April 7, 2018

Investors Need To Bet On Values Increasing

A weekend topic starting with Bloomberg. “In the early 2010s, economic development emphasized renting over homeownership. With the suburban-focused homebuilding industry in shambles, as the rental vacancy rate plunged, apartment construction boomed. In 2017, the number of homeowning households increased by over a million while the number of renting households fell, the first drop in renting households since 2004. Meanwhile, urban cores have to worry about the possibility of being overbuilt. As millennials age into their 30s and homeownership is on the rise, demographics are now moving against urban landlords.”

“As people move into the suburbs and exurbs, they may want employment options other than long commutes into urban cores — a threat to the sparkling new corporate campuses built for this cycle. These questions will become more pressing whenever we get an economic downturn and downtown demand softens.”

From Multi-Housing News on Tennessee. “The Nashville metro area has experienced record-breaking growth in recent years. This has impacted Nashville’s multifamily housing market, with new residential construction at an all-time high. Developers delivered approximately 9,000 units in the past two years, with 12,000 more units currently under construction as of November last year, according to Yardi Matrix. William Kirkland, the The Kirkland Co.’s managing partner, spoke with Multi-Housing News about the changes, challenges and opportunities in Nashville’s multifamily sector.”

“Kirkland: It’s no secret we have delivered too many units in a few submarkets for the time being and have about 10,000 units under construction right now. It’s caused some concession in a few submarkets like Downtown, West End, Charlotte Pike and Germantown, to name a few…It’s definitely harder to sell assets when rents are going the wrong direction, but that’s only in a few submarkets around town that have been overbuilt. Nashville has such a diverse economy and so much momentum in job growth and population growth. These submarkets will absorb the slight oversupply we are experiencing and one day we will overbuild these submarkets again. Guaranteed.”

The Union Tribune in California. “The average rent in San Diego County hit a record $1,887 a month in March, increasing 8 percent in a year. High-end apartment complexes downtown helped raise the rates substantially, especially those that opened in the last few months, according to San Diego-based MarketPointe Realty Advisors. However, there are some indications — such as an increased vacancy rate — that the pace of rent increases could be slowing.”

“Vacancy rates ticked up to their highest point since 2014 in March — 4.08 percent — as the flood of high-end rentals hit the market. More than half of the vacant units in the county were asking more than $2,000 a month in rent. ‘What we noticed was some of the older stuff pushed rents a little too much,’ said Russ Valone, CEO of MarketPointe. ‘We saw a number of new projects where they rolled the rent back.’”

“There are more than 2,000 new apartments expected to open this year, with most in downtown expecting to charge an average rent around $2,489 a month. That’s an increase from the roughly 1,600 new apartments added over the previous two years. Mark Goldman, finance and real estate lecturer at San Diego State University, said lenders will be taking into account any decline of rental rates. ‘Investors need to bet on values increasing,’ he said. ‘As rents start to taper off, values taper off, and investors would not be willing to pay as much for larger purchase prices.’”

The Marin Independent Journal in California. “The rate at which rents are increasing in San Rafael and Novato appears to have slowed somewhat. ‘Rents have plateaued over the last four quarters after rising rapidly over the last couple years,’ said Michael Burke, a Greenbrae real estate agent with Decker Bullock Sotheby’s International who has studied Marin’s rental market. ‘The vacancy rate is still low, which would suggest some continued pressure on rents to rise, but they’ve risen so fast I think we’re in a bit of a correction period.’”

From Habitat Mag in New York. “The advice for New York City co-op and condo shoppers has traditionally been ‘Buyer, beware.’ Thanks to recent trends, it’s becoming ‘Buyer, be aggressive.’ Sales of Manhattan apartments during the first quarter of the year hit their slowest pace since the nadir of the Great Recession, according to an analysis by the Wall Street Journal. Brokers said sales were dampened by a slowdown in closings in new luxury buildings, as well as a rebellion by condo buyers against high asking prices.”

“‘I think prices have gone up too far, and there is straight-up buyer resistance,’ says Donna Olshan, a broker who tracks contracts signed in the luxury market. ‘It has slowed the market down.’”

“Market analysts say many sellers of individual apartments have made deep cuts in asking prices in order to make deals in a less favorable environment. Pamela Liebman, president of the Corcoran Group, says there is plenty of activity in the market – but only if sellers price their properties properly. ‘Buyers are much more aggressive, and in a lot of circumstances they are getting what they want.’”

