The Day Realtors Rewrote History

Well here it is folks, the day that the Realtors finally tell us what really happened when the bubble burst. This isn’t a surprise, they were caught publishing all sorts of incorrect (dare I say intentionally misleading) data during the decline. Remember this oldie but goodie? VINDICATION – NJ Q1 Home Sales down 30%

From CNBC:

Home-Sales Revisions to Hurt: More Distress in Market

Now we know that the recent housing crash was about 14 percent worse than previously thought. That is the conclusion of benchmark revisions by the National Association of Realtors, after they realized that their numbers were “drifting” from other industry calculations.

That drift was caused by a big shift away from For Sale By Owner (FSBO) sales to Realtor sales (which was a big factor in their methodology), an increase in the geographic size/range of many multiple listing services (MLS), and double counting due to Realtors listing properties in several different local MLS’s.

So what does this change? I’ve already expounded on what it doesn’t change, which is really anything happening today in the economy, current home sales and prices and already-accounted-for losses from the housing crash.

It does however, change perception and economic prediction as we go forward. The Commerce Department will have to revise the housing component of GDP lower, and, perhaps more importantly, we have to look at comparisons and the overall health of today’s housing market differently.

From HousingWire:

NAR reduces home sales index 14.3%

The National Association of Realtors revised its existing home sales downward 14.3% in the period from 2007 to 2010, after the group said its data diverged from actual market conditions.

The trade group announced the revisions Wednesday in its monthly existing-sales report. November sales rose 4% from last month and 12.2% from a year ago. Jed Smith, the head of quantitative research at NAR said in a conference call that numbers in reference to supply and demand in the market are unchanged.

Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, said about half of the revisions came from a decline in for-sale-by-owner transactions. NAR said those sales dropped from 16% of the market in 2000 to 9% in 2010.

Multiple listings, geographic population shifts and house flipping also contributed to the revisions, Yun said.

John Burns Consulting contends that for years, the mortgage market believed NAR’s numbers to be overstated. Zillow recently added it would not be changing any of its operations as a result.

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

134 Responses to The Day Realtors Rewrote History

  1. Mike says:

    Good Morning New Jersey

  2. Mikeinwaiting says:

    As if we didn’t know the NAR was & is full of it.

  3. Mikeinwaiting says:

    Mike 2 Brightened my morn, thank you & Merry Christmas to you.

  4. Mikeinwaiting says:

    From last thread , have to go with Bearfan & Gary . There is more to come, check out Bear’s 119. Keep in mind I am really out there in terms of location ( Vernon NJ) so I doubt those on the other side of the discussion would disagree for my area.

  5. grim says:

    On to more important topics, let me introduce my new puppy, Lexington:

    Baby Lex
    Lex and Spooky in jail
    Lex hiding under the tree

    9 weeks old, about 21 pounds today. Target … 175lbs (we hope not much more).

  6. funnelcloud says:

    Mike
    Nice card, Merry Christmas to all the bloggers and your families,

  7. Mikeinwaiting says:

    Grim breed?

  8. grim says:

    Great Dane

  9. Mikeinwaiting says:

    Oh boy! I am going with Dogue de Bordeaux when I get another , had one in the past love them. Link : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dogue_de_Bordeaux

  10. grim says:

    That’s what my wife wanted

  11. Mikeinwaiting says:

    Never saw a Dane pup before, cute! I do not know if you have had a LARGE dog before I have had 2 Mastiffs ( bull & French), you need a shovel!

  12. Mikeinwaiting says:

    Grim 11 She is a smart gal with good taste.

  13. gary says:

    Fewer existing homes were sold since 2007 than previously estimated, painting an even bleaker picture of the industry that precipitated the U.S. recession, a report from the National Association of Realtors will show today.

    You honor, the prosecution rests.

  14. gary says:

    you = your

  15. Mikeinwaiting says:

    Grim , lex’s picture under tree : floors look good. (something I would notice)

  16. I want Santa to bring me an AK.

  17. Time to git your gat.

  18. Mikeinwaiting says:

    Meat I just want some claymores to set up a nice perimeter with, that is not asking for a lot Santa.

  19. NJCoast says:

    #6 Grim
    Awww.

  20. Mikeinwaiting says:

    Europe sliding down off some good earlier numbers today , our futures following suit. Go to Vegas put it all on black, same thing. I want my Santa rally.

  21. Mikeinwaiting says:

    Gary 14 “There are lies, there are outrageous lies, and there are statistics.”

  22. Fabius Maximus says:

    I love Banksy.
    Clot was this you in your youth?
    http://www.banksy.co.uk/

  23. yo says:

    #2 Mike,that gave me the spirit to do some Christmas shopping today.Thank You.Happy Holidays to all!!!

  24. grim says:

    Isn’t today the end of the world?

  25. grim says:

    Fitting I guess, let’s wait to the end of the world to let everyone know what really happened with home sales, maybe they just won’t care.

  26. yo says:

    Dave Koz & Friends – Smooth Jazz Christmas Overture
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y-6_c39YRJY&feature=share

  27. Mike says:

    Love that name Lexington!

  28. grim says:

    Big dog needs a big name

  29. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    (23) fabius,

    ROFLMAO

    Are you trolling for these digs or do they just land in your lap?

  30. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    Great name Grim. Of course, I love just about anything with a Mass theme to it.

  31. Gifter says:

    warmandfuzzyfeeling.com

  32. All Hype says:

    Grim, the puppy looks really cute. The name will suit him well when he is a full sized adult.

  33. All Hype says:

    Clot (17):

    I told my wife I wanted a sniper rifle for Christmas. She told me I could get a 55 inch LED television instead.

  34. Confused in NJ says:

    25.grim says:
    December 21, 2011 at 7:42 am
    Isn’t today the end of the world?

    No, 12/21/2012.

  35. grim says:

    35 – shit, somebody couldnt tell me this an hour earlier, just gave away my car and quit my job…

  36. yo says:

    The Mayan Prophecy of end of the world 12.21.12.You got 1 year to gift alll your valuables to me.Only liquid assets please

  37. The Original NJ Expat says:

    I saw an ex-MF Global trader on CNBC early today (John Brady?), looks like they’re grooming him to be the young Art Cashin on the trading floor. He seemed OK until he said that Mario Draghi may end up being the 21st century Alan Greenspan. And he meant it as a complement.

