Jumbos Near 10% Delinquency Nationally, NJ Jumbos 3rd Worst

From HousingWire:

Fitch Says Prime Jumbo RMBS Near 10% Delinquent

The performance of US prime jumbo loan performance within residential mortgage-backed securities (RMBS) slipped again in January as serious delinquencies (60+ days past due) rose for the 32nd consecutive month and edged closer to 10%, according to the latest market commentary from Fitch Ratings.

Prime jumbo loan delinquencies began to rise in Q207 but accelerated since then. In 2009, the rate of delinquency nearly tripled during the year. The serious delinquencies rose to 9.6% in January from 9.2% in December.

“The new year has brought no relief from declining jumbo loan performance,” said Fitch managing director Vincent Barberio. “The trend line for delinquencies indicates the 10% level could be reached as early as next month.”

California spearheaded the rising delinquencies, jumping to 11.3% in January from 10.8% a month earlier. The state represents 44% of the $381bn prime jumbo RMBS market.

Four other states rounded out the top five in terms of highest volume of prime jumbo loans outstanding. New York, which represents 7% of the market, saw delinquencies rise to 6.1% from 5.8% the month before. Florida, representing 6% of the market, rose to 16.6% delinquent, from 16%. Virginia, representing 5% of the market, jumped to 5.6% delinquent from 5.4%. And New Jersey, representing 4% of the market, grew to 7.4% delinquent, from 7.1%.

From the LA Times:

Prime jumbo loan delinquencies still rising, report shows

People who hold jumbo loans on pricey U.S. properties continued to struggle in January as more Americans lose their jobs and property values have plummeted, according to a report released Monday.

“The deterioration in performance is really the combination of two things going on: rising unemployment that took place throughout 2009 as well as our estimate that about a third of all jumbo loans that are current are underwater in terms of the value, so [borrowers] owe more on their properties than they are worth,” Fitch managing director Vincent Barberio said. “As more of these loans become delinquent, they ultimately will come into foreclosure.”

Prime jumbo loan delinquencies began to rise in the second quarter of 2007, but accelerated in 2009 and nearly tripled over the course of the year, Fitch said. The five states with the highest volume of prime jumbo loans outstanding are California, New York, Florida, Virginia and New Jersey.

From Fitch:

Fitch: New Year, No Improvement as U.S. Prime Jumbo RMBS Delinquencies Approach 10%

The five states with the highest volume of prime jumbo loans outstanding (California, New York, Florida, Virginia, and New Jersey) comprise approximately two-thirds of the loans in question. Prime jumbo RMBS 60+ days delinquencies for these states at January 2010 compared to December 2009, and their approximate share of the $381 billion market, are as follows:

–California: 11.3%, up from 10.8% (44% share of the market);

–New York: 6.1%, up from 5.8% (7% share);

–Florida: 16.6%, up from 16% (6% share);

–Virginia: 5.6%, up from 5.4% (5% share);

–New Jersey: 7.4%, up from 7.1% (4% share).

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304 Responses to Jumbos Near 10% Delinquency Nationally, NJ Jumbos 3rd Worst

  1. grim says:

    From the WSJ:

    Senator Prodded Fed to Aid Ailing Lender

    Sen. Robert Menendez of New Jersey urged the Federal Reserve last July to approve an acquisition to save a struggling bank in his state. He didn’t mention that the bank’s chairman and vice chairman were big contributors to his political campaign.

    If the acquisition had been approved, it would have prevented the two executives from losing what was left of their investments in the bank.

    In his letter to the Fed July 21, Mr. Menendez said there was a strong likelihood that First BankAmericano, of Elizabeth, N.J., would fail in three days, which would “send yet another negative message to consumers and investors and further impact our fragile economy.” The one-page letter, obtained by The Wall Street Journal under the Freedom of Information Act, urged Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke to approve a sale of the bank to JJR Bank Holding Co. of Brick, N.J.

    The Fed didn’t act on the request from Mr. Menendez, a Democrat, and First BankAmericano, which was closely held, failed July 31.

    While lawmakers routinely forward requests from constituents to government agencies, it is rare for them to make specific requests along the lines of this letter asking specific actions, bank attorneys and congressional aides said. One reason is to avoid any appearance of trying to influence the regulatory process for political ends.

    The chairman of First BankAmericano at the time of the letter, Joseph Ginarte, is a high-profile attorney with offices in New York and New Jersey. He has given a total of about $30,000 to Mr. Menendez and his political-action committee since 1999, according to federal records.

    The vice chairman of the bank was Raymond Lesniak, a New Jersey state senator and local political heavyweight. He also has given generously to Mr. Menendez’s campaign coffers. In 2006, Mr. Lesniak held a fund-raiser at his home for the senator featuring former President Bill Clinton, according to news reports at the time.

  2. grim says:

    From the Washington Business Journal:

    Mortgage Bankers Association gets out from underwater

    The sale of 1331 L St. NW, for most local observers, was about the buyer, CoStar Group Inc., completing a city-assisted move to D.C. from Bethesda.

    But for national observers it was about whether the Mortgage Bankers Association, the seller, acted hypocritically in possibly getting out of a $75 million loan it had secured to buy the building that — only months after the purchase — was underwater, meaning the loan value was greater than the building’s value. (In this case about $38 million greater).

    “Like millions of American households, the Mortgage Bankers Association found itself stuck with real estate whose market value has plunged far below the amount it owed its lenders,” read a Wall Street Journal article Saturday, a day after the deal closed. “But the trade group for mortgage lenders is refusing to say exactly how it extracted itself from that predicament.” The association has reached “an agreement with all the relevant parties” a spokesperson told the Journal, but declined to say what that agreement was.

    It’s natural for any borrower to want to get out from under an underwater mortgage, except that the MBA isn’t just any borrower: It is a massive federal lobbying organization on behalf of mortgage lenders whose CEO, John Courson, said eight weeks ago that homeowners considering walking away from their own loans ought to consider how defaults could hurt surrounding property values. “What about the message they will send to their family and their kids and their friends?” he asked.

    Well, Mr. Courson, in selling a new building for 55 cents on the dollar, you have done the same thing for real estate in downtown D.C. Everyone else’s property is now worth less thanks to your sale.

  3. grim says:

    From the WSJ:

    No Exit in Sight for U.S. As Fannie, Freddie Flail

    When Charles E. Haldeman Jr. became Freddie Mac’s chief executive officer in August, the ailing housing-finance giant had already consumed $51 billion of government money to stay afloat. It’s likely to need even more.

    Freddie’s federal overseers nevertheless have instructed Mr. Haldeman to focus on something that isn’t likely to make the bleak balance sheet look any better: carrying out the Obama administration plan to allow defaulted borrowers to hang onto their homes.

    On a recent afternoon, employees at Freddie’s headquarters here peppered Mr. Haldeman with concerns about the company’s future. He responded that they were “fortunate” to have such a clear mission—the government’s foreclosure-prevention drive. “We’re doing what’s best for the country,” he told them.

    Freddie and its larger rival, Fannie Mae, were among the first big financial institutions to receive massive federal bailouts after the financial crisis hit in 2008. Government officials have been racing to fix bailed-out car makers and banks and are pushing to reshape the financial-services industry. But Fannie and Freddie remain troubled wards of the state, with no blueprints for the future and no clear exit strategy for the government.

  4. grim says:

    From the NY Daily News:

    Homeowners at risk of foreclosure can delay paying overdue water bills, Mayor Bloomberg says

    Homeowners at risk of foreclosure can delay paying their overdue water bills while they try to save their homes, Mayor Bloomberg said Monday.

    A new city program will let up to 2,000 homeowners, who have owed at least $1,000 for more than a year, stop the clock on penalties and unpaid interest.

    The city would recover the unpaid water bills whenever the home is sold or refinanced. Bloomberg said it would have little impact on the city’s budget but would make a huge difference to struggling homeowners.

    “What this is trying to do is to help people, not to bail out everyone. The city just can’t do that,” Bloomberg said.

  5. Schumpeter says:

    Always knew Menendez was a thug and a crook.

  6. Schumpeter says:

    “Vote against any candidate who wants to raise your taxes to benefit themselves. How do you find those candidates? It’s easy. Vote against any candidate supported by the teachers’ union, the firefighters’ union, the police union, or for that matter any union.”

    http://globaleconomicanalysis.blogspot.com/2010/02/550-million-will-create-400-jobs-in.html

  7. Schumpeter says:

    Now the collapse is squarely in NJ’s wheelhouse. We are going down…hard.

    Embrace the oblivion.

  8. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:

    My personal goal for today:

    Be a better-fitting cog in the big, flowing machine.

    Obey.

  9. #8 – Be a better-fitting cog in the big, flowing machine.

    I’m looking forward to re-prioritizing my current action items until I’m advised on a status upgrade to the situation….
    Obeying is fun! Those at the center of the herd aren’t eaten.

  10. Essex says:

    I still say our standard of living is so elevated…that we can ride this thing down for the next three generations and still live better than most of the civilized world.

  11. Shore Guy says:

    “Florida, representing 6% of the market, rose to 16.6% delinquent”

    I wonder if there are any data on whether these are more likely to be “strategic defaults.” I suspect they are.

  12. grim says:

    10 – I am going to guess that you don’t get out much.

  13. Shore Guy says:

    ” we can ride this thing down for the next three generations and still live better than most of the civilized world”

    This is tongue-in-cheek, right?

  14. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:

    “The United States has been ransacked and pillaged. Our structures have been gutted and only the walls are left standing. While being perpetrated, everything the world would rake up to sell us was brought in here at our expense by the Fed until our markets were swamped with unneeded and unwanted imported goods priced far above their value and make to equal the dollar volume of our honest exports, and to kill or reduce our favorite balance of trade. As Agents of the foreign central banks the Fed try by every means in their power to reduce our favorable balance of trade. They act for their foreign principal and they accept fees from foreigners for acting against the best interests of these United States. Naturally there has been great competition among foreigners for the favors of the Fed.”
    Rep. Louis McFadden Chairman of the Banking and Currency Committee
    1934

  15. #12 & #13 – Well, the ‘civilized world’ is such a broad definition.
    We will certainly have enough Uggz boots and Ed Hardy shirts to last though! Thank Goddess for that.

  16. freedy says:

    does this mean that Bergen County home
    values will go down? how can this be?

  17. Shore Guy says:

    Hey, pal. You made a bad bet buying into what any thinking person could see was an overheated RE market. Whay should anyone in your shoes expect help from the prudent folks who had sense not to jump into the shark tank with you?

    http://www.nytimes.com/2010/02/03/business/03walk.html

    No Help in Sight, More Homeowners Walk Away

    In 2006, Benjamin Koellmann bought a condominium in Miami Beach. By his calculation, it will be about the year 2025 before he can sell his modest home for what he paid. Or maybe 2040.

    “People like me are beginning to feel like suckers,” Mr. Koellmann said. “Why not let it go in default and rent a better place for less?”

    After three years of plunging real estate values, after the bailouts of the bankers and the revival of their million-dollar bonuses, after the Obama administration’s loan modification plan raised the expectations of many but satisfied only a few, a large group of distressed homeowners is wondering the same thing.

    New research suggests that when a home’s value falls below 75 percent of the amount owed on the mortgage, the owner starts to think hard about walking away, even if he or she has the money to keep paying.

    snip

  18. Shore Guy says:

    freedy,

    No way. Bergen County is so close to both Manhattan and Bergen County.

