July 8, 2017

Captives To The Monster They Have Created

A weekend topic starting with the Denver Post. “Good news for buyers: Denver’s perpetually tight real estate market loosened up in June, according to a market trends report by the Denver Metro Association of Realtors. Residential inventory in the Denver metro area increased nearly 20 percent in June compared with May. ‘The rate of (price) growth is slowing,’ said Steve Danyliw, chairman of the Denver Metro Association of Realtor’s market trends committee. ‘It’s not unexpected. The reality is that having double-digit growth is unsustainable.’”

“However, Danyliw said he and other experts in the field are not worried about a housing bubble. He said other economic indicators — such as distressed home sales and job growth — indicate the market is strong and that homeowners are financially stable. And, leading up to the housing market crash in 2008, it was a buyer’s market, not a seller’s. ‘For something to really depress the housing market it would have to be something that we cannot predict, something that would be a shock to the whole economic system,’ Danyliw said of his forecasts. ‘The underlying fundamentals are very strong.’”

From CNBC. “The U.S. housing finance system continues to put taxpayers at risk in a market dominated by government-backed agencies, Federal Reserve Governor Jerome Powell said on Thursday, calling for further reform of an ‘unsustainable’ situation. A decade after doubts about the creditworthiness of mortgage-backed securities helped trigger the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression, systemic risk remains given the concentration of mortgages in Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, he said.”

“‘We’re almost at a now-or-never moment,’ Powell told a conference in Washington, arguing that the window for political action on an overhaul of housing finance may not stay open for long. U.S. housing prices may have recovered since the crisis, with credit flowing under tighter underwriting standards that have made the system somewhat safer, Powell said, but while ‘the status quo may feel comfortable today … it is also unsustainable.’”

From ABC News. “First, it was a gaggle of billionaires. Now, the global financial puppeteers are getting queasy. There was the US Federal Reserve’s Stanley Fischer expressing concerns about debt and risks in the system before his boss, Janet Yellen, dropped this clanger during a keynote speech in London: ‘Asset valuations are somewhat rich if you use some traditional metrics, like price earnings ratios,’ she said.”

“The problem for Ms Yellen, as it is for other central bankers like Europe’s Super Mario Draghi and Japan’s Haruhiko Kuroda is that the bubbles they have formed — in property, stock and bond markets — are entirely of their own making. To a large extent, they have become captives to the monster they have created.”

“Killing the beast will be nigh on impossible. Taming it could wreak havoc. They’re trying, by slowly raising interest rates. But at the rate they’re going, it’ll take years. The real problem for the Australian economy, courtesy of the deluge of cheap cash flooding the globe, has been in real estate.”

“Money is no longer real. It’s a theoretical concept. Around 90 per cent of the world’s cash is electronic. And since 2008, when the financial crisis was threatening to destroy capitalism, central banks have been manufacturing it by the petabyte (or whatever measurement is appropriate). To start with, they used it to soak up the debt created by investment banks that created the problems in the first place.”

“Then, they figured they’d keep going, that if they could just inject enough cash into the system, everything would eventually return to ‘normal.’ When we entered the new millennium, the world’s biggest central banks held debt worth under 2 per cent of global GDP. Now, it’s grown to just shy of 40 per cent. The problem is, most of that created cash has been used — not for productive purposes, but for speculation.”

“That’s why Wall Street has boomed right through the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression. It’s why housing has become an unattainable dream for our youth. And it underpins the growing disparity in wealth permeating the developed world and the political instability that has created.”

RSS feed


Comment by Ben Jones
2017-07-08 10:16:55

Here’s a graphic from the last link:

‘Central bank balance sheets from 2000-2016′

Comment by taxpayers
2017-07-08 10:31:49

no worries as yellen will sell off 1/2 over the next 400 months
the 1/2 being mostly treasuries

seeing more inventory

Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2017-07-08 12:31:36

I’m watching the US 10-year bond. If it goes over 3% and stays there, Yellen will be forced to raise interest rates correspondingly.


Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2017-07-08 12:42:39
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Comment by alphonso bedoya
2017-07-08 12:48:42

Historically, Federal Reserve Bank of St Louis raises it first.

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Comment by Professor Bear
2017-07-08 15:22:52

Their former president, William McChesney-Martin, coined the phrase “taking away the punch bowl.”

