyboard, although these apparently meaningless outbursts are almost intelligible. must be a smart cat

  168. x-underwriter says:

    reinvestor101 Says:
    We need mortgage products with a longer amortization period with government backing. Very much related to this is gaining some control over longer term rates.

    So you’re saying mortgages where all the borrowers basically pay is interest..oh wait. We already have that. We need mortgages with a longer amortization…how huch more than 40 years can you go? You can already get close to 100% financing from the FHA. What more do you want? I’m afraid you don’t have much experience in the mortgage industry. Smaller montly payments in relation to the principal is what got us into this mess in the first place.

    Stop being so damn angry. The people who post here on a daily basis have no effect on the overall picture. We’re just commentators on a big show. We just happened to accurately predict this a few years back. What are you getting out of coming here every day and venting venom. Nobody here is going to help you out of your own mess.

  169. 3b says:

    #164 YOU !!! checking grim’s math!!! hysterical!!! if it were not so insulting to grim.

  170. gary says:

    “In New Jersey, home prices varied by region. The Wayne and White Plains, N.Y, region, which includes Bergen, Hudson and Passaic counties, had a 3.6 percent increase…”

    Um….questions? Comments?

  171. skep-tic says:

    #167

    pretorius– not sure why you think all of those ivy leaguers move here except for the jobs. even for those who are just dying to move to NY under any circumstances, if your job option now becomes consulting rather than banking, do you still buy that $700,000 1 BR two years out?

  172. bi says:

    history always repeat itself and usually it does in the round of 6 or 12 years. that is why we have 6 packs, 12 hours and 12 chinese animal years. the current market is exactly the same as what happened 6 years ago. after big event, people are afraid of recession and thus fed aggresively cut interest rate, which gradually brings back confidence to consumers. in the next few months, we will see huge correction in commodity area, espcilaly engergy, which is about 30% of S&P 500 value. Since people are still nevous about financial sector, which is the largest component of S&P 500, the stock market will be very choppy. But one thing is certain, with declining interest rate and increasing volatility in equity, smart money is looking for hard assets – real estate. this is today’s market analysis. happy holiday!

  173. 3b says:

    #175 gary: I think its been exhausted to death before, but here goes.

    Really expensive house sells, less expensive house sell, the median price rises.

    Tells nothing about the over health and state of the market.

    It just noise at this point IMHO.

  174. lisoosh says:

    “Gold is for optimists. I’m diversifying into canned goods.”

    – Seen as a quote of someone elses quote. Wish I could reference the original.
    Funny though.

  175. 3b says:

    #169 pret OK, but they are going to need jobs, are they not?

    And the jobs are going too have to pay enough to live on the so called gold coast, will they not?

    And they still have to eat, do they not?

  176. rhymingrealtor says:

    Reinvestor101 w/regard to Post #139

    Whaaaaaat?

    KL

  177. kettle1 says:

    Bi 176,

    What factors do you see driving the decrease in energy prices??? I stand by the call that all energy prices are going nowhere but up. there may be a few volitile dips by the will revert back to upwards trends

  178. kettle1 says:

    Lisoosh 178

    if it really gets that bad ionly 3 things can save you, Gold, Guns, God

  179. gary says:

    3b,

    The median was the first thing that came to mind. It’s terribly misleading to the everyday reader who doesn’t follow trends or market dynamics.

  180. njpatient says:

    161 grim

    Yes
    Sickening.

  181. Interesting goings on at Rescap/GMAC…
    They need capital and GM is saying they have “no further obligation” to fund GMAC.

    http://njrereport.com/index.php/2007/11/21/this-is-not-business-as-usual/#comments

    Reuters is reporting GMAC is looking to buy a non US mortgage institution and integrate RESCAP’s local business w/ the acquisition. I think I know what they’re trying to do there. I’ll post full links when they come up.

    #170 – Cat-like Typing Detected
    hehe… I can haz rate cut?

  182. bi says:

    173#, gary i cann’t comment northern jersey. but here is my random observations on greater princeton area: princeton boro and princeton township are like mini-mathattan. it went up 5 to 10% from 2007. for the price in the neighboring towns such as montgomery, west windsor and south bronswick, it was with 3% of 2005 level. 2 years ago, even the houses in bad location can be sold quickly. but it takes much longer now. for a desirable house in desirable location with desirable price, it can be sold in 1 or 2 weeks.

  183. kettle1 says:

    Bi i would like to point out…

    Oil retreats after surge above $99
    http://www.reuters.com/article/newsOne/idUSSP21758220071121

    oil will break $100 before santa arrives my friend

  184. bi says:

    185#, from 2006

  185. Shore Guy says:

    reinvestor101 Says:
    November 21st, 2007 at 1:30 pm
    The question revolved around taxes paid to finance the war. There have been no tax increases.

    Bi, this is true in the short term, inasmuch as we have financed the cost of the war with debt. Every dollar borrowed will cost 3-4 over the 30 years that we pay back the loan. In the end, we will pay for it, just not today. I will not venture into the debate as to whether or not the geopolitical interests argue that the war is a net positive or a net negative. Still, to say we have escaped tax increases is only true in that we have not yet decided to pay for our spending. We are behaving like a person with a hundred bucks in his pocket and goes and buys a eighty dollar item on the credit card but feels good about it because he can make the monthly payment and still has the hundred to spend as he sees fit. The bill is out there and, if you are younger than 50, you will be paying higher taxes to cover it and the accumulated interest….sometime.

  186. Not much detail, but the link on GMAC/RESCAP from Reuters is below;

    http://www.reuters.com/article/innovationNews/idUSWEN268920071121

  187. BC Bob says:

    “this is today’s market analysis. happy holiday!”

    bi,

    Happy holidays to you also.

    Regarding today’s market analysis. I would rather listen to Tiny Tim as he prances thru the tulips. Tulips [no pun].

  188. bi says:

    180#, kettle, energy price usually moves in line with economic activities. from my observaton on emerging market and u.s. market, it seems to me it will be slow down in next year or two. that will eventually bring down oil and other commodity price.

  189. Shore Guy says:

    gary Says:
    November 21st, 2007 at 1:38 pm
    “In New Jersey, home prices varied by region. The Wayne and White Plains, N.Y, region, which includes Bergen, Hudson and Passaic counties, had a 3.6 percent increase…”

    Um….questions? Comments?

