S&P Case Shiller April HPI

Due out at 9am this morning, post will be updated as news/info becomes available.

From Bloomberg:

Home-Price Declines in 20 U.S. Cities Eased in April

Home prices in 20 major U.S. metropolitan areas fell in April at a slower pace than forecast, a sign the plunge in real-estate values is abating.

The S&P/Case-Shiller home-price index decreased 18.1 percent from a year earlier following an 18.7 percent drop in March. The measure declined 19 percent in January, the most since the data began in 2001.

Price declines are likely to keep moderating as demand steadies and distressed properties account for a smaller share of transactions. Still, the highest jobless rate in 25 years is contributing to record foreclosures, which are likely to keep depressing values for months to come even as home sales steady.

“It is looking a little bit better,” said Mark Vitner, a senior economist at Wachovia Corp. in Charlotte, North Carolina. “The largest declines are probably past. When prices stop falling the erosion in household wealth will come to an end.”

Economists forecast the index would drop 18.6 percent, according to the estimates of 33 economists surveyed by Bloomberg. Estimates ranged from drops of 17.7 percent to 19.4 percent.

From MarketWatch:

U.S. home prices down 18.1% in past year

U.S. home prices were down 18.1% in the year ended April, according to the national Case-Shiller home price index released Tuesday. On a month-to-month basis, prices in 20 selected cities fell 0.6% in April, with declines in 11 cities. Still, the overall pace of decline slowed in April, said David Blitzer, chairman of the index committee for Standard & Poor’s, which compiles the Case-Shiller index. “Every metro area, except for Charlotte, recorded an improvement in monthly returns over March,” Blitzer said. “While one month’s data cannot determine if a turnaround has begun, it seems that some stabilization may be appearing in some of the regions.”

From the WSJ:

Home Prices Drop at Slower Pace

U.S. home prices continued their multiyear tumble in April, according to the S&P Case-Shiller home-price indexes, although the indexes showed their third-straight month of slightly smaller declines.

Seventeen of 20 major metropolitan areas posted price declines of more than 10% from a year earlier, with the Sun Belt continuing to be hit hardest. Nationally, home prices are at levels similar to the middle of 2003.

From the AP:

Home prices post 18.1 percent annual drop in April

A key housing index shows a clear trend that home price declines are moderating.

The Standard & Poor’s/Case-Shiller index released Tuesday showed home prices in 20 major cities tumbled by 18.1 percent from April 2008. The 10-city index fell 18 percent from the year before.

April, however, marked the third straight month both indexes didn’t set record price declines. And yearly losses in 13 metros improved compared to March.

Still, the 20-city index is off almost 33 percent from its peak in the second quarter of 2006, and the 10-city has dropped by almost 34 percent, which means home values are now around 2003-levels.

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222 Responses to S&P Case Shiller April HPI

  1. grim says:

    From Forbes:

    Cash-Strapped States Target The Rich

    New Jersey Gov. Jon Corzine Monday signed a 2010 budget making his state the latest to squeeze the rich for extra cash. The budget imposes a new 10.75% state income tax rate on income over $1 million and a 10.25% rate on income over $500,000, up from an old top rate of 8.97%. Both rates are retroactive to Jan. 1, effective for 2009 only, and kick in at the same taxable income level for both singles and couples.

    The new law gives New Jersey the second highest 2009 state income tax rate in the nation–second only to Hawaii’s 11% rate on income over $400,000 per couple, which that state’s Democratic legislature adopted in May over the veto of the state’s Republican governor.

    New Jersey is “playing a numbers game so they won’t be the highest,” says Kathleen Thies, a state income tax analyst at tax publisher CCH, a Wolter Kluwer business.

  2. grim says:

    From the WSJ:

    McMansions Out of Favor, For Now

    A new study out Monday by the American Institute of Architects shows that Americans have fallen out of love with McMansions. The 500 residential architects surveyed said that only 4% of their clients wanted more square footage in their homes this year, compared to 16% last year.

    This desire isn’t surprising, given both the recession and the fact that the most recent U.S. Census shows that there are 77 million people in the “empty-nester” phase of life, from ages 45 to 64, and 61 million in the first-time buyer category, from 20 to 34.

    So at least for the near future, empty-nesters and young adults will dominate the housing market. The question is, will smaller, more affordable housing be there for them?

    On the surface, at least, it looks like that might be the case. A survey released this month by the National Association of Home Builders shows that the average home built during the first quarter of 2009 was 2,335 square feet, down from 2,629 square feet during the second quarter of 2008. And 59% of builders surveyed in May by the trade association said that they are planning on building smaller homes in the coming year. Only 1% reported that they would be building bigger homes.

  3. cooper says:

    Taxpayers to have say on AIG-

    NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) — AIG is expected to formally install its new board on Tuesday, when the company holds its first annual shareholders meeting since U.S. taxpayers were given majority control.

    The three trustees that represent the government’s 80% controlling interest in the troubled insurer plan to elect six new officers to the 11-member board of directors that is tasked with helping AIG repay more than $70 billion debt owed to taxpayers.


  4. grim says:

    From the APP:

    Raise the rent on sweet deals

    Monmouth County Park Service officials are forming a subcommittee to be charged with studying whether 34 park service department heads and other employees ought to pay more than the bargain rates they’ve been paying to live in county-owned houses on park lands. In other words, officials are spending more money and more time to learn what they already should know: The sweetheart housing deals must end.

    County Board of Recreation commissioners have been defending their rock-bottom rent policy, which assesses these employees only between $360 and $720 a month to live in park houses. The county pays for utilities, the county pays for all repairs, the county pays for needed improvements. Great deal? You bet.

    When presented last winter with complaints from the public about these deals, county officials defended their policy by claiming the park workers essentially are on duty 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, ready to respond to emergencies. That’s saving taxpayers the cost of security personnel, they explained.

    Well, thanks to the efforts of Holmdel resident and freeholder candidate Stan Rosenthal, that claim was blown out of the water. Rosenthal went through the records at seven county parks and clocked 691 incident reports for 2008. Only three of those incidents occurred outside normal work hours. Three off-hours incidents in one year hardly justifies the incredibly low rates these employees are paying to live in what is, effectively, taxpayer-subsidized housing.

  5. gayatri says:


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  6. DL says:

    CNBC a treasure trove today. Remember, the recession is over.

    “My house value fell from (last appraisal) $1.250 to $650k!”


  7. safeashouses says:

    Britain’s Queen will run out of money by 2012


    Good riddance in my book. Can’t stand the concept of monarchies.

  8. grim says:

    From the Star Ledger:

    N.J. Attorney General Anne Milgram plans to unveil mortgage-fraud indictments

    New Jersey Attorney General Anne Milgram today plans to announce multiple indictments for mortgage fraud.

    Milgram and Criminal Justice Director Deborah L. Gramiccioni are scheduled to make the announcement at noon in the Hughes Justice Complex here. The mortgage industry is wrestling with a record number of fraud incidents.

  9. stan says:

    Jonny boy announced in the budget that the state would be suspending jury trials for the month of August to save the hourly wage jurors are paid. When I served it was like 5 bucks an hpour or something,

    wtf. Talk about really cutting to the bone, not to mention the poor S0B waiting for his day in court in prison.

    What an a$$

  10. #10 – I was just served a few weeks ago. I got $5 a day.

  11. That should read ‘I just served’.
    I can’t imagine that this adds up to a large amount of money.

  12. RentinginNJ says:

    #10 – I was just served a few weeks ago. I got $5 a day.

    When I served (4 days) it was $5 per day for the first 3 days and then $30 per day thereafter

  13. A.West says:

    In NJ
    Trial by jury is expendable.
    Cushy salaries and retirements for state workers is not.

    In my daughter’s elementary school, her first grade teacher, who was really good, and was paid under $25k/yr, was let go because she didn’t have tenure.

    If baseball teams were run this way, the Cincinatti Reds would be paying Pete Rose $100mn to play second base this year.

  14. cooper says:

    just caught this, excuse if repost-

    BofA wording may cause more foreclosures

    “Moore listed the home in Edmonds for about $30,000 less than she owed on the mortgage. She thought the “short sale” agreement signed with the bank meant the bank would absorb the loss.”

    “Then she discovered that her lender, Bank of America, might still come after her for the difference. That means she may have to let the bank take back her property, or file for bankruptcy because she can’t afford to pay up.”

    “Bank of America could end up pushing thousands more homeowners into foreclosure or personal bankruptcy”

    more shadow inventory?


  15. aj says:

    157 (previous thread) – Are you concerned about interest rates rising significantly in the next year or so? That is where I am at right now.

    That is another bogey – which has been blown and milked out of proportions by realtors. My contention is why do interest rates matter in your home buying decision? In fact I would like to buy when interest rates are highest – if any. Because that is the time ordinary folks wont be able to afford and house prices will drop even further technically.

    If your buy/not buy easily tips because of one or two point changes in interest rate, you should re-do your maths to see how much “safety margin” you have. Maybe you should not be thinking of buying a house in first place and think about building a bigger down payment/safety money first.