That said, it is not the case that regional Fed banks set interest rates independently

Comment by alphonso bedoya
2017-07-08 20:53:49

Historically they follow the leader and then the others do likewise.

Comment by Jingle Male
2017-07-09 06:56:28

The 10-year is at 2.4% today. It rarely moves more than 1% in a year and it would be unusual to see it move 1/2% in a year, so it does not look likely. The Fed action has little effect on the long term treasuries so I don’t understand why you think short term rates (Fed rates) would have to rise if the long term rates rise (which is unlikely anyway).

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Comment by Professor Bear
2017-07-09 14:02:23

“The Fed action has little effect on the long term treasuries…”

1. A failure to control inflation can result in levitation of long-term Treasury yields, as was seen over the 1975-1982 period.

2. Purchasing long-term Treasurys (aka Quantitative Easing) has the effect of suppressing long-term Treasury yields.

3. Unwinding the Fed’s balance sheet could presumably have long-term Treasury yield normalization as a consequence.

Comment by Professor Bear
2017-07-09 14:24:51

The Fed’s Glacial Yield-Flattening Plan
By Lisa Abramowicz
May 24, 2017 4:15 PM EDT

The Federal Reserve will almost certainly take steps to start reducing its $4.5 trillion balance sheet later this year.

The central bankers made that clear in the minutes from their May 2-3 meeting, which were released Wednesday. At first blush, this seems as if it would be bad for longer-term debt, which is yielding much less than it has historically in large part because of the Fed’s post-crisis stimulus effort of purchasing the debt. If a huge buyer stops buying, that typically means that prices drop and yields climb.

But after the minutes were released, Treasury values rose and longer-term yields fell.

Comment by Rental Watch
2017-07-10 00:41:37

PB, I tend to agree with you (that the unwinding of the Fed’s Balance sheet will tend to push 10-year rates higher).

However, there are a couple of counterbalancing forces that are hard to completely ignore:

1. Demographics are pushing more capital into fixed-income; and

2. The world economy isn’t great (EU with slow growth, Brexit uncertainty, China, etc.), and the US is the cleanest dirty shirt of them all…still.

Makes me think that while rates will rise, they will rise somewhat less than what it would take for them to “normalize” relative to prior eras.

Comment by Professor Bear
2017-07-10 10:45:14

Of interest to those who incorrectly believe that central bank policies have no impact on long-term yields:

Japanese government bonds
Warning of Bank of Japan battle to keep bond yields near zero
Investors digest central bank drawing line in the sand for 10-year benchmark
Read next
BoJ trims 3-5 year JGB auction size range
Haruhiko Kuroda, Bank of Japan governor, last week drew a clear line in the sand after the 10-year JGB yield crept above 0.1 per cent
by: Leo Lewis in Tokyo and Dan McCrum in London

The Bank of Japan faces a “protracted battle” for control over yields on the benchmark 10-year government bond, say analysts, as global markets and the sliding popularity of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe threaten to push market interest rates higher.

Warnings of repeated summer confrontations between the BoJ and the Japanese government bond (JGB) market come as investors spent Monday adjusting to BoJ governor Haruhiko Kuroda’s decision last week to draw a clear line in the sand, after the 10-year JGB yield crept above 0.1 per cent for the first time since February.

By stepping into the market with an offer to buy an unlimited amount of JGBs on Friday, traders said the BoJ was deploying the most potent weapon at its disposal as the central bank defended its 10-month-old policy of holding the 10-year benchmark at “around 0.0 per cent”.

The move has dimmed speculation that the central bank might gradually raise its intervention point from 0.11 per cent to 0.2 per cent — a latitude that, according to some analysts, would have signalled a turning point to investors and revived interest in Japan’s banking sector.

After Friday’s intervention, Deutsche Bank’s banking analyst Yoshinobu Yamada said the cap “makes it difficult to justify a bullish stance on the bank stocks”.

Comment by Jingle Male
2017-07-11 00:45:39

I stand corrected PB. I neglected the QE side if buying the bonds. Still, much about long term rates is determined in the market…..thanks for your clarifying posts.

Comment by 2banana
2017-07-08 12:27:05

Interesting the yuge vertical jump in 2009.

And then off to the exponential races.

Hope and change.