    I suspect this is a statistical anomaly caused by entry-level buyers being squeezed out of the market. With those lower priced homes not moving and no longer factored into the equation, even with higher-priced homes selling for a lower price, the average goes up.

  190. Pat says:

    Bi..what did you do back in the old country?

    I’m just curious, I’m not saying anything derogatory.

  191. Aaron says:

    bi I have always agreed that commodities will retreat, but pandoras box has been opened and they will return to levels much higher than we are used to.
    People in emerging markets are not going to return to consumption patterns from 15 years ago.

  192. bi says:

    193#, i don’t have old country to go back.

  193. Pat says:

    O.K., what was your profession up until 6 years ago?

  194. Shore Guy says:

    bi Says:
    November 21st, 2007 at 1:59 pm
    180#, kettle, energy price usually moves in line with economic activities. from my observaton on emerging market and u.s. market, it seems to me it will be slow down in next year or two. that will eventually bring down oil and other commodity price.

    It will be interesting to see what happens to Chinese consumption as the U.S. economy cools. If they cut energy use s a result of slow growth or recession here, I bet you are right and oil prices will drop a bit (assuming OPEC does not decide to stick it to us by switching to the Euro or such as its base currency). How far they go down is anyone’s guess but I would not bet on sub $65-70.

  195. Pat says:

    Never mind,that’s way too personal. Sorry.

  196. bi says:

    196#, technical (quantitative) area since 1998

  197. gary says:

    Can anyone tell me where they see Gold and Silver prices heading?

  198. x-underwriter says:

    I think we figured out who wrote all those flawed models used on wall st that didn’t use enough historical data and led to AAA ratings on junk bonds

  199. Confused In NJ says:

    World War II and Iraq: It’s More Than Just Days That Are Different
    Today’s news that the Iraq war now exceeds World War II in number of days doesn’t strike me as commentary on the failures of the Bush administration or Donald Rumsfeld.

    It strikes me first as a failure of official Washington, a place and a culture that assumes that America can shape and bend the world from its isolated enclaves, whether that is inside the Beltway or inside the Green Zone.

    Second, it strikes me as a failure of the country: We are ever so ready to thrust the military burden onto fewer and fewer shoulders, living on the credit and spending vast sums to equip and network a hyper-modern force that we think can abolish the laws of physics and humankind.

    Finally, it strikes me as a failure of our very military: They seem so confused and foiled wherever they go.

    One thousand three hundred and forty-seven days. Yesterday, the Iraq war — Operation Iraqi Freedom — matched World War II in the number of days America has been fighting. Today we have exceeded the benchmark.

    From Pearl Harbor to VJ Day, the United States defeated Japan, Germany, and Italy in two oceans and on three continents in less than four years, and yet in Iraq, our modern, all-volunteer, professional military can not defeat or even subdue a country of 26 million, where the “enemy,” even by the military’s own accounting, numbers less than 2,000 foreign fighters and terrorists, and less than 50,000 insurgents.

    There is too much dissimilarity to make this an entirely valid comparison. In one war, all of the resources of the nation were brought to bear and the entire nation was shaped for generations to come by the national security institutions created in those dark days.

    In Iraq, the vast majority of Americans hardly notice we are at war.

    The two wars though do reflect the snapshots of our society.

    World War II was fought in the day of saving bonds and rationing: Our forefathers spent what they had. They scraped the bottom and sacrificed to earn security.

    Iraq, on the other hand, is a credit card war. We spend $8 billion a month to fight in Iraq and no one makes a financial sacrifice. No one even notices.

    The Baker-Hamilton commission — the Iraq Study Group — now promises to refinance the effort: By the end of next year, we will be seemingly out of debt and out of Iraq, thanking the wise men for extricating us.

    But the democracy bubble will also have burst in the Middle East and we will be temporarily humbled in our own limitations. That is, until the next wise men sell us the prospectus that they can now indeed gentrify the region to our design.

    And what of our professional military? You’ve heard my tired lament before that we salute and genuflect and thank them for their sacrifice, a sacrifice we don’t have to make ourselves. You’ve heard as well my cranky view that the military itself deserves much of the blame.

    When the history of the Iraq war is written, perhaps the aficionados will remember that it was the 3rd Infantry Division that galloped to Baghdad. Beyond that though, there has been such a profusion of units and commanders who have rotated in and out of the country every few months, even I as close observer can hardly remember their names.

    In other words, we have a flawed institution in our midst. The U.S. military is unable to understand or adjust to the enemy and the situation on the ground; one reason is U.S. military culture itself — with constant rotations in and out of the country and with so many amenities and so much “force protection” demanded on the ground. This just doesn’t make for the kind of intimacy and learning that war demands.

    Sure there are those who have their theories about how to defeat the insurgency in a different way, who argue for more resources — for a higher credit limit.

    But I detect that the vast majority of the military, particularly those in the higher ranks, are only too happy to transfer their balances somewhere else, to refinance and bug out, just as long as it doesn’t affect their future credit rating.

    The bill will have to be paid tomorrow. But for now, we can transfer our balance and admire new interest rates and breathing space. No one’s going to call this the greatest generation.

  200. BC Bob says:

    “Can anyone tell me where they see Gold and Silver prices heading?”

    Gary,

    I would be happy to. However, you won’t believe that I’m serious.

  201. pretorius says:

    “not sure why you think all of those ivy leaguers move here except for the jobs. even for those who are just dying to move to NY under any circumstances, if your job option now becomes consulting rather than banking, do you still buy that $700,000 1 BR two years out?”

    There is more to New York than a high-paying job market.

    Smart people enjoy being surrounded by other smart people, and smart people prefer older cities with personality to newer cities where everyone lives cookie cutter suburbs. That is why the New York and San Francisco attract so many smart people. And that helps explain why $700,000 buys a small apartment in New York and San Francisco but a Toll Brothers McMansion in successful, boring cities like Phoenix and Charlotte.

    In addition, many Ivy Leaguers come from rich families, and these families are as rich as they’ve ever been. That family wealth can make a $700,000 condo affordable for couple on only $250k per year.

