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Articles Posted by Freedom_Is_Not_Free

Brevity: Headers | « Text »
  • The GOP’s horrible California nightmare

    11/07/2012 1:30:44 PM PST · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 49 replies
    http://www.salon.com ^ | Wednesday, Nov 7, 2012 | By Andrew Leonard
    Republicans are having a bad day. But it’s going to get a lot worse when they look beyond the White House and U.S. Senate and fully absorb what just happened in California. The future of American politics — a majority-minority coalition handing complete political power over all branches of government to Democrats — is written here for anyone to see, in big, bold, rainbow colored letters. California, reports the San Francisco Chronicle, may have delivered the most unexpected news in a night full of surprises: California Democrats appear to have picked up a supermajority in both houses of the state...
  • I am done with the GOP (vanity)

    11/06/2012 8:42:05 PM PST · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 85 replies
    Death of the Republic | Me, Jim Ferreira
    That's it. I'm done with the GOP. No more. I am leaving the party and registering independent of no party affiliation. Call me when there is a Conservative Party to replace the GOP. They can go to hell. Don't look for my vote anymore you RINO pukes. If you don't run Conservatives, go to hell. You don't have my vote you assholes.
  • Again our ticket is upside down (Vanity reaction)

    08/11/2012 10:59:31 AM PDT · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 91 replies
    Heart of darkness | Today in infamy | Disgusted me
    Once again the ticket is upside-down as the GOP-e throws us a bone with a true blue Conservative running second under the thumb of a liberal RINO. McLame formula again. Is this the template for the next 20 GOP-e nominees? Run a turd and coat it in sugar? I hate the GOP-e. I hate them all the more because they know I have to hold my nose this year and vote ABO, which painfully is Romney this year. Puke.
  • Happy Dependence Day (Vanity best wishes)

    07/04/2012 4:06:40 AM PDT · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 7 replies
    Vanity | July 4, 2012 AV | Me, Jim F.
    Happy Dependence Day! That is Dependence, D-E-P-E-N-D-E-N-C-E , with a capital "D". Prompted by the Treason of the US Chief Justice in support of a radical communist Muslim US president whose assigned mission is to collapse the US economy and install socialist government infrastructure at every level, while signing over US sovereignty to a child-molesting atheist mental-case in Belgium, I just want to wish Freepers everywhere a Happy Dependence Day. By the power invested in me by my dog, Ranger, I hereby unilaterally declare that July 4th shall henceforth be known as "Dependence Day", when we celebrate the loss of...
  • Thread: Inflation is a process, not an event - Part I: Three inflation fallacies - Eric Janszen

    08/26/2010 11:04:20 PM PDT · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 54 replies
    iTulip ^ | 8-16-10 | 'Eric Janszen
    * What have we forgotten the nature of inflation since the 1970s? * Where is the U.S. economy in the transition from low to higher inflation? Monetary authorities and economists focus on inflation expectations because inflation expectations have a way of becoming reality over time. Inflation expectations, after falling hard in 2008, have been steadily rising since early 2009, and actual inflation has tracked expectations, with a time lag, as usual. Recently, however, inflation and inflation expectations have started to dip again. Is it time for the Fed to hit the deflation spiral panic button? Expectations of future inflation are...
  • Wall Street Whitney (Meredith Whitney Economic Analysis)

    06/30/2010 8:10:16 PM PDT · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 12 replies
    CNBC ^ | 6-21-10 | Meridith Whitney Interview
    Banking analyst Meredith Whitney gives her economic analysis for second half 2010 & beyond. Credit is tight. Banks aren't lending. Home sales and prices are still falling.
  • Chicago school board chief believed dead

    11/16/2009 11:25:33 AM PST · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 26 replies · 1,047+ views
    CNN.com ^ | 11/16/09
    The Chicago police would say only that authorities had found the body of an adult male about 3:15 a.m. in the area of 350 N. Orleans St., a road near a waterway in Chicago. CNN affiliate WGN-TV, citing unnamed police sources, said Scott's family had reported him missing Sunday evening. WLS-TV also reported that it was Scott's body that emergency crews recovered from the water. A report on the station's Web site did not cite a source but noted that Scott's wife, Diana Palomar, is the station's vice president of community affairs. Scott had been appointed to the Chicago Board...
  • MSM Response to Van Jones Resignation (my compilation)