Comment by Professor Bear
2017-07-09 14:28:46

Definitively a panic moment for central bankers back in 2009.

Comment by Professor Bear
2017-07-08 16:08:43

Have central bank balance sheets ever previously in history summed to a comparable share of global production?

What would possibly go wrong if they never bothered to unwind stimulus?

Comment by Professor Bear
2017-07-10 06:09:13

“…while ‘the status quo may feel comfortable today … it is also unsustainable.’”

What does that even mean? They’ve sustained the Housing Bubble for a decade running into what should have been its afterlife. Why not just try to keep it going forever and hope for the best? Our children can learn to enjoy adult living in Mom’s and Dad’s spare bedroom, and real estate investors can get ever richer off a perpetually expanding bubble. Where’s the downside?

Comment by Turning Polish
2017-07-08 10:42:05

Got to LOL at the insane prices in San Diego.

7Gs a year plus property taxes, never even heard of the Statewide Communities Infrastructure Program but its Clownifornia so it probably goes to buy heroin for muslim transvestite terrorists or some such

This video gave me a sad panda face. Go ahead, tear down everything old and nice and replace it with huge ugly boxes so you can make $$$

I’d say we need to put something in the water there, but I’m sure thats already been done its just not working fast enough. We need to nuke that state from orbit, just to be sure.

Comment by Professor Bear
2017-07-08 16:10:54

Give Babyface Kim a little more time.

Comment by Turning Polish
2017-07-09 09:29:05

Kim has -zero- chance of doing anything against the US anytime soon. At least some part of this is hype to get more funding for the MIC.

Biggest thing to me is that the price of korean pears has skyrocketed - Trump needs to get that fixed bigly. I’m jonesing over here - so much juice!

Comment by tresho
2017-07-09 10:32:09

“Who’s going to tell him he can’t?” Kim Jong-Un SMOKES a cigarette right beside North Korea’s experimental ICBM that is filled with highly-flammable liquid rocket fuel. In an announcement of the missile test, North Korean officials called the launch, which leader Kim Jong-Un supervised, a ‘glistening miracle’.
A very lucky fellow. Maybe he smokes Luckies.

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Comment by Professor Bear
2017-07-09 14:08:11

We can all hope and pray that he continues to light cigarettes in close proximity to volatile rocket fuel, in the presence of subordinates who are too scared to mention the problem.

Comment by Montana
2017-07-10 15:59:32

Haha, king if the norks but encumbered with a smoking habit.

Too funny.

Comment by Mr. Banker
2017-07-08 12:19:00

“Then, they figured they’d keep going, that if they could just inject enough cash into the system, everything would eventually return to ‘normal.’ When we entered the new millennium, the world’s biggest central banks held debt worth under 2 per cent of global GDP. Now, it’s grown to just shy of 40 per cent. The problem is, most of that created cash has been used — not for productive purposes, but for speculation.”

Bahahahahahaha … What a f*cking dummy. Of course all that created cash went to productive purposes, it went into creating millions of debt slaves. Name one thing better than owing a debt slave, name just one.

Debt slaves work, debt slave owners reap. God’s Plan.


Comment by aqius
2017-07-08 13:15:38

the real Mr. Banker always has at least one “pukes” comment.

You, sir, are not Mr. Banker.
now kindly see yourself out.

and there better be the same amount of toasters after you leave.

Comment by Neuromance
2017-07-08 17:15:07

So. The world’s central banks are supposed to act as the “Lender of Last Resort” according to “conventional wisdom”. When the lending machinery breaks down, the central bank steps in.

So - they took 38% of debt onto themselves, by printing money (i.e. extracting wealth from the society) and buying it off the lenders who created it or people who bought it.

This means 38% of global debt was (purportedly) bad debt.

And no one detected anything amiss while this debt was being created and sold and profits taken.

That is a farce. No one held accountable for any malfeasance. It was all just a big mistake (that is once again being committed). What a farce.

Comment by Mr. Banker
2017-07-08 19:41:42

“What a farce.”

Agree. But for some it makes for easy living.

Comment by Prime_Is_Contained
2017-07-08 21:56:17

So - they took 38% of debt onto themselves,

I thought it was 38% of global production—not 38% of global debt. A quick googling suggests global debt is 325% of global production, in which case they only bought ~12 percent of global debt.