  38. joyce says:

    Meat,
    Several family and friends (all in NJ) really want a handgun, but up until this point they’d rather not give up their fingerprints during the permit process. Plus, there is 0% chance of getting a carry permit in this state.

  39. chicagofinance says:

    JJ: Now you know what motivates the quarterback at Tone Time….
    http://www.nypost.com/p/pagesix/sanchez_in_huddle_with_secret_beauty_PwIIiDyYXi937I3drDgnQP

  40. Painhrtz - I ain't dead yet says:

    Hey Stu, Marty looks pretty good getting ready for the years in the wilderness when he retires. Even though fat boy looks like he is done now.

    I’ll miss him being a ranger fan he has made the rivalry fun

  41. yo says:

    The Euro’s survival stands on how much sovereign bonds the banks receiving bailout fund from ECB are willing to invest.The PIIGS needed over a trillion dolars,I dont know how much it stands now and the banks are getting over half of that in loans from the ECB.They are calling for austerity measures from this countries,That means their economy will shoot down while hoping cost of borrowing will go down.The only country benefitting from this austerity call is Germany,as they have record export,low unemployment.Draghi will only be a hero if the banks will invest this money.It did not happen in the US when the Fed showered them with money.Lending was thight for the last 3 years.Only thing they did is buy troubled banks and we made them larger.

  42. JJ says:

    The strange part of dual working parents is a lot of companies have new policies that you can use sick days if you child is sick and your other spouse or childcare is not available. Oddly someone with a stay at home spouse can never do this. Even more weird how does boss know other spouse is unavailable. For all I know they both could be taking off, one spouse could never take off and the other spouse always take off, or kid is with nanny and they are both at spa. The farest method I think is to give everyone six weeks vacation, no sick days, no personal days, no funeral days, no sick kid days, no manternity leave. All these things are grab bags for the 5% of bad apples that destory morale for hte 95% of good apples.
    Sadly everyone butts will be in their chairs her first few weeks back. No exceptions. BTW I don’t write reviews for staff. Have not had to do that in like 7 years thank god. I write reviews for middle mgt who write reviews for staff. Lots of effort involved and handholding in reviews for staff under 40. Over 40 it is like whats my raise and bonus good or bad that is it.

    BTW working Moms have a huge double standard. Class Mom, girl scount leader, CCD teacher, collection for teacher, class trips they all push off on other Moms by claiming they are “working” Plus stay at home Moms get resentfull when they have sick kids their husbands can’t leave or even worse have to stay late to cover for a working mom who left early.

    Back to real estate. BTW January 1st Nassau County releases its annual assessment of property values that is done by an outside firm independently based on an imppresive software tool and experts. They got a huge lawsuit years ago over how they assess property that cost hundreds of millions. Nassau County is similar to BC in terms of pricing due to fact also a bedroom community of wall street. Cant wait to see what this year brings.

    t c m says:
    December 20, 2011 at 4:47 pm
    #90- JJ

    “I am assuming she is coming back, just worried telecommuting, FMLA, sick days for sick chiled, can I leave early for this or that. I know the whole grab bag of excuses are going to take place…..”

    Yes, going home early for a sick child is going to happen. Just be sure that you don’t have a double standard. I worked on a trading desk in one of the biggest Wall St. firms when I went back to work. When I would get a call that I had to leave because one of my kids had a fever, or whatever, I knew there was grumbling. The double standard was that very often, the guys on the desk that worked with me would duck out a lot. After trading, they would leave their jackets on the chair, and just leave for drinks, golf, home, whatever. A lot of people thought it was funny – there was no grumbling by management. But make no mistake, I knew it and other people did too. People notice this stuff.

    So, if you’re going to give someone a problem for leaving early for a sick child, you’d better be sure that everyone else’s a$$es are in their chairs all the time – otherwise, you’re in for a well earned lawsuit.

  43. Dan in debt says:

    Grim,

    You only have one more year to buy your dream house or be priced out forever…….

  44. JJ says:

    Chifi, re – Sanchez in huddle with Secret beauty.

    Kate Uptown may be as nice as she is beautiful. I don’t know Kate personally, but I know her sister Christie Uptown. Christie works for Jets. I was talking to her at the Chargers game. Kate Uptown has been going to Jets games on and off since stadium opened. At the Charger game Kate/Christie were sitting right by my seats.

    Christie got me field pass Jets/Giants preseason game in 2010 and Christie got me field passes to the Jets/Chargers game this year. Christie is super down to earth and nice.

  45. Shylock (aka, Anon E. Moose) says:

    grim [25] says:

    Isn’t today the end of the world?

    We’ll know that if Jill says yes.

  46. grim says:

    Gave up on the dream, settled for a house.

  47. yo says:

    GSP toll .50 .75 and $1.50 starting 1/1/12.More taxes

  48. Anon E. Moose says:

    Grim [title post];

    NAR lie(s/d)? Color me Capt. Renault…

  49. freedy says:

    http://www.zerohedge.com/print/441993

    Hurry home prices turned back

  50. Anon E. Moose says:

    Re [50];

    If there was adult supervision at the head of DoJ instead of a race baiting bag man… You’d think our government’s top prosecuting attorney might recognize fraud when he saw it. Nah, he’s too busy punishing the states who want to prevent illegal immigrants and dead folks from voting his boss back into office next year.

  51. JJ says:

    14% less homes sold than reported. NAR are dicey with their numbers

  52. Nicholas says:

    I think that the real shocker is that it took them 4 years or more to change accounting methods even when they knew there were large discrepancies.

  53. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [37] yo

    “Only liquid assets please”

    Sorry, I plan on drinking all of my scotch by then.

  54. Nicholas says:

    Anon,

    I’m not sure your argument is swaying me to think badly of the top prosocutor at the DoJ whoever he may be. I think that both issues are extremely important. I think we have seen some high profile prosecutions against fraud (insider trading) in the last year.

    I’m not really sure what your trying to say.