  202. Sapiens says:

    Is this a HOLYS__T moment or what???
    Europe Suspends Mortgage Bond Trading Between Banks (Update2

    http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601087&sid=aLzGEmrjr0fA&refer=home———-

  203. gary says:

    BC Bob,

    Give it a shot. :)

  204. Pat says:

    bi, thanks. Now I no longer have to picture you as one of those specialized immigrant real estate agents wearing a goofy suit and dreaming about a career in investment banking.

  205. grim says:

    Pat,

    I shed a tear when he put his gold blazer on for the first time.

  206. bi says:

    (Self-praise and predictions removed -jb)

  207. grim says:

    bi,

    I can’t take the predictions. 24 hour suspension. You can save them all up and post them tomorrow.

  208. Shore Guy says:

    Grim, are you kvelling over there?

  209. bi says:

    210#, actually, i admire these guys who jumped from the ship, swimmed to the shore and end up owning their own businesses: gas station, restaurant or whatever.

  210. 3b says:

    #207 pret: With all due repsect, you are grasping there.

    So if I interpert this correctly, Ivy Leaguers even without the Wall St jobs, or lesser paying Wall St jobs, or lesser paying jobs in general will come here, most of them are all come from wealthy families, and as such they can still pay 700k for a condo in Hudson Co?

    Did you ever even think of the possibility that the prices might drop to reflect the slowing economy in NYC?

    Again with all due respect, some of you non-natives (not from NYC, or its environs)really do crack me up.

    Grant it you can accuse me of being bearish and pessismistic,and perhaps I am overly so, but seriously some of your postings are just down right naieve and or child like in their over the top enthusaism.

    Nonetheless have a nice Thanksgiving.

  211. Shore Guy says:

    # 216

    Pat, that was funny, but this one is inspiring: http://www.zjstech.net/~library/2679/Sailfish1.jpg

    Is that your catch?

  212. Rich In NNJ says:

    213

    It’s Thanksgiving come early!!!

    Thank you, thank you, thank you!

  213. SS says:

    I love reading reinstitutionalized101’s postings. They amaze the heck out of me! He/she obviously has no handle on reality, humanity and absolutely no handle on basic economics. The sad thing is that most Americans probably believe these same ideas – “let’s have the govt bail us out of our own mess, however when I start making some money they better keep their hands off it”.

    How can you possibly say that the war has no impact on us. First and foremost (as Grim stated) the lost lives of OUR soldiers and toll on their families, and secondly the tax implications that will affect the next few generations. Heck – we’re still paying for the Spanish-American war of 1898, how can you possibly say this war has no impact.

    Imbecile

  214. Kurt says:

    sorry I didn’t see your first answer RE Milwaukee 3b. This year was the first time I’ve been here, but I bet it’s quite a bit different than 7-8 years ago. I wouldn’t say at all it’s ‘dreary’ (if you want dreary visit Trenton!).
    Downtown actually reminds me of a mini Chicago, minus the stiffling traffic and yes quite a bit of glamour.

    Clot – who are you, J Edgar Hoover? :)
    What’s worse, Communism or Fascism?
    Madison regularly tops the ‘best places to live’ polls if I remember correctly. Must be polling commies!

  215. pretorius says:

    “So if I interpert this correctly, Ivy Leaguers even without the Wall St jobs, or lesser paying Wall St jobs, or lesser paying jobs in general will come here, most of them are all come from wealthy families, and as such they can still pay 700k for a condo in Hudson Co?”

    In general, yes.

    I believe New York City home prices will remain stable if we have a 1 or 2 year slowdown. But I acknowledge that home prices will drop if there is a severe recession.

  216. skep-tic says:

    pretorios– I think you’re sort of avoiding the issue here. you act like all of these well-educated people move to places like NY to sit in cafes all day and do speed dating. take away the well paying jobs and the entire social milieau falls apart. as for old money, sure mom and dad help a lot of people with downpayments who already have jobs. that cash infusion won’t be coming if you’re sitting on your friend’s couch, unemployed.

  217. Clotpoll says:

    grim (164)-

    I’m hardly the person to be calling for the head of a poster who doesn’t run with the herd, but if you want to ban Fascist101, you’ve got my vote.

    The trolling, refusal to document anything and (now, seemingly) callous diregard of the lives of our soldiers renders his commentary far more useless that Duck’s ever was. At least Duck was entertaining.

  218. Clotpoll says:

    bi (166)-

    “here is my call again. long tech short oil. let me know 5 days from now”

    bi, did you ever consider that most folks’ investment horizon is longer than the life of a fruit fly?

  219. pretorius says:

    “take away the well paying jobs”

    These are the jobs that stay in New York, and more and more of them being created there.

    The jobs that leave New York are back office and manufacturing jobs.

  220. BC Bob says:

    “I can’t take the predictions. 24 hour suspension.”

    JB,

    How about a lifetime ban?

  221. Pat says:

    Shore, not mine, but I wouldn’t toss that one. Looks like a beaut. That guy actually looks like someone I know.

    No, I was just wandering through Thankgiving picture searches, trying to find some interesting stuff for my daughter. They don’t do enough secular info. in her first grade, and we fill in with extra home schooling in those areas.

  222. skep-tic says:

    #222

    pretorious– I really don’t understand where you’re coming from here. Do you not think that there is a business cycle to local real estate, like any other market? if you saw a decade plus long rally in anything else, wouldn’t you think it was due for a correction?

  223. SS says:

    #223 skep-tic

    If I may – if you take away high paying jobs from NYC I think you’ll still have a great environment. New York is a product of its history which has already been written. Therefore whether it’s art, architecture, food, Broadway, NYU, shopping, fashion, etc, it will always demand a premium over other areas. You can move Wall St. to Riverhead Long Island and NYC will still be the place to be.

  224. bi says:

    229#, the correction has already happened. that is why rich in nnj has posted so many listings.

  225. Am I the only one that views reinvestor101’s posts as satire? Obviously it is trollish in nature but it is supposed to be.
    Some of the stuff reinvestor101 has posted has been so over the top prima-facie absurd I don’t see how he (I’m assuming a he here)can be taken seriously.
    It could be me though… I’ve been spending a lot of time w/ Crewdson photography recently so my sense of the absurd may be a skewed…

  226. skep-tic says:

    #226

    Pretorios– I’m not trying to jump all over you, but you are not paying attention if you think the only jobs that are going out the door are back office and manufacturing. at the very least, wall st firms are not hiring tons of entry level people right now as they have been over the past few years.