Comment by Neuromance
2017-07-09 14:35:12

A Bloomberg link from October 2016: https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2016-10-16/big-central-bank-assets-jump-fastest-in-5-years-to-21-trillion

“The Bank of Japan and the European Central Bank together have expanded their assets by $2.1 trillion since Dec. 31, more than accounting for all of the top 10’s combined increase. The balance sheets of the People’s Bank of China and the U.S. Federal Reserve fell 2 percent or less as the Swiss and the Central Bank of Brazil boosted their holdings 15 percent or more.

How much is $21.4 trillion?

It’s 29 percent of the size of the world economy as of the end of 2015, double what it was in mid-September 2008″

That’s just the top 10 largest global central banks.

All that bad debt, and no regulator or policy maker saw a thing.

That is a point to consider.

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Comment by Apartment 401
2017-07-08 12:26:42

You wanna talk about Denver? Check out this narrative:


Come for the weed, stay for the heroin.

Comment by Mr. Banker
2017-07-08 12:39:17

“To a large extent, they (the central bankers) have become captives to the monster they have created.”

Bahahahahahaha … THEY are not the captives, the debt pukes are the ones who are captives.

Comment by aqius
2017-07-08 13:26:24

. . . and there it is

Comment by 2banana
2017-07-09 01:03:53

For ’tis the sport to have the engineer
Hoist with his own petard: and’t shall go hard
But I will delve one yard below their mines,
And blow them at the moon

Act III, Scene IV of Hamlet

Comment by Professor Bear
2017-07-08 15:24:54

“The U.S. housing finance system continues to put taxpayers at risk in a market dominated by government-backed agencies, Federal Reserve Governor Jerome Powell said on Thursday, calling for further reform of an ‘unsustainable’ situation.”

Luckily we have been assured and reassured that the swamp will be drained, which presumably includes the Everglades-sized real estate swamp.

Comment by Mr. Banker
2017-07-08 15:35:07

HELP! I ran across this video snippet of (gasp) Noam Chomsky and somehow forced myself to watch it and I discovered that I … I … I (gasp) AGREE with him!


Oh, the pain!

Comment by Mr. Banker
2017-07-08 18:52:11

FWIW, here’s another video snippet by Noam Chomsky that agree with …


Comment by Mr. Banker
2017-07-08 19:39:26

If any of you pukes want to go beyond mere snippets here’s a two-hour video of a talk given by this Noam Chomsky guy …

“Education For Whom and For What.”


Comment by alphonso bedoya
2017-07-08 20:48:56

It’s of interest how similar the observations of Noam Chomsky and George Carlin are. When George Carlin states emphatically”: “They own you!” he’s sharing Chomsky’s observation about General motors. Whether one understands that observation does not matter anymore. The machine no longer seeks approval. That’s the logical EXTENSION of Marshall McLuhan’s “the medium is the message.” The medium controls people, not its content. (Do you look at your I-phone the first thing in the morning?)

You weren’t going to get Sanders because you were imprinted by the medium to believe in the label they gave him. It was paramount to exclude him. “Non-believers are not allowed in the building, Bernie.”

Chomsky is devoting his time to documenting the unwinding of society. His dissent is acceptable because it has no impact. We are living in a land of labels. “Here a label, there a label, everywhere a ….”

Comment by Mr. Banker
2017-07-09 07:19:30

“It’s of interest how similar the observations of Noam Chomsky and George Carlin are.

Totally agree. We are a nation of totally dumbed-down ignorant pukes. That’s not quite the wording that Chomsky and Carlin use but their conclusions are the same.

I especially liked Chomsky’s observation that about 20 percent of the population consider themselves to be the educated elite because they read the New York Times and other elite publications but they are just as dumbed-down (my words, not his) as the 80 percent who don’t.

A nation of fools.

Comment by Mr. Banker
2017-07-09 07:36:54

“If you don’t read the newspaper, you’re uninformed. If you read the newspaper, you’re mis-informed.” - Mark Twain.

One group is a group of uninformed ignorant pukes and the other group is a group of mis-informed ignorant pukes.

Both groups are composed of totally dumbed-down ignorant pukes.

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Comment by Mr. Banker
2017-07-09 07:31:29

“Chomsky is devoting his time to documenting the unwinding of society. His dissent is acceptable because it has no impact.”

