“A long if not lost decade”

From the NY Post:

Going down

The drop in US home prices — which are already down 28 percent since 2006 — could languish until 2013 as a massive 12 million homes in a shadow inventory still have to clear through the system.

Shadow inventory, which are homes in mortgage default or those already foreclosed upon but not yet on the market, will keep values from recovering as they drip back onto the market, experts said.

“Whether it’s the sidelines, shadow or current inventory, the issue is there’s more supply than demand,” Oliver Chang, a US housing strategist with Morgan Stanley told Bloomberg News, which first reported on the data supplied by his firm as well as Moody’s Analytics, Fannie Mae and Barclays.

The size and effect of the shadow inventory was one of several bleak housing reports released yesterday, with each pointing to continued weakness in the real estate sector.

The value of the nation’s homes could drop by as much as 15 percent in the next two years on the way to a new bottom, and remain stuck there at least three years, according to a report by Morgan Stanley.

One economist said that once the bottom comes, it could take 10 years for prices to recover to their historic annual growth track of 3 percent. Chief economist Mark Zandi of Moody’s Analytics called his recovery outlook “a long, if not lost, decade.”

From Bloomberg:

U.S. Home Prices Face 3-Year Drop as Inventory Surge Looms

The slide in U.S. home prices may have another three years to go as sellers add as many as 12 million more properties to the market.

Shadow inventory — the supply of homes in default or foreclosure that may be offered for sale — is preventing prices from bottoming after a 28 percent plunge from 2006, according to analysts from Moody’s Analytics Inc., Fannie Mae, Morgan Stanley and Barclays Plc. Those properties are in addition to houses that are vacant or that may soon be put on the market by owners.

Fannie Mae, the largest U.S. mortgage finance company, today lowered its forecast for home sales this year, projecting a 7 percent decline from 2009. A drop in demand after the April 30 tax credit expiration “suggests weakening home prices” in the third quarter, according to the report.

There were 4 million homes listed with brokers for sale as of July. It would take a record 12.5 months for those properties to be sold at that month’s sales pace, according to the Chicago- based Realtors group.

“The best thing that could happen is for prices to get to a level that clears the market,” said Shapiro, who predicts prices may fall another 10 percent to 15 percent. “Right now, buyers know it hasn’t hit bottom, so they’re sitting on the sidelines.”

After reaching bottom, prices will gain at the historic annual pace of 3 percent, requiring more than 10 years to return to their peak, he said.

“A long if not lost decade,” Zandi said.

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

165 Responses to “A long if not lost decade”

  1. grim says:

    From CNBC:

    Foreclosures Rise; Repossessions Set Record

    US foreclosure activity rose in August from the previous month, and banks and lenders took ownership from homeowners at a record pace, according to a new report released Thursday.

    Bank repossessions, often the final step in the foreclosure process after a home fails to sell at auction, increased about 2 percent from the month before to 95,364, a record high. At the same the number of properties that received default notices—the first step in the foreclosure process—decreased 1 percent from a month ago and fell 30 percent from a year ago, a sign that lenders are focusing on their backlog of foreclosure inventory before tackling new distressed loans, according to foreclosure listing website RealtyTrac, which released the report.

    Overall, foreclosure fillings rose 4.18 percent in August from the previous month, and were down 5.48 percent from a year ago. In all, 338,836 properties were in the foreclosure process. One in 381 U.S. households received a foreclosure notice in August. (Foreclosure notices are defined as a default notice, auction sale notice or bank repossession.)

    “There is a buildup in delinquent loans that are not in foreclosure,” said Rick Sharga, senior vice president of RealtyTrac, adding that banks and lenders are slowing the process to avoid a drop in home prices. “It’s a managed slowdown more than anything else,” he said.

    “The underlining conditions haven’t improved,” Sharga added, referring to high unemployment and falling home prices in certain markets.

  2. grim says:

    From Newsday:

    Number of Long Island homes close to foreclosure up

    The number of Long Island homes added to the foreclosure pipeline swelled last month after a general decline, a listing service reported Thursday.

    RealtyTrac said lenders put 1,230 borrowers here on notice about pending foreclosure proceedings, a 52 percent jump from July but a 13 percent drop from a year ago.

    Lisa Mann of Massapequa said she was furious over last month’s notice because she’s been in loan modification trials for 16 months so far, paying on time. That came on top of a shocker in April, she said, when she was listed as a credit risk due to being “late” on her mortgage. She said she and her husband were never late, even when his business fell on hard times, she said.

    ” ‘I’m following what you guys told me to do,’ ” Mann said she told the lender, but the response was that her reduced trial payment was not the “original contract” amount signed at closing, a dilemma encountered by other distressed borrowers.

  3. grim says:

    From CNBC:

    Home Price Double Dip Begins

    The trouble with many of the “indicators” we report is that some are pretty current and others are severely lagging. Home sales are generally the former and home prices the latter.

    That’s why, given the combination of the expiration of the home buyer tax credit and the increasing number of loans moving to final foreclosure, we knew that home prices overall would take a hit, but it would take a while.

    Well we’re here.

    Two new reports out today prove the consequences of oversupply of organic inventory (12.5 months on existing homes in July according to the National Association of Realtors) and the shadow inventory of foreclosed properties (estimates vary widely and wildly). CoreLogic’s Home Price Index shows home prices “flat” in July as transaction volume continues to decline. “This was the first time in five months that no year-over-year gains were reported,” according to the release. In June, prices were up 2.4 percent year over year. In addition, “36 states experienced price declines in July, twice the number in May and the highest number since last November when prices nationally were still declining.”

    Now home buyer confidence is back in the dumps, which is clear from another report out today showing that for the 3rd straight month the percentage of home sellers on the market who have slashed their asking prices at least once has gone up. Twenty-six percent of sellers on the market in August, according to Trulia.com, had lowered their expectations, and hence their prices. Sellers on the market today have cut $29 billion off their collective home equity.

    Some of you responding on the blog yesterday said that your markets are just fine, even seeing competition in offers again; I’m sure this is true in many local areas. The trouble is that those areas are in the vast minority. Unless we see a marked, widespread increase in home sales over the next several months, prices will go from flat to down once again.

  4. grim says:

    From the NY Daily News:

    Home groan: City sees rise in foreclosure filings in August, according to report

    City home foreclosures spiked in August, raising concerns that federal efforts to help residents stay in their homes are having a limited effect.

    The number of city dwellers in the foreclosure process hit 1,667, a 21% increase compared with July but a 25% decline compared with a year ago, according to a report due out today from foreclosure tracking firm RealtyTrac.

    “We are not out of the woods yet,” said Daren Blomquist, a spokesman for RealtyTrac.

    Brooklyn residents were hardest hit, with 622 foreclosure notices, up 12% compared with July, but down 10% from August of last year.

    Queens came in second with 469 homes in the foreclosure process, a 22% increase from July but a 50% decrease from a year ago.

    “We continue to see high levels of stress in southeast Queens and central Brooklyn,” said Michael Hickey, executive director of the Center for NYC Neighborhoods, which coordinates free advise and legal counseling for city residents at risk of losing their homes.

    Hickey said August’s spike in foreclosure notices was another sign the federal government’s foreclosure prevention efforts are insufficient.

    “Stagnant employment figures and a soft economic outlook continue to cast a pall over near-term hopes of a turnaround,” he said.

  5. grim says:

    From the AP:

    US homes lost to foreclosure up 25 pct on year

    Lenders took back more homes in August than in any month since the start of the U.S. mortgage crisis.

    The increase in home repossessions came even as the number of properties entering the foreclosure process slowed for the seventh month in a row, foreclosure listing firm RealtyTrac Inc. said Thursday.

    In all, banks repossessed 95,364 properties last month, up 3 percent from July and an increase of 25 percent from August 2009, RealtyTrac said.

    August makes the ninth month in a row that the pace of homes lost to foreclosure has increased on an annual basis. The previous high was in May.

    Banks have been stepping up repossessions to clear out their backlog of bad loans with an eye on eventually placing the foreclosed properties on the market, but they can’t afford to simply dump the properties on the market.

  6. grim says:

    From New Jersey Newsroom:

    N.J. unemployment remains essentially unchanged

    New Jersey’s unemployment rate for August edged lower by 0.1 percentage point to 9.6 percent giving the state the lowest jobless rate in months and equal to the national rate.

    But actually, unemployment in the state remained essentially unchanged with 3,700 New Jerseyans finding work while another 3,200 lost their jobs, according to figures released Wednesday by the state Department of Labor and Workforce Development.

    A total of 3,845,600 New Jerseyans were working during August.

    A gain of 3,700 jobs in the private sector was offset by a decrease of 3,200 in government jobs due mainly to the release of temporary workers for the 2010 Census.

    Private sector employment has expanded for three straight months and five times in the last seven months.