    09/06/2009 9:09:25 PM PDT · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 34 replies · 1,622+ views
    Various media ^ | 9-6-2009 | Various media sources
    Here is what the MSM is saying about Van Jones Resignation: NEW YORK TIMES: The times is spinning this as poor vetting by a White House totally ignorant of Van Jones's "controversial past". Excerpt below: "Mr. Jones’s hiring and departure again raised questions about the quality of the White House personnel vetting process and the proliferation of so-called policy czars who are not subject to Senate confirmation or legislative oversight. "The Obama administration entered office promising the most thorough scrutiny ever of candidates for senior jobs, including an extensive questionnaire and time-consuming background checks that have left many senior posts...
  • The Big Takeover

    03/23/2009 12:36:09 AM PDT · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 41 replies · 1,092+ views
    Rolling Stone Magazine | Mar 19, 2009 | MATT TAIBBI
    <p>It's over — we're officially, royally fucked. no empire can survive being rendered a permanent laughingstock, which is what happened as of a few weeks ago, when the buffoons who have been running things in this country finally went one step too far. It happened when Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner was forced to admit that he was once again going to have to stuff billions of taxpayer dollars into a dying insurance giant called AIG, itself a profound symbol of our national decline — a corporation that got rich insuring the concrete and steel of American industry in the country's heyday, only to destroy itself chasing phantom fortunes at the Wall Street card tables, like a dissolute nobleman gambling away the family estate in the waning days of the British Empire.</p>
  • The Government Finance Bubble

    02/08/2009 10:06:10 AM PST · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 10 replies · 394+ views
    Prudent Bear ^ | February 5, 2009 | Doug Noland
    he Government Finance Bubble: What are we really dealing with here? First of all, the system is suffering through the breakdown in contemporary “Wall Street finance.” As wrenching and destabilizing as it continues to be, this process should be differentiated from outright financial collapse. Confidence in Wall Street “money” (their previously perceived safe and liquid securities/instruments) has been shattered. Myriad sophisticated Credit instruments have been discredited and thus will no longer provide a viable mechanism for system Credit expansion. Importantly, however, confidence has been sustained for system “money” more generally. As I’ve noted in previous writings, analysts made a momentous...
  • My title = "Depression, Anyone? Ask the US Treasury" (See official title in my comments below)

    02/05/2009 7:09:31 PM PST · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 14 replies · 620+ views
    United States Department of the Treasury ^ | February 4, 2009 | Treasury press release
    February 4, 2009 Dear Mr. Secretary: Since the Committee last convened in early November, the contraction in economic activity has deepened and broadened, while financial markets have remained under duress. The unprecedented volatility present in capital markets when the Committee last met has diminished somewhat but conditions still are exceptionally challenging. Policy efforts have begun to unlock credit for select high-quality borrowers. But the magnitude of wealth destruction, the still heightened cost of economy-wide capital and the impaired system of financial intermediation continue to cast a dark cloud over the economic outlook. Monetary and fiscal policy action now being implemented...
  • Fed cuts dollar, Fire sales vs FIRE sales, Duh-flation, and Bezzle shrinks again

    12/28/2008 10:42:49 PM PST · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 75 replies · 1,237+ views
    iTulip ^ | 12-16-08 | Eric Janszen
    US consumer swan song: Cheap now, cheaper later, then expensive -- it’s all about supply Early next year expect a Great American Consumer Fire Sale to follow on the heels of the Great American FIRE Economy fire sale of financial assets that began in 2006. While the FIRE Economy fire sale was in houses, stocks, and all bonds but US Treasury bonds, with particularly heavy depreciation in securitized debt, The Consumer Economy Fire Sale starting in Q1 2009 will be familiar to... *** snip *** I could not help thinking that a year from now many shoppers, blissfully unaware of...
  • American Express to Be Bank Holding Company