His dissent is acceptable because the population is so dumbed-down that, while his audience may accept and agree with what he is saying, the dumbed-down continue to allow themselves to be played.

Same with Carlin, although when Carlin tells his audience how “They own you” everyone laughs, as if it is a joke.

It ain’t a joke. They own you.

Comment by Mr. Banker
2017-07-09 08:27:45

Here’s a four-minute video of the totally dumbed-down Sara Jane Moore explaining why she tried to kill President Gerald Ford.

In her mind, within her circle of friends, it made sense to do so.


Comment by ahansen
2017-07-10 08:41:18

psst: The Medium is the *Massage*.

Comment by Carl Morris
2017-07-10 11:10:39

As long as everyone is happy in the end. Everyone is here for the summer Allena, you’ve come up once or twice.

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Comment by Neuromance
2017-07-09 14:46:18

I remember the runup to the 2003 invasion of Iraq. The media was onboard, down to Oprah.

I just saw statement on ZeroHedge about the New York Times repeating the assertion that Iran had some culpability for the 9/11 attacks (clarification at the bottom of the page - a position that is utterly absurd on its face to anyone who knows about the Sunni/Shia division in Islam.

Al Qaeda - Sunni extremists - hate the Shia with the same mindless ferocity that they hate us. To suggest they worked together is farcical, and the NYT doing it means it’s propaganda because the NYT might be a lot of things, but they’re not stupid.

Comment by AbsoluteBeginner
Comment by 2banana
2017-07-09 00:57:09

And you really don’t need to know how to spell or speak ‘Merican either…


trainning for organic pot farming (island falls)

looking for a strong women for learning an work on medical pot farm lots of odd jobs that go with it possible live in deal need refferances apply soon

Comment by oxide
2017-07-09 17:40:51

Women-only? Odd jobs? Live-in deal? Yeah, I think I know what this is about…

Here’s a fun song about Craig’s List… https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y4sALru9IJk

Comment by Professor Bear
2017-07-09 20:06:49

Is that a Jim Morrison’s spoof?

I’m wondering if there’s a real Doors song that was taken from?

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Comment by AbsoluteBeginner
Comment by 2banana
2017-07-09 00:55:21

Hey - anyone want to cut my grass? It is “unpaid” in cashmoney but you get paid with the exchange of hard work, sweat, sunburn and the satisfaction of a job well done.

Seriously - being an unpaid waitress or coffee slinger?


“The internship is “unpaid” in cashmoney, but it is paid in the exchange of our ideas, time, guidance, and experience working in: photography, filmmaking, commercial/television production, wedding filming, craft school workshop, nonprofit videography, restaurant serving, bar-backing, bicycling, driving, farming, gardening, cooking, bachelor degrees in Communications and in Film (production), home-barbering, throwing ceramics on the wheel, woodwork, songwriting, canoeing, and pulling espressos.”

Comment by 2banana
2017-07-09 01:09:55

CNN going after an anonymous blogger who made a cartoon.

Obama and Hillary blaming a almost unknown Youtube documentary for the attack on the Embassy in Benghazi and throwing the producer in jail.

California democrats suing college students for leading a recall election.

Scratch a democrat/liberal/progressive and you get a tyrant.


California Democrats are apparently suing some college Republicans for being Republicans
Hot Air.com | July 8, 2017 | Jazz Shaw

Do you recall that little dust-up out in California over the massive new gas tax they passed? It resulted in a recall effort to remove freshman state senator Josh Newman from office, along with a petition to repeal the tax hike. That prompted state Democrats to circle the wagons, going so far as to change the rules to make it much harder to gather the required signatures to recall any legislator. Normally that would be a dicey move in most other states because the same rules would be used against them, but hey… this is California. The Democrats control pretty much the entire government so they really don’t need to worry about it.

That apparently wasn’t enough for them, though. Since some of their constituents were uppity enough to actually attempt the recall, the state Democratic party decided to teach them a lesson once and for all. They’re suing a group of College Republicans for having the audacity to actually collect signatures.

Three members of the Cal State Fullerton College Republicans have been named in a lawsuit backed by the California Democratic Party in retaliation for their work to recall State Senator Josh Newman, who was the pivotal vote in support of April’s $52 Billion gas tax increase.