  7. Shore Guy says:

    Not to worry. Soon we will just “print our houses.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2010/09/14/technology/14print.html?pagewanted=print

  8. Shore Guy says:

    “print”

  9. Shore Guy says:

    The first time I saw this was at a place called Y-12. It is pretty interesting.

  10. Shore Guy says:

    Maybe we can “print” some sellers and some Realtors with a clue.

    A heart. A brain. A clue.

  11. Shore Guy says:

    Wake up. Wake up. Wherever you are. And look at my house whose price fell from a star. It fell from a star. It fell long and far. I thought prices always went up, now I live in my car.

  12. Simply Ravishing HEHEHE says:

    Shore,

    I just shot cereal milk out my nose laughing at that one

  13. Still_Renting says:

    # 11 & #12 Thanks for the laugh, really needed that this morning.

  14. Poltroon says:

    One day closer to having to shoot someone.

  15. Mikeinwaiting says:

    Another 15% ! not that some of us here were not expecting it. Does anyone one have ,able to tract down that decline chart with predictions that Veto did? Just for sh*ts & giggles.
    This will crush the hinterland market. People who bought post bubble & didn’t take seconds or a cash out refi will be on the cusp of negative equity. This negative loop will continue till no one will even want to buy a house. Then we will be at the bottom. 1998 pricing by the end of this in my area. Going to be a long walk home.

  16. Poltroon says:

    mike (15)-

    Can’t wait to see 6-8″ of snow hit the lawns up there that have 2′ high weeds. Lots of burst pipes and leaking/collapsing roofs, too.

  17. Poltroon says:

    Ever see an old iron radiator explode? It’s like a grenade going off.

  18. yo'me says:

    GREED!!! How can unemployment rebound,when profit is up and they are still cutting workers.More for less!!!

    FedEx more than doubles its first-quarter profit
    As first-quarter net earnings surge, FedEx sets plans to combine freight operations and cut 1,700 jobs while raising full-year outlook for adjusted profit as demand stays strong.

  19. Mikeinwaiting says:

    Clot talking to many owners (Ha) looking to rent, as I must give up the estate. Piti 2500 I am offering 1400 a month, similar experience with others to varying degrees. Can’t lower their selling price (no cash to bring) can’t rent at anything close to cost. Felt bad for 1 guy advised him to walk away, I’ll find another. Real ugly in the hinterlands.

  20. Mikeinwaiting says:

    Yo 18 Cutting their own throats long term. Corporations have the capital to lead us out of this but won’t. Future macro picture looking terrible, can’t see the forest through the trees. And the beat goes on.

  21. grim says:

    No way the banks are going to be able to winterize the REO and vacant pre-foreclosure inventory in time for winter.

    Smart banks better bite the bullet and start now.

  22. Poltroon says:

    Fun ‘n games (frontrun the Fed) with Bill Gross and PimpCo:

    “As we pointed out last month, in June and July Pimco raised its allocation to government bonds to the highest ever, or 63% and 54% of its then-$239.3 billion Total Return Fund. As a reminder this is when the 10 year was well above 3%, and which proceeded to plunge in yield (soar in value) in August, as the sheer panic of QE Lite (and what it means for QE 2) enveloped the market, and when the Hindenburg Omen correctly predicted a 5% drop in stocks beginning in August 12. Stocks have now risen by over 7% in September, which was to be perfectly expected considering the market has seen $10 billion in redemptions (don’t ask… bizarro), yet bonds have only gradually sold off, and as rumors of QE persist, the 10 Year continues to be just off its all time tights. This may change now that it has been made clear that Pimco sold over $40 billion in UST bonds in the month of August, just as bonds reached all time highs. Yet to get the sense of urgency behind Gross’ earlier actions, consider that the bulk of the purchases were done on margin (pink line in chart below) as the fund borrowed $35 billion in June (and $29 billion June), using all the borrowed cash to fund Treasury purchases. And since the cash repo rate would have effectively wiped out the carry profits on the bonds, it is now blatantly obvious that Gross was very well aware there would be a massive capital appreciation in Treasuries beginning some time in July or August (cough QE Lite cough), and was actively buying all he could on margin in advance of the move.That’s right, ladies and gents – we have just discovered Bill Gross’ frontrunning “tell” – 1-2 months before every Fed intervention, he loads up the securuity that will benefit the most from any particular round of QE using borrowed cash. As the effective duration of the fund increased substantially in June and July it is obvious that Gross was buying up the long end of the curve, expecting a major flattening of the curve. Which, once QE Lite was announced, is precisely what happened. Incidentally, this purchasing on mega margin was repeated by Gross just once before: when Pimco’s holdings of MBS surged from $80 billion to $113 billion in January 2009… just before Ben Bernanke announced QE1. What a series of lucky coincidences!!!”

    http://www.zerohedge.com/article/pimco-offloads-40-billion-treasurys-frontrunning-fed-creates-billions-profits-gross-does-not

  23. Mr Wantanapolous says:

    “Whether it’s the sidelines, shadow or current inventory, the issue is there’s more supply than demand,”

    MSM is quite boring these days. We discussed this 2-3 years ago.

    Yes, a long decade and a long walk home.

  24. JJ AKA John says:

    Bill Gross is just able to pick up a few extra pennies in yield. He is moving the titantic around ice burgs with his huge portfolio with investors piling cash into his fund at a time the pickings is slim.

    Mr Bruce Bent the godfather of money markets tried to pick up extra yield at a time of low rates and his reserve fund broke the buck and his 40 year career went down the toliet. Mr. Gross are you trying to join Mr. Bent?

  25. Poltroon says:

    jj (24)-

    Bent didn’t have the Fed covering his backside. PimpCo does.

  26. Poltroon says:

    Hey, it all works.

    Until it doesn’t.

  27. New in NJ says:

    My wife and I cruised Boca Raton and Bonton Beach yesterday looking for our new place to live (rent, I might add). Even the nice neighborhoods were pocked with vacant, unkempt properties with pool water greener than that of the Everglades.

    And Shore, from yesterday’s thread: I bought a some Italian-made items from Barney’s a couple of years ago, and the stitching just hasn’t held up. Maybe they were made in those Chinese-Italian sweatshops described in the article.

  28. Mr Wantanapolous says:

    JJ [24],

    LTCM’s Black Scholes model was designed to pick up nickels in front of steamrollers.

  29. Poltroon says:

    Great. Now we have massive joblessness, tied to incipient input inflation, tied to beggar thy neighbor, all glued together with burgeoning protectionism.

    Gonna be a long walk home.

  30. Poltroon says:

    Deflation in leveraged assets, inflation in goods and necessities.

    The best of both worlds (hack, hack, urrrp, urrrp….).

  31. Mr Wantanapolous says:

    Doom [30],

    Exactly. The masters are creating inflation in the wrong vehicles. Joe Consumer is about to get whacked. Falling asset prices, employment still declining, stagnant wages and hourly work week close to record low. Icing on the cake; higher food prices, import prices, material prices, medical and taxes. Fedco has brewed a double headed monster.

  32. Barbara says:

    1999 prices, that’s reasonable. That’s where we are headed. That’s what I will pay.

  33. Mr Wantanapolous says:

    Saturday Night Fever 2.0

  34. Barbara says:

    Notice the deafening silence on the inability to earn even modest interest on your coin? That’s how broke we are in this country. No coin, no interest….no interest.

  35. Mr Wantanapolous says:

    Barbara [34],

    Only GS is afforded that luxury.

  36. Barbara says:

    truth

  37. Fabius Maximus says:

    #21 Grim,

    Did you ever reach out to Ralph or Sue Barone at NJ REO. It might be worth a call to see how the winterization side of their business is doing.

  38. Confused In NJ says:

    21.grim says:
    September 16, 2010 at 8:07 am
    No way the banks are going to be able to winterize the REO and vacant pre-foreclosure inventory in time for winter.

    Smart banks better bite the bullet and start now

    That already occurred in a colonial up the street from me last winter. Still looks pretty on the outside, but is a tear down on the inside, from busted pipes and mold.

  39. Xroads says:

    Mike darta was on radio saying no dhow dip just a slowdown in the recovery. This guy and a lot of economists missed the bubble and are missing the d le dip they’re just not close enough to the disappearing middle class

  40. yo'me says:

    How hard is it to turn off the main water line and turn on all the faucets?

  41. Orion says:

    Oh that’s just great!
    I now have to wait 5-10 yrs. to recoup my significant friggin down payment made on a condo 2yrs. ago. That’s just f*king great. Because of this blog, I was pretty much kickin’ & screamin’ not to buy the overpriced place. My sorry ass was right and my not-so-informed mate was not. Wish I had a stronger set of cojones 2 yrs. ago.

  42. SG says:

    Knowledge@Wharton

    Deflation — Delusion or Danger?