  19. Mr Hyde says:

    Tosh 9

    unless that herd is being driven to the slaughter house

  20. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:

    Try as they might, they cant keep gold down. JP Morgan must be crapping their pants trying to cover those naked shorts.

  21. Shore Guy says:

    Cindy,

    Thanks for the heads-up. Mrs. Shore and I may need to go buy another place just so we can have a mortgage that someone else pays.

  22. Mr Hyde says:

    Al,

    property rights in this country are already a ghost of what they once were. considering the current property tax schemes and the recent SCOTUS eminent domain ruling, property rights are now highly restricted.

    Too bad property rights were considered once of the corner stones of a free nation

  23. Shore Guy says:

    Al,

    Are naked shorts made of clear vinyl?

  24. Shore Guy says:

    How is this for an uninspired lego-like neighborhood (it is Vegas)?

    http://si.wsj.net/public/resources/images/OB-FJ204_0126ho_D_20100126101049.jpg

  25. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:

    24.

    Yes, our children will be living in Pyonyang type apartments in Bergen County. That is the plan. Yet New Jersey continues to vote for open space intiatives despite an 8 billion dollar deficit.

  26. Shore Guy says:

    Watch “The Blob” approach D.C.

    http://www.cnn.com/2010/US/weather/02/09/winter.weather/

    It must have the Reps. who are into fears of “plagues and rumors of plagues” thinking this is the beginning of the end times.”

  27. confused in NJ says:

    Zimbabwean law to require black business ownership
    Published: 2/9/10, 7:25 AM EDT

    HARARE, Zimbabwe (AP) – White businesspeople in Zimbabwe who don’t cede control of their companies to black partners could face jail under a law going into effect next month.

    An official notice Tuesday says the law will be enforced from March 1, and includes jail penalties of up to five years. It gives companies worth $500,000 or more 45 days to submit compliance proposals. Foreign investors also need to meet an “empowerment quota.”

    The law passed by the Harare parliament when it was still dominated by President Robert Mugabe’s lawmakers in 2008 is meant to benefit “indigenous” Zimbabweans – those who suffered under colonial-era racial discrimination and their children born after independence in 1980. That effectively excludes the nation’s 20,000 whites.

  28. Mr Hyde says:

    Al,

    from last night. If you actually follow the concept of a Nompound then you cant really place one in NJ as you would meet some of the basic criteria.

  29. grim says:

    Shore,

    Reminds one of the post WWII communist bloc housing the covered much of eastern Europe.

    The style is obviously different, but the
    concept is very similar. Huge tracts of nearly identical housing unit for the proletariat.

  30. Cindy says:

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/james-kwak/elizabeth-warren-calls-ou_b_454509.html

    Elizabeth calls out Wall Street – regarding Consumer Financial Protection Agency.

  31. Mr Hyde says:

    let me guess…. this is just like no more write downs!

    Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner said the U.S. is in no danger of losing its Aaa debt rating even though the Obama administration has predicted a $1.6 trillion budget deficit in 2010.

    http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601068&sid=aDYv97KxyEtU

  32. Shore Guy says:

    I just heard that Washington has had almost as much snow as Buffalo and that at the end of this next storm is expected to have received more than Buffalo and about as much as Syracuse.

    Egads!

  33. Schumpeter says:

    The only suckers are the people who continue to pay. Default is a smart and sensible way to proceed. Ultimately, there will be little to no penalty to stiffing everybody.

    Even if one takes a hit to the credit score, who wants credit now, anyway? And, short of BK, you can repair credit in 20-24 months.

  34. Shore Guy says:

    Hyde,

    Maybe Timmy made the heads of the rating agencies “offers they couldn’t refuse.”

  35. Cindy says:

    224 – From last night – Chicago – Great Lady Gaga piece. I am a fan. I thought the Pink and Elton John/Lady Gaga performances at the Grammies were the best.

    I have no idea why Taylor Swift won an award. I had never listened to her before. The woman could not stay on tune – that night anyway.

  36. Schumpeter says:

    Phony & Fraudy pretty much have a mandate not to boot anyone out of his home. The gubmint is willing to underwrite infinite loss to achieve this goal.

    From that point forward, it’s box cars.

  37. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:

    30.

    Hyde, I understand but they are going to come after your water supply like they did in California.

    In Alaska they mandated they remove a certain amount of pollutants from a river up there but the water was too pure to meet the quota. So the government added the necessary pollutants and then removed them.

  38. Shore Guy says:

    “Absolutely not,” Geithner said, when asked in an ABC News interview broadcast yesterday whether a downgrade is a concern. “That will never happen to this country.”

    This is like approaching a Tiger’s cage, with an open gate and poking a stick in the face of the tiger. “He will NEVER attack ME.”

  39. Schumpeter says:

    Cindy (20)-

    More proof that sheer madness is metastasizing.

    Let me guess: the first guideline for this program will be the borrower has to miss three payments in order to be considered…

  40. Shore Guy says:

    Cindy,

    It seems that Auto Tune has taken over for talent. Right now, actually being able to sing a song is less important that being suitable for “packaging.”

  41. Schumpeter says:

    Hanging a lockbox today on a listing where the owners haven’t paid their mortgage in over a year…and they’re leaving on vacation this afternoon.

    They aren’t horribly concerned about the sale of their underwater unit, their 7K in HOA arrears and an unpaid 9K HOA assessment, either.

  42. Shore Guy says:

    How long do you think it will be before some angry person posts a mashup like this pinpointing the addresses of the bankers and congressional representatives who are most responsible for the nation’s current financial state?

    http://maps.google.com/maps/ms?ie=UTF&msa=0&msid=104990431116129636455.00044316f87b70af87372

  43. Shore Guy says:

    Clot,

    $7,000 provides a decent downpayment on a nice vacation. Unlike most people, they are stilol taking vacations “on the house.”

  44. Shore Guy says:

    still, even

  45. #44 – Not soon enough?

  46. Schumpeter says:

    Cindy (32)-

    Warren has lost the plot. The gubmint has no ability to regulate banks, because banks have become the de facto gubmint. Every facet of the gubmint is owned (not influenced, owned)- lock, stock and barrel- by banks.

  47. Shore Guy says:

    It has been said that an alcoholic or drug addict needs a harsh slap of reality and before they can begin to change and all the measures that one takes to ease their reformation end up causing more harm than good. Perhaps we would benefit from a credit downgrade. Perhaps THAT would get DC to wake up.

  48. leftwing says:

    Cobbler

    From yesterday, regarding earnings by income group over time.

    Cute response.

    Looking at the data though I do see an error in my assumptions. There is in fact a set of conditions during which the highest earners’ incomes will decline while everyone else’s increases.

    Recessions.

    In the recession of ’91 the top 1% and top 5% of earners saw a decline in adjusted gross income (AGI) while every other category, including the lowest 50%, saw a rise.

    And sometimes that decline is calamitous.

    In the recession of ’01-’02 the top 10% of earners saw a decline in their AGI of 14% while every other group saw an increase. Every other group. Increased.

    Mind you, this is AGI which is before government transfer payments.

    Moreover, and most importantly, the bottom 50% of income earners from the period of 1980 through 2007 have never seen a year where their aggregate income decreases. NOT ONE. Ever.

    They began the 80s with $288 billion of income and ended 2007 with $1.08 trillion. That is a 5.0% annual increase, which outpaces inflation.

    Populist enough for you?

    Truthfully, what’s wrong with this picture?

    As an aside, I personally believe this outcome is the way it should be – morally, ethically, and politically. Those more capable of weathering a downturn should, and that burden should not be placed on those most frail in our society.

    And that’s the way it worked.

    It’s getting very tiresome listening to all the “eat the rich, they’re to blame” drivel coming out of Washington and the lefties.

    Bottom line, if the pie is increasing and everyone’s earnings are outpacing inflation, why should it matter exactly how those earnings are divided?

  49. Shore Guy says:

    Tosh,

    As we speak I can picture Clot typing away.

  50. Schumpeter says:

    Shore (44)-

    If they wanted to be really helpful, they’d post missile coordinates with the addresses.

  51. Schumpeter says:

    shore (49)-

    Too bad the ratings agencies are the biggest junkies of all.

    Even worse, they’re among the biggest of dealers.

  52. Schumpeter says:

    Are latitudes and longitudes in GoogleMaps addresses enough to guide a missile?

  53. Shore Guy says:

    Depends on the throw weight, I suspect.

  54. Cindy says:

    48 – Clot

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703630404575053514188773400.html?mod=WSJ_Opinion_LEFTTopOpinion

    “Wall Street’s Race to the Bottom”

    She brings up that a year ago we had some power with this issue – Now…not so much.

  55. grim says:

    Be careful about making assumptions based on low-end incomes increasing during recessions unless you know the basis for it. It was long considered a paradox of sorts until economists really understood the drivers if it.

  56. Shore Guy says:

    Well, it is time for me to go earn a living. Obama has to eat, you know.

  57. Nomad says:

    Schump re: #43 does it make your blood boil dealing with people like this? They are literally saying to their neightbors, F you, were taking a vaca and screwing you all with our share of the HOA fees.

    No sense of responsibility anymore. I wonder in 30 years which 2-3 countries will be considered world leaders.

    So Shump, when will the rubber band start to show signs of snapping in NJ? Do you think Trenton will scream out to Washington for emergency funding in the next few months?

  58. Shore Guy says:

    As a parting shot, a bit of joy to brighten everyone’s day. The ones with a Y chromosome, anyway:

    http://i.usatoday.net/communitymanager/_photos/game-on/2010/02/09/si-cover2x-inset-community.jpg

  59. freedy says:

    i think you can repair your credit in
    about 12 months. and you can get “heat”
    if you talk about stiffing/walk a way/

  60. Schumpeter says:

    nomad (59)-

    No. I’m taking notes and learning from them. I have no doubt at all that I will eventually default on everything, when the time comes.

    And when it does, I’m gonna play it like a maestro.

    IMO, the dopes are those of us who keep paying. Were I a bit more ready to act, I’d have already started stiffing everybody.

    “…does it make your blood boil dealing with people like this?”

  61. SG says:

    NAACP: NJ lawmakers in affordable housing conflict

    The civil rights group, whose 1970 lawsuit was the impetus for affordable housing requirements, believes that a bill sponsored by Sens. Raymond Lesniak and Christopher Bateman to abolish the state board that regulates those rules presents a conflict of interest for the senators.

    Both Lesniak and Bateman are named partners in their firms and both firms represent dozens of municipalities, including zoning and planning boards that deal with affordable housing regulations.

    “These senators are representing the interests of towns that have retained them as lawyers. They are pushing legislation demanded by shortsighted local governments that are paying the senators’ private law firms to represent them,” said NJ NAACP Housing Committee Chairman Mike McNeil.

    “This is a clear violation of the trust placed in them by the public,” he added.

  62. Schumpeter says:

    I’d love to see these assclowns move 10,000 people from Irvington to Hunterdon Co. That would make for a great comedy show.

  63. Schumpeter says:

    No jobs, no bus, no train. But, we’ll have housing equality.

  64. Heavy Hitter says:

    #63

    Angry and immoral. figures.

    Deficits and earnings don’t matter, but paying your bills does.

    Where’s your sense of moral obligation? Keeping your word made this country great, now we have people like you thumbing their nose at us hard working citizens.