  55. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [51] Moose

    Not true that DoJ wants to end all poll screening. Holder made clear that this poll screening is permissible.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ob57Z6lNapg&feature=related

  56. joyce says:

    55

    what prosecutions?

  57. galgon says:

    I just wanted to say thanks to Grim for this site. Back in 2006 I had just finished my full time MBA and was still looking for a job when I got married. We decided to rent for a year since I did not know where I was going to be working. I found a job and we started looking around at the housing market when I found this site. It confirmed what I had been thinking that housing prices were insanely high and could not possibly be maintained.

    Fast forward 5 years and we finally closed on our home yesterday. We had saved quite a bit of money over the years and we finally decided to take the plunge since the arrival of our daughter made our small 2 bedroom apt too small. I know that prices have not bottomed yet but we are expected to be here for many years.

    So thanks Grim and all of the long time posters for helping me not make a stupid decision. Now back to packing.

  58. seif says:

    congrats galgon. enjoy the home and the kid.

  59. Bocephus says:

    55. It’s trying to say…it’s not happy. Or something to that affect. Lawyers seldom are.

  60. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [55] Nicholas,

    Prosecuting crimes is something DoJ should be doing. When it comes to prosecutions, look not at who is prosecuted, but who isn’t (see my prior post).

    Also, if you don’t think that DoJ has been heavily politicized, you are not reading what I am reading, notably the want-ads. When Holder took over, there was a purge and a spate of new hiring. Not only did the advertisements make clear that they wanted left wing attorneys (no, they did not actually use the words “left wing”), but a later analysis of their hiring demonstrated that they did, in fact, hire left wing attorneys, some with dubious experience, over more qualified candidates that did not share the True Believer mantle. I seem to recall that dems were furious when Bush purged the US Attorney ranks. Obama did the same thing yet nary a whimper from the dems or our media “watchdogs.”

    To me, the most glaring example of this political favoritism was the nomination of Mary Smith to head the Tax Division. I know her personally and well, and while she is a nice person and a decent attorney, she had ZERO tax or tax prosecution experience and probably was not temperamentally suited to head a DoJ division anyway. So why was she nominated? Well, the one thing I knew about her that was never reported in the news was that she worked on Obama’s senate campaign.

    Now to Moose’s point, which is that Holder is Obama’s bag man. If you consider the focus of DoJ from matters of national concern to matters that fall into state purview, and then consider the political slant of the DoJ position in each, you sense clearly a pattern that DoJ is being used as a political enforcer. Nowhere is this more evident than in the area of voting rights. The Clinton DoJ used its weight to get heavily gerrymandered districts in order to insure democratic seats, while opposing the same sort of gerrymandering if it would produce a GOP seat. This DoJ is using very attenuated arguments to prevent laws aimed at limiting voter fraud, a traditional police power of a state, and the only reason they are involved is because the type of voter fraud being targeted inures to the benefit of democrats.

    If anyone has a compelling argument why this isn’t so, I’ve yet to hear it.

  61. Bocephus says:

    58. Congrats on finding someone who will have secks with you.

  62. Anon E. Moose says:

    Nicholas [55];

    I’ll type slower for you, then.

    Illegal immigrants and dead people aren’t entitled to vote. States should be preventing this sort of voter fraud. Holder (the aforemntioned race-baiter, bag man of Marc Rich pardon fame), the Attorney General, is seeing to it that state-level attempts to prevent this election fraud from occuring is discouraged with extremem prejudice, presumably because illegal immigrants and dead people are a core Democratic voting blocs.

  63. freedy says:

    dead people voting is a longstanding tradition in NJ. after all we’ve had some real winners in office .

  64. joyce says:

    Yup, never any voter fraud with the Republicans.

    please… the one major political party in this country (R’s and D’s) is the problem, they disagree on ZERO of the major, real issues affecting the populace

  65. Shore Guy says:

    Hey, Chifi. With your holiday bounu, maybe you want to pick up something like this. It is close to you.

    http://www.zillow.com/homedetails/100-Richdale-Rd-Colts-Neck-NJ-07722/39230325_zpid/

  66. Shore Guy says:

    With respect to that Colts NEck house, does anyone want to take a guess at how much they ow on their mortgage?

    Date

    Description

    Price

    % Chg

    $/sqft

    Source

    01/12/2011

    Listed for sale

    $3,950,000

    $438

    Heritage House Sothebys International Realty

    01/08/2011

    Listing removed

    $3,950,000

    $438

    Heritage House Sotheby’s International Realty

    12/04/2010

    Price change

    $3,950,000

    -10.1%

    $438

    Heritage House Sotheby’s International Realty

    11/11/2010

    Price change

    $4,395,000

    11.3%

    $488

    Heritage House Sotheby’s International Realty

    07/29/2010

    Listed for sale

    $3,950,000

    30.3%

    $438

    Heritage House Sotheby’s International Realty

  67. Juice Box says:

    Freshies today snowing heavy and I70 may shut down which means another day of powder skiing and a late flight out of here. There is a comedy act tonight called the Jersey Boys, I may go out and get a spray tan and put on sold gold chains for the show.

  68. Shore Guy says:

    Maybe RE has an icing problem:

    All five people on board a Socata TBM-700 were killed Tuesday morning after the single-engine turboprop apparently lost a wing in flight, then spiraled to a crash in the median of busy Interstate 287 in New Jersey and burned. Nobody on the ground was hurt. The airplane had taken off from Teterboro just 14 minutes earlier, about 9:50 a.m., headed for Atlanta, the NTSB said on Tuesday afternoon. The pilot and ATC discussed reports of icing in the area. A chunk of the missing wing was found about a quarter-mile from the wreckage, lodged in a tree. The airplane belonged to Jeffrey Buckalew, 45, a New York investment banker, who was the pilot. Also on board were Buckalew’s wife and two children, a co-worker, and a dog.