    That being said, interest rates have been low for 5-6 years now. I remember people in 2003 could get mortgage for 5.5%. Some folks today would get it for 5%. How big is the difference? Does it really matter? Do you really have to believe the realtor’s line ‘NOW is the time, or else you’ll lose the opportunity forever’.

    Also from yesterday’s thead – I liked the drama where a realtor is trying to sell house, when the person clearly said that they just started looking. Lines like ‘sometimes it is only first or second house that you see – you’ll fall in love and you’ll regret having let it go’ or ‘Get your offer in soon, because there is another one in pipeline’. LOL. This is sooooo 2005. But I feel for the realtor – who is trying every line in the sales book, to have the damn house sell :).

  16. #14 – A. West – her first grade teacher… was let go because she didn’t have tenure.

    I know we have a fair number of teachers who read the blog, so maybe they can answer; What is the rationale behind making elementary school teachers tenured positions. At the collegiate level I understand, and fully support the tenure system. But at the elementary level? These aren’t the sort of teaching gigs that demand huge leeway in academic freedom. You’re not going to be teaching or presenting any radical ideas or theories that necessitate protecting the teacher. So why have it?

  17. Sean says:

    re #11 – I served a few months ago, my contribution was to not cash the check.

  18. Clotpoll says:

    safe (8)-

    Good. Then, they can take her to the East End and pimp her out.

    “Britain’s Queen will run out of money by 2012”

  19. 3b says:

    #8 safe: The English love their monarchy, so I am not sure that will happen.

  20. BeachBum says:

    Society needs tenure so that vigilante groups of parents don’t gang up on certain teachers. Teaching even (or maybe especially) small children is an inherently political act and in order to live easily in a community, teachers need tenure and vigilante power needs to be taken out of parents’ hands. If we didn’t have tenure, the culture wars would be even more dramatic than they currently are.

  21. Clotpoll says:

    “God save the queen
    The fascist regime
    They made you a moron
    Potential H-bomb

    God save the queen
    She ain’t no human being
    There is no future
    In England’s dreaming”

    -Johnny Rotten

  22. Clotpoll says:

    Chicken deflation.

    “With declining demand for chicken in this terrible economy we need to remove chicken from the market.”


  23. chicagofinance says:

    21.BeachBum says:
    June 30, 2009 at 8:55 am
    Society needs tenure so that vigilante groups of parents don’t gang up on certain teachers.

    Beach & tosh: yes….it is really too bad; a lot of parents are complete clowns…..a simple analogy…imagine you are the boss of some guy who is average at best and not that motivated. You give him a bad review and a bad raise. Then the guy’s parents show up at the office to complain that you do not appreciate how great he is. Your response is “…you have no f-ing idea what we do here, and you have no frame off reference to tell me how to do my job.” The parents then go to YOUR boss and complain about you.

  24. goonsquad says:

    CS Numbers are out. NYC region:

    -12.5% YOY for April.
    -1.7% MOM.
    -21.1% from peak.

  25. goonsquad says:

    Comparing this data with the data from the last month (March), the YOY declines (3 month moving average) are currently at their highest level. This month’s decline was 12.5% yoy. March’s was 11.8%.

  26. frank says:

    Prices are down big time, so buy now. Don’t wait until they go up.

  27. #21 & 24 – Alright, I see where you’re coming from.

  28. Al says:

    New Jersey Gov. Jon Corzine Monday signed a 2010 budget making his state the latest to squeeze the rich for extra cash. The budget imposes a new 10.75% state income tax rate on income over $1 million and a 10.25% rate on income over $500,000, up from an old top rate of 8.97%. Both rates are retroactive to Jan. 1, effective for 2009 only, and kick in at the same taxable income level for both singles and couples.

    I always thought that taxes can not be made retroactive!!! – Only could go in effect the date law is accepted…

  29. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [2] grim

    Well, we’ll see if there is a Maryland effect from the tax increase. That’s an increase of $17,500 per year in taxes on 1MM gross taxable income.

    [29] Al

    Income taxes can be assessed retroactively. There is no law preventing it.

  30. silent till now says:

    regarding realtors and “put your offer in now”:

    Have gone through the worst home buying experience ever. Trying to buy home in West Orange, looking at an REO that was sitting on the market since last November. Was patiently waiting for price to fall but also could not put in offer since had some debt we wanted to pay down first. Well, got that out of the way, but realtor insisted we offer asking, “Banks don”t negotiate…it’s a great house.. they won’t consider such a low ball offer…the housr is worth that and more…yada, yada”. Well, yes, hubby and I loved the house but didn’t think it was worth asking price since the house had not been updated since the dark ages and was empty since last year and needed a lot of work on top of that. When the price was finally reduced to what we thought was reasonable we ordered the appraisal (required with offer as per listing) but alas, we learned that the house had just gone under contract!!

    Ok, we dried our tears and moved on. Put an offer on another house (apparent short sale a few houses from the last one (this house was bigger than the last, more bedrooms, more square footage and overall in much better shape) asking price 319k. We offered 320k. Offer was accepted, realtor went on vacation. Get a call from realtor a couple of days later says that our attorney was dragging his feet other higher offers coming in we were in danger of losing house listing agent wants us to go higher. I said no way am I getting in to a bidding war in this market! Lost that house! Lo and behold the REO comes back on market. Realtor says must offer asking since it came back on the market at the same price. I said, but now still think I can get better house than that (needing practically no work, having a yard) for about 70k more, why should I pay 254k? Realtor takes out script and starts reading again “the house is worth that because…bank will not even consider your offer if lower than asking…” We wanted to offer 230k. BTW, a week after the REO comes back on the market the price dropped again to 239k!!!! So much for my realtors script!! Well we were working with another loan officer at this point because our previous loan officer apparently was going through some legal problems (won’t even get in that story right now!!),so there was some delay in getting our offer in on the REO (about two weeks). Well guess what, just as we were getting ready to order appraisal realtor tells me that bank is NEGOTIATING with another buyer so I better go above asking if I want that house (but remember folks, this is the same realtor who told me the banks will not negotiate with you). This was just last thursday, when I checked last night on the house found that it was already under contract, LOL!! I give up, I’m done with house hunting!! See ya later, I’ll start over next year.

    Moral of the long and rambling story I think is:
    Make an offer that YOU are comfortable with but be prepared to lose the house even in this market!

  31. GerryAdams says:

    chifi 24 – brilliant description of the silly circumstances involving parental involvement in schools. Solution? You are all A+ students! yeah!

    Most business managers I know must give an equal number of 5’s, 4’s, 3’s 2’s and 1’s ratings out. In other words, their employees are not all above average.

    There is an untenurable position in a school district – the superintendent. He or she has a minimum contract length of 3 years and the average stay for a superintendent is 2 years and one month. Do you know who benefits the most from that revolving door: superintendents! They could completely screw up, get a sweet buyout and then get hired by another district since there is so many open positions.

  32. Seneca says:

    MLS 2690363
    I thought there were no short sales on prestigious streets in Westfield?

    How can this be when the plunge in real estate values is abating?

  33. Sean says:

    re: #30 – Comrade too bad the commute from PA to NYC metro is so hellish. Pennsylvania’s top rate is only 3.07% right?

  34. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [2] grim,

    More from the forbes article, and this is where Trenton gets the rest of us:

    “. . . In addition, the state put through another, back door temporary income tax hike affecting people with income above $150,000. New Jersey residents have been able to deduct up to $10,000 in local property taxes from their taxable state income. That’s not overly generous considering that the 50 New Jersey towns with the highest real estate taxes charge their residents an average of $13,000.

    For 2009, those who have income between $150,000 and $250,000 will be limited to a $5,000 real estate tax deduction and those with $250,000 or more in income won’t be able deduct any property taxes at all. That means as much as an extra $1,075 going to Trenton.

    “People in well-to-do towns were already losing money in the first place with the $10,000 limit,” complains Frank Schaefer, director of state and local taxes for Grant Thornton in Edison, N.J. “Now they have this $10,000 deduction going away. I’m starting to call people with the news: Your tax bite for ’09 is going up.”

    I think I might “send” my wife to go “live” with her mother in Bucks County for the year.

  35. 3b says:

    #35 comrade:And does anybody really think that these new taxes/limtis will not be made permanent?

    And I wonder how many people oout looking for houses now, are even aware of this?

  36. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [34] Sean,

    PA is hiking to 3.5 in order to take advantage of NJ’s hike.

  37. yikes says:

    i should add that college was one of the best times of my life (milk that extra year out of your parents if you can), and i highly encourage it.

    it may not be for everyone, though.

  38. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [36] 3b

    It has always been the dem’s position that they wanted the cost of housing to come down. One way to do that is to make higher end housing cheaper; this depresses the entire market.

    It also encourages however the behavior I just described: Suppose some partner at a lawfirm in Roseland has a ski house in PA. Mom is a SAHM. All they have to do is separate for part of the year (or most of it), but still file jointly, so that the combined return in NJ can absorb the property tax credit, and the remainder is taxed in PA. DOR would have to prove that hubby didn’t drive back and forth every day, which is very hard to do.