From the Real Deal on New York. “Less than a month after the first buyer at 432 Park Avenue closed on an $18.1 million pad in 2015, the unit hit the rental market for $60,000 a month. It reappeared this past January as one of the tower’s first resale listings — priced at $17.499 million, or a roughly $618,000 loss.”

“In the last six months, 13 resales at Macklowe Properties and CIM Group’s supertall have quietly hit the market, nearly triple the number of sponsor units available, according to StreetEasy. Brokers said that although the luxury market has cooled — meaning sellers may not get top dollar — rising inventory on Billionaires’ Row and lingering uncertainty about the market has made some skittish investors eager to cash out before competition heats up.”

“New development sales — particularly sales of ultra-luxury pads — have dipped since 2015 amid a flood of competing inventory. The median price during the fourth quarter was $2.7 million, down 7 percent year-over-year, according to Miller Samuel. The number of sales during the quarter was 387, down nearly 30 percent from 2015. And some resales at competing buildings like One57 have traded at a loss since the market began to slow.”

“‘If you look at that particular subset of uber-luxury real estate near the park, you have an onslaught of new development inventory that is coming down the pike,’ said Douglas Elliman’s Michael Graves. ‘If you are an owner seeking to move that asset, now is going to be your best moment to do it.’”

“Buyers at 432 Park who signed contracts and closed on their units in 2016 got an average discount of 10 percent, according to data from Miller Samuel. The discount wasn’t that steep when Macklowe and CIM re-sold a half-floor pad on the 65th floor, after the original buyer decided to trade up. The original buyer paid $27.04 million for the unit in 2016; the sponsors resold it in December for $606,028 less.”

“‘If you’re an investor, it’s not a great time to sell unless you want to put your money into something else,’ said Compass’ Toni Haber. But that could be worth it for some uber-wealthy investors whose life circumstances changed and who may want to liquidate their purchase. ‘Some people don’t mind just taking the loss.’”

From the Lone Peak Lookout in Montana. “How we really feel? Responses to the ‘Big Sky Employee Survey—Housing Needs and Preferences’. ‘After living in the Big Sky area for nine years, rent became too expensive. I love the Big Sky area for work and play and have been forced to do the deadly commute from Bozeman knowing one of these trips I will meet my demise.’”

“If you choose to rent in Big Sky, you forgo any ability to save a down payment to one day buy your own home. AirBNB and VRBO just add to the inflated rents here in town. Seriously, drive through the Firelight condos and chalets, it is quite easy to tell that about a third of the units are VACANT most nights.”

The Chicago Tribune in Illinois. “A German company is looking for 10,000 Chicagoans to rent small bedrooms within shared apartments, betting that communal living is primed to take off in big cities. Medici Living Group will open its 175-resident Quarters property in Chicago’s Fulton Market district on April 15, CEO Gunther Schmidt said. Since emerging in recent years, co-living has been derided as dorms for adults but hailed by proponents as a way for young, transient professionals to afford to live in desirable areas of costly cities.”

“Apartments accommodate one to five people, with a kitchen, one or more bathrooms and bedrooms ranging from 77 to 198 square feet. Rents, which start at $1,200 per month and will average $1,600 per month, aren’t cheap relative to the small unit size but include expenses such as utilities, wireless internet and Netflix movies. ‘There’s an urban affordability crisis fueled by a ‘luxury’ oversupply,’ Gottlieb said. ‘Modern professionals have student debt, less earning potential than previous generations, a growing craving for real-world connections away from curated lives on social media feeds, and no longer value home ownership as a status symbol.’”

“Chicago rent prices are going down — that’s according to Zumper, an apartment listing platform. In Chicago, ‘both bedroom types are down over 15 percent since this time last year, which are the largest rent dips in the nation,’ said Zumper Marketing Manager Crystal Chen. ‘This steady downturn in prices the past year is most likely due to the influx of newer apartment buildings with move-in specials and an overall increase in inventory, which may be a relief to renters.’”