    Move to Argentina already.

  65. Schumpeter says:

    Should be a real windfall for the school system, too.

  66. Cindy says:

    http://www.risk.net/risk-magazine/news/1590861/citi-plans-crisis-derivatives

    “Citi Plans Crisis Derivatives”
    OM friggin Gosh.

    ….intended to pay out in the event of a financial crisis…

  67. chicagofinance says:

    37.Cindy says:
    February 9, 2010 at 8:10 am
    224 – From last night – Chicago – Great Lady Gaga piece. I am a fan.

    C: There was a really great piano bar in Chelsea that my wife and I used to enjoy visiting. It was called Judy’s, there are also several more in the Village of the same ilk. Basically a lot of between jobs people from Broadway, Broadway-style and Broadway wannabes. Very gay. Very Barry Manilow and Bette Midler. I heard that Gaga sharpened her chops in those places, and that video confirms it.

    Totally different from the Howl At the Moon cheeseball style paino bars.

  68. leftwing says:

    Grim

    Details? What drives the increase in low end incomes during recessions?

    And by ‘low end’ it’s not just the bottom 50%, but at least the ‘bottom’ 90%.

    I’d like to know. Mostly because these data were an eye opener for me on how really screwed we may be.

    I strongly suspect that for the first time in a generation AGI may have decreased across all groups, not just the top 1-10% as usual.

    It was a bit surprising that AGI didn’t always respond to recessions, but thinking about it a decline in C+I+G need not correlate directly with AGI.

    Any background you can give is appreciated.

  69. NJGator says:

    Shore 34 – I heard that Pat Robertson said that this is a sign that God is against heath care reform.

  70. Yikes says:

    has anyone ever tried so hard and failed so miserably to be funny as heavy hitter?

    he’s like magic johnson’s late-night show and chevy chase’s late-night show combined.

    poor guy.

  71. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:

    “Today Americans would be outraged if U.N. troops entered
    Los Angeles to restore order; tomorrow they will be grateful.

    This is especially true if they were told there was an
    outside threat from beyond, whether real or promulgated,
    that threatened our very existence.

    It is then that all peoples of the world will
    plead with world leaders to deliver them from this evil.

    The one thing every man fears is the unknown. When presented
    with this scenario, individual rights will be willingly relinquished
    for the guarantee of their well being granted to them by their
    world government.”

    – Henry Kissinger speaking at Evian, France, May 21, 1992

  72. Heavy Hitter's Mom says:

    If i find you on the computer again and you haven’t finished your math homework, you’re grounded for two weeks.

  73. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:

    67.

    We wont have to move to Argentina. Argentina is coming to us.

  74. Schumpeter says:

    Argentina is strictly a best-case scenario.

  75. John says:

    Thank god, too many fat people in Jersey anyhow, 10% less Jumbos is a good thing.

  76. Heavy Hitter says:

    Yikes,

    Small minds are always threatened by big ideas.

  77. Juice Box Sean says:

    Here is one for Clot.

    An Anarchist’s Strategy To Dismiss Every Foreclosure In Florida.

    http://mattweidnerlaw.com/blog/2010/02/an-anarchists-strategy-to-dismiss-every-foreclosure-in-florida/

  78. Juice Springsteen HEHEHE says:

    “Even if one takes a hit to the credit score, who wants credit now, anyway? ”

    Who can get credit now?

  79. renter says:

    Can anyone recommend a good mortgage broker?

  80. renter says:

    Can anyone recommend a good mortgage broker?

  81. John says:

    Re 84 is that like saying can anyone recommend a good serial killer, timeshare salesman or loanshark? Almost an oxymoron.

  82. prtraders2000 says:

    Hope for NJ? Both me and my brother are taking in college age relatives of our wives. Kids are from Georgia and Florida respectively. Apparently, NJ offers better community colleges and there are still lower end jobs for college kids.

    Now I really need a bigger place!

  83. Last line on the Crisis Derivatives and all one needs to know really…

    “Only the government can cover unlimited losses,” he says.

    Yup… No moral hazard in the Wall Street bailouts.

  84. scribe, The Princess of Paramus says:

    speaking of anarchy, from Paul Farrell of Marketwatch:

    America’s already descending into economic anarchy. We’re all trapped in a historic economic supercycle, a turning point that must bleed through a no-man’s land of lawless self-destructive anarchy before a neo-capitalistic world can re-emerge. Investors tell me they “feel” it at a deep level, “know” it’s happening. They keep asking: “What’s the best investment strategy to prepare now?”

    http://www.marketwatch.com/story/how-to-invest-for-the-debt-bomb-explosion-2010-02-09

  85. Schumpeter says:

    rent (85)-

    Ask John, since he’s the authority on everything.

  86. Outofstater says:

    #86 Why is the student from Georgia going to college in NJ? The Hope scholarship provides free tuition, fees and about $300/yr towards books at any state college or university as long as the student graduated from HS with a 3.0 GPA. The Hope grant provides the same for the community colleges, but without the GPA requirement. All funded by the lottery.

  87. A.West says:

    Shumpeter,
    I just noticed you specialize in Branchburg RE. It’s just west of Bridgewater, so I guess you follow that market too. What’s the difference?

    You may recall I just closed on a pricey house in Bridgewater. What bugged my wife and I was that all the agents and lawyers were telling us what a “great deal” we got. We think it was just fair for the time, and I think likely to look high in a year or two. Do you have any tips for the area, or things to watch out for? I’ve been working in Somerville for several years, so know a bit about the area. Rarely have gone further west into Branchburg. Restaurants, parks, landscapers?

    Seems to me that the home markets most vulnerable will be ones with a lot of purchases made in 2004-2007, recent developments. It’s hard to tell how many people who bought a home back in 1992 have refinanced their way into debt oblivion.

  88. Mr Hyde says:

    leftwing 50.

    Moreover, and most importantly, the bottom 50% of income earners from the period of 1980 through 2007 have never seen a year where their aggregate income decreases. NOT ONE. Ever.

    ARE YOU SMOKING CRACK!!!!!

    Every fith of the population as represented by the US census data shows multiple drops in real income as far back as the data goes.

    They began the 80s with $288 billion of income and ended 2007 with $1.08 trillion. That is a 5.0% annual increase, which outpaces inflation.

    This statement is outrageously simplistic and misleading. First you have to adjust for inflation to make any legitimate comparison. Secondly you have to adjust for population growth. look ta my charts. what you see is that when these factors are account for income has basically been flat for the bottom 50% of the population for the last 30 years while costs of living, form housing to energy have gone up.

    We also cannot forget that the average durability of goods is going down. We have transitioned to a “disposable” economy and hence we have to spend more money in the long term replacing “disposable” goods then if they were still “durable” goods. This means that even in the net cost of these goods has coe down, we actually spend more on them in the long run due to the “disposable” factor.

    You also for get that the % of GDP generated from government spending has been steadily increasing. For all intents and purposes, this is a parasitic factor even if it generates income in the short term.

    http://www.scribd.com/full/26618438?access_key=key-e285rdiclpb0q8me5bg

    ….The data used for the charts is from from tables H-1 ad H-2 Us Census, as well as the St Louis federal Reserve (CPI)

  89. A.West says:

    John says real men just buy their homes with investment-bank (i.e. govt) provided cash. You’re getting ready to buy a $1.2mn/mansion this year or next, cash on the barrelhead, right John? But not in NJ, despite (because of?) your presence on this blog.

  90. fly-over says:

    From Yahoo news:

    Many companies this year supplemented their TV spots with Super Bowel-centric features on their Web sites, on YouTube, and on social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter.

  91. Outofstater says:

    Whoa – “Super Bowel-centric” That’s gotta hurt.

  92. Essex says:

    Interesting Comment from NJ.com:

    “…Let’s get real about the state’s PERS pension system. It is not about the state workers who contribute every payday. It’s about the corruption of the system. First, Govs Whitman and McGreevey stole 3 billion each for operating costs. A private sector CEO would be jail for this. The state, except for the one third of the obligation added this year, has contributed zero for the past 13 years. That means all of the money added to the system has come from the employee’s paychecks not tax money. In the mid 1990’s the fund was worth 93 billion when the State Div of Investment prudently invested the money. Then through politics private stock brokers got their hands on the money. They invested in high risk hedge funds and even gave Lehman Brother (some former employees) 800 million from the fund, two months before it went belly up. Another case that should put people in jail. The Div of Investment state employees cost the state 5 million a year, the brokers cost up to 200 million in fees. In total, this move has cost the fund about 2 billion. By the way, the “private” brokers have now managed to reduce the value of the fund to about 53 billion. In addition, you have the politicians getting 3-4 pensions, they make deals for association members and contracted attorneys (not gov employees) to be added to the system. Do they even contribute? Politicians who work in and benefit from the private sector while serving on a board or committee at $1,000 a year get a six figure state job for three years and their pension is based years of service and salary. This means they could walk away with a $60,000 pension for actually paying into the system for three years
    Of course, to protect themselves, they have been “grandfathered in”.
    So what is the legislature’s answer? Cut the benfits of all the state employees that have paid into the system for years with the promise that working for the gov does not pay but at least you will get a decent pension. For the bashers, most major companies and unions offer similiar or better benefits. If you want to lower taxes, stop the corruption…”

  93. Renter,

    No nonsense broker, but tell him Stu from Montclair sent you. I get free Devil tickets and you get an agency that charges on the closing to the penny what they quoted at the initial interview.

    Carl Nielsen

    Phone: 973.785.9400
    Cell Phone: 973-865-3337
    Fax: 973.785.0649

    cnielsen@mortgagemasterinc.com

    Let me know how it goes.

    Their office is in Wayne near the Willowbrook Mall.

  94. chicagofinance says:

    I give high marks for tone deafness and just pure unmitigated balls….

    relo says:
    February 9, 2010 at 9:59 am
    Chi?
    http://www.risk.net/risk-magazine/news/1590861/citi-plans-crisis-derivativesCiti plans crisis derivatives

    Does this sound familiar?
    Citi will make the CLX tradable by using fixed historical values for the mean and volatility parameters, eliminating the need for costly recomputation from lengthy time series.

    “The great thing about the index is that it hedges your funding costs while being very simple to trade. I believe it will reduce the systemic risk in the industry, akin to how the advent of swaps means people don’t worry about interest-rate exposures any more – they just pay a fee to hedge it,” he says.

  95. chicagofinance says:

    To be clear about the CLX….fine sell insurance if you want, but how is the “insurer” supposed to hedge THEIR exposure…..if you are “eliminating the need for costly recomputation from lengthy time series” then the insurer must do it, or else they are just AIG….there is no free lunch…just people with high powered financial incentives….

  96. safeashouses says:

    #98 chifi,

    Are they copying AIG’s CDS policy?

  97. relo says:

    98: Good think AIG is still around. An entity experienced, sophisticated, and possessing a strong balance sheet has got to handle that counterparty risk.

  98. relo says:

    Apparnetly I type too slowly.

  99. relo says:

    and not too accurately.

  100. chicagofinance says:

    safeashouses says:
    February 9, 2010 at 12:15 pm
    #98 chifi,
    Are they copying AIG’s CDS policy?

    bairen: I am just reacting….it is Citi. Honestly, WTF do they know about hedging anything….to be clear, look at the insurance they are offering….what is the nature way to hedge that exposure….can you think of anything logical? No. As a result, there must be something synthetic concocted from “…fixed historical values for the mean and volatility parameters, eliminating the need for costly recomputation from lengthy time series….”