    Now, I have to think that there are some rules in place to prevent this, and I will now have to check, but state rulemaking is pretty spotty.

    And that is just earned income. Passive income should be put into trusts and other devices to move income to low tax jurisdictions. I don’t know if NJ has a collorary to the grantor trust rules, and if not, that income doesn’t count against you.

  39. Seneca says:

    So if you exceed the $150k / $250k HH income thresholds, not only do you NOT get the $8,000 rebate for buying a home this year, you also can’t deduct your property taxes from your state income tax calcs?

    I think the cherry on top will be if HHs over $150k have to pay a $10,000 “one-time” penalty for buying homes below the $500,000 price point. After all, at that income level you can really afford more and are going to save too much and are doing a disservice to your countrymen and your state. It will be called the Unnecessary Thrift Tax.

  40. DL says:

    Green bamboo shoots.
    “Prices of U.S. single-family homes fell in April from March but the pace of the decline moderated, suggesting stability is emerging in some regions, according to Standard & Poor’s/Case Shiller home price indexes released on Tuesday.”

  41. Shelley says:

    #31, get rid of that realtor right away! They are exactly who you dont want representing you. What you need is a realtor who is a b1tch and a half who will negotiate in your best interest. Make the call todaya nd tell her you are switching realtors and dont look back.

  42. Sean says:

    re #37- Comrade 3.5 top rate still beats the screwing we are getting here in NJ, I should just do what our Politicians do down in DC are doing and claim residency elsewhere.

    What is to stop me from buying a house in a nice low tax suburb in PA and keep an apt in NYC? Heck I can have a realtive rent an Apt in NJ/NYC so they bills could not be traced back to me.

  43. DANZUD says:

    Just caught the end of Case and Shiller on Bloomberg Radio. The last couple of seconds seemed to infer that Case and Shiller think that the data shows that people or the market (not them) think that the drop in housing prices is over.

  44. Shelley says:

    #45 No one can say anything is close to over based on spring selling where people HAVE to move. The best time to buy will be at the end of October or in November when people dont want to be stuck through the long winter. Come december they will be talking about another 20%.

  45. prtraders2000 says:

    I was at Mountain Ridge CC for lunch with a client last week and saw more Fla. license plates than NJ. No income tax for Fla. residents. Hmmmmm..

  46. 3b says:

    #45 It may be over in places like Cal. Fla, (but even that is suspect while unemployment is still rising), but it is certainly not over in our area.

  47. leftwing says:

    Re: 31 below, it’s good advice in any market.

    Keep in mind the real estate decision is always YOURS. Same goes for when you have stock brokers, lawyers, or accountants. These professionals are there to assist, but it’s your final call.

    Agree with poster above that your broker is at best not aligned with your views and at worst useless. Dump her and find someone else.

    Moral of the long and rambling story I think is:
    Make an offer that YOU are comfortable with but be prepared to lose the house even in this market!

  48. PGC says:

    These guys are batting a 1.000

    From NPR

    NEW YORK, NY June 29, 2009 —The company responsible for the stalled $2 billion Xanadu project at the Meadowlands, is also central to the fate of Michael Jackson’s Neverland Ranch. WNYC’s Bob Hennelly has more.

    HENNELLY: Colony Capital came to the rescue of the late singer in May of last year when it bought the existing loan on Jackson’s sprawling 3,000-acre estate. A spokesman for Colony says under the terms of the re-structured loan, the investment firm became partners with Jackson in the rehabilitation of the high-profile property. In a condolence note on Colony’s website, Chairman Thomas Barrack, a former Reagan Administration official, says the company was providing support for Jackson’s return to public life. Meanwhile grand opening dates for Colony’s ambitious Xanadu Meadowlands project have come and gone with no new date set. In addition to facing the worst retail market in decades Xanadu’s developer is in a legal battle with an investor it says backed out. For WNYC I am Bob Hennelly.

  49. 3b says:

    #49 leftwing:Make an offer that YOU are comfortable with but be prepared to lose the house even in this market!

    To which I would add: And you should be totally OK with “losing” in this market.

  50. Shore Guy says:


    EZ pass easily creates a record of where one was, if one is inclined to use it.

  51. goonsquad says:


    Read ANY of the articles on market watch for instance and they always spin the data in the most positive way possible. “Prices dropped at an 18% rate but hey, at least the rate of change didn’t increase!”. People see words like “stabilize” and “level” off and don’t understand that they are used to represent rates of change and not just prices. The authors of the articles take advantage of this fact.

  52. Shore Guy says:

    My, oh my. How times have changed. Now folks are saying that an 18% drop YOY is a great thing. Heck, if we drop another 16% between this year and next, snd then 14% the next year, etc. I will be walking on air.

  53. leftwing says:

    3b: I just missed one in Chatham.

    It was overpriced to start at just slightly off bubble levels. Realtor said to win we needed to be over ask because of all the traffic and interest. I bid 3% off of ask. Three bids came in over. Didn’t matter to me. Of course, it took a couple of days for my wife to speak to me but better than losing a bundle.

    3b says:
    June 30, 2009 at 10:10 am
    #49 leftwing:Make an offer that YOU are comfortable with but be prepared to lose the house even in this market!

    To which I would add: And you should be totally OK with “losing” in this market.

  54. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [44] sean

    Many years ago, beyond the applicable statute of limitations, someone I know very well was living in MD and working in DC. The MD state rate of 8% was higher than the VA state rate of 5.75%, and that 2.25% of her income came to about 3K per year. She started with a private box in VA, then paid some students $100 per month to “rent” a room in their apartment (which she would be “sharing” with others). Then, she changed her residence to VA, re-registered her cars there after the NH registrations expired, and probably saved a few thou a year in taxes and insurance.

    That was with a differential of 2 1/4% on an income under 100K. Imagine the savings if someone who has a business or job in NJ “relocates” to a family member or friend’s house in PA and they are in the higher tax brackets? For someone with a 500K taxable income, the savings is over $27,000.

    For that kind of money, you could BUY a house in the Poconos, declare it your residence, and the tax savings would pay for it. Then rent out “rooms” to a few of your HENRY buddies in the same boat so they can use it as a residence too. Better yet, go in on the house with them.

    Starting to sound an awful lot like the nompound?

  55. relo says:

    48: It’s not over there.

  56. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [52] shore,

    True, but can be more hassle than worth.

    A trustworthy witness that will swear that you were in their carpool with them on the trips back and forth from PA is just as good.

    Methinks that in many houses in PBC and upper haughtyville, there will be a higher than normal number of “legal separations” where high-earning hubby is living out of the family ski chalet at Jack Frost whilst mom and the kids still occupy the family manse. Even with the burden of proof on the taxpayer, it cna be shifted back to the DOR upon some proof. Then DOR will have to prove you really lived in the NJ house, which would require some level of proof.

    Remember though, this is tax evasion and very illegal. I cannot by law advocate undertaking this course, and I don’t do so here. All disclaimers.

  57. PGC says:

    #47 prtraders2000 #56 Nom

    The snowbirds are back from Fla to get away from the heat.

    News from them is that the northern states like NY, are starting to come after them to prove FL is the primary residency. If you have retired to FL why do you still have the home you lived in for 30yrs in NYC.

    I suppose unless you can show a lease on the NY property or you are working a part-time or full time job in Fl. It could be hard to explain.

  58. Nicholas says:

    I know we have a fair number of teachers who read the blog, so maybe they can answer; What is the rationale behind making elementary school teachers tenured positions. At the collegiate level I understand, and fully support the tenure system. But at the elementary level? These aren’t the sort of teaching gigs that demand huge leeway in academic freedom. You’re not going to be teaching or presenting any radical ideas or theories that necessitate protecting the teacher. So why have it?


    My wife is a teacher and we have had discussions about this issue. I think that the reason why they have tenure is because job security is about the only thing of value in that industry.

    It requires you to be college educated and the pay is terrible in most areas. It really is a labor of love, not about the money. In a job like that all that is left of value is the security that your job will be there next year and the year after…

    In Maryland/DC they are tossing around the idea of doing away with tenure but increasing the salary of teachers considerably. The downside is that if you are an underperforming teacher then you get fired, period.

  59. 3b says:

    #55 lefwing:Three bids came in over.

    What can you say, but 3 morons.

  60. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [59] PGC

    First, owning property in the state doesn’t subject you to tax liability. They have to prove you were there (or, in reality, you have to prove you weren’t but that is pretty easy to fabricate).

    Also, there are exclusions for time spent in the state. Further, the issue is not whether you spent the summer at your house on Fire Island, but whether you earned any income during your “residence” in NY.

    That’s hard to show in a lot of instances, esp. for those that can manage their income so that none is realized during their NY stay. In the end, the tax authorities want a quick hit to see if they can rake anything in.

  61. Clotpoll says:

    wing (55)-

    You have no idea how many people I know in Chatham, Tewks, etc who haven’t paid their mortgage in 3-6 months.