    11/11/2008 1:42:41 AM PST · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 25 replies · 250+ views
    The New York Times ^ | November 10, 2008 | ERIC DASH
    American Express, the nation’s last big independent credit card company, said late Monday that it would transform into a bank holding company to strengthen its position in the market turmoil. Federal Reserve banking regulators said they approved its application because of the “unusual and exigent circumstances” roiling financial markets and the company’s interest in tapping up to $3.8 billion in government money. As a full-fledged bank, American Express would gain greater access to the Treasury Department’s bailout plan for banks, a move that might allow it to lend more freely and perhaps acquire a larger deposit-taking institution. American Express customers...
  • The Coming Global Stag-Deflation (Stagnation/Recession plus Deflation)

    10/26/2008 1:17:11 AM PDT · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 33 replies · 958+ views
    RGE Monitor ^ | October 25, 2008 | Nouriel Roubini
    The fact that the most likely scenario in the global economy in 2008 is one of a negative global demand shock is the one that is priced by bond markets: if investors were really worried about a rise in US and global inflation – or about true stagflationary shocks – the yield on long term government bonds would have not fallen as sharply as it has since last summer. With US 10 year Treasury yield now well below 4% and sharply falling in the last few weeks it is hard to see a bond market that is worried about global...
  • Top Theorists Examine Rippling Economic Turbulence

    10/25/2008 9:21:21 PM PDT · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 30 replies · 1,184+ views
    PBS NewsHour (Business) ^ | October 21, 2008 | PBS
    RAY SUAREZ: Finally tonight, we return to a subject on many minds these days: the financial crisis. Our economics correspondent, Paul Solman, checked back in with one particularly prominent voice in the investment world and his colleague, who guided his thinking. Here is the pair's sobering conversation on what may lie ahead. PAUL SOLMAN, NewsHour Economics Correspondent: One of the world's hottest investment advisers these days, Nassim Nicholas Taleb, author of "The Black Swan," who's been warning of a crash for years, betting on one, and winning big. He's been ubiquitous in the financial media of late, from cable TV's...
  • The Founding Father of Crony Capitalism (Hamilton's Curse)

    10/21/2008 7:28:39 PM PDT · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 3 replies · 370+ views
    Ludwig Von Mises Institute ^ | 10/21/08 | Thomas J. DiLorenzo
    As soon as the federal government announced its trillion-dollar bailout (for starters) of Wall Street plutocrats, defenders of the bailout pulled out what they apparently believed was their secret weapon: the myth of Alexander Hamilton as the alleged inventor of American capitalism. Hamilton, they said, would approve of the bailout. Case closed. How could anyone dispute "the architect of the American economy"? Forbes.com immediately published an article entitled "Alexander Hamilton versus Ron Paul" to make the point that libertarian critiques of the bailout should be dismissed, since Hamilton was such a great statesman compared to Congressman Paul and his supporters....
  • Winter's Actionables Impacts on P-C=S+I (My title: People are saving more and buying less)

    10/18/2008 5:02:42 PM PDT · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 15 replies · 300+ views
    The Wall Street Examiner ^ | October 18, 2008 | Russ Winter
    or those who still care or remember, I was writing repeatedly in the late spring and early summer about the vicious impacts of the Crack Up Boom (CUB) Bubble on Joe Ultra Light Sixpack. It was my contention that the CUB would reach an unsustainable point, and then crash and burn. However now that it has burned, there are several positive impacts from this in the long term. First, the “take these dice from my cold dead hands” Berserkers are dead and buried. This would include hedge funds, reckless lenders and associated Pig Men. The policy makers responsible will be...
  • Plan B: Last chance to avoid financial system failure

    10/14/2008 12:55:09 PM PDT · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 162 replies · 1,312+ views
    www.itulip.com ^ | October 13, 2008 | Luigi Zingales
    After pointing a gun to the head of Congress, threatening a financial meltdown in case his plan was not approved, Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson has finally arrived at the only logical conclusion: his plan will not work. Desperate for a Plan B, Paulson is slowly warming to the suggestion of many economists: inject some equity into the banking system. Unfortunately, it is too little and too late. The confidence crisis currently affecting the financial system is so severe that only a massive infusion of equity capital can reassure the market that the major banks will not fail, recreating the confidence...
  • Peter Schiff On Glenn Beck: Inflation Nation?