    The collapse in home prices during the past few years is a reminder of the horrors of deflation. Millions of homeowners owe lenders more than their homes are worth, making it impossible to sell, trade up, downsize or move for a new job. What would happen if deflation were to spread across the entire economy, driving down wages and the prices of all goods and services?

    “I think there’s a reasonable probability we will have deflation in a number of Western countries sometime over the next year or two,” says Wharton finance professor Franklin Allen, who included the United States in that assessment.

  43. yo'me says:

    Keith Gumbinger, a leading mortgage expert, with an interesting proposal for how the government can help you, help the housing market, and even help whoever owns your mortgage. Gumbinger, a vice president at the HSH Associates mortgage consulting firm, wants the federal government to issue what he calls “value gap coverage.” It would reduce your interest payments, reduce your incentive to walk away from your mortgage, and show that behaving well doesn’t make you a sucker.

    “This is for people who are underwater on their mortgages but still current on them and have every intention of remaining so, and hope to remain in their homes for the foreseeable future,” says Gumbinger. “These people are being compelled to pick up the tab for reckless borrowers and failing banks, and get absolutely no help from anywhere for themselves. How about a reward for doing the right thing for a change?”

    Let me show how this would work, using HSH numbers that I’ve rounded for simplicity’s sake. Say you bought a house for $350,000 in July 2006 — those were the days of 100% financing, so you borrowed $350,000 on a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage at 6.8%. The house is now worth $280,000, but your mortgage balance is $334,000. The current rate for a 30-year fixed-rate loan, if you could get one, is 4.7%.

    Under Gumbinger’s plan, you’d get a new $280,000 mortgage at 4.7%, and the government would guarantee the other $54,000, on which you’d pay 4.7% interest to the current mortgage holder. This would reduce your payments by $6,700 a year, or roughly 25%. Your mortgage holder wouldn’t have to take a write-down, because the shortfall would be guaranteed by Uncle Sam. You get lower payments, preserve your credit rating, and save your pride by not becoming a deadbeat.

    http://money.cnn.com/2010/09/03/real_estate/mortgage_help_gumbinger.fortune/index.htm

  44. Poltroon says:

    yo (40)-

    It’s just as easy as selling a 500K neg-am option ARM to a janitor who never repaid a debt in his life.

  45. Poltroon says:

    orion (41)-

    Make the bitch pay for her mistake.

  46. Poltroon says:

    BTW, Orion, I’d explode that horizon to about 20-25 years.

  47. Poltroon says:

    yo (43)-

    Feh. BC proposed gap insurance for housing here over three years ago.

  48. Mr Wantanapolous says:

    “How hard is it to turn off the main water line and turn on all the faucets?”

    Counterclockwise

  49. Mr Wantanapolous says:

    Doom [47],

    A blown opportunity. Should have gone to AIG and created a SIV.

  50. NJGator says:

    Of course, noticably absent from Mayor Fried’s oratory below is the fact that Montclair residents actually had no say in the matter. We don’t get a vote in any BOE dictates – policy or budgetwise. So it would probably more accurately be said that Montclair taxpayers were forced to foot the bill for this unneeded extragance during one of the worst economies of modern times. I will bend over and accept my 6% tax increase now.

    Alvarez took time during the dedication ceremony to detail some of the many unusual features at Bullock that students encountered on opening day.

    “The entire school roof is lined with hundreds of south-facing solar panels, filled with photovoltaic cells,” he said. “The DC current is converted to AC in the mechanics room, and fed into the school’s electric supply.

    “The external pump house manages the heat supplied from deep in the ground. The geothermal system cools the building as well as heats it.

    “The cafeteria and kitchen is complete with a pulping station where paper products are automatically separated and turned into recyclables,” Alvarez noted.

    “The concrete around the building uses blocks of recycled green and brown glass, and pieces of marble,” he said. “In the restrooms, there are motion detectors to turn on the lights, the faucets, and the hand-dryer, as well as to flush the toilets.”

    The practical application of Bullock’s new technologies was inspiring to Mayor Jerry Fried, as was the completion of the school during the severe economic downturn plaguing the nation.

    “The opening of this school is truly historic,” Fried said. “It is something that future generations will look back on. They will look at the ‘Great Recession’ of 2008, 2009, 2010, and they will marvel at the ability of a community to be able to create a marvelous institution like this in light of that.

    “They will say ‘how was it possible that a brand new school with solar panels, with geothermal heating, beautifully put together, durable, lasting, sustainable for the future… How was it that an institution like this could be built in this time?'”

    Fried said the answer is “in the residents of Montclair” who came together and made a commitment to education dispute tough economic times.

    http://www.northjersey.com/news/103025014_Bravo_for_Bullock_School.html

  51. yo'me says:

    Feh. BC proposed gap insurance for housing here over three years ago.

    If I am a good standing,underwater homeowner,I will gladly pay the gap insurance to the fedco and guarantee the underwater part of my mortgage.Automatic refinance my mortgage to the current appraisal value with current interest rates. Will keep my payments low and keep me from defaulting.That is what PMI stood for.I will not have equity for a long time but hey,I have no equity now.

  52. Fabius Maximus says:

    #50 Gator

    As they unplugged their Chevy Volts in the carpark and drove off into the sunset.

  53. JJ AKA John says:

    My model is give me 10% risk free or give me death.

    I actually learned everything I know about Black Box trading from Antonio Cromertie, he has lots of experience

    Mr Wantanapolous says:
    September 16, 2010 at 8:32 am
    JJ [24],

    LTCM’s Black Scholes model was designed to pick up nickels in front of steamrollers.

  54. Poltroon says:

    gator (50)-

    Don’t worry. When TSHTF, it sounds like it’ll be easy to convert that place into a jail.

  55. Poltroon says:

    gluteus (52)-

    You neglected to mention the nozzle next to the electric charger where those loyal Montklarians can bend over and have sunshine blown up their arses.

  56. Poltroon says:

    BTW, no self-loathing Montklarian would be caught dead driving a Chevrolet.

  57. NJGator says:

    Poltroon 54 – We have a developer friend who claims he could have built the place for half the price. He also said he wouldn’t send his son there because it is the ugliest friggin building he’s ever seen. A bargain at $31M!

  58. Poltroon says:

    jj (53)-

    Too bad all the inputs came from Elvis Patterson.

    “I actually learned everything I know about Black Box trading from Antonio Cromertie, he has lots of experience”

  59. Poltroon says:

    gator (57)-

    You’d think for 31 mm, somebody could ring the place with razor wire…

  60. Poltroon says:

    gator (57)-

    In the parts of the US where people don’t have shit for brains, developers are actually required to build schools, in return for the right to do significant and profitable development projects.

  61. Poltroon says:

    Philly Fed signals imminent death.

  62. NJGator says:

    Poltroon 59 – For what we paid, that sorter in the cafeteria should make the razor wire out of recycled soda and juice cans the kids bring for lunch.

  63. Mr Wantanapolous says:

    JJ/Doom,

    You guys are confusing me, I thought the quant was the Mexican; Sanchez?

  64. Poltroon says:

    Swissie the slowest runner in the race to the bottom. Could this be the trigger event for Armageddon, BC?:

    “The SNB reserves are in dollars, Euros and gold. At this point they are taking big losses on their currency holdings. The numbers to be announced soon could push another 8 billion Francs for the quarter. There is a limit to what the SNB can absorb. And the market knows it.

    With this in mind the notion of a two-tiered FX rate makes some sense. The free rate would be allowed to float wherever the markets might take it. Exporters would have access to a subsidized rate from the SNB and thus would be largely insulated from market gyrations. The SNB would have losses to be sure. But those losses would go directly to the exporters and not the speculators in the FX markets. In that sense it is not a hard sale to the Swiss people. The flip side is that a lot of the Swiss want a stronger franc. They can travel outside the country and shop at a much cheaper cost.

    To me the idea of a two-tiered franc is crazy. If implemented it would be a modern day “Smoot-Hawley” type of event. The EU would go nuts and retaliate. Half a dozen other countries would copy the Swiss move and we would be looking at a major breakdown in global trading. From these types of steps global recessions are born.

    But the flip side is will tiny Switzerland roll over and let the global markets dictate their economy? That would seem unlikely as well. So something has to give. The most unlikely outcome is that the Swissie weakens against the dollar and the major crosses.

    We are going to hear more protectionist talk in the coming days. The Japanese have said (through last night’s intervention) that they do no want to import more global deflation. So they have teed this up. Where it goes is anyone’s guess. But there are very few soft landing scenarios out there that I can think of.