    Tuesday afternoon, NTSB investigators said Buckalew had requested clearance to a higher altitude shortly before the airplane dropped off radar. Earlier, Buckalew had a seven-second conversation with a controller, but the NTSB said it wasn’t clear if he was reporting that he had encountered icing or was asking about the location of possible icing conditions. On ATC recordings, a controller is heard telling Buckalew about “moderate rime” up to 17,000 feet, according to The Associated Press. “We’ll let you know what happens when we get in there,” the pilot says. “If we can go straight through it, that’s no problem for us.” One witness told the AP the airplane seemed to be out of control. “It was like the plane was doing tricks or something, twirling and flipping,” said Chris Covello, of Rockaway Township, N.J. “It started going straight down. I thought any second they were going to pull up. But then the wing came off and they went straight down.” Covello said he saw the descent from the car dealership where he works.

    http://www.avweb.com/avwebflash/news/IcingCitedInTBM700FreewayCrash_205909-1.html

  69. Libtard in the City says:

    Cute pup Grim. I love big dogs too. Ours it big, but skinny. Shut up JJ!

  70. Anon E. Moose says:

    Shore;

    I’m surprised Avweb would botch the story like that. “lost a wing in flight, then spiraled to a crash” The wing did separate, but was found less than 1/4 mi. from the rest of the wreck. Not likely the wing would separate at 17k ft. and end up that close. This pilot’s problems started before the wing separated.

    “I thought any second they were going to pull up. But then the wing came off…”

    Current theory is that icing in the clouds at altitutde led to a stall/spin/spiral, and the attempted recovery from the dive once below the clouds separated the outboard wing panel (starboard (right), if I read correctly). After that, there’s little hope of a good outcome. I had thought he was trying to get back to Morristown airport based on a radar track I saw, but it turns out that radar track was inaccurate.

  71. JJ says:

    Big Dogs makes me wonder. I notice in NYC in the Village most of the “men” had either little dogs or big dogs depending on who was the “top man”. I kinda like mid-sized dogs as it seems the safer bet.

    Dogs are much better than cats at least. No body wants to pay full price for a house with cats in it. Now a smoker with cats that house is worthless. I wonder if we could adjust home prices to take smokers with cats out of home sales. Surely they mess up the figures.
    Re 58, how can a two bedroom be too small for a couple with one kid?

  72. Libtard in the City says:

    I don’t undertstand the little dogs thing. I call them kick dogs.

  73. A.West says:

    There Went Meat,
    I saw that corruption of America article you posted. Decent analysis of the worst of what’s happening in the US. I had to laugh when I saw who wrote it though.
    P.Stansberry is a guy I knew 15 years ago, over ten years ago his crew wanted me to write an investment newsletter for them. It’s a slimy business though, and I didn’t want to ruin my professional credibility/reputation by connecting myself to a newsletter hype machine. All these guys are convinced they know everything, and will be right about everything, somehow they make themselves forget all their wrong investment calls.

  74. Anon E. Moose says:

    “Jobs that Died in 2011” from Monster:

    2. Real Estate Agents

    Real estate, formerly the favorite second job of actors and parents returning to work, is no longer such a sure thing.

    Al Halverson of Burien, Washington, a 30-year real estate industry veteran, says the money just isn’t what it used to be. “The buyers are coming out to buy at much lower prices,” he says. “That means Realtors are working more and making less. The million-dollar houses are now $450,000 or $500,000.” Homes selling for half the price means a big pay cut for commission-based agents’ earnings.

    Median Annual Pay for a Real Estate Agent: $75,500
    Median Hourly Pay: $36.30
    Education: Bachelor’s degree plus real estate license

    Really? I can beleive that some, even many of them, have Bachelors’ Degrees, just like the average secretary now needs a BA in whatever to type and file, but a job requirement?

  75. Shadow of John says:

    “kick dogs”

    How did he song go? Drop kick the small dogs through the goalpoast of life, or something like that. Just keep em off my crush velour.

  76. Shadow of John says:
  77. grim says:

    Here is the conspiracy theory of the day.

    Did the NAR release the revisions, only because it makes the current market recovery appear stronger?

    http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-DNmtWkQP9fM/TvICj1mITnI/AAAAAAAALqE/Rw667IEcnS8/s1600/EHSRevisions.jpg

    Comparing the pre and post revision charts, the post-revision chart certainly appears to show a little stronger of a recovery in recent months.

    Did they have their cake, and eat it too?

  78. Shadow of John says:

    Before I joined Wall Street I was inthe army and got married before shipping out to Indiantown Gap. I thought it was out fighting indians but it was only in Pensylvania. My bride was blushing that night but I was pukeing on my crush velour.

    http://a5.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-ash4/391058_349996875016365_283406408342079_1684680_2078833128_n.jpg

  79. yo says:

    Maybe one of the Kardsn can show you their real talent in this mansion

    Shore Guy says:
    December 21, 2011 at 11:48 am
    Hey, Chifi. With your holiday bounu, maybe you want to pick up something like this. It is close to you.

    http://www.zillow.com/homedetails/100-Richdale-Rd-Colts-Neck-NJ-07722/39230325_zpid/

  80. Shadow of John says:

    I also used to have an advice column in the local paper. Dear Abby paid me to stop writing. I was tsking to much of her business from her.

    http://a7.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-ash4/407612_348940958455290_283406408342079_1680699_454230636_n.jpg

  81. Shadow of John says:
  82. grim says:

    76 – I have no problem with agents leaving the industry like lemmings off a cliff (they came in that way, might as well leave the same). Random comment – One of the LA’s we worked with this past year cleared almost $350k in ’10. Not a bad year, you know, for being armageddon and the end of the world and all. Certainly an exception case, but I’m hearing the same kind of buzz from all the long-timers, the exodus of the easy-money leaches is a welcome change.

  83. grim says:

    … DOJ Reaches $335 Million Settlement in Countrywide Lending Case

    … I’d have preferred hangings.

  84. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    THE END IS NIGH (Yuletide edition):

    “Trees that produce frankincense, a fragrant resin used in incense and perfumes and a central part of the Christmas story, are declining so fast that production could be halved over the next 15 years, scientists said on Wednesday.

    In a study published in the British Ecological Society’s Journal of Applied Ecology, ecologists from the Netherlands and Ethiopia looked at large-scale field studies and predicted that tree numbers could decline by 90 percent in the next 50 years. . . .”

  85. Nicholas says:

    Grim,

    I don’t think this is a question of have your cake and eat it too when it comes to the NAR. They look like incompetent, bumbling idiots for having gotten simple things wrong for so many years.