  227. Shore Guy says:

    230 “Therefore whether it’s art, architecture, food, Broadway, NYU, shopping, fashion, etc, it will always demand a premium over other areas. You can move Wall St. to Riverhead Long Island and NYC will still be the place to be.”

    Does anyone remember the 1970s? If the city is not well run and lacks well-paying jobs, it will suffer just like anyplace else.

    The same can be said of the dollar. Unless well managed, it could very well end up like the florin or pound sterling.

  228. Clotpoll says:

    Pat (196)-

    Soothsayer.

  229. Clotpoll says:

    Pat (199)-

    Squeegee guy.

  230. skep-tic says:

    #230

    SS– I’m not saying that NYC will suddenly be emptied of high paying jobs. I’m just saying that the jobs market today is much weaker than it was a year ago, and next year it will be weaker still. I agree that NYC will probably always remain the financial center of the USA, but there are fluctuations in the area’s economic strength, even given this.

  231. Clotpoll says:

    (202)-

    quant= village idiot

  232. SS says:

    #224 Exactly Clot!

    Although, I find it ironic that the antithesis of his arguments are what keeps his postings permissible. This is after all, a free country!

  233. pretorius says:

    Skep-tic,

    I don’t dispute that home prices and local economies move through cycles.

    My point is that the long term trend across cycles is positive in places where smart and rich people want to live, in part because these people drive economic growth today.

    Regarding correction in prices, this is happening where home prices rose at a faster pace than local economic fundamentals justified -like Phoenix and Las Vegas.

    A correction is not happening in New York or San Francisco, because home prices fit local economic conditions in those cities.

  234. SS says:

    #237
    I understand & agree – I assumed you were speaking hypothetically (by removing high paying jobs). I was just trying to state that NYC has more substance to it than just being a financial hub.

  235. chicagofinance says:

    BC Bob Says:
    November 21st, 2007 at 3:02 pm
    “I can’t take the predictions. 24 hour suspension.” JB, How about a lifetime ban?

    bost: no can do…grim gets paid by the post around here…..

  236. Clotpoll says:

    (240)-

    Gussied-up uniqueness bias is still uniqueness bias.

  237. Pat says:

    Now, true contrarians would all be thankful for the things in life that remind us of alternate realities.

    Without suffering, merciless.
    Without failure, hopeless.

    Without reinvestor101, I’m at a loss here.

  238. Pretorius – There have been a few reports over the past year or two detailing the decline in NYC financial sector jobs.

    The pace of job creation in London far outstripped that of New York City, the report says. From 2002 to 2005, London’s financial services work force grew by 4.3 percent, to 318,000, while New York City’s shrunk by 0.7 percent, or 2,000, to 328,400 jobs.

    .7% isn’t a huge amount, granted. More deets at the link.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2007/01/22/business/22competitive.html

  239. pretorius says:

    Do you believe that New York lost finance jobs between 2002 and 2005? I don’t.

    If finance jobs went during that period, then they were back office jobs.

  240. njpatient says:

    “reinvestor101 Says:
    November 21st, 2007 at 1:30 pm
    The question revolved around taxes paid to finance the war. There have been no tax increases.”

    Horse pucky – the AMT would have been fixed, but it was needed to pay for the war. The war has added $600B to the national debt, which we must pay interest on and therefore can’t use in the federal budget (whether to spend on fixing your housing mess or on tax cuts or whatever), and that money has gone to rebuilding Iraq and bringing them jobs and consumer spending rather than on rebuilding New Orleans and Los Angeles and Minneapolis and wherever and bringing them jobs and consumer spending.

    You think the war is funded entirely by borrowing, and therefore is FREE. This is the entire damn problem with you and people like you: YOU THINK THAT BORROWING IS FREE.
    It isn’t. It has costs, and when you get foreclosed and live in the gutter, I hope the homeless war veteran who pees on you doesn’t find out that you think his buddies gave their lives for free.

    You’re a two-bit punk, reinvestor.

  241. #246 – I can assure you that they weren’t all back office jobs. A large number of them were traders who are now in London, HK, Tokyo, etc.

    Some have stayed in the states but moved to SF and Texas.

  242. Herring123 says:

    Hm. Thats funny, pretorius, because I seem to remember Smith Barney laying off their entire 1st year I-Banking analyst class when I was looking for my first job, in 2003.

  243. gary says:

    As I said, I receive a couple of emails a week from head hunters (IT field) asking if I’m interested in persuing other positions. This is NY, not Peoria.

  244. Essex says:

    “pursuing”–Gary….Hey Gary, not to rain on your parade….but headhunter phone calls are just fishing trips from those losers….not guaranteed jobs….Happy Thanksgiving.

  245. 3b says:

    #246 pret: Citi has been laying off restructuring this entire year, and they were not all back office jobs.

    And this was before the sub-prime fall out, so I would believe more are on the way.

  246. 3b says:

    #250 gary This is NY, not Peoria. Yeah but its not Brigadoon! Happy Thanksgiving!!

  247. 3b says:

    #240 pret: I would not assume that smart and rich people will necessarily overpay, seems contradictory to me.

    But your belief is fervent, no sense trying to reason with you.

  248. pretorius says:

    http://osc.state.ny.us/osdc/rpt5-2008.pdf

    Great report on New York financial industry.

    Key quote: “Wall Street was responsible for 41 percent of the jobs gained in New York City between 2003 and 2006 and for 52 percent of the
    income gained”

  249. dreamtheaterr says:

    #225 Clotpoll, you have to read between the lines. Bi said check back with him in 5 days. 5 days from today involves just 2 trading days.

    And this clown claims to be a quant…. perhaps he misspelled as he always does, and intended to say quaint.

  250. gary says:

    Sure, go ahead, all ya, attack the little, fat chubby kid. ;)

  251. njpatient says:

    “toshiro_mifune Says:
    November 21st, 2007 at 3:05 pm
    Am I the only one that views reinvestor101’s posts as satire? Obviously it is trollish in nature but it is supposed to be.
    Some of the stuff reinvestor101 has posted has been so over the top prima-facie absurd I don’t see how he (I’m assuming a he here)can be taken seriously.
    It could be me though… I’ve been spending a lot of time w/ Crewdson photography recently so my sense of the absurd may be a skewed…”

    tosh, you’re not the only one to think this. I posted the other day that I suspect reinvestor is someone spoofing a combination RE bull/freeper. If JB were smarter and harder working, I’d accuse him of being reinvestor for the sole purpose of spicing up the blog with some thinly veiled humor packed as spice, but he gets just as worked up by the offensiveness as I do.