“The steady increase in inventory over the last few quarters, especially among the city’s most affordable units, has continued through the start of 2018 and should leave renters more confident in their ability to find an affordable apartment,” said Joshua Clark, economist at HotPads. HotPads’ recent rent report, released in late March, found that there are 77 percent more new one-bedroom rental listings in Chicago than a year ago. The report went on to specify that rental inventory in Lakeview, as listed on HotPads, went up more than 44 percent, and climbed over 26 percent in Logan Square, over 56 percent in Rogers Park and over 59 percent in West Town compared with a year ago.”

“‘New construction is a big part of the inventory growth,’ said Clark, and experts note that many new buildings offer incentives, such as one or two rent-free months, to get renters in the door. ‘Those neighborhoods where we saw incredible inventory growth from last year also saw some of the most teardowns according to permits submitted to the city of Chicago.’”

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Comment by Ben Jones
2018-04-07 07:06:29

‘Manhattan’s Office Market Starts 2018 With A Slump’

‘Overall, Manhattan’s first-quarter leasing activity fell almost 17% from the same time last year, which is beneath the average for the last five years, according to Colliers International’s quarterly report. According to Newmark Knight Frank’s quarterly analysis, there was 8.4M SF of office space leased across Manhattan in the first three months of the year, which is 7.7% below the 10-year average.’

‘Over the next 12 to 18 months, according to Caggiano, a large number of office space blocks sized at 100K SF or more will officially hit the leasing market, which will start to push up availability. According to Transwestern, 14 blocks of 100K SF or more opened up in Q1. “Tenants are moving around the chess board,” Caggiano said. “When they move to new construction, it leaves a hole.”

Comment by Jingle Male
2018-04-07 07:42:31

Is the tide going out? Will Trump hit a decade of bankruptcies?

Comment by Professor 🐻
2018-04-08 00:04:18

Report: Gibson Guitar Company Facing Imminent Bankruptcy
Rob Arcand
February 19, 2018 12:12 pm

Iconic guitar company Gibson might be facing bankruptcy. According to reports from the Nashville Post and Dayton Daily News, the guitar-makers recently saw the departure of their chief financial officer, Bill Lawrence, after just six months with the company. Now as $375 million in senior secured notes mature, with another $145 million in bank loans due if they aren’t refinanced by July, the company might be in big trouble, as signaled by Lawrence’s abrupt departure.

Comment by rms
2018-04-08 10:14:25

Wow… somebody milked Gibson into the red.

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Comment by Taxpayers
2018-04-07 12:13:47

Over 15% vacancy in n va since 2000.
= ouch

Comment by Ben Jones
2018-04-07 07:10:37

‘Investors need to bet on values increasing,’ he said. ‘As rents start to taper off, values taper off, and investors would not be willing to pay as much for larger purchase prices.’

When rents fall, prices fall. Yes, lenders aren’t going to finance these airboxes at current prices and you guys are fooked.

‘It’s no secret we have delivered too many units in a few submarkets for the time being and have about 10,000 units under construction right now. It’s caused some concession in a few submarkets like Downtown, West End, Charlotte Pike and Germantown, to name a few…It’s definitely harder to sell assets when rents are going the wrong direction…These submarkets will absorb the slight oversupply we are experiencing and one day we will overbuild these submarkets again. Guaranteed.’

What an idiot. I have lost all your money and I’ll do it again, you betcha!

Comment by Apartment 401
2018-04-07 07:16:26

New York Magazine — It’s a Theyby!

Is it possible to raise your child entirely without gender from birth? Some parents are trying:

“In fact, McCullough and Fleishman already knew what anatomy their child would have. They’d learned it toward the end of the first trimester through a fairly routine test and had instinctually sent an email to close friends and family with the news. They didn’t particularly care what the baby’s sex was but also didn’t feel that it needed to be kept a secret.

Then, just a few days later, an article showed up in McCullough’s Facebook feed about a Canadian baby who had been issued a health card without a gender designation — perhaps the first instance in the world of a government entity not assigning a gender at birth. For McCullough, this was a revelation. “Definitely the concept of not enforcing gender stereotypes was something that was on our radar, but we simply didn’t know or have the idea on our own to not assign the baby a gender,” he says.

He began scouring the internet, looking for more information, for other families who might have made the same choice, for guidelines as to how one might go about it. He found a Facebook group and asked to join. Soon he was privy to the names and photos and thoughts and conversations of a small but hard-core group of families who were raising theybies — babies whose parents had decided not to reveal their sex, who used they/them pronouns for their children, and whose goal was to create an early childhood free of gendered ideas of how a child should dress, act, play, and be.”