    AIG just took money….I am positing that Citi is taking money and creating a woefully inadequate black box based on a methodology that failed.

    Don’t worry, this is DOA. If it is a giveaway, then people are going to jump all over it, and then it will be shut down, because it will be obvious that it is mispriced. Although you would have thought the same for AIG.

  101. safeashouses says:

    #104 chifi

    Doesn’t the Uncle Sam own a big chunk of C? Also by the Fed and Tres previous actions would not be surprised if the risk is being
    passed onto the taxpayers.

    I hope this idea is DOA.

  102. Fiddy Cents on the Dollar says:

    Essex —

    That comment about the Pension Fund is just so New Jersey. It’s pathetic.

    Weak-willed governors tapping a big pile of money. Dissolution of an apparently well run State Division of Investment. Turning over the keys to a band of cronies (at exhorbitant fees), and finally……turning $93B of 1990 dollars into $53B in today’s washed-up, watered-down currency.

    Scary Stuff. I’m glad I’m a short-timer here in NJ. I don’t want to be holding when the feces hits the fan.

  103. leftwing says:

    Ket

    I don’t even know where to start to reply.

    I understand you dig your charts and all, but…here goes.

    The income measures in your charts aren’t relevant to the argument I present. You are using income ‘limits’, which defines the number at which one breaks into a quartile, I am discussing the total income of a group (using aggregate income (AGI) for a quartile).

    Regarding your CPI argument, eyeballing your chart it goes from 95 to 220 over 28 years, or about 3% p.a. As I stated that is less than the 5% p.a. growth in aggregate income for the lowest 50% of earners.

    Your point on population growth is a good one since I am using aggregate AGI. US population in 1980 (226m) vs. 2009 (299m) yields a 1.0% growth p.a.

    My view was and is this – earnings growth in the lower 50% of earners from 1980 to 2007 of 5.0% outpaces growth in the CPI (3.0%) and population growth (1.0%) combined.

    We share the same view of government – I would agree that AGI has been reduced by (questionable and inefficient) government taxation over all income classes.

    Your other arguments are spurious at best. ‘Disposability’ of durable goods? C’mon. Without suggesting that is a valid measure of income, if you take it into account you would then need to look to the other side of the equation, like technological availability (how many people in 1980 could afford a cell phone and PC for the same portion of their monthly income as today) and technological advances. I don’t know about you but in 1980 I was still spending a buck for 45s for my record player, don’t recall having an iPod then (which tunes still seem to cost only a buck).

    To be entirely accurate on the population growth component one ought to derive the growth rate of the working age population over the period. I don’t have time for that, maybe you do.

    Other than the population point your argument and data do not address my proposition. While you have great charting cpapbilities quantity does not equal quality.

  104. 3b says:

    #96For the bashers, most major companies and unions offer similiar or better benefits.

    I am sure that will be news for most in the private sector.

  105. Mocha says:

    12:41 German govt spokesman says reports about decision on aid for Greece are “unfounded” – Reuters

  106. Schumpeter says:

    west (91)-

    Branchburg & Bridgewater are very similar markets. I would avoid eating at any restaurant in either town (except Chipotle at Bridgewater Mall). Avoid ALL landscapers, as they are all will rip you off nine ways to Sunday. Rutgers Landscape in Flemington is expensive, but they are good.

    The people doomed to oblivion in both areas are pretty much as you describe. The only surprising thing is that the numbers are much bigger than you can imagine.

    In two years, if you have a roof over your head and a steady source of water, I’d say you’re ahead of the game. Anything else would be gravy.

  107. Schumpeter says:

    west (91)-

    BTW, congrats. You live around the corner from Madoff’s #1 henchman.

  108. Schumpeter says:

    sx (96)-

    No need to do anything. The pension system will collapse of its own weight, and we’ll get the added bonus of low-level bureaucrats, clerks and other apparatchiks doing the rioting for us.

    I will, however, show up at the ramparts to give water to the rioters.

  109. Schumpeter says:

    chi (99)-

    They’d be better off turning it over to a couple of really skilled bookies.

  110. meter says:

    “No way. Bergen County is so close to both Manhattan and Bergen County.”

    LOL

  111. Juice Box Sean says:

    Schump – Frank DiPascali’s home in Bridgewater is going to auction, he gave it up to the Feds last week.

    It is assessed at 1.2 million and sold for 810k back in 2001.

    Here is the property record.

    http://www.scribd.com/doc/15950888/KnowX-Frank-DiPascali-Property-Records-Mountain-Top-Rd-Bridgewater-NJ-

    Any guess on what it will go for?

  112. Schumpeter says:

    Methinks today’s market action is one final pump to create an exit for the last of the smart money…and a big trap for the late, weak hands.

    This Euro thing is going to turn very, very ugly. They just can’t ignore the rule of law to create a rigged-up fix the same way we can.

  113. meter says:

    @29:

    “An official notice Tuesday says the law will be enforced from March 1, and includes jail penalties of up to five years. It gives companies worth $500,000 or more 45 days to submit compliance proposals. Foreign investors also need to meet an “empowerment quota.””

    There cannot possibly more than a handful of companies worth in excess of 500k in US dollars. If that currency sign is supposed to be in the Zimbabwe denomination, I think 500,000 would just about buy a Coke these days.

  114. Schumpeter says:

    sean (115)-

    It’s pretty tricked-out, so I’d say it goes for around 1.1mm. Any more than 1.2mm would surprise me.

  115. sas says:

    “Bored to death? It’s possible”
    http://www.physorg.com/news184916879.html

  116. Schumpeter says:

    How about a life of bored loathing?

  117. Mocha says:

    “Methinks today’s market action is one final pump to create an exit for the last of the smart money…and a big trap for the late, weak hands.”

    Throw gs up against the market over 200 days. Then throw up a 200 ema. One last tap and let the selling begin. At least that’s what the whales around here are saying.

  118. A.West says:

    Shumpeter,
    Yes, that DiPascali place is just 2 miles away, up the hill south and bit west. Nice lot with pond, pool and some sort of basketball court, too much wedding cake frosting on the house though. With them out and me in, the neigborhood is clearly improving. I also noticed some sort of pseudo italian villa in that direction listed for some outrageous amount (on Caruso off Mountaintop).

    What’s really outrageous is that the town tax assessment is only $150k higher for that DiPascali mansion than for my much humbler house. My purchase price was $250k and 22% less than this year’s tax assessment, so I’m going to ask the tax assessor to adjust mine downward.

    Thanks for the advice.
    I already do Chipotle at work, family doesn’t like burritos, but we like Thai food, which Somerville has in abundance, and Fortune Cookies on the west side of town (past Raritan) is a reasonably good Hunan restaurant for those who don’t mind loose bowels afterwards (proving its authenticity). Looking forward to buying some overpriced delicacies at Wegmans.

    As for a source of water, we’re ahead of the game, our lot at the end of Tullo Farm Rd is adjacent to a stream.

  119. meter says:

    “Even if one takes a hit to the credit score, who wants credit now, anyway? And, short of BK, you can repair credit in 20-24 months.”

    Access to credit = a future right to scr3w your neighbor, only for lots more money.

  120. meter says:

    @43:

    “Hanging a lockbox today on a listing where the owners haven’t paid their mortgage in over a year…and they’re leaving on vacation this afternoon.

    They aren’t horribly concerned about the sale of their underwater unit, their 7K in HOA arrears and an unpaid 9K HOA assessment, either.”

    Here’s hoping their plane crashes. Scum.

  121. “Here’s hoping their plane crashes. Scum.”

    You need to fix this statement.

    “Here’s hoping their plane crashes into the Goldman Sachs building. Scum.”

  122. Barbara says:

    should they have dumped their last 8k into a property that is 40% underwater? Time to grow up and stop getting your panties in a bunch about the esthetics. Be bold.

  123. freedy says:

    whats wrong with screwing a major bank?

    credit scores are coming down as we speak.

    getting easier to fix, since many have the
    bad credit now.

    who they going to sell this crap to

  124. Essex says:

    What I find amusing is that if you settle with a card company, chances are the settlement will be fair once the compound interest and fees are stripped away. They go from making a killing and having you on a leash forever…to just making a profit.

  125. Barbara says:

    something to get mad about? The hording of properties by the banks. Get em out, get em sold.

  126. meter says:

    Their neighbors should welcome them home from vacation with a good old fashioned lynching.

  127. Barbara says:

    hoarding even

  128. Barbara says:

    meter
    you just sound jealous.

  129. Essex says:

    There is a lot to be angry about, but someone choosing to unhinge from the debt wagon? Not something that bothers me. I am pleased to say that. Completely and totally unconcerned about others’ affairs.

  130. Realistically, the sooner people become smart enough to walk away, the sooner our economy could get back on solid footing, rather than pylons made of hardened turds.

  131. “How Not To Get Screwed By Your Bank”

    Have more than $1 in your checking account and don’t use ATMs at other branches. There! I just saved you from watching the video.

  132. Barbara says:

    it all needs to shake out. You never owned in the first place, stop giving the thieves your cash on your inflated, glorified rental.

  133. Barbara says:

    137
    Stu,
    lol my thoughts exactly.

  134. freedy says:

    walking away will become more and more , trendy ,, will take a while to reach NNJ

  135. freedy says:

    take closter as an example they now have
    56 foreclosures,,, a very trendy Northern
    Valley town,, and we’re not talking low end.

    the jumbo’s have taken some hits.

  136. Schumpeter says:

    freedy (127)-

    You are exactly right. Therefore, the RE market of the future will be deadbeats selling each other houses and stiffing the scuzball banks who finance the deals.

    All the while, the gubmint will perpetuate the charade of artificially-high values.

  137. Schumpeter says:

    I’m thinking of sponsoring a Foreclosure Fox Hunt in the Somerset Hills.

    Tally ho…and look at this piece of crap, willya?

  138. Schumpeter says:

    Barb (130)-

    Can’t do it. If they do, the whole Ponzi comes unwound.

    “something to get mad about? The hording of properties by the banks. Get em out, get em sold.”

  139. freedy says:

    ya got one in every 130 or so in some form
    of foreclosure,, who ‘s going to be able
    to afford the crap

  140. Schumpeter says:

    Instead of foxes, we can hunt Graydons and Ellerys.

    Hope I get to ’em before the dogs do.

  141. Meter,

    I figure I’m down about $20,000 per year annualized since I bought my home back in 2004. Now compared to renting, I’m still ahead of the game. If my home drops another $100,000 over the next 2 years, then my annualized loss is $28,500 per year. That equates to having paid $2400 in rent over the seven year time period. $2,400 rent could have gotten me a much nicer place than my current home. At what point should I feel guilty about screwing the banks. Remember the banks are the experts in this case. They provided the original appraisal on the property and they are the loan experts. Why should I feel one ounce of guilt for their poorly planned decision to loan me a home?

    Lord knows that if I didn’t act responsibly and put down 20%, I would have jingle mailed it in a long time ago.

    Anyone here who feels sympathy for the same banks that your tax dollars bailed out needs to have a lobotomy performed at once.

    Credit score, schmedit score. If you continue to pay twice what your home is worth every month to your bank, then your credit score won’t be worth sh1te anyway as you will have no money left to make a major purchase in the future.