    I just don’t know – I’d say he can’t be real, but if you’d described the last 6 years of presidential behavior to me in 2000, I’d have also said that guy can’t be real either. The world has some spectacular loons in it, and this guy is a smoking loon. Now, for some reason, I need a glass of wine.

  252. bi says:

    257#, gary, it took me 3 months to figure out some folks here are simply losers. don’t take it seriously. happy thanksgiving.

  253. Aaron says:

    The transformation of NYC = transformation of USA to the FIRE economy, and on the same time line.
    When the FIRE economy is no longer sustainable NYC will suffer the same fate.

  254. BC Bob says:

    “Key quote: “Wall Street was responsible for 41 percent of the jobs gained in New York City between 2003 and 2006 and for 52 percent of the income gained”

    Pre,

    How does this solve the problem regarding an overbought, over-subscribed, deflating RE market. Do the best minds on WS overpay for a declining asset class? How does this affect current lending standards?

  255. BC Bob says:

    “perhaps he misspelled as he always does, and intended to say quaint.”

    dream,

    Maybe he is a pilot for Qantas?

  256. gary says:

    bi,

    Nobody’s attacking me. Didn’t you see me “wink”?

  257. chicagofinance says:

    pretorius Says:
    November 21st, 2007 at 3:27 pm
    Do you believe that New York lost finance jobs between 2002 and 2005? I don’t.
    If finance jobs went during that period, then they were back office jobs.

    pret: maybe I am splitting hairs, but I gotta ask……WTF is your definition of a back-office job…..?

    Maybe I am a little too hardheaded, but you really come off like a guy who flipped a couple of condos….is sitting on about $250K after-tax proceeds, and you are so drunk on it that you can’t be rendered coherent no matter how much coffee you drink and cold water is tossed on you……????

  258. chicagofinance says:

    November 21st, 2007 at 4:12 pm
    “perhaps he misspelled as he always does, and intended to say quaint.”

    no…he was referring to someone with an eating disorder and meant “gaunt”

  259. pretorius says:

    Chicago,

    I wish my proceeds were that high.

    Back office job = Merrill Lynch job in Hopewell, NJ. Front office job = Merrill Lynch job in New York, NY.

  260. BC Bob says:

    Investment banking is moving eastward, the floors[both NYSE and MERC] are virtually vacant, prime brokerage is curtailing lending, mbs is getting whacked, structured finance is seeking a new name, bankers and associates are staring at excel spreadsheets, trying to keep busy, pe is cutting back, hedgies are elsewhere and MBA hiring is very questionable. That’s OK, every graduate wants to come to NY and sip coffee.

  261. bi says:

    most back office jobs are still in NJ. Merrill Lynch -> Hopewell and JC, BSC, barclays -> Wipperney. Citi -> warren. tons in Jersey City area. more financial information systems to princeton area. happy thanksgiving. guys. take your pssimism out for one day vacation.

  262. Aaron says:

    yeah, don’t choke on any turkey bones.

  263. gary says:

    Hey, anyone, give me a forecast on silver.

  264. BC Bob says:

    “Wipperney”

    ????

  265. BC Bob says:

    “Hey, anyone, give me a forecast on silver.”

    Gary,

    Hi-Ho.

  266. gary says:

    LOL! You’re whacked!!

    C’mon man, gimme me a target price.

  267. pretorius says:

    Skep-tic,

    Those layoffs are mild in light of the fact that we’re in the middle of a financial crisis. 2001 & 2002 – which many people tell me was a light recession – produced dramatically higher layoff #s.

    And many of the people who were fired were based in Orange County, not New York.

    See figure 8 in report I linked in #255. Do you expect a repeat of 2001-2002?

  268. BC Bob says:

    Why is every nation, that has their currency pegged to the dollar, screaming regarding inflation. Are we the only nation, dollar, that is not subject to this ugly pilferer.

  269. skep-tic says:

    #276

    Pre– I don’t know whether it will be worse than ’01-’02, but I do think that this turn in the cycle is really only about 3 months old (everyone thought it was ‘contained’ until recently). There are a lot of people sitting in banks, PE shops, law firms, accounting, consulting doing very little work. The year overall has been profitable due to the first two quarters. But if next year is the same as it has been since August, I think a lot of people will become expendable.

  270. njpatient says:

    260 Aaron

    I’ve been saying the same to anyone who will listen

  271. grim says:

    Nothing to see here… From Reuters:

    Merrill bank $1 bln infusion keeps capital rating

    Merrill Lynch & Co Inc recently pumped $1 billion into a banking subsidiary that has a large exposure to risky subprime mortgages and commercial paper hurt by the global credit crunch. Without the $1 billion infusion, Merrill Lynch Bank USA — the largest U.S. industrial bank — would have flirted with falling below minimum federal requirements for being a well capitalized bank, U.S. regulatory filings show.

    Even with the infusion, the bank’s cushion against future declines to asset values is thinner than at many smaller industrial banks.

    The capital infusion could be a prelude to more losses on Merrill Lynch’s subprime-related assets.

    Goldman Sachs analyst William Tanona predicts Merrill will write-down $8 billion in the current quarter and $5 billion next year. That’s on top of the company’s $8.4 billion write-down in the third quarter.

    “Consistent with our long-standing practice, and as part of our normal capital management activities, we take steps to remain ‘well-capitalized,’ which is the highest bank regulatory capital category established by the federal banking regulators,” Merrill said in a statement on Tuesday.

  272. toshiro_mifune says:

    Pret – did you actually read the report you posted or did you just skim it for talking points?

    From pg. 6 col 2 – the period between 2000 and 2003 resulted in employment losses “.. of 34,000 jobs on an average annual basis. Between 2003 and 2006, as Wall Street once again expanded and the industry gained more than half of it lost jobs… employment grew by 18,100 jobs”. So they aren’t even back on par yet with 2000, a net loss of jobs compared to seven years ago.