    If (when) the EURCHF gets to around 1.25 there will be some action. If it is first renewed intervention and that proves both costly and a failure the talk of a two-tiered franc will come on the table. I doubt the Swiss are just going to sit there and get rolled over. The Great Sucking Noise will get much louder if that should be the result.”

    http://www.zerohedge.com/article/swiss-trade-unions-we-want-two-tiered-franc

  65. A.West says:

    I guess Mayor Fried thinks he has a sugardaddy who will always take care of his bills for pretty baubles. No doubt there are some magazines and newspapers that will call him a visionary, and by spending your money on what is in some circles fashionable “investments”, he can boost his political career.
    Group hug!

  66. Zack says:

    GE to built IT plant in India for $50 Million and generate 3000 jobs.

    http://business.rediff.com/report/2010/sep/16/ge-plans-new-plant-in-india.htm

    $50MM buys toilet papers and other Janitorial supplies here in the US.

    Wonder why we are not creating Jobs here in the U.S..?

  67. Poltroon says:

    BC (63)-

    We need Frank to weigh in here. Right after he finishes his shift.

    “I thought the quant was the Mexican; Sanchez?”

  68. Orion says:

    (66)
    So, how much $ in fines is O going to impose on GE for going outside the US? Or, does he get a lifetime of refrigerators instead?

  69. Anon E. Moose says:

    YO [40];

    If you’ve shut the valve at the main, where does the water go when you open the faucets? It sits there and freezes – pop. Then whats in the system spills out and makes a nice petri dish for mold, etc.

    There will be a valve at the lowest point in the system (usually placed at a slop sink). You have the let the water out of the pipes through that low valve. Then drain the hot water lines and the water heater tanks (unless its tankless). Then put glycol (antifreeze) in every trap in the sewer lines to keep a fluid barier to sewer gasses that won’t evaporate or freeze.

    Not rocket science, but there’s a reason people get paid to do it.

  70. scribe says:

    Chi,

    Thanks for yesterday’s explanation. Just read it now.

    I think we still need steak & ale at Arthur’s, though :)

  71. NJCoast says:

    Seeing lots of for sale signs here in the Malibu hills in Ca.

  72. reinvestor101 says:

    “Orion says:
    September 16, 2010 at 9:15 am

    Oh that’s just great!
    I now have to wait 5-10 yrs. to recoup my significant friggin down payment made on a condo 2yrs. ago. That’s just f*king great. Because of this blog, I was pretty much kickin’ & screamin’ not to buy the overpriced place. My sorry ass was right and my not-so-informed mate was not. Wish I had a stronger set of cojones 2 yrs. ago.”

    Look, you’ll be just fine. This is just a very temporary hickup in the long march upwards in real estate. Console yourself that you’ve temporarily sacrificed for America just like I did and don’t let the comments from the unpatriotic real estate terrorist types upset you with their psy ops operations. They’re just jealous and they hate homeowners and real estate investors.

  73. Fabius Maximus says:

    #55 Clot

    “You neglected to mention the nozzle next to the electric charger where those loyal Montklarians can bend over and have sunshine blown up their arses.”

    That comes standard in the Volt. How else to they justify $40K.

  74. spyderjacks says:

    72:reinvestor – Besides, the more you all hang on to your overpriced real-estate, and keep paying the mortgage, the sooner you will no longer be underwater. And then I can come in, with my RE terrorists, and buy up your shacks at the 50% of what you paid, just like I’m offering now. You can feel better because you didn’t have to write a check, to get back to zero gain. But nothing is going to stop the revaluation of the marketplace. Somebody is going to take the loss. You… or your estate. Whichever smells the coffee first.

  75. Poltroon says:

    gluteus (73)-

    Can’t even justify the existence of GM. They should be on the ash-heap of history, with the bondholders given their due priority.

    Instead, we get a gubmint-controlled jobs program, masquerading as a car company.

    Oh, I forgot…we also get the death of rule by law.

    Great bailout there.

  76. Juice Box says:

    re: Winterize – baseboard heat is usually the first to go. Anyone ever been in a house where the baseboard heating system froze and burst?

  77. Shore Guy says:

    Way-oh. Way-a-a-oh. Housing crash come now I don’t have a home.

    Hey there mister banker man holding my big mortgage.
    The sheriff come, so I got to go now.

  78. Mr Hyde says:

    Moose.

    Is that hows its done in residential systems, makes sense? I have only done industrial systems, in which case the lines are blown down with compressed air and then valves at the sewer connection are closed and locked out.

  79. Shore Guy says:

    Back to the salt mine. There is nothing like the satisfaction obtained from realizing that 60% of one’s income is going to feed governments for whom that is not enough to keep the budget in the black.

    After taking away so much, we should get a balanced budget.

  80. Shore Guy says:

    Clot,

    Just shut up, make money, and send it to Washington, where it will be spent appropriately.

  81. Juice Box says:

    Interesting read on Trenton’s Mayor, he just won in May and is now about to be kicked out of his home. Foreclose sale is Sept 29th.

    During last spring’s campaign, questions arose about Tony Mack’s personal finances. He hadn’t held steady employment for several years, his short-lived restaurant was closed and in debt, and there were rumors about pending foreclosure proceedings on his personal residence. The “icing” on this cake was the $20,000 personal loan Mr. Mack made to his campaign.

    Where did the money come from?

    Since taking office, the Mayor’s personal financial picture has come under scrutiny and criticism. Reports have surfaced about outstanding tax issues on the building at Calhoun and W. State Streets that served as Mack Campaign Headquarters. That building is owned by Foremost Development Construction LLC. Foremost is Tony Mack.

    The Sheriff’s sale of the Mayor’s residence on Berkeley Avenue was postponed from August 25 to September 29. Beneficial Mortgage Company filed for foreclosure on the mortgage, delinquent water bills, interests and such that total some $319,457 due.

    And now comes a report by the Associated Press that the money for the $20,000 loan to the campaign came by way of a mortgage on one of Mack’s rental properties. The mortgage is the fourth on the property and is held not by a bank or financial institution but by a Burlington County resident who states she “is not comfortable” discussing the loan.

    The continuing saga of the Mayor’s personal finances indicate that he was willing to bet his already highly leveraged real estate portfolio on the fact that he would win the election.

    While he did succeed in becoming the city’s top elected official, his salary has already been knocked down from $149,107 to $126, 460 due to a court decision in a case left over from the previous administration. That’s about a 15% decrease in anticipated salary to the sole bread winner for his family of four children and wife. There is no doubt Mack is heavily in debt and in danger of losing his home and his income properties.

    And there is little doubt that his big ticket ($175 per person) Inaugural Ball slated for October, just before some 400 city workers are slated to be laid off is being targeted to refill his campaign coffers. This would enable him to pay back that loan “he made” to his campaign.

    But what if he hadn’t won the election? Where would Mr. Mack be right now? How would he face his financial obligations?

    Mack and his city paid spokesperson, Lauren Ira, are correct when they say his financial problems are “personal.” Correct, to a point.

    Being willing to take such high stakes risk with his own money and his family’s security is one thing.

    The city of Trenton is extremely serious financial trouble. Is gambling with what little resources we have the best approach to stabilizing the city budget?

    We don’t think so.

  82. Unexpected HEHEHE says:

    The end of Wall Street bailouts?

    Republican Voters Pushing Out TARP Supporters:

    Yesterday Republican primary voters came across the barricade with torches and pitchforks. Any remaining day traders still playing Wall Street’s latest pump-and-dump gambit — the mirage that QE 2.0 is lurking just around the corner — should carefully consider the implication. Indeed, the signal emanating from this year’s election noise is quite unmistakable: The unholy alliance of careerist politicians from both parties that slammed through the September 2008 bailout of Wall Street — against the vocal wishes of 80% of the electorate — has been shattered.

    The literal poster-boy victim of this anti-crony capitalist tide is Rick Lazio, the GOP candidate for New York Governor who went down to overwhelming defeat at the hands of an unknown from Buffalo. In fairness, it’s possible that the allegedly conservative Lazio was only doing his job all those years as JPMorgan’s (JPM) chief influence peddler in Washington. Maybe he didn’t really believe that the largesse obtained by JPMorgan on his watch were an appropriate imposition on the taxpayers — such as the 10-year industry-wide holiday on paying deposit insurance premiums, which effectively bankrupted the FDIC, the $28 billion safety net for the Bear Stearns acquisition, or the $25 billion TARP takedown. But one thing is certain: Republican voters most definitely didn’t think Lazio’s four-year apprenticeship to Wall Street’s chief crony capitalist, Jamie Dimon, enhanced his qualification for the governor’s mansion.

    In the Delaware Senate nomination race, nine-term Congressman Mike Castle suffered what can only be described as an ignominious defeat at the hands of Tea Party heroine Christine O’Donnell. Ordinarily, a career that included founding a pro-chastity religious group called the Savior’s Alliance for Lifting the Truth and selling portraits of various Vatican personages wouldn’t be much of a qualification for higher office. But at the end of the night, O’Donnell had one big thing going for her while Castle had a political lifetime of nearly everything going against him.

