Monthly Archives: January 2010

Was The Housing Bust The Banks Fault?

During his State of the Union address last night, President Barack Obama blasted the bank bailout. It seems clear that Obama and the Democrats will make banks and Wall Street their enemy in the run-up to the 2010 elections. It … Continue reading

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Office Buildings Have High Vacancy Rates

Commercial real estate will be the next shoe to drop. That’s the cliche we’ve been hearing for more than a year. Vacancy rates at office buildings keep going up. The LAT says: For some, construction kicked off during better years, … Continue reading

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Mortgage Applications Fall 11%

They keep dropping despite interest rates near zero. The refinance boom has gone bust. What further tricks might the Fed have up its sleave? I suspect they’re running out of money and interventionist steam. The LAT says: “Although rates remain … Continue reading

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Dramatic Drop In CA Mortgage Defaults

Defaults in California were down about 25% in the fourth quarter. Much of the credit for this belongs to the Obama administration’s mortgage modification program. How much significance can we give to these numbers? Only time will tell. For three … Continue reading

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Interest Rates Remain Near Zero

Fed chair Ben Bernanke is about to be confirmed by the US Senate to a second term. The Fed says that prospects for the economy are looking up. Despite this, they plan to keep interest rates near zero. Easy money … Continue reading

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Home Prices Increased In November

The increase is so small that economists wonder about its significance. With high unemployment, who can afford to buy a new home? Not many people — compared to past years — can handle mortgage payments now. The government, through the … Continue reading

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Home Sales Plunge In December

The housing market remains weak despite trillions of dollars of government intervention. How much lower would home values go if the government just left the market alone? There are substantial tax incentives to buy homes. The overall prospects for home … Continue reading

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Can The Housing Market Stand On Its Own?

I doubt it can. It has been propped up by massive government intervention over the past couple of years. There was the income tax credit for purchase of a home and the Federal Reserve’s $1.25 trillion purchasing of mortgage-backed bonds. … Continue reading

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Housing Market, Economy Appear Frail

Housing figures bounce up and down, but overall the past six months, the housing market has appeared steady. That’s largely because of massive government intervention to prop up home prices and reduce foreclosures. The Washington Post says: But pending home … Continue reading

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Federal Reserve Conflicted Over Its Mortgage Intervention Program

The Federal Reserve has a program in place to buy $1.25 trillion worth of mortgage-backed securities to keep mortgage interest rates low and revive the housing market. This program has been credited with keeping the housing market steady over the … Continue reading

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