    10/14/2008 12:18:31 PM PDT · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 88 replies · 1,329+ views
    The Glenn Beck Show ^ | October 13, 2008 | Glenn Beck and Peter Schiff
    Sorry, no body to post. Please click link above, then discuss...
  • Hoping There's Hope

    10/11/2008 8:21:36 PM PDT · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 30 replies · 519+ views
    Prudent Bear ^ | October 09, 2008 | by Doug Noland
    oping There's Hope: This is the first all-encompassing global dislocation of contemporary finance, impacting virtually all economies, markets and asset classes. The media is now all over the “Wall Street” and “banking” crisis. I am of the view, however, that the collapse of the hedge fund industry has moved to the forefront – that it is now at the epicenter of global market upheaval. To watch silver lose more than 20% of its value today in intraday trading; to see the collapse in energy prices; to see the entire commodities complex absolutely routed; to view global currency markets in complete...
  • 36 Hours of Alarm and Action as Crisis Spiraled

    10/01/2008 10:14:44 PM PDT · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 32 replies · 769+ views
    The New York Times ^ | October 1, 2008 | JOE NOCERA
    Some selected excerpts from the article... "This is what a credit crisis looks like. It’s not like a stock market crisis, where the scary plunge of stocks is obvious to all. The credit crisis has played out in places most people can’t see. It’s banks refusing to lend to other banks — even though that is one of the most essential functions of the banking system. It’s a loss of confidence in seemingly healthy institutions like Morgan Stanley and Goldman — both of which reported profits even as the pressure was mounting. It is panicked hedge funds pulling out cash....
  • Behind Insurer’s Crisis, Blind Eye to a Web of Risk [major conflict of interest/rip off]

    09/29/2008 12:41:22 AM PDT · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 39 replies · 1,062+ views
    New York Times ^ | September 27, 2008 | GRETCHEN MORGENSON
    Two weeks ago, the nation’s most powerful regulators and bankers huddled in the Lower Manhattan fortress that is the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, desperately trying to stave off disaster. As the group, led by Treasury Secretary Henry M. Paulson Jr., pondered the collapse of one of America’s oldest investment banks, Lehman Brothers, a more dangerous threat emerged: American International Group, the world’s largest insurer, was teetering. A.I.G. needed billions of dollars to right itself and had suddenly begged for help. The only Wall Street chief executive participating in the meeting was Lloyd C. Blankfein of Goldman Sachs, Mr....
  • The Toll of Human Suffering During the Great Depression

    09/25/2008 12:25:31 AM PDT · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 112 replies · 2,036+ views
    Socyberty.com ^ | August 19, 2008 | Joanna Lenae
    Human suffering became a reality for millions of Americans as the depression continued. Many died of disease resulting from malnutrition. Thousands lost their home because they could not pay the mortgage. In 1932,at least 25,000 families,and more than 200,000 young people wandered through the country seeking food,clothing,shelter,and a job. Many of the young people traveled in freight trains,and lived near train yards called hobo jungles. The homeless,jobless travelers obtained food from welfare agencies,or religious missions in town along the way. Most of their meals consisted of soup,beans,or stew and had very little nourishment. The travelers begged for food,or stole it...
  • Resurrect the Resolution Trust Corp.

    09/19/2008 1:06:29 AM PDT · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 22 replies · 282+ views
    Wall Street Journal ^ | * SEPTEMBER 17, 2008 | NICHOLAS F. BRADY, EUGENE A. LUDWIG and PAUL A. VOLCKER
    We are in the midst of the worst financial turmoil since the Great Depression. Absent bold action, matters could well get worse. Neither the markets nor the ordinary diet of regulatory orders, bank examinations, rating downgrades and investigations can do the job. Extraordinary emergency actions by the Federal Reserve and the Treasury to date, while necessary, are also insufficient to resolve the crisis. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the giants in the mortgage market, are overextended and now under new government protection. They are not in sufficiently robust shape to meet all the market's needs. The fact is that the...
  • The Uppers [or the Upper Class contribution to and impact on the current financial crisis.