    O’Donnell had apparently been to Washington only once for a brief stint as an intern at the Republican National Committee, and therefore hadn’t been instructed in the doctrines of crony capitalism by the denizens of K Street. Thus, not understanding that it’s the job of Wall Street to harvest the profits and Washington to underwrite the losses arising from the nation’s vast financial casino, she consistently and loudly denounced Congressman Castle’s vote in favor of TARP.

    That was all that the voters of Delaware needed to hear — thereby reinforcing a recurrent pattern coming out of this election cycle: Namely, GOP Senators who voted for TARP have been sent packing, or have packed up and quit voluntarily before the voters could fire them.

    The first of these departed was Senator Robert Bennett of Utah, a purported conservative who spent 18 years on the Senate Finance Committee where he never once encountered a business tax subsidy he didn’t like. Other pro-TARP Republican Senators who got their walking papers include Kay Bailey Hutchison (defeated for Governor of Texas), Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, and Senator Arlen Specter, who’s been the sole member of the Specter Party in the Senate for several decades now.

    Adding to the ranks of pro-TARP departures was the voluntary exit of Senator George Voinovich of Ohio and especially Senator Judd Gregg of New Hampshire. The latter served on the banking committee where he consistently re-broadcast K Street talking points with flawless fidelity.

    Needless to say, had Bernanke and Paulson been forced to pitch their Wall Street bailout to the kind of Senate Republican caucus likely to emerge from the November election, the outcome might have been far different. Certainly the principled voice of Senator Richard Shelby wouldn’t have been diluted and muffled by the confused, excuse-making noises that emanated from the above-named departed. Perhaps even one of Senator Jim Bunning’s rhetorical beanballs would have found its mark!

    At the same time, the Delaware Putsch was a repudiation of the kind of “country club statism” represented by the 40-year career of Mike Castle. As president of the so-called Republican Main Street Partnership, he represented the wing of the GOP that’s especially challenged by fiscal math.

    These so-called Main Street Republicans were always the first in line for Federal pork targeted at their middle-class constituencies — such as Cash for Clunkers, Cash for Caulkers, tax credits for homebuyers, and subsidies for agriculture, Amtrak, ethanol, higher education, urban development, and more. Fair enough, if that’s what they believe in. But when this breed of Republican also lined up to drive a $300 billion annual hole in the budget by voting for the Bush tax cuts, and then supported several hundred billion more in annual red ink for two unfinanced wars, credulity met its limit.

    Undoubtedly, certain sleepwalkers who still inhabit the financial world and periodically mount a ritual cheer for free markets, low taxes, and small government will find yesterday’s outcomes comforting. Poor things! In fact, yesterday was simply a foretaste of the political chaos that is coming down the pike in November and for years to come.

    America is in deep fiscal trouble because it’s been in the thrall of two free lunch parties for 30 years. The Democrats have pushed out the boundaries of the welfare state and supported the wars. The Republicans have started the wars, decimated the revenue base, and surrendered on domestic spending cuts.

    Consequently, the Federal government is destined to borrow $100 billion per month from now until at least October 2013, when conceivably a new government might be installed. At the same time, inflation is slinking toward zero and real growth seems likely to bounce along the bottom at 1% to 2%, owing to the burdensome overhang of our 40-year national borrowing binge. Consequently, nominal GDP can’t possibly grow at more than $40 billion to $50 billion per month. The debt and income ratio is thus 2:1 and debt is on top. A Greek-scale public debt ratio in excess of 100% of GDP is baked in the cake.

    It’s axiomatic that Washington will do nothing about this runaway fiscal freight train before the spring of 2013. President Obama, his veto pen already sheathed and his political knees already knocking, won’t even be able to stop an extension of the Bush tax cut for the top 2% of wealthiest Americans. In that environment, the very idea of means-testing Social Security, axing farm subsidies, or throttling current runaway spending for higher education gives implausibility a new definition.

    But the real danger to financial markets isn’t simply the endless sums which must be floated in Treasury auctions week in and week out. The more ominous threat is that the Delaware Putsch signals that the nation’s economic governance will now descend into sheer, partisan chaos.

    Some of the Tea Party-supported marginalistas who have grabbed the Republican nomination will likely lose in November. But for the next several years the GOP will be the site of a vicious civil war in which the remnants of the regulars will be under merciless attack by Tea Party activists, amateurs, Bible thumpers, and just plain whackos from the hinterlands.

    At the same time the Democrats are likely to respond to their upcoming drubbing by forming the equivalent of a circular firing squad. That fractionation will, in turn, preclude an agreement with the White House on any kind of meaningful fiscal plan — let alone a productive negotiation with Republicans who should have de facto control of Capitol Hill, if not an elected majority.

    As the utter chaos and dysfunction of the American fiscal and economic policy factory comes into clearer view, the global fixed-income and currency markets may at some point succumb to a panic attack. This time there will be no Wall Street bailout because the careerist bag-carriers who supported the last one will be long gone. But no matter. The next crack-up will be of a scale way beyond the pay grade of even Uncle Sam.

    http://www.minyanville.com/articles/print.php?a=30110

  83. yo'me says:

    Moose

    You are absolutely right.Do it the right way.

  84. Anon E. Moose says:

    Hyde [78];

    My experience is actually helping a friend button up his family’s cabin in the mountains for winter; or opening/re-closing it when we’d occasioanlly spend a winter weekend up there. Blow down is a nice touch, but probably unnecesasry and not often done.

    Both his parents were teachers so as a kid they’d spend two full months in it every year and had unkind descriptions for the ‘weekend warriors’ – that is their neighbors who had real jobs and could only use their second homes on weekends. His uncle, a cop, bought the place next door. He left big bucks as a overnight commodities trader to work for a utility company. He learned the lesson from his family well – the private sector is for suckers.

    Chris Christie notwithstanding, we’ve become France – the ultimate goal is to get a government job.

  85. Mr Wantanapolous says:

    Doom [64],

    Another land mine. Currency wars will blow this nightmare, or comedy, depending on one’s view, to smithereens. At that time, all the pundits will declare that nobody could see this coming. Buckle up.

  86. still_looking says:

    Dow graph today is starting to look like a ventricular tachycardia tracing….

    …or maybe I’m studying too much!

    Oh my reinvestor is back! Be still my beating heart!

    sl

  87. Mr Wantanapolous says:

    “Dow graph today is starting to look like a ventricular tachycardia tracing….”

    SL,

    Does that mean buy, sell, or punt?

  88. Poltroon says:

    BC (87)-

    Is “puke” one of the choices?

  89. Matty Pond says:

    MLS # 1037683 $999,900 29 JAMES BRITE CIR, MAHWAH, NJ 07430. Home is in prestigous Rio Vista with 6 bedrooms and 5 baths almost 4,500 sft. All those $1.2M + homes in Rio are going to get really hurt with this “comp killer” now on the market. Other homes outside Rio Vista asking close to $1M will also get hurt. I really thought something like this would never happen here.

  90. JJ AKA John says:

    Chifi is the sanchez of investing afraid to throw the ball long, I am the Cromertie of investing, if it moves I hit it. I rather me the thermostat than the thermonitor

  91. Mr Wantanapolous says:

    “I am the Cromertie of investing, if it moves I hit it”

    JJ,

    Trading or your sex life?

  92. Poltroon says:

    Cromartie has both:

    1. Hit everything that moves, both on AND off the field.

    2. Taken too many hits to the head.

    Proof:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t8wc1ufReYk&feature=fvw

  93. chicagofinance says:

    Bitch set me up…..

    45.Poltroon says:
    September 16, 2010 at 9:19 am
    orion (41)-

    Make the bitch pay for her mistake.

  94. chicagofinance says:

    T.O. responding to Cromartie referring to Revis and Cro as “Jordan and Pippen”….it looks more like Ren and Stimpy to me….

    53.JJ AKA John says:
    September 16, 2010 at 9:50 am
    My model is give me 10% risk free or give me death.

    I actually learned everything I know about Black Box trading from Antonio Cromertie, he has lots of experience

  95. JJ AKA John says:

    except I pump but don’t dump

    Mr Wantanapolous says:
    September 16, 2010 at 12:27 pm
    “I am the Cromertie of investing, if it moves I hit it”

    JJ,

    Trading or your sex life?

  96. Libtard says:

    Listening to some of your older stories JJ. If true, you did a lot of pumping and dumping.

  97. Confused In NJ says:

    Census Bureau reports new spike in poverty

    Les Christie, staff writer, On Thursday September 16, 2010, 1:09 pm
    The nation’s poverty rate jumped to 14.3% in 2009, its highest level since 1994, and the 43.6 million Americans in need is the highest number in 51 years of record-keeping, the government said Thursday.