    Banks are very slow to file NODs on these borrowers, because they know the houses, once they are in REO, will take ages to sell and will sell at massive discounts to today’s prices. The jumbo/super-jumbo mortgage market in the US is completely seized up and actually on the verge of falling apart.

  62. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    Oh Joy. Rebates in 2026!!!!

    “Cap-and-trade climate change legislation (H.R. 2454) passed by the House June 26 provides for tax refunds to consumers beginning in the year 2026.

    The legislation authorizes the Treasury Department to provide tax refunds on a per capita basis to each U.S. household that will “collectively equal the amount deposited into the Climate Change Consumer Refund Account.”
    Proceeds from the sales of certain emissions allowances will fund the account, according to the legislative text.

    House lawmakers voted to clear the bill 219-212, a tight margin that reflected hours of delay in floor consideration as Democrats worked on gathering the 218 yeas needed for passage.
    The legislation also includes a provision expanding the earned income tax credit amount for childless workers—increasing the credit percentage and phase-out percentage for individuals with no children from 7.65 percent to 15.3 percent, and increasing the beginning phase-out amount from $5,280 to $13,590. The EITC modification would cause a $9.0 billion loss in revenue from fiscal years 2010 to 2019, as well as a $15.7 billion increase in both direct spending categories from FY 2010 to FY 2019, according to a June 26 Congressional Budget Office and Joint Committee on Taxation updated estimate.”

  63. Clotpoll says:

    plume (64)-

    The only plan the gubmint has come up with to deal with the current crisis is to decisively and completely break both the wealth and the spirit of the average American.

  64. Silera says:

    Yikes, that’s a great article regarding college. Obviously, there are people that aren’t “test takers” but the idea of taking tests to reflect competency in different course areas seems like a great solution to a lot of problems with the education system as it stands.

    I’m also of the opinion that many (most) careers don’t require 2 yrs worth of liberal arts and electives. If I want to read great books or study art, I shouldnt have to pay 800 or more per credit to do so. One is quite capable of learning the basics of most professions and never writing a dumb paper with a trite premise.

  65. Clotpoll says:

    Prediction for today (based on some info I got yesterday):

    Look for a one-year repeal of the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice Act, put into place on May 1, 2009.

    Not only are appraisals being blown right and left, but borrowers pay more for the appraisals and are effectively locked into using the lender who orders the original appraisal, since going to another lender means paying another inflated appraisal fee.

  66. PGC says:

    #62 Nom.

    ‘whether you earned any income during your “residence” in NY’

    If your pension check comes from your home state, its a bit hard to hide.

  67. Clotpoll says:

    Silera (66)-

    What? You mean it’s not smart to spend 200K+ on a quality education for young Graydon, only to find him graduating into a $12/hr McJob?

    Pop goes that bubble…

  68. veto that says:

    Date CS NY Metro YOY Price Change
    Mar-08 -7.48%
    Apr-08 -7.98%
    May-08 -7.74%
    Jun-08 -7.04%
    Jul-08 -7.04%
    Aug-08 -6.61%
    Sep-08 -7.13%
    Oct-08 -7.71%
    Nov-08 -8.71%
    Dec-08 -9.17%
    Jan-09 -9.74%
    Feb-09 -10.33%
    Mar-09 -11.85%
    Apr-09 -12.53%

    updated Veto/Kettle charts to follow later today…

  69. fedgod says:

    RE prices will continue to drop. It’s far from over. With the media that came out today, hopefully, it will inspire people to put their homes on the market that have been wanting to. In all honesty, the inventory sucks compared to last year.

  70. yo'me says:

    #55 lefwing:Three bids came in over

    How does that work? Appraisal comes in lowern than asking.Buyer puts the difference between asking and appraisal plus over bid?

  71. Sean says:

    Here is a booming industry at over 12% YoY growth. Government handouts (food stamps, welfare, unemployment insurance) of one sort or another rose a full percentage point in May to a record 18%.


  72. Sean says:

    This one is for Chi.

    The banks have been net buyers of Treasuries/Agencies in each of the past three weeks, adding $56 billion to their cache last week alone which was the second most active buying activity in history.


  73. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [68] PGC

    Yes it is. And you are putting out specific facts, which may result in tax liability. Or not.

    Fact is, there are exceptions to every rule, and one can play a tax profile game all day. All I am saying is that there are ways to avoid NY tax jurisdiction. Not everyone will be able to do so. Further, the bite may be so minimal, it isn’t worth planning. Depends on the tax profile.

  74. veto that says:

    ‘the inventory sucks compared to last year.’

    i agree. inventory is horrible. nothing for sale in my area except for dillusional idiots asking 2005 prices and wont budge an inch. the ones who know how bad the market is arent listing. its killing me.

  75. yo'me says:

    #71 Veto
    #55 lefwing:Three bids came in over

    April 08 -7.98% + April 09 -12.53% = -20.51%

    Do you know how much it dropped from april 06 to april 09?

  76. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [75] sean

    Chart suggests there is a yield play to be had.

    Fact that they have a gun to their head is a motivator as well.

  77. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [70] clot,

    “The last time we got a -2.42 standard deviation between confidence and the market, things got real ugly, real fast”

    Mr. Dow and Mr. Jones tanking to the tune of -113 at last check.

    Imagine that.

  78. yo'me says:

    delinquencies on the least risky mortgages more than doubled.


  79. Silera says:

    Clot, how do you expect Graydon to properly install satellite radio systems if he can’t write a paper debating whether 20th Century Film was pivotal in leading the charge for racial equality or simple mirrored the political landscape at the time?

  80. fedgod says:

    Veto, I’m looking in Wayne particulary. Taxes suck but what wifey wants… well she can want. But I’ve been watching Wayne’s inventory for 2 years. Couldn’t buy then, because I couldn’t sell. I finally sell and there isn’t shit. So now I’m chillin in an apartment and going to open houses that are shitholes.

  81. prtraders2000 says:

    Just spoke to a family member on the phone. He and his wife are both lawyers with a combined income of 190k. They live in Elizabeth. Somehow they get free (including lunch) summer day camp for their 5 & 6 year olds through the city. Ridiculous use of tax money, but great for him.

  82. Ben says:

    The University system rapidly embraced the “no child left behind” sydrome. 10 years ago, we took pleasure in failing students because it meant they will pay more when they take the class again. These days, we just charge them the arm and leg up front and pass everyone. These days, a Degree, whether it’s a BS, MS, PhD, MD, or JD, is just a piece of paper. I can give you a handfull of people who hold a bunch of the aforementioned pieces of paper that I wouldn’t trust to wash my windows. I can also give you a hand full of people who don’t have a high school diploma that can install your floors, fix your car, rewire your house, fix your TV, and god knows what else. I say this as someone who’s going to be holding 3 degrees…don’t measure someone’s value by the amount of letters after their name. Chances are, they didn’t earn them.

  83. A.West says:

    Case Schiller data indicates an accelerating rate of housing price decline for the NY area. -12.5% yoy in April, vs -10% and -11% in the prior months. Good for buyers, but housing price declines seem to just be gaining momentum in this area. I noticed that Atlanta area prices are back down to year 2000 levels now, the composite index is back to 2003 levels, while the NY area only back to 2004 levels.

    Corzine and friends are certainly not making this area a more attractive place for profitably employed people to live than it was in 2004. A return to 2002 price levels for this area would represent another 20%-25% drop. Should easily make it there by about June 2011.

    That’s real money. No wonder real estate agents want people to fall in love with houses, and check their brains at the door.

  84. Doyle says:



    I have friends in Elizabeth too, probably make that same amount of money as yours and they have a 3 year old. I think he gets to go to full day Pre-K this coming year for free too. Or maybe it’s summer camp, I can’t remember exactly, but it was something ridiculous (for free). I think they give him a uniform too!

    Gotta love it.

  85. Clotpoll says:

    silera (82)-

    If the popping of the educational bubble leads to the death of literary deconstructionism and other forms of fake intelligentsia, I have no problem with it.

    I will now sit back and wait for someone to call me Pol Pot.

  86. Clotpoll says:

    Thinking about education as another commodity with excess inventory and production capacity is both frightening and exciting.

  87. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [82] silera

    “write a paper debating whether 20th Century Film was pivotal in leading the charge for racial equality or simple mirrored the political landscape at the time?”

    If Graydon’s parents really want their money’s worth, they had better make sure Graydon comes down on the correct side when it comes to debating the charge for racial equality. In fact there should not be a debate, so if his position is that film was merely mirroring, he had better make sure his piece reflects the proper criticism of the industry for not leading the charge.

    Otherwise, one can expect some disappointing grades from the tenured professor, and that will surely affect grad school prospects.

  88. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [88] clot

    can’t resist. Pol Clot

  89. Clotpoll says:

    Doyle (87)-

    That’s still not enough of an inducement to make me want to live in Elizabeth.

  90. 3b says:

    #86 awest: Should easily make it there by about June 2011.