    Also, “In recent weeks a number of financial forms have announced plans to shed jobs due to ongoing problems… Job losses could accelerate in 2k8 if 4th quarter profits do not recover”. They don’t look like they’re going to recover.

    The discussion of the securities industry’s affect on tax-revenue (pg 9)is very interesting, esp. considering NYC’s second largest employer is NYC.

  273. grim says:

    Tosh,

    Get with the program here. The folks fired during the 2000-2003 period were all middle managers. Once the chaff was discarded, payrolls were refilled with the best, brightest, prettiest, and richest that HR could find. Because this new crew was *so* productive, they only needed to hire half the amount. The savings were paid out as bonuses.

  274. #281 – ha !

    Since I retained my employment during that time can I now consider myself one of the best, brightest and prettiest? I know I’m not amongst the richest.

    Also from the report, pg 8 – “the average salary in the rest of the City’s economy reached $59,630 in 2k6” Williamsbug and LIC are soooo toasted.

  275. Rich In NNJ says:

    November 21st, 2007 at 4:12 pm
    “perhaps he misspelled as he always does, and intended to say quaint.”

    no…he was referring to someone with an eating disorder and meant “gaunt”

    No, no, no, he was referring to someone here who teases him and meant “taunt”

  276. pretorius says:

    Toshiro,

    The report matches what I’ve been saying all along on this blog.

    Early part of decade was a really bad time, and New York was hit especially hard. The recession was mild from a broad national perspective, but it was a business recession, so Wall Street was affected more than Main Street.

    Other people say that I am young and naive, 2001-2002 wasn’t bad at all around here, and we are going into a darker period. I disagree. This slowdown is a consumer slowdown, so it affects Main Street more than Wall Street.

  277. t c m says:

    #247 nj patient –

    sorry, i don’t agree that if it weren’t for the war, they would have fixed amt. i remember being hit with it before the war – before 9/11 in fact.

    the problem with getting rid of amt is that once the politicians get their grubby hands on our money, they don’t seem to be able to let go. even when they all cry we need a “fix”, and all lament about how it hurts the middle class – what a lie – they’ll spend it – if not on the war, then on something else – you may like what it’s spent on, or you may not, but you’re not getting it back.

  278. mikeinwaiting says:

    Pret A consumer slowdown, Wall Street is posting losses of bil after bil.Stocks are getting killed.You read this blog right.

  279. njrebear says:

    Japan first bear market of 2007. Down 20% from 2007 highs.

  280. Orion says:

    Flyin’ mañana…
    Happy Thanksgiving to all.

  281. reinvestor101 says:

    You know, that with “Reinvestor” here on the blog, you’re not supposed to be posting. We’ve discussed this previously and yet you choose once again to violate our pact. Lady, you’re skating on thin ice here. Watch yourself.

    Pat Says:
    November 21st, 2007 at 3:20 pm
    Now, true contrarians would all be thankful for the things in life that remind us of alternate realities.

    Without suffering, merciless.
    Without failure, hopeless.

    Without reinvestor101, I’m at a loss here.

  282. njpatient says:

    285 tcm

    “the problem with getting rid of amt is that once the politicians get their grubby hands on our money, they don’t seem to be able to let go. even when they all cry we need a “fix”, and all lament about how it hurts the middle class – what a lie – they’ll spend it – if not on the war, then on something else – you may like what it’s spent on, or you may not, but you’re not getting it back.”

    You’re speaking about a period during which Bush and the Republican congress passed absolutely massive tax cuts, so I don’t think the assumption that you can never get it back holds at all. Sure, the AMT existed in 2000, but it hadn’t hit a father of two making $100K at that point. The difference now is extreme, and the intervening event was the war.

  283. Essex says:

    #259….LOL….Bi reachin’ out with angst….Hey guys….Have a Happy Thanksgiving…My wife just dragged me to Short Hills Mall….with any luck I won’t hafta go back til 2008……(shaking head). One more reason to shop online this year!

  284. reinvestor101 says:

    Inpatient, you’re a wuss. Stop moaning about how much the war has cost you in taxes when you haven’t paid a damned thing.

    Try moving out of a high tax area or limit your employee business expenses if want to avoid AMT. Tax rates at the margin in our nation are some of the lowest in the industrialized world. You don’t have anything to complain about until you let the liberals screw around with the taxes.

    As to the debt, everybody knows that an expanding money supply is going to deal with that anyway. People, like you, have been running around with debt clocks, wringing your hands and moaning about how we’re going to pay ever since the advent of supply side economics. Inflation takes care of that. You won’t have to really pay any damn thing. Get with the program.

    Let me tell you something. I don’t make it a habit to carry around a bunch of damn bibs and diapers for some crybaby moaning how much he’s paying for something when he hasn’t paid jack. Grow up and stop acting like Baby Huey. The most important thing here is protecting the homeland and the way we do that is to spread democracy

    njpatient Says:
    November 21st, 2007 at 3:30 pm
    “reinvestor101 Says:
    November 21st, 2007 at 1:30 pm
    The question revolved around taxes paid to finance the war. There have been no tax increases.”

    Horse pucky – the AMT would have been fixed, but it was needed to pay for the war. The war has added $600B to the national debt, which we must pay interest on and therefore can’t use in the federal budget (whether to spend on fixing your housing mess or on tax cuts or whatever), and that money has gone to rebuilding Iraq and bringing them jobs and consumer spending rather than on rebuilding New Orleans and Los Angeles and Minneapolis and wherever and bringing them jobs and consumer spending.

    You think the war is funded entirely by borrowing, and therefore is FREE. This is the entire damn problem with you and people like you: YOU THINK THAT BORROWING IS FREE.
    It isn’t. It has costs, and when you get foreclosed and live in the gutter, I hope the homeless war veteran who pees on you doesn’t find out that you think his buddies gave their lives for free.

    You’re a two-bit punk, reinvestor

  285. njpatient says:

    That mall is a terror on holidays – but better today than Friday!

  286. t c m says:

    # 290 njpatient –

    re: amt

    …… “so I don’t think the assumption that you can never get it back holds at all. ”

    well, i certainly hope you’re correct – but i won’t hold my breath. i’m just too skeptical of both parties.

    there are so many reasons i feel awful about this war, but tying amt to it is, in my opinion, a stretch. maybe you tie the two, because, it happens that when you got hit, the war started – but as i said, i’ve heard politicians claiming they wanted to fix it for too long – and nothing was done.

    again, i’d be thrilled to be wrong about this one.