In keeping with the rules, opponents of the massive tax hike gathered nearly 90,000 signatures in a matter of weeks just to get the initiative moving. Since the Democrats can’t seem to stop them under the standing rules, this lawsuit must be the next best way they see to remove some players from the field and intimidate the rest.

Comment by Turning Polish
2017-07-09 09:24:47

Yep, saw some videos of the intimidation online - not surprised at all, this is the fascist left that has taken over the state like parasites:


Last one is particularly nuts.

Comment by frankie
2017-07-09 03:16:27

Homes on the brink: In the wake of dire warning on house market, fresh data shows prices slipping

Dip in the number of surveyors reporting house price rises expected
Prices fell on average in June, Halifax figures showed this week
Leading housing economist says Britain is due a ‘house price correction’

Fresh signs of a slowdown in the housing market are expected this week when one of the most highly regarded barometers of the sector is released.

The UK Residential Market Survey from the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors is seen as one of the best lead indicators of house price movement. It is expected to show a dip in the balance of members reporting house price rises.

The figures will come after a new dip in prices was recorded by Halifax and following last week’s warning from a leading housing economist, reported exclusively in The Mail on Sunday, that Britain was ‘due a house price correction’.

Read more: http://www.thisismoney.co.uk/money/mortgageshome/article-4677680/RICS-data-expected-house-price-growth-slipping.html#ixzz4mKPKr3Cq
Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook

Britain ‘is on the brink of the worst house price collapse since 1990s’: Experts predict property costs could plunge by FORTY PER CENT

The spectre raises the possibility of the return of ‘negative equity’
This is when a house falls so far in value that its worth less than the mortgage
A shift could push thousands of recent buyers into housing trouble
Experts warned that we are due for a ’significant correction’ in housing prices

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4657812/Britain-brink-housing-price-collapse.html#ixzz4mKPTVK3d
Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter | DailyMail on Facebook

Timber, if the Daily Heil says it is so, it is so.

Comment by Jingle Male
2017-07-09 06:49:46

Some of you reading this blog know my wife and I are planning to move in 2018 or 2019 so we are selling our real estate portfolio over the next year or two. I listed the first rental house for sale two weeks ago today and promised you HBB readers I would keep you informed of the process.

Here is the first interesting observation: Two prospective buyers are moving from Portland, OR to Sacramento. Why? 1) the Portland, OR real estate market is very tight and they can sell quickly, easily and at a nice profit, bringing big equity gains with them (so…is this a reverse equity locust situation?), 2) their incomes will easily double when they move to CA, and 3) The housing prices in Sacramento and Portland are roughly equivalent, so their affordability ratio increases substantially.

This seems to be the opposite of the “get stucco” phenomenon we saw in 2007-2012 where people could not move because they were pinned down by their home. NOW, their home is a springboard to facilitating a better life.

Comment by SW
2017-07-09 07:26:27

Double income? What do they do?

Comment by Jingle Male
2017-07-09 09:04:12

Prospect one is an IT guy who has a stay at home wife with many children (he will increase his income 50%). Prospect two is a wholesale residential finance guy (20% raise) who has a wife in the medical profession (she may be an LVN or RN and will double her income).

Comment by scdave
2017-07-09 07:54:58

I listed the first rental house for sale two weeks ago today ??

You doing a 1031 ?? Where are you and the wife headed ??

Comment by Jingle Male
2017-07-09 09:07:23

No 1031. I will pay my taxes and get liquid. I like to buy low, so I will wait for the next downturn….probably 2019 or 2020 and I doubt it will be that deep….just a better opportunity to choose properties I like with intrinsic value.

We are likely headed for San Diego, though it depends on how deep the condo market corrects there….if it does at all, before we buy anything. Anyway, we are going to rent a small place there for a year and travel.

Comment by scdave
2017-07-09 09:21:23

Nice…We really enjoyed our recent stay down there..Going back for a week or more in October…

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Comment by Professor Bear
2017-07-09 10:13:19

Some of my work colleagues bought the dip in the housing market between the 2007-2009 meltdown and the onset of the Fed’s housing reflation program in 2012. One of them is taking a new position in the Portland area and facing the choice of renting out his place or selling it. He seems undecided. I personally would sell in a heartbeat if I were in his shoes, given the Fed’s announced plans to unwind its balance sheet, plus the news that San Diego prices recently surpassed their pre-2007 peak. However my former colleague is of the commonly held belief that San Diego real estate always goes up, so the home will remain a good investment forever.