    The Office of Management and Budget defined the poverty threshold level as less than $21,954 for a family of four in 2009. The poverty rate increased for all racial groups except Asians.

    The jump, reported as part of a regular annual Census Bureau report on income, poverty and health insurance, was not unexpected. The U.S. economy went through a very rough 2009.

    “The Census Bureau released data that illustrates just how tough 2009 was, ” President Obama said in a statement.

    “Even before the recession hit, middle class incomes had been stagnant and the number of people living in poverty in America was unacceptably high, and today’s numbers make it clear that our work is just beginning,” the president added.

    Many Americans lost their jobs during 2009. The unemployment rate jumped from 7.7% at the beginning of the year to 10.1% by October, before inching down to 10% the rest of the year.

    Poverty increased less than many experts were projecting beforehand. David Johnson, chief of the bureau’s Housing and Household Economic Statistics Division, said that the rate would have been higher except that it declined substantially for elderly Americans, falling to 8.9% from 9.7%.

    He also said increases in employment benefits brought many people out of poverty.

    The income used to calculate poverty status includes earnings, workman’s compensation, unemployment insurance, Social Security, veteran’s payments, pensions, interest and dividends, and just about every other source of cash.

    It does not, however, include capital gains, so, theoretically, millionaires could qualify as poor if they lived solely by selling off investments.

    Non-cash benefits, such as food stamps or subsidized rents, also do not count as income.

    Poverty is expected to continue climbing, reaching a high of about 16%, over the next decade, according to an analysis by Isabel Sawhill and Emily Monea of the Brookings Institution, the Washington-based think-tank. The researchers say that, as a result, another 10 million Americans – including 6 million children – will be in poverty.

    “The recession makes finding jobs very difficult and has hit low-income families especially hard,” said Sawhill.

    The Census report said that the poverty rate for children under age 18 grew faster in 2009 than it did for the population as a whole, increasing 1.7 percentage points to 20.7%.

    Regionally, the South was the poorest area of the country, with a rate of 15.7%. It also experienced the biggest jump in poverty, 1.4 percentage points from 14.3% in 2008.

    The West had a poverty rate of 14.8%, the Midwest rate was 13.3% and the Northeast rate was 12.2%.

    Mississippi is the poorest state in the nation with an average of 20.6% of the population earning less than the threshold rate over the past two years. Arizona, at 19.6%, and New Mexico, at 19.3%, also recorded much higher poverty than the national average.

    New Hampshire, at 7.3%, had the lowest percentage of poor residents with Connecticut, at 8.3%, and Utah, at 8.6%, also scoring well.

    The government also said the number of Americans with health coverage dropped for the first time since record-keeping began in 1987

  98. Mr Wantanapolous says:

    Confused [97],

    There’s a bull market somewhere.

  99. michaljohn says:

    This is a wonderful opinion. The things mentioned are unanimous and
    needs to be appreciated by everyone.
    Loan Rates

  100. michaljohn says:

    The society is facing problems with such laws. This has to go legal
    and it’s needed to be sorted at the earlier.
    Loan Rates

  101. ricky_nu says:

    Matty #89

    the lower price on that house is not surprising, it has Route 202 in its backyard, so you get the bonus of listening to cars blasting by all day and night.

    that being said, I think Rio Vista is a prime example of the tasteless building that has so captured the lame imagination of NJ McMansion buying tools……

  102. Poltroon says:

    Mike Krieger’s weekly report is becoming a must-read. Here’s today’s:

    “Despite the title of this piece I do not wish to engage in some inane debate about whether deflation or inflation is the risk…When a money manager of financial assets looks into his future and sees deflation he is correct. When the majority of “Main Street” looks into their future they also correctly see inflation. That is because when you have 40 million Americans on food stamps I am sorry but they have much bigger issues to deal with than the S&P500. So the world we are looking at is where a BLT sandwich could cost $12 and home prices drop another 20%. Investment professionals have a very hard time getting the heads around this concept for some reason but that is the reality we are looking at. Goods that are wanted around the world will rise in price in debased dollars while non-essential items deflate. The Chinese want pork but they could care less about some McMansion in Ohio. There is nothing anyone can do to change this. It is a natural cycle as simple, powerful and inevitable as any cycle in nature. If it must happen, it will happen.”

    http://www.zerohedge.com/article/guest-post-if-what-deflation-looks-like…

  103. relo says:

    86: BC,

    Heard a term used for race to the bottom = competitive devaluing. Same person said homes would be fortunate to stay priced where the are now, but they’re positioned for much lower.

  104. Mr Wantanapolous says:

    “Goods that are wanted around the world will rise in price in debased dollars while non-essential items deflate.”

    Doom,

    Bingo. Let the experts debate it until they are blue. We are and will continue to experience both. Unfortunately, the fed is blowing up the wrong balloon.

  105. Mr Wantanapolous says:

    Relo [104],

    They never learned that your first loss is your best loss.

  106. Poltroon says:

    Classic Krieger:

    “The Fed can buy all the SPU futures they want and the other players can sell the treasuries they recently bought back to the Fed and then goose the market, but the magicians of mayhem can’t print gold and that is all you need to know.”

  107. 250k says:

    There goes the neighborhood!

    Source: Westfield Patch
    “Attempted Luring by Masked Man Near Wilson”
    http://westfield.patch.com/articles/attempted-luring-by-masked-man-near-wilson

    Nom, between this and the drop in school rankings, how are the comps doing in your neck of the woods?

  108. reinvestor101 says:

    Oh my reinvestor is back! Be still my beating heart!

    sl

    LEAVE ME ALONE!! You’re making me look two ways and under the couch before I post on this board. LEAVE ME ALONE!!

  109. reinvestor101 says:

    “spyderjacks says:
    September 16, 2010 at 10:47 am

    72:reinvestor – Besides, the more you all hang on to your overpriced real-estate, and keep paying the mortgage, the sooner you will no longer be underwater. And then I can come in, with my RE terrorists, and buy up your shacks at the 50% of what you paid, just like I’m offering now. You can feel better because you didn’t have to write a check, to get back to zero gain. But nothing is going to stop the revaluation of the marketplace. Somebody is going to take the loss. You… or your estate. Whichever smells the coffee first.”

    Tell you what—I’ll strap some napalm on my ass and jump aboard a damn ICBM to take a ride through hell, before I let you buy a damn thing from me at half of what I paid. You must take me for a damn fool. You have no idea who you’re mucking with you terrorist motherhubbard.

  110. Mr Wantanapolous says:

    “You must take me for a damn fool.”

    50.5,

    “The Constitution gives every American the inalienable right to make a damn fool of himself.”

    John Ciardi

  111. Simply Ravishing HEHEHE says:

    Happy happy joy joy:

    Two big threats to the economy shrink a bit
    Threats of deflation and second recession shrink as jobless claims fall, wholesale prices rise

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The economy may have a long way to go, but at least two big threats are fading.

    Economists are less worried that the U.S. will experience another round of mass layoffs and its first bout of deflation since the 1930s after the release of two government reports Thursday.

    The third drop in jobless claims in four weeks and a mild uptick in wholesale prices in August add to evidence that a second recession is unlikely.

    http://finance.yahoo.com/news/Two-big-threats-to-the-apf-1154060038.html?x=0&sec=topStories&pos=main&asset=&ccode=

  112. JJ AKA John says:

    I love the smell of a bull market, 2008, 2009 and 2010 is setting the stage for a late 2011 rally!! Now can someone just tell me the day it will begin I will be set.

  113. Simply Ravishing HEHEHE says:

    CRISIS AVERTED!!!

  114. BeachBum says:

    Haven’t posted in a while, but wanted to give a quick update on my great adventure (worth at least 6 flags) in real estate hell.

    So- after at least 3 years of looking for a vacation place in Belmar/Bradley, where I’ve made a few offers, but never got them accepted, I found a place and signed a contract to buy a house in Belmar in April. The price good but not crazy.

    Turns out it’s an estate, the house was left to two brothers, one brother wants to sell and one brother doesn’t. Nobody tells me this. The agent (a solo agent just starting her own agency) doesn’t tell anyone, just says “oh, it takes longer to convince the other brother”. No one tells me he has clearly refused to sell. I pay the deposit in trust to the seller’s lawyer, a guy in Long Branch, Siciliano, to hold in escrow, and then the title insurance finds out that this is not a typical estate sale, ie all assets to be split equally with power to the executor to dispose of assets, but that the house belongs to the two brothers. So the recalcitrant brother sends a letter via his lawyer saying: I refuse to sell, all parties be aware.
    OK: time of the essence letters sent, the summer goes by, threatening letters, etc. Finally I say, look, I just want my deposit back plus my costs caused by these jokers.
    No answer. The brothers and sisters are now suing each other, no one wants to actually sell the house.