    I Do not think it will take that long. I am starting to see asking prices back at 2002 levels in my blue ribbony, Bergen co. train town now. Another year IMO will do it

  91. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [89] clot

    Been saying for years that there is an excess of educational infrastructure in traditional higher ed. Nowhere will that be more keenly felt than in the Northeast. New England is particularly vulnerable.

  92. Pol Clot says:

    Don’t need no book learnin’ to aim and shoot.

  93. goonsquad says:

    [98], from june 06 (ny metro peak) to april 09, CS index is off 21.1%.

  94. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [92] clot

    or to send my kids to camp in elizabeth, with the kids who are gonna teach my little one some new skilz and vocabulary I don’t want her to learn this early.

  95. HEHEHE says:

    “The banks have been net buyers of Treasuries/Agencies in each of the past three weeks, adding $56 billion to their cache last week alone which was the second most active buying activity in history.”

    Sean this had been forecast by several market commentators a few months ago. The banks having all that cash on their balance sheets and being propped up by the gubmint turning around and propping up the gubmint. This could get even messier.

  96. 3b says:

    #69 clot: There is only kid I know who graduated form college this year who has a full time job.

    Lots of graduates sitting home on their butts this summer doing nothing.

  97. 3b says:

    #67 clot: Are you kidding?

  98. All Hype says:

    Pol Clot, LOL!!!!

  99. PGC says:

    #76 Nom.

    I’m not disagreeing with you and I’m sure all the members of the Palm Beach CC are using those strategy’s to ensure whatever Madoff didn’t get from them is away from the Northeast states view.

    But over at “Del Boca Vista phase III” with Boomer Joe and Jane SP, the story is slightly different.

    I’m sure in the next year or so, NJ especially, is going to try and go after pension dollars that are leaving the state. If the state can show that a property that you declared as your primary residence for so many years is still in your name, unless you prove you weren’t, you are on the hook. The state don’t have to go after everyone, just enough to make the rest fall in line. The proof can be simple, produce the credit card receipts where you bought gas or groceries, or produce the ATM receipts where you took out the cash to pay or the bank were you cashed the check.

  100. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [90] redux

    This prior discourse on political correctness brings me to my patented method for answering law school and bar exam questions (and this will translate to any test in which there is a gender role prominent in the question):

    When there is a dispute between two people, and the genders are specified (or roles used, such as H&W) and may be relevant to the question, you are to find for the female and against the male. Typically, you find this on exam questions involving family law, but you may see it in crim as well. In con law, you always find for the female and against the government.

    The only subjects in which this rule doesn’t hold is contracts, comm. paper, and UCC (essentially commercial courses). There, the gender role is irrelevant. Same for tax.

    I did this on my exams and aced them. I did this on 2 bar exams and aced those.

    BTW, a friend had a similar rule for passing ethics exams: any choice in which the attorney could make money was unethical. She answered accordingly and passed easily.

  101. Don’t need no book learnin’ to aim and shoot.

    /looks at all the Derrida and Foucault on the bookshelf.

    Uh oh. The proles are getting restless.

  102. Sean says:

    re: #98 – HEHEHE – yes I know Bernake’s magical rabbit trick to monetize deficit by having the banks buy up Treasuries, I have been waiting for confirmation and there it is.

    Only problem is the long end of the yield curve will continue to rise and kill any kind of housing recovery.

  103. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [102] pgc

    If you retired to Florida and the NJ house is still in your name, you had better get with a tax planning attorney. You have bigger issues than whether NJ will try to deem you a resident for income tax purposes.

  104. PGC says:

    #87 Doyle

    I think that goes away next year when the Abbott funding gets canned.

    Anyone any idea how the new funding distribution is coming along?

  105. Doyle says:


    Clot, don’t get me wrong, I’m with ya. In fact, I say it to my wife all the time.

    They will be moving soon though…

  106. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [104] tosh

    “The proles are getting restless”

    Which is why I intend to hide the kids inheritance offshore and don my beret and che t-shirt. Whydoya think I go by “Comrade”?

  107. PGC says:

    #88 Clot,

    Will you be moving your agenda forward by promoting book burning to the people can’t afford to heat the McMansions through the winter.

  108. Pol Clot says:

    PGC (110)-

    Keep your McMansion at a balmy 451 degrees this Winter!

  109. HEHEHE says:


    Yeah, Bergabe’s not monetizing our debt…directly.

  110. Pol Clot says:

    So now they tell me if I get smashed, wake up the next AM, and pop an acetominophen, my liver will fail, and I’ll die?

    Life is not worth living anymore.

  111. yikes says:

    way off topic … a pregnant friend just lost their baby with 2 months to go. obviously, they’re crushed.

    i have never dealt with anything like this. flowers? cards? We live a few hours away.


  112. Secondary Market says:

    i’m not sure why i even try any more. below link is the house i went to see in chestnut hill on sunday. its fsbo and so the owner and i have been communicating leading up to the open house and in following up on the showing he asked what i thought and my interest level.

    i basically told him he did a nice job w/ the rehab but i would offer in the 20-30% off asking range since there are much larger homes in the area where price per sf makes a lot more sense.

    his response: “well my target audience is those who want a turn key home w/ a walkable train station to center city. good luck.”

    the home was purchased exactly 1 year ago for 140k and rehabbed in 6 months. put on the market in feb and reduced the price in march. we’ll see how long it takes for him to email me back in the fall to ask if i’m still interested.

    it’s a nice little house but not 440k nice.


  113. kettle1 says:

    Re trial by jury

    Is it legal to suspend trial by jury since that is a constitutional right? am i missing something?

  114. goonsquad says:

    [115], the house looks awfully lived in for such a short term intensive project. They obviously rehabbed the house for resale. Did the person/family actually live there during the renovation or are all the furniture just props?

  115. kettle1 says:

    Nom 90

    otherwise, one can expect some disappointing grades from the tenured professor

    I ran into that little stumbling block in college in a middle east history course

  116. DANZUD says:

    Wait a second, you are calling for the death of higher education? How else are we going to continue to create Obamabots???? You can’t let them loose after high school and find out what the real world is at such an early age. They need more Obamabot training at community or 4-year schools!!!!!! If we let them out before that, they won’t have school debt to blame people for or get written off and will be out of the grasp of the handouts to continue the new world order……..

  117. SirRentsalot says:

    safe a$$ houses, from yesterday
    “I just want to be able to have a life if we buy a house”

    I think that’s the definition of “affordability.”

  118. SirRentsalot says:

    “Is it legal to suspend trial by jury since that is a constitutional right?”

    With respect to criminal trials, yes, though recently the Bush admin solved that problem by simply not having the trial.

  119. SirRentsalot says:

    103 nom de geurre

    Very good, and correct, advice to any aspiring lawyers.

  120. SirRentsalot says:

    “There is only kid I know who graduated form college this year who has a full time job”

    Was the same when I graduated college in ’92.

  121. kettle1 says:

    Sir rent,

    With respect to criminal trials, yes, though recently the Bush admin solved that problem by simply not having the trial.

    the government CAN suspend trial by jury at will??????? how does that work, just because they feel like it?

  122. Secondary Market says:

    it’s all staged. if you look at the other project he sold in 2007 it’s all the same furniture. he quit his job to rehab, i mean flip homes.

  123. yo'me says:

    Ever heard of judge Judy?No jury

  124. hoodafa says:

    Green Shoots’ Take Over the Lexicon, If Not Economy

    June 30 (Bloomberg) — The current recession has created at least one growth industry: use of the phrase “green shoots.”

    Since Federal Reserve Chairman Ben S. Bernanke first uttered the words almost four months ago to describe signs of a thaw in frozen credit markets, instances of the botanical metaphor in the press have climbed sevenfold. A Google search for “green shoots” returns 4.86 million hits.

    More at: http://bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601109&sid=aVBKus1dis34

  125. SirRentsalot says:

    “Otherwise, one can expect some disappointing grades from the tenured professor, and that will surely affect grad school prospects.”

    Nom, here I disagree with you. I agree with the bit about needing to write what your undergrad professor wants to hear regarding social politics (that’s always true; I had a former Reagan advisor for European Gov as an undergrad, and the rule was “if in doubt blame the unions, and if there are no unions, blame the French”). What I disagree with is the idea that your undergrad grades matter for grad school. Perhaps they do if you’re going to grad school for comparative lit or sociology or some other social “science,” but if you’re going to law school, med school or business school, they really only care about your LSAT, MCAT or GMAT. My law school didn’t give a damn that my undergrad transcript was filled with gentleman’s C’s made somewhat illegible by all the beer stains.

  126. SirRentsalot says:

    124 kettle

    “the government CAN suspend trial by jury at will??????? how does that work, just because they feel like it?”

    Um – yes. We now have a precedent that the executive branch can unilaterally suspend habeas corpus, due process and jury trial for US citizens, and precisely because they feel like it. It’s as simple as the President declaring that you, kettle, are an enemy combatant. As soon as those magic words are spoken, you have no constitutional rights. So next time you’re crossing the Brooklyn Bridge, you’d better leave your pocket knife and home and take those bottle rockets out of your knapsack.