    I’m happier that they have come out and admitted their mistakes but since it took so long I’m not entirely sure that they won’t perform a massive cover up again. They still are a source of information that is slightly above wikipedia in my book.

  86. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    Kick dogs?

    My dog is a Boston Terrier (again with the Massachusetts meme), and these dogs exemplify the old adage “It isn’t the size of the dog in the fight, it’s the size of the fight in the dog.” They can be all fight, and my BTs routinely kick the snot out of dogs much bigger.

    I am reminded of an anecdote from many decades ago when the AFC sucked. At a player’s picnic, OJ Simpson, who had a big dog, was ridiculing Sam “Bam” Cunningham of the Patriots, who had a small dog. The story went that Sam, who was much bigger than OJ, got in OJ’s face and said very softly “I don’t need a big dog.”

    http://www.google.com/imgres?q=sam+cunningham+patriots&hl=en&sa=X&rlz=1R2ADRA_enUS451&biw=1280&bih=537&tbm=isch&prmd=imvnso&tbnid=TroGpwyIiwvOnM:&imgrefurl=http://patsblog.projo.com/2010/06/sam-bam-cunning.html&docid=-LQ21SWAxEguqM&imgurl=http://patsblog.projo.com/cunningham_0614.jpg&w=3600&h=2456&ei=1UHyTpm3HcXW0QGFjPWLAg&zoom=1&iact=rc&dur=188&sig=118156927069184642432&page=1&tbnh=150&tbnw=213&start=0&ndsp=11&ved=1t:429,r:8,s:0&tx=161&ty=79

    Sam and I have a lot in common. We like small dogs and running over people.

  87. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [85, 86] shadow

    Well, women supposedly love small things. Guess you were pretty popular.

  88. yo says:

    They get you comng in,they get you coming out

    grim says:
    December 21, 2011 at 2:51 pm
    Here is the conspiracy theory of the day.

    Did the NAR release the revisions, only because it makes the current market recovery appear stronger?

  89. chicagofinance says:

    I pass that area every day on my commute. The area is very nice….that particular property appears to be unsaleable…..people are going to look back and the place will have a 00’s (i.e. aughts) dated look…what a clusterfcuk….

    Shore Guy says:
    December 21, 2011 at 11:48 am
    Hey, Chifi. With your holiday bonus, maybe you want to pick up something like this. It is close to you.

  90. chicagofinance says:

    congrats….

    galgon says:
    December 21, 2011 at 11:19 am
    Fast forward 5 years and we finally closed on our home yesterday.

  91. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [92] redux

    Only once did someone actually try to kick my dog. It was in a dog park in Virginia, and my late BT went after a Mastiff. Sent it packing. The owner, a big guy in a hockey jersey, ran over to save his dog and lashed out at mine with his foot. I flew into the pile and sent him sprawling with a forearm shot.

    Guy was so stunned by this that he did not know what to do. We faced off for about ten seconds, each holding onto our dogs. I could see the wheels turning, he figuring out what happened and trying to figure out if we should throw down. I suppose he figured that even if he wanted to throw down, he’d get a fight. Moreover, our dogs would go at it again and mine would turn his into mincemeat. So he got into his truck and left.

    Kick my dog, will ya?

  92. Bocephus says:

    63. Wow…what a mind. A real genius.

  93. Bocephus says:

    97. Not just tough. Internet tough.

  94. homeboken says:

    Nom – Double cheers for the BT’s. I have one that is very big for the breed but would not know the first thing about how to be aggressive. His response to another dog lunging and growling is to get into play-bow.

  95. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [99] SX

    Nope, I’m old school. I don’t say anything here I wouldn’t say to your face. And I freely admit that if we got into it, I probably would have been pounded silly. That guy was big. But I don’t back down from challenges; that’s a guaranteed loss every time.

    If you want, call me out on it. I don’t mine and would actually look forward to it. Must be the Irish side, but I do enjoy confrontation a lot more than I did when I was younger—debate, ring, dojo, doesn’t matter. Besides, anything to get this lame group to a GTG.

  96. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    D’oh.

    mine=mind.

  97. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [100] HB

    That’s unusual. BTs are known for being aggressive with other dogs. Even when they play, they look like they are fighting. And they love to play tug of war. Mine will latch onto a toy and I can spin her around with it.

    Kinda like this:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I4qoJlt8MzU

  98. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [101] redux

    Meant to say that I would have been pounded silly by guy in Virginia. Not you.

    Nothing to go by on that score. You could be Chuck Norris or Pee Wee Herman.

  99. Anon E. Moose says:

    Grim [88];

    One of the LA’s we worked with this past year cleared almost $350k in ’10. Not a bad year, you know, for being armageddon and the end of the world and all. Certainly an exception case, but I’m hearing the same kind of buzz from all the long-timers, the exodus of the easy-money leaches is a welcome change.

    BK laywers get paid well, and first. Undertakers, too. There’s money to be made among the smouldering ruins.

    My experience is that supply and demand works. There’s plenty to be said for skills, knowledge and qualifications, but most of what drives salary is being willing to do what other people aren’t. That’s not to say that I particularly admire what I’ve experienced most realtors being willing to do that I wouldn’t, but the bottom line is they do, and I doubt they would but for the compensation involved.

  100. Painhrtz - I ain't dead yet says:

    Nom my BIL’s BT plays with our 120lb German Shepherd when they are up from NC. It is pretty funny to watch. The little fart machine BT has absolutely no fear of my bear dog

  101. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [105] moose

    “most of what drives salary is being willing to do what other people aren’t.”

    That explains salaries in BIGLAW firms. It ain’t cuz you so smart; it’s because, all things being equal, you wouldn’t work in those hellholes otherwise.

    When I was at Skadden, one of my co-associates worked on the Citi-Travelers deal. This was before Gunderson touched off the salary wars. He sat down one day and calculated that during a six month stretch, if he figured out his salary on the basis of hours spent in the office, he was making $9 an hour.

  102. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [106] pain

    Funny. My BT just wandered into my home office a little while ago and stunk the joint up. Smelled so bad I looked outside the office to see if he left a present under the tree.