  142. Schumpeter says:

    Afford? You don’t have to be able to afford…just clever enough to dupe the lender.

  143. Barbara says:

    144. schumpt
    That gets me mad

  144. Schumpeter says:

    If your FICO gets busted down to 580-620, you actually have a very minor credit problem (if any).

    12-24 months of effort, and that number will start going up again.

  145. Schumpeter says:

    Barb (149)-

    Don’t hate the playa. What else could happen in a situation where banks repossess worthless collateral?

    You either mark it down or Ponzi your ass off. To the banks, this is a no-brainer choice.

  146. Schumpeter says:

    580 FICO gets you an FHA loan. Just have to put 10% down.

    And click your heels together.

  147. Schumpeter says:

    Anybody wanna buy a foreclosing 900K condo in Far Hills?

  148. No one tell Meter that I own a multi and collected $108,000 in rent over that same time span. :P

  149. freedy says:

    the credit scores rebound quickly ,,

  150. freedy says:

    they want to sell you something, and if you
    work on it ,, will come back even faster.

  151. Barbara says:

    schumpt,
    the banks were already paid off on that worthless collateral. Thats what gets me mad

  152. Barbara,

    3 years ago, that house fetches 700K.

  153. relo says:

    154: Barb,

    Clearly you are not Montclair material. Kindly refrain from perusing the inventory.

  154. Schumpeter says:

    Barb (158)-

    Yep. They pretty much jam a big one in all the open holes.

  155. Barbara says:

    stu, nawp – I was in 3 years ago, thats a 3 years ago price. Even montlcair wasnt that crazy 3 yrs ago. Look at the pics, its small and super crappy

  156. Schumpeter says:

    #154-

    That agent looks like some creature from 11th Avenue.

  157. Barbara says:

    Stu 3 yrs ago I was in a bid on a house over 2X the size with nice historic details and an amazing third floor apt- for 525k ask.

  158. freedy says:

    this is going to be interesting , what the banks do with credit card defaults.

    going to become trendy to do the credit card mod. they will come 50%off in one phone call.

    that’s for starters

  159. Barb, it depends on the location. If it’s on one of those snobby east-west Upper Montclair roads just north of the Upper Montclair town center, it would have gone for 700K.

  160. Barbara says:

    160.
    relo
    this is true hehe

  161. Barbara says:

    163 Schumpt
    she needs to go back to QVC and scrapbooking.

  162. Barb,

    Multi-families are always cheaper. Trust me. I bought one! :>

  163. Anon E. Moose says:

    Barb[154];

    I love the “Agent’s Other Listings”:

    Two shots of the same townhouse – Asking $315,000 to buy; $2,450/mo to rent. The ratio isn’t far off, but $2,450 for a 2br townhouse?

    Not to metion the “other listings” on those pages both include the Montclair house. I guess she’s got two clients.

  164. Donnie Darko says:

    163: I’m fascinated by these agent pics for some strange reason.

  165. “163: I’m fascinated by these agent pics for some strange reason.”

    This one is still my favorite:

    http://i442.photobucket.com/albums/qq145/stuw6/MsAdlers.jpg

  166. meter says:

    @133 –

    You sound sort of shrewish, if I’m not mincing words.

  167. freedy says:

    so the market rally is based on greece
    not defaulting , we’re crazy

  168. meter says:

    $147 – I get it. My beef is that they’re purposely not paying their HOA fees, thereby directly scr3wing their neighbors, and instead going on vacation. I’d start slashing some tires if I lived next door.

  169. yo'me says:

    Jingoism and the Budget Deficit: Using Any Tactic to Advance the Budget Cutting Agenda

    The deficit hawks apparently believe that their case is so weak that they must resort to crass jingoism to push their agenda. NBC apparently intends to run a piece on the evening news on Tuesday that talks about the portion of the government debt that is owned foreigners, highlighting the role of China.

    This is incredibly dishonest. The extent to which foreigners hold U.S. assets is determined by the trade deficit, not the budget deficit. (Actually, the causation largely goes the other way. The decision of foreign governments and/or investors to buy dollar assets raises the value of the dollar, leading to a larger trade deficit.) Insofar as there is an issue of U.S. indebtedness, it is the holding of U.S. assets in general by foreigners. This represents claims against future U.S. output that will be paid out to foreigners rather than being available for domestic consumption. Whether foreigners hold shares of General Electric and Microsoft or U.S. government bonds makes no difference, especially since one can be readily sold to buy the other any day of the week.

    A serious discussion of this issue would focus on the value of the dollar. That is the relevant factor in the story of foreign indebtedness. Given the current value of the dollar, at the same level of GDP, we would be building up just as much foreign debt if the government were running a budget surplus rather than a $1.3 trillion deficit. Economists all know this.

    However, the deficit hawks are not interested in a serious discussion. They are pushing their agenda of cutting Social Security and Medicare. And they are apparently willing to appeal to crude jingoism to make their case.

    –Dean Baker

  170. Schumpeter says:

    Crazy will be when Greece defaults.

    Which should be around Friday.

    “so the market rally is based on greece
    not defaulting , we’re crazy”

  171. freedy says:

    a bailout for greece, ??

  172. Schumpeter says:

    relo (180)-

    Was she in rigor mortis when they took that pic?

  173. Essex says:

    176. Nice. Slashing tires. What’re you 15??

  174. Essex says:

    182. The phone in the pic says. “I’m busy, yet accessible”.

  175. relo says:

    183: Easy, I just want a date, we’ll see where it goes…

  176. meter says:

    For the record, again…

    I have absolutely nothing to be jealous about as I’m:

    1) not a home-owner/debtor
    2) not underwater on any asset of any kind
    3) cashed out of the equities market other than a 401k
    4) flush with cash
    5) in a relatively high-paying position

    What gets me is the cheerleading of treating others (not banks) poorly. In this case, your neighbors. In freedy’s case (not to rehash this whole thing, just trying to summarize), anyone and anything he owes money to.

    I think some (not all) of you are just deadbeats by nature and now have a excuse to practice subversive behavior for its own sake. And yes, I am just as angry, perhaps moreseo, about bank bailouts as all of you. I have a very personal reason to be.

  177. relo says:

    185: Wonder if she knows about call waiting. No wonder I always get a busy signal.

  178. leftwing says:

    “Given the current value of the dollar, at the same level of GDP, we would be building up just as much foreign debt if the government were running a budget surplus rather than a $1.3 trillion deficit. Economists all know this.”

    Any economists want to explain this one to me? They didn’t cover it when I majored in the topic….

  179. meter says:

    @184 – not paying your bills. What are you, 8?

    No cookies for you until after dinner, junior.

  180. freedy says:

    hey meter, take on the rest of the crowd
    no me, leave me out of it. i had my say.

    Screw the Banks,

  181. Barbara says:

    185
    Essex or maybe “my hearing aide is turned WAY UP, go ahead, I can hear you from here.”

  182. Essex says:

    187. Then why are you here? trying to make average Americans feel worse about the economy than they already do? Gloat a lil bit? Or did your fugly wife/hubby cut you off and you got nothing else to do?

  183. Barbara says:

    Stu
    you are right about the multis in Montclair, I think they are the better value, most are fairly easy to convert to single.

  184. meter says:

    Essex,

    Yep, you NAILED it, pal.

    “Then why are you here? trying to make average Americans feel worse about the economy than they already do? Gloat a lil bit? Or did your fugly wife/hubby cut you off and you got nothing else to do?”

    The reason I’m here is because this is a real estate forum and I’m – y’know – interested in purchasing real estate at some point. Or at least I was.

    If that means in doing so I am forced to live around deadbeats and losers like you, maybe PA is more my speed. I think I need to know that my potential neighbor has the financial wherewithal of a drug-addled teen and the same sense of responsibility. That – y’know – DIRECTLY affects me. When – y’know – I’m paying higher HOA fees to offset your freeloading a$$.

    For example.

    You dig?

  185. John says:

    BTW Chifi is going to beat my butt any day now in investing. He is a professionally trained B school CFA. My amazing looks, street smarts and fact I am hung like a donkey has allowed me to beat him like a red headed stepchild for almost two years straight. It can’t go on forever.

  186. Normally, I’m not very fond of politics in general – however, every now and then all of us have to pay attention. There are some very good arguments debated here, and I’m paying attention – I am grateful to you.

  187. Essex says:

    196. PA? I would rather be here. I like Jersey. I have lived in six states. Waited for a long time before buying and have a nice place. Great wife. Super kid. My life couldn’t be better. Life is reaaaaalllly tough for me.

  188. Essex says:

    So anyway.

  189. freedy says:

    get veto over here to deal with meter,

  190. Essex says:

    I would never do condo life…..not interested in sharing space or time with anyone I did not marry or give birth too.

    Condo’s are generally harder to buy/finance and sell. And who the hell wants to share walls?

    My neighbors are far enough away so that I can do whatever I want, whenever I want.

  191. meter says:

    Fine and dandy. I also will never buy a condo.

    You get the point I’m making though?

    Actions have consequences. Sometimes unintended. Sounds fine to screw ‘the man’ in principle but little thought is put into what spillover effects that might have.

    I feel like I’m alone amongst a conservative economic version of Greenpeace activists lately.

  192. Juice Box Sean says:
  193. Essex says:

    I am with you meter. But you cannot count on others in this life. You must make your own way and choices. I wish nothing for the best for all people, but in all honesty do not give a rat’s ass about them. That is the American way. We look out for our own the best that we can. But in reality it is every family for themselves. As far as the man goes, they inhabit my own immediate family and most are so completely smug that it is ingrained on their DNA. I tend to steer clear of them as I am often tempted to remove their teeth with my fist.

  194. Mikeinwaiting says:

    meter196 Finding neighbors with financial wherewithal might leave you on an island for get about PA.
    I have no problem with screwing the banks,not paying HOA fees that screw your neighbor (who may not be in such great financial shape)also rubes me the wrong way. Now if you are flat broke well, but to go on vacation is a little much.

  195. Essex says:

    You can find a lot out about your neighbors …my wife was checking out a site that said one of ours with in a pre-foreclosure mode (which they apparently got out of) but it was kind of sad. My area is full of poor chumps who are caught up in their private schools and most pay big big bucks for that . Their choice I suppose.

  196. Mikeinwaiting says:

    Essex can’t have little Graydon going to school with that public RIF-RAF.

  197. chicagofinance says:

    relo says:
    February 9, 2010 at 3:48 pm

    Big fan.
    phoffer.remax-nj.com

    RE/MAX
    Outstanding Agents. Outstanding Results.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Su54aO1muOg

  198. Essex says:

    209…actually with these folks it is a religious thing…very cultish….but probably adds some semblance of ‘unique salability’ to the neighborhood. Either way…I’m here. Comfortable. And don’t intend to leave any time soon.

  199. Essex says:

    But in this recession it could affect anyone or any neighborhood. You could be living next to mid management folks one minute and the next……poof! Job gone!

  200. Mikeinwaiting says:

    Check out this one.

