Posted by Jonathan J. Miller -Wednesday, February 29, 2012, 12:38 PM Comments Off
[click for video]
The Caroline Hepker of the BBC reports on the uptick in short sales on the East End. There are more and the number of high end listings are rising. I’m not clear of the reference for the following statement but she cites that:
For the first time, America’s wealthiest families are now losing their homes at a faster rate than any other group.
For my part, I was asked to discuss the state of national housing market for context. Short sales were not held back by the robo-signing scandal that had the effect of providing a temporary reprieve from foreclosures entering many housing markets across the country.
Short sales are a fact of life everywhere and don’t generally depress housing prices in and of themselves since lenders won’t accept offers that are significantly below current market levels.
House hunting in Hamptons as US market remains depressed [BBC News]
Posted by Jonathan J. Miller -Monday, February 27, 2012, 9:45 AM Comments Off
[Interview starts at about the 31:30 mark.]
Had a nice interview about new and existing US home sales with Michelle Makori in the NASDAQ Marketsites studio on the street level at Times Square. She’s the anchor of the Friday evening broadcast of Biz Asia America, a show on the English-language channel of China Central Television (CCTV), China’s largest national broadcasting network. It is a 24-hour international news channel, which can currently be viewed in more than 120 countries and regions. They are making a big push in the US expanding operations in DC and NYC.
Have you recently sat down in front of the TV and tried to find national and international news? Aside from the inconvenient timing of network news, its nearly impossible and frustrating. Remember CNN Headline News? Now its HLN/Nancy Grace. CNN International is basically the same content as the US version. Bloomberg TV is one of the only US (real) news channels out there today other than when Anderson Cooper is on the scene at a disaster.
Like Al-Jazeera English and France 24, CCTV is filling the English speaking news void created by traditional US cable news outlets like CNN, Fox, MSNBC and others who focus on celebrities, tabloid style news and gossip. Let’s raise the bar people.
Posted by Jonathan J. Miller -Monday, February 13, 2012, 9:25 PM 1 Comment
This video has some spicy language, not for the faint of heart, it but c’mon, this is riveting economics humor by Yoram Bauman, the first and only stand-up economist. This new video delves into the theory of why S*** happens.
Posted by Jonathan J. Miller -Wednesday, February 8, 2012, 2:41 PM 2 Comments
This research paper from the Boston Fed addresses the issue of “House Lock” – the idea that people who have negative equity on their homes are trapped and can not migrate to where the jobs are.
…These observations have raised concerns that the prolonged weakness in the U.S. housing market is keeping unemployment high by preventing homeowners who have negative equity from relocating to other states with better job markets. Having a negative equity position in their homes is likely to further deter homeowners from selling in an already weak housing market. Other options, such as engaging in a short sale or strategically defaulting on the loan, can be costly in terms of lost value or a damaged credit record. And in all likelihood, the number of underwater households is likely to persist as house prices continue to fall in many areas due to continually high levels of unemployment and foreclosure.
The report concludes that there is NOT a strong correlation between people stuck in their homes and the high unemployment rate.
home owners are already less transient than renters and account for only 20% of state-to-state migration.
negative equity reduces the probably of migration but does not impact unemployment rates.
Still it seems to me that Fed has become much more focused on housing as the way to fix the economy as of late. Of course, this is not official Fed policy speaking in this paper, but with what feels like an increase in housing related research (or I am super sensitive to this as of late), maybe it represents the “Id” of the Fed mindset. You can see it in the last sentence of the paper:
Instead, increased efforts to alleviate the housing sector’s drag on the economy— such as helping more homeowners to refinance or stemming the tide of foreclosures—may be more effective at stimulating aggregate demand and reducing the high rate of joblessness during the recovery.
Are American Homeowners Locked into Their Houses? The Impact of Housing Market Conditions on State-to-State Migration [Federal Reserve Bank of Boston]
Posted by Jonathan J. Miller -Monday, February 6, 2012, 9:36 AM Comments Off
So Clint Eastwood is one of my all-time favorite actors, most recently in Gran Torino (curiously a Ford), my wife’s family hails from Detroit and I’ve always wanted a car with a Hemi engine, but besides all that, this was my favorite commercial of the Superbowl.
I like the symbolism that the country needs to regroup and the game isn’t over yet (yes I realize that Fiat has a 58.5% ownership stake in Chrysler but please let me bask in the glow). A lot of negativity to churn through in the coming years because many people are hurting financially.
Posted by Jonathan J. Miller -Friday, February 3, 2012, 10:44 AM 1 Comment
Had a lot of fun with Tom Keene, Bloomberg’s editor-at-large, radio and TV anchor on his must watch show Midday Surveillance yesterday. Always flattering to be asked to guest co-host for the hour and a challenge to keep up with his fast paced wit. I’ve always felt that Bloomberg news, now with new emphasis on TV is business news the way it should be delivered – longer interviews and neutral presentations.
The show’s theme was housing and I felt compelled to give him more reasons to hand-wring about his upcoming apartment rent increase. Was fun to do.
The hour was divided into 4 segments, the last three with guests:
I’m not quite ready to use the word “haunted” in my housing language, but I had a nice chat with Brian Sullivan and Mandy Drury of CNBC TV’s ‘Street Signs’ – 30 Rock is always quick walk from my office... Read More