  103. Ghost of Xmas Future says:

    Pb moving at a high enough velocity is a precious metal.

  104. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    Pain, homboken,

    now this BT owner is just asking for it.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ei8bm372x9s&feature=related

  105. Happy Renter says:

    [80] “Did the NAR release the revisions, only because it makes the current market recovery appear stronger?”

    Ha! Yeah, showing last year’s real numbers against this year’s latest fake numbers makes things look so much better.

    Buy now or be priced out forever, folks!

  106. SX says:

    101. Old School to me is just not even bothering with online stuff. Most of my buddies that are truly old school don’t even own computers.

  107. JJ says:

    I declare the recession over. I had to wait in line for 20 minutes at the jeweler to get my wife a xmas gift. In the diamond district ever store was crowded at three pm in the rain on a weekday. Everyone in front of me bought, no tire kickers. Owner told me this year much better.

    Glad to see countrywide settlement. Although I think BAC should not have to pay anything. They were forced at shotgun to buy this dog and eat big losses then the govt fines them for things prior CEO did. That is BS> Bank of America is doing the Lords work. God Bless them. Plus havent their stock holders been punished enough. If we are bailing out mortgage holders we should bail out BAC stock holders.

    Even Boeing is up, people buying multi million dollar planes. Even crazier I could not book a summer 2012 vacation as the places I want to go to are sold out. I already miss the recession. Oh the joy of cheap flights, hotels, cars, it was heaven. With cheap gas, low interest rates and unemployment falling sadly the bottom for re is coming in the next year or two. My dream of one dollar homes in Saddle River may never come through.

  108. Anon E. Moose says:

    Re: [113];

    JJ == Frank?

    What recession?

  109. JJ says:

    Foreclosure sales still pummeling home prices
    BY les christie,
    CNNMoney.com
    ™ and © 2011 Cable News Network and Time Inc. and/or their affiliated companies. All Rights Reserved.
    CNNMoney.com — 12/21/11
    Nearly five years into the crisis, foreclosures are still weighing heavily on home prices.

    A whopping 46% of homes sold in November were either short sales or REOs — as homes repossessed by lenders are called, according to a survey by Campbell/Inside Mortgage Finance. One problem: Distressed homes sell for a lot less than homes sold by conventional sellers. The average price for a short sale (when borrowers owe the bank more than their homes are worth) was $209,000 in November. For a regular sale, the average was about $259,000.

    The numbers are even worse for REOs, which averaged about $190,000 for properties in move-in condition.

    For a damaged REO, the price was just $99,000. That’s a common problem, since homeowners who’ve been foreclosed on don’t typically devote resources to upkeep.

    There is no shortage of distressed properties: More than 6 million borrowers are delinquent 30 or more days, according to LPS Applied Analytics. Two million are already in the foreclosure process, and most of these homes will be repossessed or sold as short sales.

    “The huge glut of distressed properties coming to market is why there will be no home price rebound this coming year and maybe into 2013,” said Guy Cecala of Inside Mortgage Finance, a publisher of mortgage information and news.

    There’s another problem: getting financing for REOs in poor shape can be difficult, according to Cecala. Lenders don’t like to issue mortgages for homes in need of extensive repairs.

    And in an insidious twist, as distressed properties are sold, they can also bring down the price of homes that aren’t in trouble. That’s because mortgage appraisers assessing a regular home’s value typically compare it to short sales and REOs in the area.

    Since distressed properties sell for so much less, using them as comparables drags the appraised values of regular homes way down.

    “It’s the No. 1 reason why transactions fall through,” said Cecala. “If you can’t get an appraisal to support the price, the deal will won’t close.”

    ——————————————————————————–

  110. Bystander says:

    It’s official. Transit benefit drops to $125..basically nothing if you live around NYC. Those of us with commuter tax benefits get left behind by the useless, bloated f__ks in Congress. This is truly war on the working class. Metro North increase now pushes my train pass up $60 / month. Of course, no decent bonus or raise scheduled by my IB.

    http://dc.streetsblog.org/2011/12/20/senate-fails-to-extend-transit-commuter-tax-benefit/

  111. Anon E. Moose says:

    My anecdotal recession indicator: AC surviving, but not thriving.

    Unlike Shore I do not get comped in every casino I go. I am on more pedestrian promo e-mail lists. Lots of cheap Sun-Thu night rooms, almost giving them away (e.g., $39 incl. a $25 food comp – though they ding you an extra $10 for “resort fee”. Really? AC? A resort? Whatever…) This month they started including weekends, though at higher rates. Fri $70; Sat $120. (Foxwoods is now pimping MGM Grand for $69 midweek.)

    Casino was active but not packed. Biggest thing I saw was the low table limits: Fri. night $5 Craps and $10 BlackJack well into the wee hours. All this tells me they’re hurting, but doing what they need to do to keep the lights on and the doors open.

    And the people are still going. Sat in plenty of traffic on the Parkway, even well before the Asbecon exit.

  112. JJ says:

    Recession has been officially over for awhile now. However, I have seen limos, broadway shows, diamonds for christmas, fancy vacations, new cars from friends, family and co-workers becoming more common place. I recall when I got my BMW a friend already had one that was a lease that was due up around March 2009. Last I saw him I noticed he was driving same car. I go so what happend you extend lease on car or buy it back. He said times are so bad that when the three year lease was up on my 2006 blue five series with beige interior I leased a 2009 blue five series with beige interior so I would not make neighbors feel bad. Felt uncomfortable showing off. However, he said in March 2012 when these lease is up he is getting a fancy new car, now that recession is over he can show off again. Everyone makes sacrifices.

    Anon E. Moose says:
    December 21, 2011 at 5:21 pm
    Re: [113];

    JJ == Frank?

    What recession?

  113. JJ says:

    Even , more screwed up the tax free parking benefit was untouched. My buddy who works in an IB and walks to work from Battery Park uses tax free dollars to pay for part of his parking spot for a car he does not drive to work. They are encouraging people to drive rather than take train as parking subsidy is larger.