  127. SirRentsalot says:

    88/89 clot
    yeah. Was a great NY Times article about this a few weeks back. But I still cancelled my subscription.

  128. goonsquad says:

    [125], I see that now. They use the same painting several times and furniture too. I don’t put this in the category of flipping though. This is a definite top to bottom rehab, impressive. What do you figure they put into this house in terms of materials? I have no idea because I’ve never rehabbed a house.

  129. yo'me says:

    Wait a second, you are calling for the death of higher education?

    We are already complaing about H1 visa and foreigners taking the high paying jobs because of lack of skilled and educated workers.
    That will not solve our problems.We need more Engineers and scientist to move forward,maybe soci alised education is not a bad idea.

  130. SirRentsalot says:

    85 Ben
    Your MD and JD still hold value. Think of them as technical degrees, and it makes sense. My view; go to law school, med school, or technical school. The PhD, on the other hand, I agree, is worth no more than the GED.

  131. kettle1 says:

    SIr rent

    I am hosed!

  132. Secondary Market says:

    i’d safely put it at $150 a sq ft. 200k total? 340 all in cost w/ previous structure but that’s just my guesstimate.

  133. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [128] Sir,

    Here we have to agree to disagree. Not all law schools value grades, but the ones I am familiar with do value grades. In applying to law schools, it became painfully apparent that it helped me not that I took difficult courses outside of my major in order to expand my knowledge; what mattered was grades.

    That said, there are probably schools (notably Ivy-covered) where the grades will be “normalized” by admissions (e.g., a C from Cornell is equal to an A at Ohio State). We cannot know what is in the minds of the admission officer. But, I can say with authority that there are graduate programs, including in Law, where grades matter.

  134. SirRentsalot says:

    24 chifi
    bang on (had two parents who were teachers, and dealing with the incompetent parents of the terrorist kids is effing miserable).

  135. SirRentsalot says:

    136 nom
    fair ’nuff.

  136. yo'me says:

    What happened to passing the BAR exam first?That don’t matter anymore?

  137. SirRentsalot says:

    50 PGC
    It’s not fair to blame Colony Capital for the mess that is Xanadu. The barn had already burned down when they arrived.

  138. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [140] yo’me

    A trained chimp could pass the bar exam in most states. I took two, 11 years apart, and in retrospect wondered why I even studied for it.

    It is only useful for weeding out the truly untalented, and yet I know some people who failed spectacularly, yet would have made competent attorneys in their fields of expertise.

  139. SirRentsalot says:

    nom, I had a friend who went to Duke Law who failed the NY Bar. Twice. Lost his job at Shearman as a result.

  140. yo'me says:

    Nom got your point but it still a pre requisite to practice.I always tell my kids get an education that need licensing,you can be the dumbest nobody can take your job.The smartest nurse will always not be a Medical Doctor.

  141. kettle1 says:

    Tosh 145,

    Cali issuing IOU’s is when things get interesting. Will they be widely accepted or will vendors begin to refuse to accept them? If/once the Federal government backs Cali, then its pandora’s box.

  142. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [118] kettle,

    and, finally, in case you were wondering, here is a section from the Author’s Manuscript instruction page on John Wiley & Son’s college textbook submission webpage:

    “Eliminating Sexism
    We offer some specific guidelines you should follow to make sure your book is free of this type of bias.

    The Generic “Man” and Other Biased Terms
    It is best to avoid the so-called generic “man”. This should not create a problem, as there are a number of alternative expressions. Among them are the following:

    Human beings
    Human race
    Similarly, many traditional terms that distinguish between the sexes are no longer politically correct. A number of these terms – comedienne, aviatrix, authoress, and poetess, for example – are generally considered to be obsolete.

    The Generic “He” and “His”
    Many Authors have great difficulty avoiding the use of the generic pronouns “he” and “his”. One of the best solutions for this type of problem is to recast the offending sentence in the plural:

    Almost everyone likes his bacon crisp.
    Most people like their bacon crisp.

    Sexism in Illustrations, Examples, and Problems
    Sexism can also creep into illustrations, examples, and problems, often without the Author being aware of it. To preclude this type of sexism, please follow these guidelines:

    Make sure that women and men are portrayed with equal frequency in illustrations, examples, and problems.
    Avoid stereotypical characterizations.
    Show both sexes in a variety of roles and situations, again avoiding stereotypes.”

    Let that be a lesson to you.

  143. yo'me says:

    With out the license you are still a educated get me cofee guy.

  144. zieba says:


    Where did he end up?

  145. kettle1 says:


    when am i scheduled for re-education camp?

  146. kettle1 says:


    Supreme Court: State can apply some laws to national banks

    The Supreme Court on Monday ruled that states can apply some of their own laws to big national banks operating within their borders, a decision proponents called a huge win for consumers and for states seeking more power to regulate financial activities. The high court ruled that a state attorney general cannot on his own issue a subpoena against a bank that has branches in that state and others. However, the court also said that national banks are subject to some state laws under the National Banking Act, and an attorney general can go to court to enforce those laws.

    “What this decision today says is that states have the ability to enforce their own laws (against national banks) as long as they follow state due process procedures, which generally mean issuance of a subpoena which can be challenged in court,” said lawyer John Cooney, a former assistant solicitor general and deputy general counsel at the Office of Management and Budget. Officials say the 5-4 decision opens the door for states to do their own investigations of national banks, as long as they can convince a judge that investigations are needed. New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo called the decision “a huge win for consumers across the nation.”


  147. kettle1 says:

    Mounting Jobless Claims Force States To Borrow Funds

    The government checks keeping Candy Czernicki afloat are fast running out. The reason? U.S. states obligated to pay benefits to the swelling ranks of jobless Americans are piling debt onto strained budgets. Fifteen states have depleted their unemployment insurance funds so far, forcing them to borrow from the U.S. Treasury. A record 30 of the country’s 50 states are expected to have to borrow up to $17 billion by next year, said Rick McHugh of the National Employment Law Project, a nonpartisan advocacy group.


  148. Ellen says:

    Secondary –

    I think you’re right to balk at the price tag. It’s just not that great a neighborhood, either. Too close to Stenton Ave (and the troubles that brings from Cheltenham and North Philly) for me to ever feel really safe.

    If you’re willing to live on the east side of Chestnut Hill and South of Hartwell, you might as well go look in Mt. Airy (both East and West), your dollar will go a lot farther and you should be able to get walking distance of a train there too.

  149. kettle1 says:


    another 1 for you

    U.S. Companies Seek New Tax Havens

    Anticipating U.S. tax-law changes for Bermuda and other standbys, Tyco and Ingersoll-Rand are among the corporations looking at Switzerland or Ireland. Ah, Bermuda. Pink sand beaches. Charming pastel cottages and kelly-green golf courses. Tiny storefront “headquarters” of major global corporations. For years the archipelago, along with its Caribbean siblings the Cayman Islands and British Virgin Islands, has played host to companies seeking favorable tax treatment.

    But rising concerns about a U.S. crackdown on tax havens have a growing number of companies rolling up their beach blankets and decamping to far less sunny shores. Since October at least a half-dozen major corporations, including Tyco International (TYC), Noble (NE), and Ingersoll-Rand (IR), have proposed reincorporating in Ireland or Switzerland. The two countries may have higher tax rates than in the tropics, but both offer bigger tax savings than either the U.S. or Europe. Plus, both have well-established tax treaties, which decide which country has primary taxing rights and help avoid double taxation.


  150. NJdroppingtheball says:

    So what types of housing markets in Northern NJ do you guys feel will be hurt the most over the next year.

    The under 500K range, 500 to 1mill or over 1mill?

  151. SirRentsalot says:

    150 zieba
    dunno – lost track of him (feel bad about that, actually, he was a really nice guy)

  152. SirRentsalot says:

    156 dropping
    assume you mean on a percentage basis, and this is just my gut feeling, but the execs are hurting, so I’d go with the over $1M crowd myself. On the under $500K houses, crap like the buyer’s tax credit will keep a floor under the house of cards for a bit longer.

  153. SirRentsalot says:

    152 kettle/nom
    That decision is like a jobs program for lawyers who do blue sky research.

  154. kettle1 says:

    Sir rent,

    nice to have you back around ;)

  155. Secondary Market says:

    @154 Thanks for the tip, Ellen. So is E. Chestnut Hill the bad side of the tracks? It didn’t really seem that way but I actually asked the seller if there was any overflow from Germantown or N. Philly and naturally he said “oh no, the city really keeps Chestnut Hill safe and puts a lot of resources into the neighborhood.”

  156. Ben says:

    Sir RentsALot

    “Your MD and JD still hold value. Think of them as technical degrees, and it makes sense. My view; go to law school, med school, or technical school. The PhD, on the other hand, I agree, is worth no more than the GED.”

    No they don’t. We have MD’s who leave scalpel’s in patients after surgery. We have JD’s who don’t know a single law. The paper is meaningless. It’s all dependent upon the individual.