Comment by Mr. Banker
2018-04-07 08:02:35

“And so he told hospital staff, “ ‘At minimum, do not describe the anatomy, or what you think the anatomy means, when this baby’s born.’ We definitely wanted to prevent them being gendered in any intense moment. And everybody was aware of that.”

Bahahaha … these pukes really think they still have a choice as to whether their child is a boy or not after it - after he - is born.

Typical puke: I want it my way therefore I shall have it my way.

We’ll see. Bahahahaahahahaha.

Comment by Mot
2018-04-08 13:42:24

They’ll be paying for the kid’s therapy for decades.

Comment by In Colorado
2018-04-07 10:31:16

If gender is just a social construct, then there can’t be a gender pay gap, or sexual harassment, because gender doesn’t exist.

Comment by ChuckA
2018-04-07 12:05:35

Yes and No

Sexual harassment still applies - that is not a gender issue though we view it as male -vs- female conflict - worked with a guy who was fired for harassing another guy about two years ago.

You other point is valid and I agree. I’m waiting for corporations to do thier “own” gender classifications of employees - work place is about to become more “balanced” in pay and makup of the work force.

Comment by OneAgainstMany
2018-04-07 14:12:02

As a nurse, I’m a guy in a historically female profession (”pink collar job”), so I get what these parents are trying to do. At the same time, you don’t need to obscure gender to fight against stereotypes.

A perfect example:


“I’m not going to be one of those girly girls who puts on lip gloss every day, dresses in a tutu and goes to ballet.”

“When I hear someone say, like, you kick like a girl or you throw like a girl, it just makes me what to say, ‘well, I am a girl’.”

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Comment by oxide
2018-04-07 17:09:04

you don’t need to obscure gender to fight against stereotypes.

This BS triggers me worse than any liberal watching a ♥PJW♥ video (not you OAM, in general). Two girls and I used to play Star Wars in the fields. I was Luke, one girl was Han, and the weak one was Leia, and we switched off when we felt like it. We didn’t bother to suss out who the “strong female character” was. We certain didn’t think about “gender stereotypes.”

Comment by OneAgainstMany
2018-04-07 18:57:52

We didn’t bother to suss out who the “strong female character” was. We certain didn’t think about “gender stereotypes.”

I think that’s cool. My wife and her sister’s role playing revolved around figure skating. One sister got to be Nancy Kerrigan, another was Michelle Kwan, and then whoever ended up drawing the last straw was resigned to being Tonya Harding and she cried and cried (I, Tonya was a good movie btw!). If I had a daughter, I’d just as soon she role play whatever she wanted to, figure skater or not. But at least she could imagine herself as Katniss or Rey, and not a weakling like Bella.

So yeah, I still think it’s important for sexes people to see people they can relate to in movies, books, sports, etc. Eliud Kipchoge is my running idol, but Gaylen Rupp is the guy who is giving a bunch of white high school cross country runners the belief that they can compete against Africans and win. I’m excited to line up with Shalane Flanigan next week in Boston too, so I guess she is another one of my running icons since she was the first American female to win NYC in 40 years.

Comment by BlueSkye
2018-04-07 20:50:44

One of life’s ironies is that people who have not raised children know the most about how to do it.

Comment by oxide
2018-04-08 06:35:56

But at least she could imagine herself as Katniss or Rey

Something wrong with imagining herself as Peeta or Haymitch or Edward or Jacob? Or do girls have to go to the female characters AUTOMATICALLY? On the same note, I wouldn’t mind a guy taking on the Katniss character.

Comment by OneAgainstMany
2018-04-08 06:59:52

One of life’s ironies is that people who have not raised children know the most about how to do it.

And those who have never been married are experts on relationships. For what it’s worth, we are raising a child, but a boy, not a girl.

Something wrong with imagining herself as Peeta or Haymitch or Edward or Jacob? Or do girls have to go to the female characters AUTOMATICALLY? On the same note, I wouldn’t mind a guy taking on the Katniss character.

Nothing wrong with that at all. Just as long as it can happen. I imagine that without some female protagonists though in art, the default setting for many girls are the princess/damsel in distress. You’re personal experience is heartening, but I suspect it is an outlier.