    Bystander says:
    December 21, 2011 at 5:33 pm
    It’s official. Transit benefit drops to $125..basically nothing if you live around NYC. Those of us with commuter tax benefits get left behind by the useless, bloated f__ks in Congress. This is truly war on the working class. Metro North increase now pushes my train pass up $60 / month. Of course, no decent bonus or raise scheduled by my IB.

  114. Bystander says:

    JJ,

    That is because these a$$clowns want to talk about giving the commuter tax breaks while they know damn well that $240 parking is useless. It is a revenue issue. You can generally park for $5 a day at many transit stations. That is $100 a month. $240 is for the trader in the Benz who wants extra wide spaces, covered parking , heated garages while throwing the keys to Jose who parks it for him. $230 was still 10% short on my train pass. Now, it is 50% short.

  115. Confused in NJ says:

    Interesting that Senate & House are debating a bill to further bankrupt social security so that some people can buy more trinkets from China?

  116. yo says:

    The Fed is suppose to cover lost revenue to SS.They are discussing where the money will come from.
    What gets me is,they want to cut taxes on the upper income because they are the job creator.Let us see who really is the job creator.A business will only exist if there is demand.And that demand is generated by the middleclass.You cut the disposable income of the middleclass and you have no business.The top income will not hire if there is no demand.
    Why are they insisting to give the aid upwards?They did this during the downturn it did not trickle down.Still insisting of the same.
    The house republican neophytes have an agenda.The Tea party only wants this agenda,even if they get voted out next election they won already.They just want their agenda to win.This are not career politicians.

  117. yo says:

    The one hope that financially weak eurozone nations have to offset the effects of austerity on their economies is to show GDP growth. That not likely because austerity robs economies of stimulus money. New GDP figures from Italy are a sign that austerity may be coupled with failing economies, not improving ones. That means austerity has a smaller and smaller chance to bring budget deficits down.

    Italy reported that its GDP dropped 0.2% from the second quarter to the third. Bloomberg points out that this begins the fifth recession in the southern European nation since 2001. An improvement in the GDP number would have given hope that a combination of economic growth and a drop in government expenditures would narrow budget gaps and, eventually, Italy’s indebtedness. The final effect of that process should be that Italy’s borrowing costs fall.

    The yield that weak eurozone nations have had to pay on newly issued sovereign debt has fallen in the past two weeks, after reaching eurozone era records. That decline will not continue.

    Capital markets investors will look at Italy’s new numbers as a confirmation of one of the two things they fear. The first is that politicians and voters will block austerity plans. The second is that a substantial economic slump will hit the eurozone region. What many thought politicians could not do — put austerity in place — has happened. The second part of the equation may be worse than forecast.

    Douglas A. McIntyre

  118. Shore Guy says:

    Moose,

    Thanks for the cheap shot. I needed a bit of class added to my day.

  119. 30 year realtor says:

    #51 Moose – Are you suggesting there is a case for prosecuting NAR for their inaccuracies? Would you care to explain?

    Please understand that I couldn’t give a sh*t about the trade organization that has sucked dues and fees from me for decades. I just want to understand the basis for the prosecution.

  120. 30 year realtor says:

    #124 Shore – He has a special gift!

  121. Shore Guy says:

    30 Year,

    So it seems. I have no objection to anyone viewing the world in through a different philosophical lense than I. Nor do I take offens when folks debate policy differences with me. Pettiness, on the other hand, is just a sad excuse for behavior and, in my experience and opinion, indicates a lack of coherent thought and, often, jealousy; it is the adult version of the preschooler’s “so there.”

  122. cb says:

    grim

    thanks for supporting our site
    http://www.listingfree.com

  123. Confused in NJ says:

    122.yo says:
    December 21, 2011 at 6:41 pm
    The Fed is suppose to cover lost revenue to SS.They are discussing where the money will come from

    2011 was unfunded and added to the debt. 2012 is questionable. Neither party has offered a way out of the deficit, without which, country is doomed.

  124. Confused in NJ says:

    The rich were only job creators years ago when they actually owned companys and created products. The non owner parasitic service economy rich only create wealth for themselves.

  125. chicagofinance says:

    Shore & Coast: the real story….

    Cornell’s $350 Million Donor Feeney Plans to Give It All Away

    By John Lauerman and Oliver Staley – Dec 21, 2011 12:00 AM ET .

    Cornell’s $350 Million Donor Feeney Plans Give It All Away Skidmore Owings &

    Merrill via Bloomberg

    Research towers and sloping lab buildings are oriented for the most efficient capture of solar energy in this proposal for a new engineering campus in New York City.

    Research towers and sloping lab buildings are oriented for the most efficient capture of solar energy in this proposal for a new engineering campus in New York City.

    Donating a record $350 million to Cornell University last week moved Charles Feeney closer to a life goal: giving away all of his fortune while still alive.

    Feeney, 80, plans to shut by 2020 Atlantic Philanthropies, the foundation he began bankrolling in 1984 by gifting his businesses, including shares of the Duty Free Shoppers Group chain he co-founded. The charity has about $2 billion in assets and has donated more than $5.5 billion for health programs, universities and causes worldwide, according to its website.

    Cornell has been among the biggest beneficiaries, receiving almost $1 billion, including the gift announced Dec. 16 that will help pay for an engineering campus in New York City. Feeney graduated from Cornell’s school of hotel administration in 1956 and has helped pay for buildings, scholarships and research at the main campus in Ithaca, New York, for decades, said Ron Ehrenberg, an economist and former university vice president.

    “Cornell has just been very, very fortunate to have him,” said Ehrenberg, who received $1.5 million from Feeney to support his work. “It is hard to envision the university without him.”

    Feeney in February joined the Giving Pledge group that originated with Microsoft Corp. co-founder Bill Gates and investor Warren Buffett. The campaign includes about 70 members who have agreed to donate more than half their wealth.

    “I cannot think of a more personally rewarding and appropriate use of wealth than to give while one is living,” Feeney said in a letter to Gates and Buffett making his pledge.

    Grant Making
    Atlantic Philanthropies concentrates its grant-making on aging; children; population health; and reconciliation and human rights. It gave away $285 million in 2010, and $375 million the previous year, according to recent financial statements.

    Feeney typically doesn’t seek public credit for his donations and his name isn’t on any Cornell buildings, Ehrenberg said. Most of his Cornell gifts are to projects recommended by the university’s president and provost, he said.