    The house just came back on the market yesterday- same asking price. I’m out my deposit, the real estate agent has no problem with this, just put it back on the market for some other sucker.

    The lawyer/real estate agent/seller will find a law suit on their front steps, but I mean WTF? The house was not for sale, someone stole my money, and to get a lawyer in NJ to take this on, it’s like pulling teeth!! Everyone just throws up his hands and says: “hey you should get your money back.” As if that hasn’t occurred to me!!

    All ideas welcome -baseball bat, second amendment, etc.

  115. Barbara says:

    118. Beachbum.
    Sue the realtor, the sellers and their lawyer and your lawyer.

  116. nj escapee says:

    Congressmen Weiner and Waxman Set Gold Hearing

    Just as the government is trying to prevent people from investing in anything other than T-Bills by raising taxes on taxable interest and dividends to confiscatory levels, it’s also trying to prevent you from parking your wealth in assets, like gold, that compete with the paper dollars issued by the Federal Reserve and the Treasury. A press release from Rep. Anthony Weiner, Democrat of New York, not yet (as of this instant) posted on Mr. Weiner’s Web site, announces that a September 23 hearing of the Subcommittee on Commerce, Trade, and Consumer Protection (a subcommittee of Rep. Henry Waxman’s Commerce Committee) will focus on “legislation that would regulate gold-selling companies, an industry who’s [sic] relentless advertising is now staple of cable television.”

    From the press release: “Under Rep. Weiner’s bill, companies like Goldline would be required to disclose the reasonable resale value of items being sold.” That’s great. Are Mr. Weiner and Chairman Bernanke also going to agree to print on every dollar the reasonable expectation that its value will be eroded by inflation?

    http://seekingalpha.com/article/225579-congressmen-weiner-and-waxman-set-gold-hearing

  117. Mr Hyde says:

    So the sellers attorney spent/split the money with the sellers or with realtor?.?.?.

  118. Barbara says:

    oh errrm, you already said that. Never mind.

  119. Juice Box says:

    re #118 – BeachBum – Sorry to hear about it. The good news is by the time this is all settled you can buy that place or another like it for 30% additional off. That will teach them to mess with you. “Impossibility of performance” comes to mind, it’s pretty cut and dry they are probably waiting for you to lawyer up, so do that ASAP and don’t forget to include the damages your children suffered for the missed summer, and all the nookie your wife would not give you because of your failure to close this deal.

    I am no lawyer but I did attend a few classes on contract law after drinking heavily and talking other mind altering substances.

  120. Poltroon says:

    relo (117)-

    Don’t just stand there; hand me those tungsten bars.

  121. Poltroon says:

    bum (118)-

    Baseball bat. Lawyer’s office. Keep swinging until they give you your money back.

    Even if the cops come, you at least get the pleasure of doing a lot of damage.

  122. reinvestor101 says:

    “The house just came back on the market yesterday- same asking price. I’m out my deposit, the real estate agent has no problem with this, just put it back on the market for some other sucker.”

    First off, I must disclose I have a bias for any seller especially considering how these damn buyers have been mucking with me with their lowball offers.

    Allow me a few queries here. Did you offer to pay the full damn price or did you sneak up like some stinking vulture trying to get the place for 50% off the damn asking price? If you did the latter, the brothers are probably pissed and want you to correct that behavior. The place is back on the damn market. Get your ass over there a make a damn bid and this time do it at the right damn price. This is an example of you being given a second chance to do the right thing.

  123. Temporary Name Change says:

    2 questions for the peanut gallery:

    1) Live in PA. Is it better to purchase a vehicle in NJ or PA? Is there a difference at all (taxes, fees, etc)? Haven’t checked prices to see if there’s a massive difference. It’s been forever since i bought a car … last two have been free hand-me-downs (work from home, don’t drive a lot).

    2) Let’s say your house is 275k underwater. You hear the assessment is $165k. You want to quit paying your mortgage and do a short sale. Could you have a wealthy friend BUY the short sale, and then have you live in it and pay them rent? This is legal, right? Can’t see how it is any different from a strategic default.

  124. willwork4beer says:

    Juicebox,

    “all the nookie your wife would not give you because of your failure to close this deal.”

    “Loss of Consortium”

    Don’t forget “Mental Anguish”.

  125. reinvestor101 says:

    “1) Live in PA. Is it better to purchase a vehicle in NJ or PA? Is there a difference at all (taxes, fees, etc)? Haven’t checked prices to see if there’s a massive difference. It’s been forever since i bought a car … last two have been free hand-me-downs (work from home, don’t drive a lot).

    2) Let’s say your house is 275k underwater. You hear the assessment is $165k. You want to quit paying your mortgage and do a short sale. Could you have a wealthy friend BUY the short sale, and then have you live in it and pay them rent? This is legal, right? Can’t see how it is any different from a strategic default.”

    I’m feeling like damn Abigal Van Buren today. Do you live in PA? If not, buy the damn car in NJ. Secondly, give me your friends name and number and let me try this first. That way, you can be assured of it working because I’ll tell you how it worked for me. No need to take a bunch of unknown and unforeseen risks when someone like me can do some front running and let you know what happened and how to do it.

    Anyone else need any damn advice?

  126. grim says:

    2) Let’s say your house is 275k underwater. You hear the assessment is $165k. You want to quit paying your mortgage and do a short sale. Could you have a wealthy friend BUY the short sale, and then have you live in it and pay them rent? This is legal, right? Can’t see how it is any different from a strategic default.

    The verbal contract between buyer and seller may make this transaction something other than arms-length, a requirement of many short-sales. Not a lawyer, but this is fuzzy since there are many investors buying occupied short sales for exactly such a purpose.

  127. Poltroon says:

    Nothing is illegal…if you don’t get caught.

  128. Mr Wantanapolous says:

    “I’m feeling like damn Abigal Van Buren today.”

    50.5,

    F-Ing Classis. Love it.

  129. grim says:

    All ideas welcome -baseball bat, second amendment, etc.

    Assume you were using an attorney through the contract period.

    What does your attorney say? This seems like an incredibly silly question to me. They won’t perform under the contract. You are due all funds back. It does not require a suit to refund. The funds are in escrow. If they’ve already been disbursed to some other party, the lawyer should be disbarred for malpractice.

  130. Orion says:

    Beach (118),

    Sorry to hear about that. Something smells fishy.
    Try contacting the Attorney General’s office or the Dept. of Community Affairs (DCA); both are free. If they’re willing to hear you out, promptly follow-up with a certified letter. Good luck.

  131. Yo'me says:

    I pay the deposit in trust to the seller’s lawyer, a guy in Long Branch, Siciliano, to hold in escrow

    What does it say on the escrow contract? Are you in default of the contract? I am really interested to hear what the experts have to say on this.

  132. Juice Box says:

    Gotta love the spin on the MSM, Catie Couric says better times are around the corner in RealEstate, meanwhile she covers 95k homes foreclosed last month and record poverty in USA.

  133. Yo'me says:

    I bought a house in a pre-construction community in 2004.Put a 10% down.I used a 3rd party escrow company and got the builder to agree.Contract was builder was to deliver with in a year and a half.Builder delivered on time and filed for bankruptcy a few months later.My wife’s friends that gave the down payment to the builder’s agent lost their money.Apparently Elliott building group is big in PA and south jersey.Lots of people lost their down payment.

  134. Ben says:

    I guess I’ll gloat that gold made a new high. Where are all the people that were mouthing off in June? They’ll return as soon as there is a pullback and scream “deflation”. Meanwhile, I’ll be back to say I told you so when it makes a new high after that.

  135. relo says:

    Engle Homes beat my wife’s company (and many other subs) out of a ton of dough before they BK’d. Glad to see they’re getting tossed a bone. But don’t any of you non-corporate debtors get the notion to skip. It’s immoral.

    http://blogs.wsj.com/developments/2010/09/08/hedge-funds-cant-always-save-home-builders/?KEYWORDS=engle+homes

  136. Shore Guy says:

    Bum,

    If you send Nom, Clot, and BC Bob, you will have the classic solution to any problem:

    Lawyers, guns, and money.

  137. Punch My Ticket says:

    A prize from today’s NYT.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2010/09/16/opinion/16riordan.html

    No one but an idiot politico like Riordan and an investment banker could propose something quite this nonsensical ..

    Proceeds from the bond sales would cover its liabilities, providing a quick resolution to the underfunding crisis.

    That’s some accounting. An entity that issues bonds to cover liabilities magically becomes sound. The liability from the bonds? I guess there must not be one. That’s some way to paper over a smoking hole on the right hand side of the balance sheet.

    Now this is op-ed, not reporting, but surely the NYT still employs editors to do some checking. Would they understand it if an analogy was used? Like taking a loan from Paulie to pay off Fat Tony doesn’t really solve your problem?