    08/03/2008 10:05:19 PM PDT · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 10 replies · 112+ views
    Safe Haven ^ | August 1, 2008 | Doug Noland
    The Uppers: The U.S. Bubble economy has burst. I sympathize with those that would argue this is old news. But the probabilities are now high that GDP turns decisively negative during the second half - if it hasn't already. Instead of the year-long Credit crisis showing signs of improvement or even stabilization, a further tightening of Credit Availability is taking hold broadly throughout the economy. The so-called "subprime" crisis has, of late, invaded "prime" and "conventional" mortgages. This is a major additional blow for home prices and the economic support provided from built-up home equity. The securitization markets remain in...
  • Doscientos Mes [stock market 200 month moving average as a predictor --CALLING THIS A MUST READ]

    08/03/2008 9:54:25 PM PDT · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 12 replies · 430+ views
    Financial Sense ^ | August 1, 2008 | BRIAN PRETTI
    Set against the magnitude of credit cycle issues of the moment that indeed have very meaningful implications for what will be the reality of domestic economic outcomes ahead, questions have arisen as to whether we are now facing a relatively run of the mill bear market for equities or perhaps a bear of generational proportion. The thought has clearly made the rounds that the US equity bear market started in early 2000 was simply interrupted to the downside in 2002/2003 by incredible domestic monetary and credit cycle stimulus, as was truly exemplified by the literal generational bubble that was blown...
  • Mr Mortgage: June CA Foreclosure Report…Conditions Arguably Worsen

    07/16/2008 6:07:24 PM PDT · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 12 replies · 125+ views
    For a second straight month, CA lenders took back over $10 billion ($10.2 billion) in properties from the foreclosure auctions throughout the state. Last month banks took back $10.4 billion. If the banks are lucky and sell the properties for 60 cents of the NEW appraised value, which could be as little as 30-40% of the value at the time they initially lent on the property, then this could represent another $6 billion+ in losses for the nations largest lenders in one state for one month. In case you were wondering, CA represents roughly 30% of the total foreclosure count...
  • More People Raiding Their 401(k)s

    07/16/2008 5:57:13 PM PDT · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 71 replies · 135+ views
    CBS News (See BS) ^ | July 16, 2008
    Study Finds An Increasing Number Of Americans Are Using Retirement Funds For Emergencies Americans are raiding their already fragile retirement piggy banks to weather financial hardships such as unemployment, medical emergencies and buying a home. And they're doing it even though borrowing a modest $5,000 can dramatically erode savings over time, according to a study released Wednesday by the Center for American Progress. The study found workers in 2004 had $31 billion in outstanding 401(k) loans, a fivefold increase from $6 billion in 1989. Between 1998 and 2004, an average of 12 percent of families with 401(k) plans borrowed from...
  • LQD: Roubini predicts the worst financial crisis

    07/15/2008 9:07:59 PM PDT · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 60 replies · 321+ views
    European Tribune ^ | July 15, 2005 | Nouriel Roubini
    RGE Monitor MEDIA ALERT: Nouriel Roubini predicts the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression and the worst U.S. Recession in the last few decades. New York, July 15, 2008- In a series of recent writings on the RGE Monitor Nouriel Roubini - Chairman of RGE Monitor and Professor of Economics at the NYU Stern School of Business - has argued that the U.S. is experiencing its worst financial crisis since the Great Depression and will undergo its worst recession in the last few decades. His analysis leads to the following conclusions: This is by far the worst financial crisis...
  • Housing Bubble Correction Update: Fasten your seat belts, here comes the jobs crash

    07/10/2008 10:23:46 PM PDT · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 41 replies · 216+ views
    iTulip ^ | July 2, 2008 | Fred
    Housing Bubble Correction Update: Fasten your seat belts, here comes the jobs crash The housing market has fallen hard but it's not time to buy, no matter what you hear. Depending on where you live it's time to decide if you can afford not to sell before prices go lower, or grin and bear it. The choice depends on your likely future employment prospects and where you live. In our first major update in our series of housing bubble forecasts since 2006 that began with our August 2002 Yes, it's a housing bubble analysis, we delve into the next phase...
  • Crossing the Rubicon (A Must Read!)