    The Scariest Employment Graph I’ve Seen This Year
    The good news from January’s jobs report was that official unemployment unexpectedly fell from 10% to 9.7%. The bad news was … just about everything else. Catherine Rampell from the New York Times’ Economix blog spots a particularly glaring statistic: The average length of unemployment in this recession is 31 weeks, the longest on record. In fact it’s 50% longer than the previous record from the early 1980s. This graph is scary:

    http://business.theatlantic.com/2010/02/the_scariest_employment_graph_ive_seen_this_year.php

  201. meter says:

    I guess it’s foolish in this day and age to take a man at his word. I was raised to follow the tenet that ‘a man is only as good as his word. ‘

    I believe this is a big part of what made America great. Respect for others’ property, deals done on handshakes, etc. I’ve worked in New York long enough and have traveled around enough to know the world is full of slimy people.

    Just seems this kind of behavior is now the rule rather than the exception. The day I allow myself to stoop to these tactics and mindset is the day I need to find a new place to habitate.

    I still (perhaps naively) believe in human decency. That means considering the effects of my actions on others. Not just my family and close friends.

    I also believe that the Bernie Madoffs of the world will be paying a big price for theirs long into the future.

  202. chicagofinance says:

    I am no huge fan of Buffett, but here is prima facie evidence that Mr. Black Swan is a class-A derivative do nothing with a big ego, mouth, and not much else….talk about Ivory Tower at its worst….
    http://www.cnbc.com/id/35300031

  203. Essex says:

    213. Not surprising. I spent the first dozen years of my career in tech…one job to the next each with a better pay day but zero security.I watched IPOs and burn rates and foolishness and managed to make a decent living and capture a few nice packages on the way out, but something told me to get a more secure position. I did and never looked back.

  204. Essex says:

    214. I have seen enough folks in the business world to know that if you ever ‘need’ them you are screwed. That is just the way it is. But then I was always on the sales side and you learn real fast how pathetic people are when they start to divide the pie before it is baked.

  205. House Whine says:

    Maybe I missed something but you don’t really know the whole story. So before we all pass judgment on the couple who went on vacation it’s also possible that they had already paid for most of the vacation and there was no way to get a refund. I know that we usually book our trips way in advance and sometimes even the hotel isn’t 100% refundable. I’m just saying.

  206. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:

    The administration is planning for some sort of exchange of retirement funds for a government guaranteed annuity. That is so they can fund their enormous debt domestically as Japan has done for almost 20 years

    You were warned.

  207. givemeajob says:

    WASHINGTON DC, United States—The number of illegal immigrants in the United States fell by seven percent last year to 10.8 million, coinciding with the country’s financial crisis, a Department of Homeland Security report said Tuesday.

    The majority of the country’s illegal immigrants come from Latin America, with 62 percent from Mexico (6.7 million), followed by those from El Salvador (530,000), Guatemala (480,000), and Honduras (320,000).

    Together with Filipinos (270,000), Latin Americans accounted for 85 percent of all illegal immigrants in the United States in 2009, the DHS report said.

    “The number of unauthorized residents declined by 1.0 million between 2007 and 2009, coincident with the US economic downturn,” said the report, based on census data and extrapolations from the total foreign population in the country.

    Of the nearly 11 million undocumented people living in the United States in January 2009, 37 percent, or four million, arrived since January 2000, 44 percent since the 1990s and 19 percent since the 1980s, the DHS said.

    The cutoff date of January 1, 1980 in the DHS’s estimated tally of illegal immigrants corresponds to a grandfather clause in the 1986 US immigration reform law that extended residency to anybody living in the United States prior to that date.

    In overall numbers, a little more than 31 million foreigners were living in the United States—legally and illegally—in January 2009, the report said.

    California was the state with the most illegal immigrants, 2.6 million, followed by Texas with 1.7 million and Florida with 720,000.

    “Between 2000 and 2009, the Mexican-born unauthorized immigrant population increased 2.0 million or 42 percent,” said the report, confirming earlier independent studies of that nationality.

    However, the biggest jump in illegal immigrants from a single nationality went to Hondurans, who saw their number almost double (a 95-percent increase) in the past decade.

    Beside the US and global financial crisis, other reasons the report adduces for the drop in the undocumented population include tougher border enforcement and a national crackdown on illegal immigrants.

    Since his inauguration a year ago, US President Barack Obama has been prodding Congress to take up immigration reform after two failed attempts in 2006 and 2007.

  208. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:

    BEIJING (Reuters) – Senior Chinese military officers have proposed that their country boost defense spending, adjust PLA deployments, and possibly sell some U.S. bonds to punish Washington for its latest round of arms sales to Taiwan.
    http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE6183KG20100209

    We all saw this coming.

    “Our retaliation should not be restricted to merely military matters, and we should adopt a strategic package of counter-punches covering politics, military affairs, diplomacy and economics to treat both the symptoms and root cause of this disease,” said Luo Yuan, a researcher at the Academy of Military Sciences.”

  209. Mikeinwaiting says:

    AL 221 you should read this one.
    Geopolitical Thoughts: A World on the Brink
    http://seekingalpha.com/article/187504-geopolitical-thoughts-a-world-on-the-brink

  210. Schumpeter says:

    meter (196)-

    You’re going to have to move to another planet to find community living where scores of people aren’t defaulting on their HOA fees.

    I get all the notices of HOA liens being filed in central NJ. Believe me, they dwarf the lis pendens filings. It’s gotten to the point where I can use them as a predictor of future foreclosure, and (depending on the size of the balance), I devote a fair amount of marketing to this segment of people in trouble. So far, it’s yielded some pretty good results.

    I know you’ll appreciate that it also gives me a great chance to encourage owners at the earliest possible point in their inevitable death spiral to stop paying their mortgages. I’ve got a feeling a lot of them take my advice.

  211. Schumpeter says:

    John (197)-

    I think a couple of imminent sovereign defaults are going to be game-changers, to say the least.

  212. freedy says:

    stop paying becoming very trendy,

  213. PGC says:

    PSA: Mumps outbreak in NY/NJ

    http://www.cnn.com/2010/HEALTH/02/08/mumps.outbreak.northeast/index.html

    I’ll ignore the 800lb gorilla in the article.

  214. Schumpeter says:

    I’m going to short sell my house, undercut my neighbor two doors down, then rent his house when it won’t sell because I destroyed the comps.

    I figure I can turn a $3,100 monthly nut into about $1,500. Plus, he has a pool and is such a sap I can get him to repair everything that breaks.

  215. Schumpeter says:

    Then, I am going to default on everything else I owe. Will report here on the offers I get from the creditors.

  216. Outofstater says:

    #204 meter – You’re not alone. I’m wondering what will happen when, say, 50% of mortgage and credit card debtors default. Never mind what the reason might be; they just default. So who will want to write a mortgage or issue a credit card? Mortgages might require 50% down and CC’s will be issued only to those who don’t need them, i.e., those who could pay cash anyway. That might not be such a bad thing but it will not do any favors for demand, real estate prices will drop further and few people will be able to buy or sell property. The transition to that economy from this one will not be fun.

  217. Barbara says:

    Outofstater

    229.

    you just described 1973. We lived ok back then. It will be ok.

  218. Schumpeter says:

    stater (229)-

    The real question is: who will want to borrow money?

    Available credit doesn’t matter if no one wants it. And, all indications point to no one wanting credit. God knows, I don’t.

    Housing is dead for 40 years. It’s a consumable, not an asset.

    “So who will want to write a mortgage or issue a credit card?”

  219. Schumpeter says:

    BTW, the way things stand now, I will tell both my kids to borrow to the hilt for college, then default.

    By that time, the gubmint will fix it so you can walk away from student debt.

    Besides, it might take my kids 10 years to find a job that even remotely justifies having a higher education.

  220. meter says:

    I have a really hard time believing that anyone on this message board truly has the cojones, resources, skills, and adequate plans to make it in an economic meltdown scenario. Myself included.

    Guns and compounds aren’t going to cut it, folks. Might help with the first/second wave, but there will be more desperate and crazy people than you have rounds.

    Unless you’re really remote – like off the grid and map.

  221. Essex says:

    Meter…meter….meter….it could happen. And you could walk out of your home and get run over by a bus. Or get a cancer. Dude. Just relax. Enjoy the ride. It’s fun. It’s supposed to be.

  222. Pat says:

    meter, some people have taken steps to get “really out there” even if it’s painful.

    And don’t make assumptions about personalities or their skills.

    Clot talks a good game. But he’s too nice. No mean streak. The ones you really have to watch out for – the ones that’ll come and shovelsmack you for your turnips – are the poets.

  223. safeashouses says:

    #233 meter

    Dude I grew up next to the projects. Just go with the flow and enjoy what you have.

  224. Yikes says:

    Cirrus (from yesterday): Congrats on the move to Bucks County.

    A few recommendations for dinner –

    Honey in Doylestown
    Oishi Sushi in Newtown
    Yardley Inn in Yardley
    Tastebuds in New Hope

    Skip the oxford valley mall and go straight to Willow Grove (a bit farther) for shopping purposes (or King of Prussia, which is probably a hike depending where you live)

  225. Pat says:

    This is what you’re going to get:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mJ_OL-ktp0g

  226. meter says:

    Pat, LOL

  227. Schumpeter says:

    “Marcello, his wife Sylvie and their three kids lived in Montevideo, Uruguay in 2002. They were in their early 30’s and life was pretty good. Sylvie had a license to practice dentistry. It is a different standard then what we know. But she had education debt and she borrowed to build an office. She also borrowed $10,000 to pay for “license” required to open a business.

    They borrowed money to buy cars, they had credit card debt. They did not look much different than your average American family. Their income was close to $100k; they had debt of $50k. A problem, but not a crisis.

    Nearby Argentina had “Dollarized” its economy a decade before. Uruguay did the same. For years there were big benefits from linking to the dollar. Inflation collapsed. The availability of credit expanded dramatically, the economy prospered.

    Sylvie and Marcello earned $100k in Uruguayan Pesos. The debt was in dollars. As long as the exchange rate of the UPeso was fixed there was not problem. But in 2002 there was a big problem. The charade of tying a local currency to a reserve currency at a fixed parity ended very badly. The Argentine Austral and the UPeso ended up devaluing by 90%.

    Think of Sylvie and Marcello, they went to bed one night owing $50,000 and woke up in the morning owing $450,000. (It actually took a year) They were busted. What could they do to get out from under? The whole family left the country and came to the US on a tourist visa. And Marcello worked off the books seven days a week to earn the dollars he needed to support his family and try to pay back the dollar debt.

    These people weren’t dead beats. To me they were like any middle class family that got squeezed. They wanted to honor their debt and get back to living. The only choice to do that was to get an income in dollars. Their Peso income would no longer cover the debt.

    A few years after they got here I got involved and negotiated a settlement with the various Uruguayan banksters that had lent them the dollars and put them at risk. We paid 25 cents on the dollar, so that meant the debt was cut to $14,000. Sylvie left with the kids. Marcello stayed for a while longer so he could pay me the 14k. A solid guy, he settled with everyone. They are all back home now. Life is okay again. They will never borrow money in dollars again.

    There are similarities to Uruguay in 2002 and the PIIGS in 2010. Both converted/pegged their domestic currency to a much stronger reserve currency. The same benefits of reduced inflation and economic growth have followed as a result. But so has debt creation. Both in the public sector and the private sector.

    The CIA puts Spain’s external debt (mostly Euro denominated) in 2004 at $780B. Six years later the same source put the number at over $2 Trillion. And that is why we have a problem today.