  157. SirRentsalot says:

    “We have MD’s who leave scalpel’s in patients after surgery. We have JD’s who don’t know a single law.”

    The point is not that they are incompetent. The point is that they get paid.

  158. ruggles says:

    161 – Agree with Ellen. We take Easton Ave south from 309 to get to Chestnut Hill/TLA and sometimes CC to avoid the skookl. Stenton Ave east of Cresheim Valley starts to border on projects (they’re not projects but they remind me of driving through the Bronx. There’s a big shopping center on Chelthenham and Easton and a small village just south along Easton where it turns into Wadsworth. If I remember correctly there was a wig store there. That’s never a good sign.

  159. Alexnyc88 says:

    How much is this house realistically worth? NJMLS# 2921631
    Thanks a lot!

  160. SirRentsalot says:

    160 ket
    Just waiting for bi to complain that I post too much. :)

  161. Secondary Market says:

    alex, i bet that’s a reo

  162. kettle1 says:

    Sir rent

    he should around shortly with his post counting script. he’s just busy at the moment tuning his black box for the next wave down in the market.

  163. Qwerty says:

    RE: “The downside is that if you are an underperforming teacher then you get fired, period.”

    Sounds like an upside.

  164. Silera says:

    146 MYRTLE AVE.
    Assessed: $545,000
    Taxes: $9,374
    Last Sold: 07/04 $560,000

    Instead of losing 18% yoy like everyone else, they want 100K more.

  165. Safeashouses says:

    We need to keep building McMansions! Where will our future illegal aliens live!

  166. Qwerty says:

    RE: “He and his wife are both lawyers with a combined income of 190k. They live in Elizabeth.”



  167. kettle1 says:

    intersting biton reverse mortgages:

    Beware the reverse-mortgage ripoff

    Seniors raiding home equity since the market tanked? Thats going to hurt any future recovery if this becomes widespread, as a fair amount of equity in boomer homes could have been drawn down and force more housing on the market as the boomers die off.

  168. relo says:

    171: Trick question? There won’t be any.

  169. x-underwriter says:

    Secondary Market,
    I don’t know if you mountain bike, but Wissahickon Park is one of the best places on the east coast for it…pure mountain biking nirvana. The park is right in Chestnut Hill.
    Love the area. It’s like a fairy tale with the old homes but I’d be cautious about living there. I don’t know what the public schools are like. From the real estate you see, I’d guess everyone sends their kids to private schools.

  170. SirRentsalot says:

    173 kettle
    Not only that, but what happens when they’re another 20 years older and they’re on the public dole because they have no savings, equity or pension?

  171. veto that says:

    Ok here are the updated Case Shiller NY Metro charts. Enjoy


    Veto That & Kettle

    Interesting that on a real basis, we are already down 33% from June 2006 Peak.
    Nominal terms we’re down 21% from peak.

  172. #114 – Yikes – I’m sorry for your friend. That’s a difficult question. I have seen cards for that exact situation, so it would seem to be at least appropriate. However, I think it would really depend upon the person. Some people may wish, understandably, to keep the matter very private.

  173. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [152] kettle,

    I was reading that yesterday. It is going to open a pandora’s box, and may prove just as controversial as the case that got all the press yesterday. Why? Because it essentially unsettles previously heretofore settled law.

    I generally don’t mind Scalia, but he was really parsing it with the whole visitation versus litigation thing. It invites further litigation that they will have to clarify by finding that state laws that attempt to regulate lending are pre-empted by the National Bank Act or Reigle-Neal.

    Congress could take this up, but don’t hold your breath. What it means is a lot of money for Skadden, S&C, Shearman, Davis Polk, Goodwin Proctor, and others, in the next wave of legislation through litigation wrought by state a.g.’s. And it means headaches for borrowers in these states as the ensuing litigation will mean that lending slows and becomes more expensive.

    Last year, I teased Anne Milgram for going after national bank lending in one of her first cases, and quickly getting shot down in the USDC. Now it looks like she will get the last laugh. I am wondering if it makes sense to pen a quick article on it so as to try to position for business as local counsel.

    Glad I already got my re-fi done. Oh yeah.

  174. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [161] 2ndary

    That I believe. Cities know who butters their bread, and they can’t have more neighborhoods turn into crack dens because the former wealthy residents beat feet for the main line. So they patrols are good.

    Also, PA is a “shall issue” state, and there is no deterrent like deterrent at your side.

  175. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [166] sir

    very true. Bi isn’t Patient.

  176. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [166] sir,

    I kinda like replying to your posts. Sounds like I am replying to the op-ed page of The Economist, what with all the “sirs.”

  177. Pol Clot says:

    Don’t need no book learnin’ for to aim and shoot.

  178. Ellen says:

    @161 Secondary Market –
    I don’t think it would be fair to say the east side is the wrong side of the tracks, just that given the two neighborhoods, I’d rather be on the west side, where it’s bordered by Fairmount Park while the east side is just awfully close and convenient to some scuzzier neighborhoods, particularly once you’re lower than Willow Grove Ave. or Hartwell.

    While Rendell may have seen that resources poured into Chestnut Hill, I don’t think the Nutter administration cares about Chestnut Hill one way or the other. I would’ve asked for specifics. From my admittedly very suburban perspective, I see city families availing themselves of suburban amenities in Whitemarsh and Springfield (like our parks and rec programs, libraries, and stores) all the time and I don’t see suburban residents going into Chestnut Hill for similar opportunities.

  179. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [155] kettle

    Old news. That was in the tax pubs weeks ago.

    It is also what I would call a two-step. Set up a primary co. in a low tax juris. that has a treaty, or at least a TIEA with the US, and then set up subs or accounts in true tax havens. Thus, transactions btwn Ireland and US attract no attention or extra reporting. And even if the Irish give up the info on the parent in Ireland, the money trail is firewalled at Nevis, or wherever, and the IRS is blocked out.

  180. still_looking says:

    Time to hit the hay before another fun “night in the Pit”

    for the record:
    More depressed folks with lost jobs.

    One patient’s wife tells me her husband started a new job. Working 80 hrs a week and is “really really stressed.”

    Seems like an increase in drunks and drug addicted but may be seasonal (they return from warmer climates in the summer/fall)

    Seeing more and more people from the local free clinics overall.


  181. still_looking says:

    All Hype! Welcome back! Where ya been? You missed the GTG and we were in your backyard!


  182. Secondary Market says:

    i don’t think living there is an issue at all. for one, i know many politicians and upper lever city officals live there because its not the “city” but w/ in city limits as required by their elected jobs. all city employees have to live in philly. however, schools are the x factor. masterman is the best public charter school in the state but they do not enroll until grade 5 and carries into 12. now until 4th grade is what i’m really worried about.
    i suppose there is inherent risk about living near fringe neighborhoods but anything can happen anywhere. i can’t live life on egg shells anticipating the worst. i’ve said it before but i just can’t succumb to the burbs yet, i just can’t. that’s not a knock to people that live there but more of a preference to my lifestyle and interests.

  183. x-underwriter says:

    Secondary (188)
    I don’t really think of living in Chestnut Hill as living in the city. There’s a few walkable places on Germantown Ave but would think if you want a center city experience, you need to live in CC. You’d have to take the train to CC from there

  184. calitransplant says:

    Even if a home has been renovated, does it warrant an increase over 2005 prices? Trying to determine the worth of this home—MLS 2693944

  185. Sean says:

    Perhaps a little late?

    New Leveraged Housing Bubble ETF’s benchmarked to the S&P/Case-Shiller Composite-10 Home Price Index.

    Symbols are UMM for up, DMM for down with a 300% leverage factor.

    Bi and Frank can load up on UMM and the rest of us can take the other side of the trade with DMM.


  186. d2b says:

    If you are looking at Chestnut Hill you have already succumbed to the suburbs. That being said, there is a pretty good public school in Chestnut Hill.

    Masterman is a good school but sending a 10 year old into the city everyday is a pain in the ass. One of the best things about local schools is the sense of community. A ten year old with a one-hour commute each way everyday is miserable. My kid is on the bus and in school in about ten minutes.

  187. Morpheus says:

    indeed. However, Bar-Bri was helpful. I found that if an individual actually did taket the time to study for the bar exam and took it seriously, they generally passed. Most of my friends who decided they rather play golf than study generally failed the Bar exam.

  188. Sean says:

    re: #190 – calitransplant – at a minimum inflation adjusted UP about 10% in 2009 dollars.

  189. SirRentsalot says:

    114 yikes
    Tough call. IF it’s a very close friend, and IF you are supposed to know they lost a baby (usually, I find that no one other than maybe the sister/mother/bff is supposed to know), I would send flowers with a simple card that says “we love you and are thinking of you” but with no mention of loss. Otherwise, I’d just lay low.

  190. relo says:

    Oh Crames, stop it! You’re killing me I tell ya!

    Terrific! The Case-Shiller index says home prices bottomed in June! That’s right, June figures showed that all 20 metropolitan areas increased since the previous month, ending the long slide, and the keepers of the index declared that a bottom in housing had occurred June 30.