  287. Clotpoll says:

    gary (271)-

    Here’s a serious silver call:

    Usually when gold ramps up, you get a secondary, “echo” rally in silver that is like the gold rally shifted into hyperdrive. Of course, it’s also like a parabolic rocket launch & flight (chartwise), so the vol is enough to make you barf. All you can do is hang on, close your eyes and enjoy the ride.

    If you’re a gold bull, then you have to love silver. If you don’t, it’s ok…it just means you’re a weak long. And, if you’ve got the onions, lay as much on silver as on gold.

    IMO, I can’t even begin to tell you how undervalued both silver and gold are right now.

  288. Clotpoll says:

    gary (271)-

    Munch on this appetizer (SLW, 1 year):

    http://money.excite.com/jsp/ct/bigchart.jsp

  289. Essex says:

    Kanye West a popular and obviously overpaid hip hop singer bought a tear down mansion on N. Crescent Drive in the flats of Beverly Hills for $7,150,000.

    Now, less than nine months later, the six bedroom and 4 bathroom dump is back on the market with an asking prices of $8,699,000. Do the math puppies. That’s a $1,549,000 profit (less the considerable real estate fees).

    http://tinyurl.com/2v633c

  290. Clotpoll says:

    grim (279)-

    Chump change…

  291. reinvestor101 says:

    And like I told you the other day, there’s no apparition sitting here typing my posts. It’s the real me.

    One day, this nation will come to appreciate all that George Bush has done to promote and protect us. Sometimes doing the right thing is unpopular. History will judge President Bush as one of the greatest leaders the world has seen. If necessary, I’d die for Bush.

    njpatient Says:
    November 21st, 2007 at 3:54 pm
    “toshiro_mifune Says:
    November 21st, 2007 at 3:05 pm
    Am I the only one that views reinvestor101’s posts as satire? Obviously it is trollish in nature but it is supposed to be.
    Some of the stuff reinvestor101 has posted has been so over the top prima-facie absurd I don’t see how he (I’m assuming a he here)can be taken seriously.
    It could be me though… I’ve been spending a lot of time w/ Crewdson photography recently so my sense of the absurd may be a skewed…”

    tosh, you’re not the only one to think this. I posted the other day that I suspect reinvestor is someone spoofing a combination RE bull/freeper. If JB were smarter and harder working, I’d accuse him of being reinvestor for the sole purpose of spicing up the blog with some thinly veiled humor packed as spice, but he gets just as worked up by the offensiveness as I do.

    I just don’t know – I’d say he can’t be real, but if you’d described the last 6 years of presidential behavior to me in 2000, I’d have also said that guy can’t be real either. The world has some spectacular loons in it, and this guy is a smoking loon. Now, for some reason, I need a glass of wine.

  292. Essex says:

    #292….Stop moaning about how much the war has cost you in taxes when you haven’t paid a damned thing.
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    Tell me how each of use are not on the hook for somewhere in the area of $20k each for the trillion in war debt? Not to mention the infrastructure that could have been improved if the money were spent domestically? Let me understand how this does not negatively affect my taxes….and probably my child’s future taxes? I really need to know.

    P.S. The AMT has been stomping us for years….it sucks and needs to be abolished…..but who am I kidding….tax and spend is now the mantra of BOTH PARTIES!

  293. Clotpoll says:

    sx (300)-

    Wake me when the talk turns to caching ammo and rifles at secret, strategic locations in a perimeter around Washington.

    Happy Thanksgiving, all! The only way to a better way is via armed overthrow of the gubmint.

  294. Essex says:

    #299…. History will judge President Bush as one of the greatest leaders the world has seen. If necessary, I’d die for Bush.

    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    The revolution is coming! Everyone into their BMWs we ride tonight!

  295. kettle1 says:

    # Clotpoll Says:
    November 21st, 2007 at 8:13 pm

    sx (300)-

    Wake me when the talk turns to caching ammo and rifles at secret, strategic locations in a perimeter around Washington.

    Happy Thanksgiving, all! The only way to a better way is via armed overthrow of the gubmint.

    WOw, clot i never thought of you taking that view (maybe my sarcasm meter is out of calibration…) Talk like that on the interweb will get you a 1-way trip to Gitmo for a waterboarding demo…

  296. Sapiens says:

    BC BOB [276]

    http://www.financialsense.com/editorials/englund/2007/0109.html

    Hugo Salinas Price’s essay, Why are the Americans Smiling?, cogently describes how the international dollar-reserve standard is little more than a wealth transfer scheme exploiting the poor and burgeoning middle classes the world over. He states the…

    …U.S. has transferred its inflation, to the rest of the world, exporting it in the form of dollar reserves in Central Banks around the world.

    When dollars arrive in foreign countries, the local Central Bank purchases the dollars in exchange for the local currency. More reserves equals more local currency. More currency means prices rise; as prices rise, cheap exports to the U.S. decline. The remedy: devaluation. Other countries must devalue their currencies in order to have the privilege of receiving papers from the U.S. Devaluation destroys local financial and productive systems, because in order to persuade local savers from exchanging their local currencies for dollars, interest rates, for instance in Mexican pesos, are raised. Mexico and Brazil are classic cases.

    It is a curious fact that not one Nobel Prize winner has pointed out these extraordinary circumstances. The reason must be, that dollar reserves are such a gigantic tribute operation, that it is not convenient to point out these things. (Italics in the original)

  297. Clotpoll says:

    25.25 (299)-

    “If necessary, I’d die for Bush.”

    Please die now.

  298. d2b says:

    When I was in my twenties I went to Milwaukee for training for ten straight days. I was with seven other guys and we had a fantastic time. I drank a years worth of beer in a week. The memories still make me laugh.

    One night we ended up in the worst strip club in the country. The place was a converted row home. There were chubby chicks dancing on pallets topped with plywood painted black.

  299. Essex says:

    #306 Oh lord…..I went to my first gentlemen’s club in Evansville, Indiana….they had aluminum cans filled with BBs…when the dancers performed the patrons shook the cans….it was completely insane….