    The $350 million gift was critical to Cornell winning New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s contest to lure an engineering school to the city, said Peter Meinig, chairman of Cornell’s board of trustees. The mayor — founder and majority owner of Bloomberg LP, parent of Bloomberg News — solicited bids in July for a competition that would offer use of city land on Roosevelt Island, in the East River, and $100 million for infrastructure improvements to build a science and engineering campus.

    Major Project
    “You’re talking about a major, major project,” Meinig said. “All universities today are operating under significant financial constraints. The fact that Chuck Feeney and Atlantic Philanthropies were willing to commit $350 million to this project gave us the ability to be very aggressive in the competition.”

    Atlantic Philanthropies said in an e-mail that Feeney wasn’t available for an interview.

    Cornell, partnering with Technion-Israel Institute of Technology, beat out six competing bids from schools including Stanford University and Carnegie Mellon University. Stanford pulled out of the contest Dec. 16, hours before Cornell announced Feeney’s gift as an anonymous donation. Feeney was revealed to be the donor Dec. 19.

    Cornell plans to begin classes next year in leased space until the Roosevelt Island campus is completed. Cornell said it will move by 2017 and finish construction of more than 1.3 million square feet by 2027. By 2043, the campus will have 2,500 students and 280 faculty members, according to the university and the mayor’s office.

    $1.5 Billion Construction

    The project will cost about $1.5 billion, Cornell President David Skorton said at a Dec. 19 press conference. The university doesn’t plan on borrowing to finance the project and instead will rely on tuition and philanthropy, technology license fees and corporate partnerships, he said.

    Feeney, the son of a nurse and insurance underwriter, grew up in a neighborhood on the western edge of Elizabeth, New Jersey, according to a 2007 biography written by Conor O’Clery, “The Billionaire Who Wasn’t: How Chuck Feeney Secretly Made and Gave Away a Fortune.” He knew how to squeeze money out of work, and as a teenage golf caddy, sought out nine-hole players who paid the same tip of 25 cents as those using the full 18-hole course, according to the book.

    Feeney owns neither a house nor a car, and takes a salary from the foundation that “covers his needs,” O’Clery said in a telephone interview. Feeney recently stopped flying coach, switching to business class after his charity’s board insisted because of health concerns, O’Clery said.

    “He’s still shopping for the cheapest tickets, you can be sure of that,” O’Clery said.

    Net Worth
    While Forbes magazine in 1988 listed Feeney as the 23rd richest person in the world with assets of about $1.3 billion, the ranking was wrong, O’Clery said. Feeney had already signed over businesses to his philanthropy at a secret meeting in the Bahamas in 1984, according to O’Clery. The assets included spas in Thailand, retail stores in Hawaii and France, and property in the U.K.

    Profit from those businesses added as much as $300 million annually to the foundation’s endowment, O’Clery said. In 1997, the foundation received about $1.6 billion after Feeney’s share of Duty Free Shoppers Group was sold, he said.

    Feeney decided to acknowledge his philanthropy to encourage other wealthy donors to do the same, O’Clery said.

    “He wanted his model of giving while living to be out there for other people of great wealth to use as a template,” the author said.

  126. chicagofinance says:

    The End Is Nigh (Slider Edition):

    BOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOYYYYYAAAAAAAAAAA!!!!!

    COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — White Castle, a 90-year-old hamburger chain known for its square “slider” burgers, is sipping on the idea of offering alcoholic beverages as it tests beer and wine sales at a restaurant in Indiana.

    The food famously craved by stoners in the 2004 movie “Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle” can be had with a glass of wine or a domestic or seasonal beer at a Lafayette, Ind., restaurant that fuses a conventional White Castle with a new concept for the company called Blaze Modern BBQ. Wine costs $4.50 and beers start at $3.

    “This was something that customers had been suggesting,” said Jamie Richardson, a spokesman for Columbus-based White Castle System Inc. “They thought that beer and wine might go nicely with the barbecue that was available at Blaze. We’re certain that we might have some customers who might enjoy some sliders and a beer or wine as well.”

    White Castle’s test with those beverages was first reported in Wednesday’s editions of The Columbus Dispatch.

    Other fast-food restaurants also are dabbling with alcohol. Earlier this year, Burger King opened the Whopper Bar South Beach, a restaurant in Miami Beach offering beer, and Starbucks Corp. has been testing beer and wine at a few sites.

    The companies see alcoholic beverages as a growth opportunity after years of flat sales, said David Henkes, a vice president with the Chicago-based food research firm Technomic. “Alcohol is one of those things that is extremely profitable to the operator,” he said.

    White Castle’s beer and wine tryout is part of a broader experiment with three new concepts that the company has been studying for a little over a year, Richardson said Wednesday. Besides Blaze Modern BBQ, there’s also an Asian food brand, Laughing Noodle, at a White Castle in Springfield, Ohio, and a triple-decker sandwich concept, Deckers, in Lebanon, Tenn.

    Customers have had a “very positive” reaction to the alcoholic beverages offered in Indiana, but for now, White Castle is considering only whether to expand them to the two other co-branded restaurants, Richardson said.

    White Castle would face challenges trying to roll out beer and wine on a wider scale, Henkes said.

    “What we find with fast-food places is, there’s very strict regulations around training. Typically, a lot of the employees in fast food are under 21, so you get into some service issues,” he said. “You get into some inventory issues. You get into whether distributors are willing to deliver to you because you’re generally not doing a whole lot of volume in these categories.”

    Adding beer and wine to the menu sounds fine to lifelong White Castle fan Jim Kreml of Elk River, Minn. — even though he’s a teetotaler. “I know my wife would love that because she is a wine drinker,” said Kreml, 47, the operator of a chimney-cleaning business who acknowledged he eats at the restaurants “a couple of times a week.”

    Kreml, named in 2009 to White Castle’s Cravers Hall of Fame, said Wednesday that he would expect alcoholic beverage options to be popular with many slider aficionados. “If they’re of age and they drink that already, I think they’d be happy with that. As long as they’re responsible and don’t sit in there, and that’s not party time,” he said.

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    really nice blog post…

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