    04/03/2008 6:57:25 PM PDT · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 31 replies · 318+ views
    First Pacific Advisors ^ | March 30, 2008 | Robert L. Rodriguez
    Ever since the government bailout of Chrysler in 1979-80, this country has been on a course of raising the safety net so that the market’s discipline, in a capitalistic economic system, has been truncated. We have witnessed a growing level of decisions that are based upon expediency rather than sound long-term decision making. Each time these expedient decisions are made, the level of risk within the U.S. economy has been increased. The market’s discipline is not allowed to work for fear of the potential economic fallout. In light of the above comments, the partners of FPA came to a unanimous...
  • U.S. Food Prices Pork Out

    03/31/2008 12:33:26 PM PDT · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 11 replies · 602+ views
    FORBES ^ | March 30, 2008 | Miriam Marcus
    If your diet consists entirely of bacon, you probably haven’t noticed that food prices in the United States are rising. Practically everything else is going up, and the respite for lovers of pork bellies is temporary. Last week, the American Farm Bureau Federation, an organization of farmers and ranchers, announced the results of its quarterly Marketbasket Survey, and the outlook for producers and consumers is not great. Every quarter since 1989, the federation has conducted an informal survey to determine the price of a basket of 16 basic food items an average American would purchase at a local grocery store....
  • Chaos on Wall Street

    03/31/2008 12:04:08 PM PDT · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 25 replies · 1,231+ views
    CNNMoney.com ^ | March 31, 2008 | Allan Sloan
    Fear is the culprit So why hasn't the cure worked? The problem is that vital markets that most people never see - the constant borrowing and lending and trading among huge institutions - have been paralyzed by losses, fear, and uncertainty. And you can't get rid of losses, fear, and uncertainty by cutting rates. Giant institutions are, to use the technical term, scared to death. They've had to come back time after time and report additional losses on their securities holdings after telling the market that they had cleaned everything up. It's whack-a-mole finance - the problems keep appearing in...
  • Recession is here - economists

    02/05/2008 9:05:16 PM PST · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 108 replies · 106+ views
    CNN Money ^ | February 5, 2008 | Chris Isidore
    NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- A growing number of top economists believe that the U.S. economy has now toppled into recession. Alarm bells were set off Tuesday by a grim report on service businesses, which make up the majority of the U.S. economy. The Institute of Supply Management said that activity in the service sector declined for the first time in nearly five years. This report also indicated that employers are cutting staff. The survey covers the retail, transportation and health care industries as well as hard hit areas such as finance, real estate and construction. Some economists argued that the...
  • 'It's going to be much worse'

    02/01/2008 12:29:28 PM PST · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 77 replies · 72+ views
    CNN Money ^ | January 31, 2008 | Brian O'Keefe
    "I'm extremely worried," he says. "I have been for a while, but I just see things getting much worse this time around than I expected." To Rogers, a longtime Fed critic, Bernanke's decision to ride to the market's rescue with a 75-basis-point cut in the Fed's benchmark rate only a week before its scheduled meeting (at which time they cut it another 50 basis points) is the latest sign that the central bank isn't willing to provide the fiscal discipline that he thinks the economy desperately needs. "Conceivably we could have just had recession, hard times, sliding dollar, inflation, etc.,...
  • What Median Home Prices Would Look Like If the Bubble Never Happened

    01/30/2008 8:15:28 PM PST · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 146 replies · 201+ views
    HomeGuide123 ^ | January 28, 2008
    It is obvious to most people that we are in the midst of a national housing bubble. Nevertheless, there are still plenty of naysayers who are telling anyone who will listen that there are local bubbles only. Using the 2.8 formula, it is clear that local bubbles aren't the problem. Median home prices are inflated in every U.S. region. In the West, where the median household income is $52,249, median home prices are more than double what they should be. The situation is similar in the Northeast, where the median household income is $52,057. Median home prices are not quite...
  • Economy Nearly Stalled in 4th Quarter; Suffers Worst Year Since 2002

    01/30/2008 8:07:37 PM PST · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 2 replies · 46+ views
    The economy nearly stalled in the fourth quarter with a growth rate of just 0.6 percent, capping its worst year since 2002. Wednesday's Commerce Department report showed that the economy deteriorated considerably during the October-to-December quarter as worsening problems in the housing market and harder-to-get credit made individuals and businesses more cautious in their spending. Fears of a recession have grown, even as inflation remained elevated. For all of 2007, the economy grew by just 2.2 percent, the weakest performance in five years, when the country was struggling to recover from the 2001 recession. The housing collapse was the biggest...
  • Forecast Update: Housing drags economy down the sink

