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Bernanke Is Blind As A Bat

Bernanke Is Blind As A Bat

“Following the stock market crash of 1929, there was a short period of calm before the government and Fed would deliver a Great Depression. During that short period of calm, the establishment and authorities did their best to assure everyone that things were ok. I don’t doubt that they even believed what they were saying. Here are some examples of what was said during the calm period.” Continue reading

What Is Middle Class in Manhattan?

What Is Middle Class in Manhattan?

“Manhattan is not like most places. Its 1.6 million residents hide in a forest of tall buildings, and even the city’s elite take the subway. Middle-class neighborhoods do not really exist in Manhattan — probably the only place in the United States where a $5.5 million condo with a teak closet and mother-of-pearl wall tile shares a block with a public housing project. In a city like New York, where everything is superlative, who exactly is middle class? What kind of salary are we talking about? Where does a middle-class person live? And could the relentless rise in real estate prices push the middle class to extinction?” Continue reading

Housing Prices Starting to Melt Up

Housing Prices Starting to Melt Up

“Home prices may be starting to melt up. That means that fewer homeowners will have negative equity in their homes and more of them will have less of it. […] The median existing single-family home price rose 10.9% y/y during December, the best performance since January 2006. This is happening because the supply of existing homes available for sale dropped last month to the lowest since January 2001.” Continue reading

One Thing Explains Why Home Prices Are Rising In Some Cities And Falling In Others

One Thing Explains Why Home Prices Are Rising In Some Cities And Falling In Others

“One key reason for the discrepancy is the legal process for foreclosing on a home, explains Bank of America Merrill Lynch’s Michelle Meyer. ‘Broadly, states with a non-judicial process witnessed a sharper decline in home prices at the beginning of the downturn, but are currently enjoying price appreciation,’ said Meyer recently. ‘This is due to a more efficient disposition of delinquent supply, leaving lean inventory in many markets. In contrast, states with a judicial process are still struggling to clear the pipeline of distressed loans. As a result, home prices in the Chicago and New York metro areas have continued to edge lower.'” Continue reading

The Echo Boom in Housing-Recovery Stocks

The Echo Boom in Housing-Recovery Stocks

“Speculative bubbles often produce an ‘echo boom’ a few years after the bubble has burst, as the cultural/institutional memories of the asset’s spectacular gains remain operative long after the initial boom/bust. Is the much-hyped housing recovery an organic, sustainable trend, or is it merely a speculation-driven echo boom that is doomed to fade?” Continue reading

Foreclosure Laws and Procedures By State

Foreclosure Laws and Procedures By State

“Compare all state foreclosure timelines on this simple one-page chart and click on any state name to read about detailed foreclosure procedures for that state. Before continuing, please note that if you’re currently facing or potentially facing foreclosure, you probably have a handful of foreclosure questions. We have a Frequently Asked Questions section that can help.” Continue reading

Shiller: Housing Market May Have Further to Drop

Shiller: Housing Market May Have Further to Drop

“‘The housing market has been declining for something like six years now, it could go on, that’s my worry,’ Shiller said in Davos, Switzerland. ‘The short-term indicators are up now, it definitely looks better, but we saw that in 2009.’ ‘It’s a good housing market in the sense that mortgage rates are very low and prices have come down to normal levels, so yes, it’s a good time to buy if nothing bad happens,’ Shiller said. ‘But it’s also a very bad housing market in that most of the mortgages are being supported by the government, and we have the Fed and this buying program. It’s a very abnormal market. There’s a lot of uncertainty going forward.'” Continue reading

Lenders will target near-equity squatters for future foreclosures

Lenders will target near-equity squatters for future foreclosures

“Banks are letting delinquent borrowers squat rather than foreclosing on them and booting them out. At first, it was a self-preservation measure by the banks taken out of desperation when the first wave of foreclosures caused prices to crash. However, now the banks are content to allow squatting, even for years, because squatters do not become MLS supply weighing down prices. The houses occupied by squatters are effectively removed from the market creating an artificial shortage. The lack of MLS homes for sale and high affordability is causing prices to rise, and as prices go up, banks have collateral backing on their bad loans.” Continue reading