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Comment by Prime_Is_Contained
2017-07-09 08:44:12

NOW, their home is a springboard to facilitating a better life.

It always seems so, in the middle of a bubble…

Comment by Jingle Male
2017-07-09 09:09:16

….and a millstone in the busts..

Comment by Prime_Is_Contained
2017-07-09 13:00:36

Glad that you get that, Jingle. Here’s hoping you unload your millstones before it becomes hard to do so!

Your timing does seem to be quite good, from my vantage point, anyway. And I’ve always wished you well with it, though I also long suspected it was perhaps unconsciously more speculation and less long-term LL’ing. Please do keep me posted on how your exit proceeds!

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Comment by In Colorado
2017-07-09 11:54:07

their incomes will easily double when they move to CA

I seriously doubt that. They’ll get a non trivial bump, but that’s about it.

Comment by alphonso bedoya
2017-07-09 14:11:47

“their incomes will easily double when they move to CA”

Indeed. Then a year later, upon further inquiry, the new arrivals will tell you that there was no “overtime” where they came from, but, now they can work another shift in the hospital, thus, increasing their income.

Do ya really want a nurse checkin’ up on ya , at the end of her “overtime” shift?

Comment by PitchforkPurveyor
2017-07-09 15:25:35

“…their incomes will easily double when they move to CA…”

Riiiiiiiight, because Sacramento, CA median income is double that of Portland, Oregon. You are the biggest bullshitter on this blog.

Comment by Jingle Male
2017-07-11 00:51:32

These are not median income positions. These are highly skilled employees.

Comment by Professor Bear
2017-07-09 14:33:19

Interest never sleeps nor sickens nor dies; … Once in debt, interest is your companion every minute of the day and night; you cannot shun it or slip away from it; you cannot dismiss it; it yields neither to entreaties, demands, or orders; and whenever you get in its way or cross its course or fail to meet its demands, it crushes you.

– J. Reuben Clark Jr.

Comment by scdave
2017-07-09 15:04:18

Interest is just the rent you pay for the borrowed money. Banks do the same thing with your savings. They pay you rent for putting it in their bank and making it available to them to invest and earn a higher rate.

In the case of your personal residence, you are paying interest (rent) on the money you have borrowed. The decision to do that is determined by the value the residence gives you back in return.

In the case of CRE, it’s not much different then the bank model. You as the investor is seeking a higher rate of return then the interest that you are paying on the borrowed money.

Comment by Professor Bear
2017-07-09 15:32:56

The quote I shared, which is from the Great Depression, is intended for people who get themselves over their heads in debt.

Comment by scdave
2017-07-09 15:38:45

In a depression, even the prudent players get taken to the wood shed.

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Comment by Blue Skye
2017-07-09 20:37:22

Promising to pay what you do not have, but what you kind of expect to have in future, isn’t prudent.

Comment by Professor Bear
2017-07-09 15:39:30

It is so easily done inn this era of ultraloose credit.

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Comment by scdave
2017-07-09 16:24:33

I would agree with that Pbear.

Comment by oxide
2017-07-09 18:27:55

Nice quote, P-Bear, but it’s no longer true. I guess you still have to pay interest rent on the loan while you’re actively using the asset, but you can get out of future interest by paying extra on principle or by paying off the loan early (either with saved money or by selling the asset). Or you could declare bankruptcy or allow the asset to be repossessed. Or you could simply squat in the house and wait for a cramdown from Mel Watt.

I don’t think that last one was available during the Depression.

Comment by palmetto
2017-07-09 15:33:33

Looks like Yellowstone’s cooking. Who says they aren’t making anymore land? I watched the NatGeo documentary on supervolcanos. The last time Yellowstone blew (640,000 years ago), a large part of the US was fairly tropical, with all sorts of exotic plants and animals inhabiting the plains of Nebraska, for example. Global warming. The volcano really dropped the temperature on the planet big time. I guess that’s one way of solving the problem.

Comment by Professor Bear
2017-07-10 06:22:51

Large volcanic eruptions have had global cooling effects even in modern times. Check out info on the eruption of Mount Tambora in Indonesia:


Comment by palmetto
2017-07-10 08:29:44

That’s another one I was reading about. No summer in New England, snow and hail in June, July, even August.