    01/27/2008 11:20:21 AM PST · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 105 replies · 157+ views
    The recession in housing has spilled over to the rest of the economy, in our view. We now expect an outright contraction in economic activity in the first three quarters of 2008. This downturn should be led by consumer spending. GDP is expected to average 0.8% in 2008 (was 1.6% before) and only pick up to 1.0% in 2009, in spite of $175bn in fiscal stimulus and aggressive easing of monetary policy by the Federal Reserve. As we saw in prior post-bubble de-leveraging episodes, the healing process takes time as the bad debts get extinguished and balance sheets repaired. Home...
  • Rogue and the Pogue

    01/26/2008 10:59:54 PM PST · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 3 replies · 78+ views
    Asia Times ^ | Jan. 26, 2008 | Chan Akya
    Here is why this move (as well as the next two rate cuts) will fail - the problem with world markets today is not liquidity, but capital. The difference goes beyond nomenclature - while liquidity is long form for money flows, capital is the ability of banks to sustain the losses from such lending. For example, if you make a billion dollars of loans to individuals and expect to lose about 1%, you would set aside double that, say $20 million, as "capital", and then calculate your return on those $1 billion in loans as a proportion to the capital...
  • Lennar's new homes fetch 60% less as market slump deepens

    01/10/2008 12:23:03 PM PST · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 26 replies · 72+ views
    Lennar Corp.'s November sale of 11,000 properties in eight states set a price that may mark the bottom for the U.S. housing market: 40 cents on the dollar. That's how much Morgan Stanley Real Estate paid for an 80 percent stake in the 32 communities, 60 percent less than the price at which the properties were valued just two months earlier. That's also what some investors say they would pay for distressed land, condominiums, homes and whole developments, whether it's now or later this year. "If you're an opportunistic buyer with enough cash and credit, it will be one of...
  • New cars that are fully loaded — with debt

    12/31/2007 11:35:21 AM PST · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 92 replies · 312+ views
    LA Times ^ | December 30, 2007 | Ken Bensinger
    When Jennifer and Bobby Post traded in their 2001 Chevy Suburban last year for a shiny new Ford F-350 turbo diesel with an extended cab, it seemed like a great deal. Even though they still owed $9,500 on their SUV after the trade-in value, they didn't have to put a penny down. The dealership, near the Posts' home in Victorville, made it easy; it just added the old debt to the price of the new truck and gave the couple a seven-year, $44,276 loan. The Posts were a little worried about taking on such a long obligation, but they couldn't...
  • Economic jitters slam stocks

    12/15/2007 11:54:08 AM PST · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 4 replies · 116+ views
    CNN Money ^ | December 14 2007 | Alexandra Twin and Ben Rooney
    NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- Stocks tanked Friday, ending a tough week on a down note, after a report showing higher inflation raised worries that the Federal Reserve won't be able to keep cutting interest rates, even as the economy continues to struggle. The Dow Jones industrial average (INDU) lost 1.3 percent. The broader S&P 500 (INX) index lost 1.4 percent. The tech-fueled Nasdaq (COMPX) composite lost 1.2 percent. The Russell 2000 (RUT.X) small-cap index lost 2 percent. For the week, the Dow lost 2 percent, the Nasdaq lost 2.6 percent and the S&P 500 lost 2.4 percent. Next week brings...
  • Five Things You Need to Know: Carina CD-Oh-No; What Is a CDO?

    11/10/2007 12:23:03 AM PST · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 8 replies · 249+ views
    Kevin Depew's daily Five Things You Need to Know to stay ahead of the pack on Wall Street: 1. Carina: CD-Oh-No Standard & Poor's said a collateralized debt obligation managed by State Street (STT) began liquidating its assets, prompting the ratings firm to slice the investment vehicle's ratings as much as 18 levels, according to Bloomberg. * It's an important story. * Carina CDO Ltd., the CDO in question, is the first CDO to begin unwinding. * According to S&P, the ratings on the most senior class of Carina CDO Ltd. were lowered to BB, two levels below investment grade,...
  • Morgan Stanley exec: US recession likely (Roach)

    11/04/2007 12:55:21 AM PDT · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 62 replies · 53+ views
    Business Week ^ | 11/02/2007
    The U.S. will likely slip into a recession in 2008 and such a development may affect Asian economies, Morgan Stanley Asia Chairman Stephen Roach said Friday. "The global economy will be a very challenging one in the next couple of years. The subprime crisis is an early sign of a recession in the U.S. in 2008," Roach said at a function. "While fundamentally the Asian economies are terrific, Asia remains an export-led region. If the U.S. sneezes, Asia will catch a cold," he said. A sharp fall in prices of securities backed by housing loans to people with poor credit...
  • Pent Up Housing Supply