Comment by tresho
2018-04-08 07:24:01

There are many female protagonists in history that are forgotten for the most part, two that come to my mind, based on recent reading, are Lady Sale who wrote a bestseller on the first British war in Afghanistan, and one of the wives of Jan Fishan Khan, who supported the British during their disastrous defeat. Or consider Sacajawea in the USA. Very few are interested in history.

Comment by rms
2018-04-07 11:52:48

Merit is alive and well.

Comment by goedeck
2018-04-07 13:15:53

Name the baby pat

Comment by Mafia Blocks
2018-04-07 14:52:47

…… Realtors are liars.

Comment by Taxpayers
2018-04-07 07:29:17

As someone said last month, the recession starts NOW

Comment by Jingle Male
2018-04-08 23:32:07

Wait, I thought it started last month? 😀

Comment by Mortgage Watch
2018-04-07 07:31:09

San Francisco, CA 94109 Housing Prices Crater 16% YOY As California Loses Population


*Select price from drop-down menu on first chart

Comment by Jingle Male
2018-04-08 23:35:11

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California’s population rose to 39.5 million in 2016. The state added more than 300,000 residents last year with the largest increases in big cities, according to a report released Monday by the California Department of Finance.May 1, 2017.

I thought a broken mortgage watch would be right twice a day…..but nope.


Comment by Jingle Male
2018-04-07 07:46:43

San Diego waterfront condo trends….

April 2017 = 225 condos

April 2018 = 292 condos

30% increase in inventory. It has been increasing over the last few months. It might be time to go shopping for a nice view condo in 2020 or so…..at a 50% discount??


Comment by Ben Jones
2018-04-07 08:13:49

‘at a 50% discount’

Another “we all knew it was a bubble” quote.

Comment by Eringzo
2018-04-07 10:08:31

If current trends continue, downtown SD will be packed with Hep infected homeless, some of whom were former condo “owners”.

Comment by Professor Bear
2018-04-07 11:27:24

Where did all the buyers go?

Comment by Apartment 401
2018-04-07 07:54:25

Bloomberg — What It’s Like Living Without Health Insurance in America

Forced to choose between paying bills and having health coverage, many Americans are risking it and going without:

“Last week, Bloomberg News told the story of three families without health insurance. We also asked readers to share their own stories as we spend the next year following people who are “risking it.”

The response was overwhelming. More than 3,000 people from across the U.S. filled out our questionnaire and shared their challenges, and how their decisions have affected their health and financial well-being.

Some can’t afford to insure their children. Others are seeking cheaper care abroad. Some older adults are counting down the years until they qualify for Medicare.

While these people are among the 27 million Americans who remain uncovered despite the large expansion of health insurance under the Affordable Care Act, their stories transcend politics, reflecting tough kitchen-table decisions about health care faced by many families.”


Comment by In Colorado
2018-04-07 10:28:19

Interesting that some of the families profiled have six figure incomes and can’t afford insurance.

Also sobering that a family can spend 20K per year on insurance and still end up with a cr@ppy HD plan.

The system is going to collapse. When I do go to the doctor, I’ve noticed that almost everyone in the waiting room are seniors, on Medicare. Given that pretty much everyone else is on HD plans, I can see why they just “tough it out” as an ordinary office visit will cost some serious $$$.

Anyway, I give it 10 years tops before the SHTF, maybe as soon as 5.

Comment by Ol'Bubba
2018-04-07 11:15:38

The system is definitely messed up, and there is plenty of blame to go around. In my mind, the medical industry has done an excellent job of manipulating the legislative branch of government at both the state and federal level.

Anecdotally, I’ve heard that here in North Carolina the hospitals have staffers whose job is to visit the legislators on a regular basis to deliver campaign contributions. From the legislator’s perspective, the hospital rep is always welcomed into the office because he’ll bring 20 or 30 checks totaling two or three grand. from senior executives and medical directors and the like.

From the constituent’s perspective, the legislator has sold them out. The hospital will make up the $3,000 donation on 1 or 2 overpriced procedures.

We, the public, are “fooked” as Ben likes to say.

Comment by Taxpayers
2018-04-07 12:18:13

You work 3.6 times as many hours to pay for hc now vs. 1950s ,per Forbes
Add gov n it’s what u get
Same for housing n edu

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Comment by In Colorado
2018-04-07 16:32:46

We, the public, are “fooked” as Ben likes to say.