    There’s a problem, though, a problem I knew that would cause an issue when I made my prediction that prices would bottom June 30. The index doesn’t give you a June reading until the end of August. At that point it will be so painfully obvious it won’t matter.

    Yep, it will take two months for this silly index to register June readings, and if you’re an investor, by then it will be too late. It will be obvious that foreclosed property held by banks will be worth more than it was when the institutions repossessed them, and that the Other Real Estate Owned category will begin to go down in value from sales or actually be viewed as a positive because there will be so little inventory left, a combination of low price, low rates — remember that 5.5% rate that freaked people out? we’ve round-tripped that back — and little new home construction.

    delusion/ off

  191. SirRentsalot says:

    179 nom
    “I am wondering if it makes sense to pen a quick article on it so as to try to position for business as local counsel.”

    I’m gonna say yes.

  192. SirRentsalot says:

    182 nom
    I still remember the first time someone called me “sir” (it was a little boy who noticed I’d dropped something). I was only 20, but it hit me like a punch to the gut. The other day I got carded for booze, and boy was I happy. Then the clod behind the counter said “don’t worry, I didn’t REALLY think you were under 21, it’s just that management makes us card everyone now.” I told her not to give that explanation to the next guy.

  193. HEHEHE says:

    re 196,

    Did that clown really say that?

  194. SirRentsalot says:

    “Most of my friends who decided they rather play golf than study generally failed the Bar exam.”
    The bar exam was one of the most miserable experiences I’ve ever had, mostly because no one at my firm had ever failed it in the firm’s (now 45-year) history, and all of the older lout’s at the firm made sure that we youngsters knew it. So the pressure was absolutely intense not to become famous as the “First Ever To Fail The Bar”. The odds were low, but the stakes were high. I passed, of course, but I don’t mind if I never have such an experience again.

  195. calitransplant says:

    # 194 Sean

    Are you saying overall that renov. homes generally are at 10% UP or this house in general…If that’s the case, even for Berkeley Heights? Seems like there is next to nothing in inventory in this price area so things like this one sell fast. Like I was referring to yesterday, I feel like the “starter” home market has a different set of recession rules. Things seem to go quick due to lack of inventory. Been playing this “game” now since the beginning of the year and it seems like nothing has significantly dropped in the low 400K range in decent towns in Union County.

  196. The Kid says:

    The Kid is looking for a residential structural engineer to take a look at a lolly column in The Kid’s basement. Can anyone recommend one to The Kid? Appreciate any an all help.

  197. WHYoung says:

    #114 – Sorry about your friends loss.

    Having friends who were in a similar situation, I know the thing is to be available, but not push the topic…

    People don’t know what to say in a situation like that and can be afraid to approach them at all, thinking that they want to be alone, but sometimes they need a shoulder to cry on an do want to talk about it with someone they know well enough to have a small emotional breakdown with.

    The difficult thing is making your approach subtly enough that they know they can can on you (or not).

    There’s always the old “church lady” ploy of dropping off a prepared meal. And if they have other kids, maybe offer to take the kids for a while.

    And in the future be aware of the anniversary, you friend will think about it a lot around then.

  198. Secondary Market says:

    192. i don’t disagree with you totally. i failed to mention this is my best compromise to my wife for true suburbia vs true city. she’d like the white picket fence in a subdivision where i’d prefer the convenience of the city grid. i think chestnut hill provides a little bit of both flavors. the train is only 25 min to market east station but you also get the sense of retreat when you head back to CH.
    school is obviously a big thing and so is overall neighborhood in terms of other children in the area. right now in old city i can count on 1 hand how many kids are the neighborhood. my daughter is only a month old but eventually i’d rather my kid(s) be able to run down the st to lil johnny’s house to play rather than set up a complete organized play date. it’s a tough balance but based on what i’ve seen CH is the best place within city limits.

  199. calitransplant says:

    #194 Sean (and anyone who wants to respond)

    To clarify–the Berk Hts home is up 10% basically over the 2005 selling price. Do I still take into account that they renovated the home or in this market is this raising of the price regardless of improvements just ridiculous? I like the home because like I said, very low inventory, but clearly, I don’t want to buy something overpriced.

  200. SirRentsalot says:

    “compromise to my wife for true suburbia vs true city”

    Un-PC, but seems to me this is a very common gender-divide.

  201. Sean says:

    re#194 – My point is take the 2005 price and adjust it for inflation sans improvements as perhaps a starting point, some Sellers are still expecting 20% YOY increases. You will find lots of delusional sellers out there.

    Disclaimer – I am neither a Realtor or an appraiser. Determining a homes worth is a very subjective process, you will gets lots of good advise here and lots of bad advise as well.

  202. veto that says:

    This is a good part from that seeking alpha article…

    We’re also going to see residual effects from this crisis, much the same as we saw after the Great Depression. People that lived through the scarcity of those years tended to be savers and hoarders, not throwing anything away. Going forward, I think we’ll see a large increase in the number of people that never buy another home. After going through the trauma of getting foreclosed on or watching their parents, family, neighbors and/or friends go through it, they’ll choose to be lifetime renters. That’s good news for real estate investors as many of these people will still want to raise their families in houses, not apartments.
    I also think we’re seeing the end of the “McMansions” and sprawling suburbia. Inland California was overbuilt, in the middle of nowhere (that’s why it was cheap to develop) and is now turning out near vacant ghost towns due to all the foreclosures. Values have already dropped over 50% in many of these areas and show no signs of slowing yet. Why? It’s too far to commute to work. Eventually population growth will fill these towns back up, but that could take a decade or more.
    Millennial’s, those born after 1980, are flocking to urban landscapes and smaller homes. They don’t want to be house poor or commute more than minutes to work, preferably via mass transit. As gas and energy prices rise when the world economy recovers, more of us will be forced to address these same issues. This will eventually be good news for decaying urban areas and those that invest there ahead of the curve.
    People will also stop looking at their homes as a source of wealth. Homes will be seen less as “castles” and more as just places to live. Europe and Asia are already like this. People there don’t socialize in their homes as much as we do (most are too small), they meet at cafes, restaurants, parks, etc.

  203. ruggles says:

    First, in order to use the 2005 selling price to determine current market value or what you should pay, you have to know that the 2005 sales price was fair market value. maybe they overpaid, maybe they got a great deal. So that number is useless unless you have other 2005 similar sales and can compare.

    Second, the renovations may put the house in a higher bracket, who knows. maybe they increased the value by 30% over 2005 price and now its only worth 10% over. you have to find current similar sales in the neighborhood or town and compare.

  204. ruggles says:

    209 is for calitransplant

  205. Outofstater says:

    #114 Yikes – There are no cards for this situation. I’d get a blank card and write a brief note saying that you are thinking of them at this difficult time. Just a line or two. No flowers.

  206. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [197] sir

    “I’m gonna say yes.”

    Thought you might.

    In my my free time, too.

    Yeah, free time. Right.

    BTW, you still up the hill from me?

  207. 3b says:

    #205 Renovations or not, the price should still be down, as the purchase price in 2005 (unrenovated) was inflated.

    Plus depending when the renovations were done, they now could be 4 to 5 years old. Renovations do not increase the price with age.

  208. relo says:

    199: Yep. I guess Frak is right.

    delusion/ off

  209. Ellen says:

    @204 – My husband grew up in Germantown (definitely the wrong side of the tracks) and a couple of his sisters still live in Mt. Airy. One made a conscious decision to remain for the “convenience” of the train, so they could limit themselves to one car. Unfortunately, neither she nor her husband could find jobs within the city. Now they’re paying resident city wage and getting virtually nothing for it (kids are at Catholic schools so they’re not taking advantage of Masterman or Central). Also they’re paying city insurance rates for two cars. She was just telling me a couple of weeks ago that she would love to move to Flourtown.

    Other sister in law lives in a huge 6 bedroom twin in Mt. Airy right up the street from the train. Kids are also in Catholic Schools. Her husband works in NYC and drives down to 30th street every day for both convenience and safety reasons. Virtually every activity she drives her kids to (from the orthodontist to gymnastics) is in the suburbs. She has wanted to move to Lafayette Hill for years, but the thought of packing up her 6 bedroom house is really just too daunting.

    I’d just be really careful before committing a huge sum inside the city limits. As your kids get older, the city really becomes a less convenient address.

  210. silent till now says:

    These neiborhoods were ground zero of the housing bubble. Then the madness just went up from there.


  211. Comrade Nom Deplume says:

    [217] silent

    As a result of the Clearinghouse decision yesterday, this is gonna take off, and will be like the tobacco litigation.

    Ah, a payday for the lawyers. Good thing I sold my WF stock.

  212. grim says:

    New thread, up!

  213. SirRentsalot says:

    212 nom
    Yes indeedy. Sure am.

  214. Pol Clot says:

    plume (215)-

    At first glance, I thought that sicko was Ron Paulus.

    Just another reason to hate Dook.

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