    May I recommend the ADMIRAL CLUB if anyone hits the Windy City….well worth it….

  300. Clotpoll says:

    vodka (303)-

    I’m on the record here as being a firm advocate of a bit of the ultra-violence. Blood, unfortunately, will probably have to be spilled to purge our country of the festering sores that bedevil us. For years, I thought the roiling underclasses would rise in unison against the rest of us.

    Now, it seems to me as though the underclasses have been completely sedated by hip-hop and gubmint cheese. They’ve learned to suck and enjoy it. So, it’s time for the disaffected (and well-armed) John Q to take their place at the ramparts. Even if John Q can’t articulate what it is he’ll be fighting against, the simple act of fighting will feel good. Once the endorphins kick in (and he’s weaned from his 2,000 calorie-a-day McDonald’s habit), hopefully John Q’s mind will follow. At the very least, the agrarian aftermath of the Second Civil War will afford John Q ample opportunity for fresh air and exercise. Dropping your ploughshare for the occasional baloney sandwich will create a slimmer man than a daily gorge on bloated, empty McCalories.

    Look at Corzine. Look at Bush. Look at Hillary. Look at Giuliani. Look at any career bureaucrat. Look at some bennie-addled NEA schoolteacher, whining about “gender-neutral” and “self-esteem”. Look at any pasty-faced maggot who sucks money out of your pocket, tries to twist your children’s minds and tells you that YOU have some sort of problem, because you insist that your child be taught something more than how to lay down, close his eyes and enjoy the royal scr*&^ing he’s getting. Is there anything, short of the edge of a bayonet, that will loosen their parasitic grip on the flesh of you and your loved ones?

  301. Clotpoll says:

    grim…308 stuck in moderation.

    This is a post that may get you some significant notice. :)

  302. still_looking says:

    #299: you need haldol. badly.

    #301: clot, watch out for our supreme court who are looking to dilute our second constitutional right (to bear arms.)

    only one more year of that loose nut in the House.

    sl

  303. 3b says:

    #284 pret: First you were grasping, now you are just delerious, it is incredibly hard to take anything you post seriously.

    Yes you are too young, and just plain silly.

  304. 3b says:

    #275 Those layoffs are mild in light of the fact that we’re in the middle of a financial crisis

    Child , the layoffs are just starting, a little early to be calling all is well.

    Listen kid I can tell you right now you will never survive a resession. Can you not at least entertain the possibility that you do not have a clue?

  305. BC Bob says:

    sapes [304],

    Our # 1 export, inflation. I am more bullish **** than bearish RE. Our fed has has gone to tremendous lengths to deface our currency. They have abused their power and generations will suffer as a result. As the worlds econonomy begins to slow, there will be a war; a currency war. It will be the race to the bottom. The de facto currency will rule supreme.

    Also, how about the BOJ, a little manhandled lately? They signed up for this charade with BB back in 2003. They have been the largest benefactors of the carry. This recent action was not part of their blueprint. Unfortunately, currency manipulation can not last forever. Eventually market forces will conquer. A 10% rise in the yen since June? How are their foreign reserves, in treasuries, faring lately?
    You just gotta love central bankers.

  306. 3b says:

    #255 Pret: its a little dated that news, don’t you think. Are you really this obstinate?

  307. bruiser says:

    276…BC Bob

    I have a gut feeling that “inflation” will not be seriously discussed until after Bush leaves office.

  308. Pat says:

    Straight to the moon, reinvestor.

    http://www.haminahamina.com/Enemies.wav

    But Happy Thanksgiving, anyway. I’ve been trying to figure out why your talk to the hand speech the other day reminded me of Boy George and the 80’s.

  309. pretorius says:

    3b,

    The report I posted is only a few weeks old. It is not dated.

    So are you calling a recession?

    For the record I believe we’re in a mid-cycle slowdown, not a recession.

    By the way, I survived the 2001 recession, which was a bad one in terms of local finance industry job losses.

  310. chicagofinance says:

    pret: to be clear…I think your opinions are extreme…at minimum, painfully optimistic…

    As an example – I related the following in June and also in August.

    The friend I had who was just whacked from MS. I had dinner with him in June and talked to him in August. Both times I asked him the obligatory “are you worried?” question. Both times I received a blank stare/silence, followed by “why?”.

    You either see this situation clearly or you don’t. Granted we have many likely minded people here and a nice dose of yahoo-jingoism, but clearly we are well informed and certainly not stupid, ignorant, or lacking in relevent industry experience.

    You certainly have a right to your opinion, and more importantly provide a better breadth to the discussion in the threads.

  311. reinvestor101 says:

    And happy thanksgiving to you and your family as well, Pat.

    Pat Says:
    November 21st, 2007 at 10:02 pm
    Straight to the moon, reinvestor.

    http://www.haminahamina.com/Enemies.wav

    But Happy Thanksgiving, anyway. I’ve been trying to figure out why your talk to the hand speech the other day reminded me of Boy George and the 80’s.

  312. BuyingH says:

    Regarding the price of gold and silver…

    I have a bet with a gold-blind friend of mine: I get $100 if the intraday spot price of gold dips below $650 at any point before April 2008. Of course, I pay him $100 if it stays at $650.00 or above. We’ve had this bet since early October.

    The last few weeks have provided plenty of opportunity for each of us to question the other’s manhood by daring to double down. One week gold is up $100, next it’s down $100, next it’s up $50. Wild ride.

    BH

  313. njpatient says:

    “Inpatient, you’re a wuss. Stop moaning”

    Are you kidding? the reason why everyone on this board despises you is that you’re the world’s biggest pansy,completely unable to take responsibility for your own actions. Invest like a moron?? You run whining to the government to put lotion on your pale, soft a$$. Start a war?? Send some other woman’s son to die, because you’re too cowardly. You can’t face up to anything. How long has it been this way, you crying yourself to sleep every night because life is too difficult for you?

    “I’d die for Bush.”

    Then enlist.

  314. njpatient says:

    300 sx, 301 clot

    Darn tootin’

  315. Essex says:

    I wouldn’t give a toenail for Bush.

  316. Clotpoll says:

    sl (310)-

    I have more guns than I need, but not as many as I want.

  317. Truesue says:

    deleted, posting under multiple aliases is prohibited – jb

Comments are closed.