  138. gary says:

    And on top if it all…

    http://tinyurl.com/2ahcsc

  139. gary says:

    if = of

  140. Fabius Maximus says:

    So how do you think CC explains this one to Joe Wilson?

    President Obama appoints Gov. Christie to federal trade panel
    http://www.nj.com/news/index.ssf/2010/09/president_obama_appoints_gov_c.html#comments

  141. Shore Guy says:

    I nominate the following song to be the anthem for all underwater homeowners who either bought with nothing down, or sucked out equity, or jumped into the RE market because everyone else was doing it:

    Nobody’s Fault But Mine

  142. Punch My Ticket says:

    Bum [118],

    While you’re at it, file a complaint with the bar association. Allegations of misappropriated funds among the membership generally sets the bells ringing, because every lawyer pays when one goes bad.

  143. gary says:

    Shore [146],

    Bonham on the cans in that song… awesome!

  144. yo'me says:

    Global rally is on!

    Rally on Garth!

  145. gary says:

    “The belief has been: if we stimulate sales with a tax credit and delay foreclosures with modifications, the market would stabilize,” said Ritholtz, author of “Bailout Nation.” “We’re just putting off the day of reckoning and drawing out the pain by not letting the housing market hit its bottom.”

  146. gary says:

    Owners of about 11 million homes, or 23 percent of households with a mortgage, owed more than their property was worth as of June 30, according to CoreLogic. Another 2.4 million borrowers had less than 5 percent equity in their houses and probably would lose money on a sale after paying broker fees and closing costs, CoreLogic said Aug 25.

  147. galgon says:

    I think I found the official beer sponsor of the njrereport: Grimbergen

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grimbergen_%28beer%29

  148. gary says:

    The small upward correction in home prices from multiple tax credit offerings died in July. Worse yet, inventory of homes for sale as well as shadow inventory both soared. 8 million foreclosure-bound homes have yet to hit the market according to Morgan Stanley.

    The odds home prices return to their peak in 10 years is close to zero.

  149. gary says:

    Dear Sellers,

    tick…. tick…. tick…. tick….

  150. Jim says:

    I apologize if this was already posted, but this graph shows that we have a ways to go before we hit bottom.

    http://www.dailyfinance.com/story/real-estate/housing-bottom-years-2013-14/19636711/

    Jim

  151. Yikes says:

    Libtard says:
    September 15, 2010 at 8:54 pm

    I dislike Obama because he is a corporate shill. Just like all the rest of them. Can’t wait for the tea partiers to split the republican vote and for the O man to get reelected.

    This is totally going to happen. It’ll be hilarious, too.

  152. Fabius Maximus says:

    Lets take a moment to mourn the loss from the network of a great comedic talent.

    http://www.dailyfinance.com/story/media/cnbcs-dennis-kneale-set-to-exit-say-sources/19637190/

  153. Poltroon says:

    gary (153)-

    I will stick to my 20-40 year prediction and continue to try and find a way to place a giant bet on my being right.

  154. Poltroon says:

    gluteus (157)-

    You mean he won’t be going back to Sesame Street to reprise his role as Beaker?

    Guess that means he’ll be turning tranny tricks on 11th Av.

  155. chicagofinance says:

    WSJ
    TELEVISION
    SEPTEMBER 16, 2010
    Jersey Shore, Gangster Edition
    By ALLEN BARRA
    ‘The Atlantic Ocean was really somethin’ back then,” says Burt Lancaster’s small-time hood in “Atlantic City,” Louis Malle’s classic 1981 film. “You should have seen the Atlantic Ocean in those days.” Thanks to Martin Scorsese and Terence Winter, the executive producers of “Boardwalk Empire,” now we can.

    “Boardwalk Empire,” HBO’s 12-part series that premieres Sunday, Sept. 19, recalls a bygone era and provides a voyeuristic look at the birth of organized crime in America. In the first episode, directed by Mr. Scorsese, Atlantic City, N.J., political boss Enoch “Nucky” Thompson (based on real-life Atlantic County sheriff and later ward leader Nucky Johnson and played by Steve Buscemi) addresses a Temperance League meeting on the eve of Prohibition in November 1919. An hour later, at a meeting of his associates—among them Chicago rackets king “Big Jim” Colosimo, whose henchmen included a young Brooklyn-born thug named Al Capone; New York’s own Johnny Torrio, one of the city’s first prominent bootleggers; and the notorious gambling kingpin, Arnold Rothstein—he raises a toast to “the distinguished gentlemen of our nation’s Congress . . . those beautiful, ignorant bastards.”

    Prohibition created big opportunities and the impetus for the modern mob. “It was an all-American invention,” says Mr. Scorsese. “For the first time, men of different ethnic backgrounds came together for a common purpose: to make unprecedented amounts of money. It’s a fascinating period in American history because the early mobsters were a grotesque parody of legitimate businessmen.”

    Italians are usually credited as the pioneers of organized crime in this country but, says Mr. Scorsese, “there’s enough credit to go around. There were Jews and Poles and Irish involved. Not all of their names ended in a vowel.” At least one had perhaps the most common surname in America in 1920—Johnson.

    According to Nelson Johnson (no relation), in his 2002 book “Boardwalk Empire”—the basis for the HBO series—Nucky “understood people and power and knew how to handle both. There was not an elected official or city or county employee who did not owe his job to Nucky. He shared in the profits of every municipal contractor and gambling operation in town.” If Torrio and Rothstein were the grandfathers of the mob, Nucky Johnson was its midwife.

    Mr. Johnson’s book notes that Nucky “gave Atlantic City the brand of leadership it needed. The political and economic power structure that evolved was thoroughly corrupt.” He “included key racketeers as members of the Republican organization, making him head of both the political machine and the rackets. Under Nucky, the two rings of power became one.”

    It was a perfect conjunction of the right people meeting at the right time and the right place: For the first time America’s great gang bosses met and worked together to create a network. The illegal liquor they produced became the lifeblood of organized crime.

    After World War I, Atlantic City, the first great resort to cater to the working class, took off with a boom, offering reasonably priced hotels and restaurants as well as the signature Boardwalk, with its souvenir shops, stores selling salt-water taffy and cotton candy, and piers packed with Ferris wheels and other rides. And, of course, there was the main attraction—the ocean.

    For the more jaded, there were other attractions. As Murray Fredericks, an Atlantic City lawyer with mob connections, was fond of saying: “If the people who came to town had wanted Bible readings, we’d have given ’em that. But nobody ever asked for Bible readings. They wanted booze, broads and gambling, so that’s what we gave them.”

    To re-create this Sodom by the Sea required a crew of over 300 and more than 1,000 meticulously costumed extras. The 290-foot-long Boardwalk alone, built across the East River from Manhattan in Greenpoint, Brooklyn, cost more than $5 million and used more than 140 tons of steel. The budget for the debut episode was in excess of $18 million.

    “Boardwalk Empire” also strives to, in the words of Michael Stuhlbarg, who plays Arnold Rothstein, “put clothes on the ghosts. Rothstein has always been depicted in movies as a shadowy figure in the background or as a Damon Runyon-type character. In reality he was the uncrowned king of the New York underworld after the first World War, one of the self-conscious architects of big-time crime.”

    Vincent Piazza plays Charles “Lucky” Luciano, who would come to be the most important American mobster of all. “He wasn’t one of the ‘Mustache Pete’ Mafioso types,” says Mr. Piazza. “He had nothing but contempt for the Old World. He was a proud American, grabbing for what he saw as his share of the American Dream and fully willing to work with members of other ethnic groups to achieve it.”

    Series creator Terence Winter, a veteran of dozens of episodes of “The Sopranos” as producer and writer, says: “We wanted total authenticity for this series that would make you feel as if you had stepped back into another time. Everything from the gas-lit, sepia-toned interiors to the music—the sounds of Eddie Cantor, Sophie Tucker and Enrico Caruso in the background—had to be letter perfect.”

    Even the Atlantic Ocean itself had to be authentic. “The light is different on the Atlantic than on the Pacific. You can’t fake it to people who know what it looks like.” In one memorable scene, Mr. Buscemi’s Nucky looks out past the Boardwalk and calls it “my ocean.” It was really something back then.

    Mr. Barra writes about the arts and sports for the Journal.

  156. chicagofinance says:

    unmod?

  157. Shore Guy says:

    “The small upward correction in home prices from multiple tax credit offerings”

    This is aanalogous to an uptick in beer consumption when a bar gives it away for an hour.

  158. Shore Guy says:

    With apologies to L. Frank Baum and the residents of Munchkin City, in the County of the Land of Oz.

    As coronor, I must now state
    I have examined real estate
    And it is not just merely dead
    It’s really most sincerely dead

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