    The pressure is mounting for “something” to be done. The argument, “Greece should float out of the Euro” or, “There should be a two tiered Euro” is gaining some traction. While this process will ebb and flow throughout the year, it really has only one direction to go. It’s going to get worse. The idea that the PIIGS will work this out with budget cuts is just wrong headed. That is not going to happen. The development today where it appears that a lifeline may be extended to Greece is going to backfire on Germany. There will be too many hands sticking out requesting a soft loan. The steps that may come in the next few days may serve to defuse the problem. But the fuse will get re-lit before too long. At that point it will be a short fuse and nearly impossible to put out.”

    http://www.zerohedge.com/article/uruguay-greece-story

  228. Schumpeter says:

    meter (233)-

    I am armed to the teeth, willing to shoot and have a large amount of timberland in MS with a serviceable house on it. The extended family and I already have a protocol for when and how to head for this place, and we have a prearranged plan for securing it from the time the first of us shows up until the last one of us arrives.

  229. Essex says:

    241. Fascinating. Good story. The reason I value Clot’s vision more than most half pint / lame brain c-student 80 IQ punks that pretend to be internet tough.

    Don’t Come around here, piss on my gate…

  230. njescapee says:

    Barb, 1973 I was working at a mafia run trucking outfit in Redhook near Columbia St. Neighborhood was pretty wild back then. Folks in the projects across the street used to shoot out the truck windows. Oh and we cashed our checks at the local check cashing place. No one had checking accounts. But we did have fun.

  231. Essex says:

    We’ve got tons of family land in souff central PA…..not a problem from that standpoint. But I doubt it will come to that. If it does….so be it. I know my way around a camp site.

  232. 241 Clot
    I’ll be in TN. If we should happen to stumble upon each other down South, I hope we’re on good terms. :)

  233. njescapee says:

    Schump, me and the mrs will just take the next ferry 90 miles south to Havana.

  234. All "H-Train" Hype says:

    My sister has a house in rural NH Already gave my parents the out of the way route to get there. The property is well off the main road and you cannot even see it at night.

    I can fight my way up there if needed.

  235. Mocha says:

    215 chifi,

    I agree, have you seen his “ill timed” oil trade.

  236. Schumpeter says:

    lost (246)-

    You make it down to where we are, I can have my neighbor Luther and his little jug band come over and play.

    Might even get Luther’s dad, Jimmy Dickinson, to come over too.

    Turn the volume all the way up:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WETFnlfL-XQ&feature=related

  237. Schumpeter says:

    chi (210)-

    Gonna give Re/Max the boot pretty soon. Don’t need them to pick up short sale clients.

    Besides, I still can’t seem to get the hang of gouging the eye, then scarfing it in one bite.

  238. Schumpeter says:

    Gonna be Schumpeter Realty.

    Motto?

    “Press hard. You’re making three copies.”

  239. 250 Clot

    Let me know if they play up here somewhere. If I’m going to have to rely on others, I’d like to let them know I’m worth the favor.
    Ok that came out wrong but I really don’t give a sh!t.

  240. Schumpeter says:

    whine (218)-

    Nice try, there…looking on the bright side and all.

    Actually, the owner doesn’t give a rat’s ass. He’s the steelworking project manager on a building in Battery Park City that the developer just gave back to the bank. Said that watching how the big boys do it gave him the idea to stiff his bank. When he got my short sale promo letter, he realized he could ditch his place pretty much scot-free and not take the credit hit of a FK or DIL.

  241. Schumpeter says:

    al (219)-

    Bet meter doesn’t have a problem with that.

    “The administration is planning for some sort of exchange of retirement funds for a government guaranteed annuity. That is so they can fund their enormous debt domestically as Japan has done for almost 20 years”

  242. d2b says:

    Stu:
    Can A-Rod be on that plane that flies into the GS building?

  243. Yikes says:

    toshiro_mifune says:
    February 9, 2010 at 7:39 am

    #12 & #13 – Well, the ‘civilized world’ is such a broad definition.
    We will certainly have enough Uggz boots and Ed Hardy shirts to last though! Thank Goddess for that.

    nice work. laughed at that.

  244. Essex says:

    I laughed too, those uggs feel good though~!

  245. d2b says:

    Yikes:
    No Franklin Mills for you and the Mrs.?

    There’s a Miller’s Ale House (called Langhorne Ale House) next to Oxford Valley. There are 30 of them in Florida. We hit them almost every time we go down because they have every game possible on one of their TVs. Food is okay; decent burgers.

  246. Al "The Thermostat" Gore says:

    255.

    Dont worry. He probably took the swine flu vaccine as well despite my warnings. If he was one of the unlucky ones to receive a shot laced with squalene he will learn he hard way in about 3 years. Just rolling the dice because people refuse to think for themselves.

  247. Essex says:

    251. Now that is what i’m talkin about.

  248. Schumpeter says:

    lost (253)-

    Back to the latex wear, huh? :)

    “I’d like to let them know I’m worth the favor.”

  249. Schumpeter says:

    al (260)-

    Meter probably sucks on squalene Lifesavers.

  250. Mr Hyde says:

    Leftwing 107,

    Actually the data i showed is completely relevant.

    First lets discuss the quintile (not quartile) income limits.

    The income measures in your charts aren’t relevant to the argument I present. You are using income ‘limits’, which defines the number at which one breaks into a quartile, I am discussing the total income of a group (using aggregate income (AGI) for a quartile).

    If the quintile (5th’s) income limit moves up or down, that means that the income for that group has moved up or down. If the income limit for the bottom 5th moves up that means that the portion of gross income that the bottom 5th receives has increased relative to the the entire population. If that limit goes down then it means that the total portion of income that that fifth receives has gone down.

    This is a direct equivalent to you using IRS AGI data.

    Secondly, lets discuss the Table H-2 Share or aggregate income received by each fifth
    http://www.scribd.com/full/26618438?access_key=key-e285rdiclpb0q8me5bg

    This table directly contradicts your claims. This table shows the % of gross national income that each fifth of the population receives as collected by the US census bureau. This data is more detailed then the IRS data i was able to find, but am more then happy to see any contradictory data you may want to point out. (try some links)

    One additional kink in your argument using IRS data is that the definition of earned income and other stats used to generate AGI have changed multiple times over the years and hence causes an increased amount of uncertainty in the available IRS data.

    You suggest the i used data is not relevant. If its it not then point out why. Are the US census income stats unreliable? inaccurate?

    You provided no data that i have seen except for your opinion. If you have and i missed it, please point me in the right direction.

    How do people afford everything?

    Go the the St Louis FED website and pull up the Consumer credit stats. Consumer credit has expanded at an astonishing rate over the last 10+ years.

    Your basic supposition may be accurate up until sometime around 2000. At that point incomes went flat for all but the higher income earners, while costs have generally gone up, especially housing.

    We also have to consider social changes. In the early eighties, we say a substantial number of woman moving into the work place.
    As John likes to point out, this can often be a net loss cost wise for a family depending on child care costs commuting costs and the amount of additional income earner by the working spouse.

    There have been a number of people including Elizabeth Warren who have argued that this has essentially generated a net negative effect on family earning power.

    Regarding your CPI argument, eyeballing your chart it goes from 95 to 220 over 28 years, or about 3% p.a. As I stated that is less than the 5% p.a. growth in aggregate income for the lowest 50% of earners.

    Your point on population growth is a good one since I am using aggregate AGI. US population in 1980 (226m) vs. 2009 (299m) yields a 1.0% growth p.a.

    My view was and is this – earnings growth in the lower 50% of earners from 1980 to 2007 of 5.0% outpaces growth in the CPI (3.0%) and population growth (1.0%) combined.

    If you can actually rebut chart # 6 that i linked, please feel free, other wise you have no argument for there being no drop in income.
    You ae really left wiht 2 choices.
    1. the US census data is wrong.
    2. your supposition is wrong.

    Given that the US census income data show multiple drops in income across all segments of the population over the last 30 years the census data would need to be significantly incorrect for your argument to stand.

    And if you would be so kind, provide a link to the IRS data you are arguing

    And yes we both agree government is inefficient, i am only arguing your income suppositon.

  251. Mr Hyde says:

    Left wing:

    is this the data you used?

    http://www.census.gov/hhes/www/income/histinc/rdi8.html

    if it is i see where you get your numbers.

    I still think these numbers are misleading at best.

    both median and average incomes have fluctuated up and down over the last 30 years. Are you suggesting that the effective income of the bottom 50% of the population hasnt fluctuated as well?

  252. Schumpeter says:

    I say grim busts 500 posts tomorrow.

    I hope we get some good forex or sovereign action to entertain us.

  253. Mr Hyde says:

    Left wing

    you want more data?

    http://www.census.gov/hhes/www/income/histinc/rdi3.html

    Explain how the above data is not relevant to your point. It directly contradicts you, in both Pre-tax and post-tax terms

  254. 262 Clot
    I just sold almost all my latex. I still have some nice corsets though. :)

  255. plg says:

    Schumpeter,

    I have a theory about folks like you.

    Civilized society just isn’t working out so great for you. It requires to0 many skills that you don’t have. Social skills perhaps, I don’t know.

    So instead of investing yourself in civilized society you invest yourself in the dissolution of civilized society. In this new order you dream about intelligence and social skills don’t matter, all that matters is that you have more firepower. It simplifies things for you. I understand this desire for simplification, but I encourage you to resist this temptation. Think of ways to improve civilized society instead of waiting for it to fall apart.

  256. Essex says:

    271. That’s bullsh^t…sorry to jump in…

    What it is here is awareness. An acute understanding of the game…how it is played…how rigged it is…and how slimy the players are.

  257. Essex says:

    Social skills are supremely overrated. We live in a results oriented society….so unless you can deliver something of value you can be the nicest person in the world….and starve.

  258. Mr Hyde says:

    Schum

    i’d stop by for some whiskey, but have spent enough time in MS to know i dont ever want to go back there.

    I would rather be in northern Maine!

  259. Mr Hyde says:

    Essex,

    the only social skills that matter in todays world are ass kissing and sociopothy

  260. Pat says:

    Are you saying:

    Networking = intelligence

    Notice that the only time someone thinks you’re a sociopath is when they are NOT trying to network with (get something from) you?

  261. Essex says:

    Try Ass kicking and Social drinking.

  262. Pat says:

    Well, that got all messed up.

    I typed that @sskissing is greater than equal to networking. The only time one networks is when one needs something.

    And sociopath greater than equal to intelligence. Nobody calls you a sociopath if they need to network with you.

  263. Safeashouses says:

    #270 plg

    Were you dancing barefoot in the snow under a shining moon and singing koombaya while you thought of that one?

  264. MSP says:

    Fun little note on my 2010 tax assessment notice:

    Appeal date is extended to May 1, 2010. New appeals threshold to tax court must exceed $1,000,000 in assessed value.

    Does this mean what I think it means? If your house is assessed under a million, you cannot appeal. Can this be right?

    BTW, I live in Bernardsville. Although there are many homes assessed over $1,000,000, I believe the majority are less.

  265. Pat says:

    Has anybody six stigma’d freedy’s process to determine the best timing on this stuff?

  266. Pat says:

    meaning optimal savings by little guy?

  267. Mr Hyde says:

    If we want to be realistic, then it doesn’t necessarily matter how prepared or hoe much training one may have if/when TSHTF. The primary determinant of success in such an environment is how one mentally and emotionally responds to high stress environment.