Something they never taught in school.

Who needs carbon credits? Nature has a way of making corrections.

Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2017-07-09 18:43:52

These quotes are from The Brass Check which was written by Upton Sinclair in 1919.

A brass check was a token purchased by a customer in a brothel and given to the woman of his choice. Sinclair saw the moneyed interests of his day holding brass checks with which to purchase politicians, journalists and their editors, and other thought leaders of the day. In modern times we call them ’speaking fees’ and ‘consulting contracts’ and lobbyist positions’ and ‘book deals.’

For twenty years I have been a voice crying in the wilderness of industrial America; pleading for kindness to our laboring-classes, pleading for common honesty and truth-telling, so that we might choose our path wisely, and move by peaceful steps into the new industrial order. I have seen my pleas ignored and my influence destroyed, and now I see the stubborn pride and insane avarice of our money-masters driving us straight to the precipice of revolution.

What shall I do ? What can I do — save to cry out one last warning in this last fateful hour? The time is almost here — and ignorance, falsehood, cruelty, greed and lust of power were never stronger in the hearts of any ruling class in history than they are in those who constitute the Invisible Government of America today.

Imagine, if you can, the feelings of a workingman on strike who picks up a copy of the Wall Street Journal and reads:
‘We have a flabby public opinion which would wring its hands in anguish if we took the labor leader by the scruff of his neck, backed him up against a wall, and filled him with lead. Countries which consider themselves every bit as civilized as we do not hesitate about such matters for a moment.’
Year by year the cost of living increases, and wages, if they move at all, move laggingly, and after desperate and embittered strife. In the midst of this strife the proletariat learns its lessons ; it learns to know the clubs of policemen and the bayonets and machine-guns of soldiers.

Day by day the money-masters of America become more aware of their danger, they draw together, they grow more class-conscious, more aggressive. The [first world] war has taught them the possibilities of propaganda ; it has accustomed them to the idea of enormous campaigns which sway the minds of millions and make them pliable to any purpose.

American political corruption was the buying up of legislatures and assemblies to keep them from doing the people’s will and protecting the people’s interests; it was the exploiter entrenching himself in power, it was financial autocracy undermining and destroying political democracy.

By the blindness and greed of ruling classes the people have been plunged into infinite misery ; but that misery has its purpose in the scheme of nature. Something more than a century ago we saw the people driven by just such misery to grope their way into a new order of society; they threw off the chains of hereditary monarchy, and made themselves citizens of free republics.

And now again we face such a crisis only this time it is in the world of industry that we have to abolish hereditary rule, and to build an industrial commonwealth in which the equal rights of all men are recognized by law.

Comment by taxpayers
2017-07-10 04:35:21

rank of state failure, bk
they’ll raise re taxes bigly
who would buy a house there

Comment by palmetto
2017-07-10 05:56:09

I dunno why anyone would buy a house in any of those states. NYC, one of the reasons for buying in the Tri-State area, isn’t worth it anymore.

Comment by Professor Bear
2017-07-10 06:15:31

“Janet Yellen, dropped this clanger during a keynote speech in London: ‘Asset valuations are somewhat rich if you use some traditional metrics, like price earnings ratios,’ she said.”

A completely obvious statement takes on a much different meaning if the Fed chair makes it in public. In this case, it suggests awareness of a problem with a potential need for corrective action.

Comment by The Filth
2017-07-10 08:23:20

Bigger numbers are always better than smaller numbers.


Comment by Larry Littlefield
2017-07-10 07:46:55

The increase in inequality in recent decades was either entirely created by rising debts, or at least could not have taken place without it. And neither could the huge trade imbalances.


Comment by scdave
2017-07-10 08:15:32

The increase in inequality ??

Over the past couple of years I have seen many people I know personally sell their homes and leave the area…These are people of substantial means so they are not forced financially to leave…The common denominator with them all ?? Their children are struggling to afford to stay here even with good jobs so the children are headed out with them..Some are moving out of the area and some are moving out of state…This has always been the case over the years but I have never seen accelerate like it has over the last couple of years….There are three more moving in the next couple of months…Oregon, Idaho & North Carolina…

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