    10/29/2007 12:28:44 PM PDT · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 11 replies · 36+ views
    Mish's Global Economic Trend Analysis ^ | 10/29/2007 | Mike Shedlock
    Recent data shows U.S. Home Vacancies Rise to New Record. A record 17.9 million U.S. homes stood empty in the third quarter as lenders took possession of a growing number of properties in foreclosure. The figure is a 7.8 percent gain from a year ago, when 16.6 million properties were vacant, the U.S. Census Bureau said in a report today. About 2.07 million empty homes were for sale, compared with 1.94 million a year earlier, the report said. New foreclosures have risen to a record, led by defaults in adjustable-rate loans to people with tainted or limited credit histories, according...
  • Trends in Motion

    10/27/2007 2:20:19 PM PDT · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 9 replies · 37+ views
    10/25/2007 | Russ Winter
    Reports from large homebuilders like Centex indicate that large scale job layoffs have recently occurred. The 40 percent workforce reduction reported now seems consistent with the housing start level at 1.191 million. With new home sales running at only 770,000, even the 40% decline in construction employment now looks problematic. This chart translates that 40% fallout level into a one and a half million job losses from the peak, which would correlate with the Centex report. While there has been some discussion (such as illegals) as to why this has not shown up in BLS numbers, my readers should know...
  • The Three Ingredients That Will Lead to a Recession

    10/27/2007 1:48:43 PM PDT · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 9 replies · 42+ views
    The excerpts below from an article in the WSJ give the three reasons why the US economy will slide into a recession. I really like his three rules in trying to forecast a recession. Text in bold is my emphasis. It was basically a triple whammy: Housing prices kept falling, oil prices kept rising and both lenders and borrowers grew more cautious after five years of incaution. The combination was simply too much even for the impressively resilient U.S. economy. The Federal Reserve saw it coming, but couldn't move swiftly enough. Still, Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke's interest-rate cuts helped keep...
  • The sky has already fallen

    10/27/2007 1:11:53 PM PDT · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 20 replies · 213+ views
    The Telegraph ^ | 10/25/2007 | Ambrose Evans-Pritchard
    If you are a bear, you must accept that you will always be wrong in polite society, and you will continue to be wrong all the way down to the bottom of recession. That is the cross that bears must bear. Night sky It's gone, whatever sceptical colleagues may say Over the last three months we have seen a rolling collapse of speculative debt and real estate across half the global economy, yet friends still come over to my desk at the Telegraph, with that maddening look of commiseration on their faces, and jab: “so when is the sky going...
  • How Mortgage Fraud Functions

    09/26/2007 7:56:04 PM PDT · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 20 replies · 169+ views
    Voice of San Diego ^ | September 24, 2007 | KELLY BENNETT Voice Staff Writer
    Monday, Sept. 24, 2007 | To a frustrated home seller in the current real estate market, it sounds like an offer from an alternate, utopian universe: A buyer offers to pay as much as you're asking -- plus 10 to 30 percent -- and you just kick the difference back to the buyer in cash after the deal closes. You'll get out of the house without knocking tens of thousands of dollars off of your asking price to compete with the other 23,000-some homes on the market in the county. But the offer fits the profile of the most prevalent...
  • This Is Why I Rent: Median Incomes Do Not Support Median Home Prices

    09/21/2007 10:49:53 PM PDT · by Freedom_Is_Not_Free · 253 replies · 1,567+ views
    eFinanceDirectory ^ | September 17, 2007 | Ben W
    Sep 17, 2007 -- When you rent, most people mistakenly assume the decision is made out of necessity, not rationality. But there is a very good reason to rent in today's bubble-stricken market: median incomes do not support median home prices. By Ben W. (bdarbs) Median income household cannot buy median priced home The graph above demonstrates three very important facts. * Whenever prices rise more than the normal trend, they eventually correct and drop back in line. * This housing bubble is an absolute giant when compared to the housing bubbles of the previous decades. * Income levels haven't...