    Look at combat. A soldier, no matter how well trained if often considered a liability by combat veterans until they have been exposed to real combat. The training and preparation can be meaningless if you cant effectively operate in high stress environments.

    That said, Schump is one person i think could operate in that environment if i were to guess based purely on blog personalities

  268. Mr Hyde says:

    pat 280

    intentional typo???

    six stigma’d

  269. Pat says:

    Naw. I hate that shit.

    And I know the stuff.

  270. Pat says:

    I even know how to insert the appropriate greek symbols into my formulae. That makes me cool.

  271. Pat says:

    Hyde…it’s like a subconscious thing.

    If I make fun of it, maybe it will
    go away before I have to beat it to death.

  272. Barbara says:

    I’m not one for this SHTF stuff but if it happened, you have your city mouse and your country mouse. Both landscapes offer opportunities and vulnerabilities if it were to all fall apart.

  273. Mr Hyde says:

    barb

    i think SHTF is relative and comes in many shades.

    If in 10 years the US were to look similar to Argentina then i think that would qualify as SHTF in big picture terms. Yet many would not due to the time period it happened over.

    I think a rapid collapse is unlikely barring the random meteorite or 12 monkeys out break.

    In any slow collapse i think the majority of the population adapts i n one form or anther without realizing it.

    And by slow collapse i mean we end up something like russia or argentia in 10 years

  274. Shortabuck says:

    Anyone preparing for significant civil unrest is not going to announce that they have a remote compound on this board.

  275. Barbara says:

    288 Hyde
    totes agree

  276. All "H-Train" Hype says:

    Shortabuck (289):

    Disagree with that statement. I do not mind talking about it and my plans are made.

  277. chicagofinance says:

    One of the greatest post ever recorded on this site…..not quite read my lips you schmuck…..where is Booya to unload on plg as required?

    238.Pat says:
    February 9, 2010 at 8:01 pm
    This is what you’re going to get:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mJ_OL-ktp0g

  278. chicagofinance says:

    WSJ
    Wednesday, February 10, 2010
    BUSINESS
    FEBRUARY 10, 2010
    Dreams of Retail ‘Xanadu’ Meet Harsh Reality

    Developer of New Jersey Entertainment Complex Seeks Financing as Report for Governor Floats Idea of Surrendering Site

    By A.D. PRUITT And LINGLING WEI

    Bloomberg News The developers offer a tour of the Xanadu retail and entertainment complex in New Jersey in March 2008.
    .
    As the developer of the long-delayed Xanadu project in New Jersey struggles to line up new financiers and partners, advisers to the state’s new governor have floated another possibility if the $2 billion project can’t get its act together: Surrender it back to the state.

    Since taking office in January, Gov. Chris Christie has made it clear he plans to get tough with the whimsically named 2.3-million-square-foot complex that was supposed to open in November 2008, complete with an 800-foot indoor ski slope and the largest Ferris wheel in North America. A report prepared for his transition team labeled Xanadu’s business model a failure and recommended the state, which owns the land, “needs to engage the owners…to either complete and open, or surrender the property.”

    The increasing pressure from the state comes as Xanadu’s development partnership, led by Colony Capital, has been negotiating with potential partners including Related Cos., headed by New York real-estate mogul Stephen Ross, a person with knowledge of the matter said. A potential partner would be “additive” to the partnership’s expertise, this person said.

    Carl Goldberg, chairman of the New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority, which owns the land, said Related is in “serious talks with Colony to acquire a majority interest” in the development. He also said if such an acquisition materializes, Related would likely announce a new completion date for Xanadu.

    One of the Colony group’s biggest problems is replacing the $500 million in financing that was cut off as a result of the bankruptcy filings of its original lenders, Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. and Capmark Financial Group Inc. A new partner may also bring in the capital needed to restart the entertainment and retail project, which halted construction in early 2009. Any new capital would be the first in line to be repaid.

    A spokeswoman for Related declined to comment. Related, the developer of New York’s Time Warner Center, has been brought in to help rescue other troubled developments. In 2008, for example, Deutsche Bank signed contracts with Related to take over the Cosmopolitan project in Las Vegas as new developer.

    Today, the Xanadu project sits mostly completed in East Rutherford as part of a proposed retail and entertainment center that is adjacent to the IZOD Center where the NBA’s Nets play.

    It was envisioned as one of the top shopping destinations in the country, but some industry experts say the development was ill-conceived from the beginning.

    The project was the brainchild in 2004 of Mills Corp., a mall developer that was acquired in 2007 by Simon Property Group and Farallon Capital Management in the wake of an accounting scandal. Before that deal, the Colony-led group, also including German fund KanAm and Dune Capital Management, took over the Xanadu project from Mills for $500 million..

    “I always thought it was a crazy idea,” says Carlos Rodrigues, the New Jersey director for the Regional Plan Association. “We don’t advocate free-standing destinations that are not part of the larger community.” He said the development would be difficult to access without a car and that northern New Jersey is already saturated with stores.

    Xanadu’s developers paid the New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority an initial $160 million as part of a ground lease agreement. Those funds were an advance payment for the first 15 years. Thereafter, the authority was slated to be paid a minimum of $95 million in staggered payments through 2026.

    But experts believe the state could still make a grab for the complex if the delay persists. “It is customary in any kind of contract of this type to have an escape clause to allow the public agency to terminate the contractual relationship if the private party is not performing,” says Mr. Rodrigues. A commission convened by Gov. Christie to look into Xanadu, among other things, is slated to make its policy recommendation by the end of June, says Mike Drewniak, a spokesman for the governor. “It’s essentially a mammoth commercial enterprise that is laying fallow,” Mr. Drewniak says. “This is one of the most valuable properties in the state of New Jersey. Having it sitting there with its financing in tatters is not doing anybody any good or use, and how long should that go on?”

    Xanadu is about 70% rented, according to the transition team’s report. Among the major tenants are science museum WonderWorks, a LEGOLAND Discovery Centre and a Cabela’s sporting-goods store.

    However, if financing doesn’t come through quickly enough, tenants have the option to pull out via an “escape clause” that is dependent on the strength of leasing, the transition report noted.

    Write to Lingling Wei at lingling.wei@dowjones.com

  279. chicagofinance says:

    grim: please delete

    293.chicagofinance says:
    Your comment is awaiting moderation.

    February 9, 2010 at 11:07 pm

  280. Stu says:

    MSP (279): No and No.

    You only have until May 1st the year in which your town undergoes a revaluation. The million threshold is for direct appeal to the state tax court. If you are assessed under, you must appeal to the county board of taxation.

    Gator supplied me with this info.

    I spent tonight at a town council meeting telling them all to their faces that they are smoking crack.

  281. leftwing says:

    Ket

    I can’t do this…last go around for me….you may entertain yourself with data trolling but I don’t.

    “If the quintile (5th’s) income limit moves up or down, that means that the income for that group has moved up or down.”

    Not correct. The income limit is nothing more than the income of the last person to make it into the quintile (or any other -ile one chooses). Let’s use a simple extreme to prove the point. Two consecutive years, same amount of total aggregate income, same amount of aggregate income in the quintiles, same population. In year 1, everyone in the top quintile has the same income, say $100k. In year two, the top earner in the group moves to $105k and the last earner in the quintile moves to $95k. Income limit has decreased 5% while aggregate income has stayed the same. Allow changes in the other variables held constant above and one can construct a dozen different scenarios where income limit and aggregate AGI for any -ile move in different directions.

    “This table directly contradicts your claims. This table shows the % of gross national income that each fifth of the population receives as collected by the US census bureau.”

    Missing my point totally. My point is specifically that the percentage of income earned by any one group relative to another (income disparity) should be irrelevant in an a society where all groups’ incomes are rising on a real basis. I am not arguing the data in the table you present but asserting that the measure itself is irrelevant.

    Stated differently, if the $50k a year bus driver is getting 5% annual raises does it really matter to him if Sergei Brin gets $1B or $2B? Or a CEO $2m or $1m? They are in totally different markets.

    What does affect the bus driver (which you rightly try to touch on earlier) is his standard of living, which at his income is more sucsepticle to bad government policies and outside shocks than higher income groups.

    That vulnerability, however, does not support trying to limit income disparity (it can best be addressed on a case by case basis with a social safety net). Putting a bonus limit on the CEO so that he earns no more than $1m will not cause the bus driver to earn more than $50k.

    As an aside I would not have expected to see the income growth trends in nearly all the percentile breakpoints that I found, particularly the lower percentiles. Conditioned as everyone else I would have expected rapid income growth at the higher percentiles and declining (or negative) revenue growth at the lower percentiles.

    Despite the data presenting the opposite, which approximates a situation similar to the one I posit, my argument does not require it. My assertion is a logical argument assuming certain circumstances that may or may not exist.

    I was surprised to see that incomes at nearly all percentiles over most of the time had actually grown so consistently (Table 3) particularly given the growing income disparity in Table 5.

    Again, the Left will be appalled at the trends in Table 5 but they present little actual concern so long as real earnings growth exists.

    We can have a whole other discussion on how government policies (taxes) and standard of living factor in, but it needs to be over some Grey Geese.

  282. Stu says:

    Grey Geese? Plural? Since I started the debate, I would be up for a get together to discuss.

  283. sas says:

    “In any slow collapse i think the majority of the population adapts i n one form or anther without realizing it”

    yup.

    why you think all your water and food is becoming toxic, and we are being drugged either legal or illegal, and sport & entertainment is turning you into a zombie 24/7.

    and you think cash is king? hark no…

    Propaganda & advertizement is king.
    SAS

  284. cobbler says:

    We will not look like Argentina – like mentioned a day before about Holland/Austria, Argentina is pretty homogeneous society. It did retain its middle class in the crisis – most everyone went down in wealth, but overall structure stayed in place. Remember, zerohedge’s example of the Uruguayan dentist – the guy came here to earn USD to pay his RE debts when he couldn’t earn them at home; he didn’t default strategically or otherwise. We will look like Columbia or more dangerous parts of Brasil…

    Clot: what happens to HOA liens if the house is foreclosed – the new owner has to pay them on closing, banks pays them, or they are discharged?

  285. sas says:

    “. The training and preparation can be meaningless if you cant effectively operate in high stress environments.”

    thats why we got basically high tech video game technology.

    It removes the emotional attachment and stess inducement.

    we got blokes out in bases that just push a button, and boom… there goes half the town, and then they go off and drink a 7up. but yes, always a need for ground troops.

    SAS

  286. sas says:

    and some you knuckleheads you there think towns are cleared before they drop the wee bombs… and like the flashing lights on the CNN… you don’t shinola.

    most of the time, we got innocent civilians hiding.

    so, think twice next time you wanna draw blood. cause let me tell you, when you decide to draw first blood…it will come back to you 10 fold.

    me, i must be a god damn cat cause I damn near used all my 9 lives. but, I can’t stay in same place for 4 hrs.

    SAS

  287. Theo says:

    In 1900, Argentina was 12th in the world in per capita GDP. By 2006 it had fallen to #83. This is what century of being run by military dictatorships and charlatans gets you. In the US, I don’t know if we’ll ever get to the dictatorship route, we’ve been run by charlatans for at least the last 20 or so years and we’ve managed to fall from 3# in 1900 to #8 in 2006, all of that fall in the past 30 years or so. The future is not looking bright.

  288. MMAWeekly.com scores the round 10-9 for Emerson.

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