Used to be it was the working poor who would “tough it out” because they couldn’t afford to see the doctor. Now it’s households with six figure incomes. I suppose that their strategy will be a Medical BK should a medical disaster happen that requires hospitalization. And as insurance becomes more and more expensive, more middle to UM class households will simply drop out and “take their chances”. Crazy world, where people might have a Beamer or a Lexus in the driveway, but can’t afford to see a doctor.

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Comment by tresho
2018-04-08 07:27:14

Crazy world where routine medical procedures now cost more than a Lexus or a Beamer.

Comment by rms
2018-04-07 12:01:04

“The system is going to collapse.”

We could cut our spending in the middle-east, which is nearly a trillion dollars per year. That would buy a lot of health care and infrastructure.

Comment by In Colorado
2018-04-07 16:40:17

Unless costs stop growing, it would only buy us time. That’s what all the previous tricks did: HMO’s, PPO’s, HD Plans, HSA accounts, etc.. The fact that six figure households are going uninsured tells me that the quiver is empty and we’ve run out of tricks.

The status quo is that you pay 20K for an HD plan and unless you have a medical disaster it pays for nothing.

And expect Medicare to cut back benefits, big time. You have a bad hip or knee? Here’s your walking stick and some pain killers.

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Comment by MGSpiffy
2018-04-07 18:56:11

Even if you have “good” insurance, something like a knee replacement can be $15K-$20k ‘out of pocket’.

How do I know? I’ve been putting off a partial knee replacement on my left knee for almost 2 years now. At this point it’s less the money, but the downtime I can’t afford (due to a lot of people depending on me for their livelihood), but it was *sobering* to find out how much sticking with my preferred doctor and their system (Swedish) would cost me due to half the crap they don’t tell you about up front (gotta go digging) being billed as ‘out of network’

I’m giving string thought to a dedicated clinic that does joint replacements for a single no-dicker set price (~$20k) for everything. How do they do it? All Cash, no Insurance.

Comment by OneAgainstMany
2018-04-07 19:00:32

Might want to look into medical tourism. Some good options in Europe and even parts of Asia.

Comment by MGSpiffy
2018-04-07 19:02:33

@OneAgainstMany - that’s what I was referring to in the last paragraph. In this case it would be tourism to Oklahoma.

Comment by OneAgainstMany
2018-04-07 19:05:40

Gotcha, smart!

Comment by MGSpiffy
2018-04-07 19:19:42

Seriously. Just knowing there is one price and it is the actual true bottom-line price is worth it.

My wife had a surgery last year ago that we tried to pay cash for. It (paying cash) worked for the surgeon and some primary expenses… but we still wound up paying for stuff never used (Hospital pads their “cash bill” all sorts of contingency items.. no refunds) and got billed by people that just walked past and for procedures that were incidental and only decided up on the spot (bill cramming?).

And that led to a bunch of dealing with insurance, denials, appeals, back-and-forths for months. f**k that s**t. At least we got enough expenses to line-item on our taxes this year…. whee..

Comment by OneAgainstMany
2018-04-07 19:48:03

From the NYT article I posted below:

“In one 2009 survey, the costs associated with doctors and nurses “interacting” with health-insurance plans–a euphemism for those deadly hours spent filling out forms, recording prior authorizations and negotiating with insurers–amounted to more than $23 billion a year.”

Guess whose paying that? End consumer. This is one of the many reasons I support a single-payer healthcare system.

Comment by In Colorado
2018-04-07 22:47:12

My wife had a surgery last year ago that we tried to pay cash for. It (paying cash) worked for the surgeon and some primary expenses… but we still wound up paying for stuff never used (Hospital pads their “cash bill” all sorts of contingency items.. no refunds) and got billed by people that just walked past and for procedures that were incidental and only decided up on the spot

Try getting an estimate for a procedure. Good luck with that. You’ll be told that it’s not possible, because of “unknowns”.

Comment by In Colorado
2018-04-07 22:53:08

Even if you have “good” insurance, something like a knee replacement can be $15K-$20k ‘out of pocket’.

Thanks for the heads up, as I’m in the same boat. Thinking about getting it done this summer. Everything should be through Banner Health, which is in UHC’s network, but I’ll double check for any “out of network” surprises. My maximum out of pocket for the year is $2K (of which half has already been spent on a colonoscopy), but for out of network it’s $4K.

Comment by rms
2018-04-08 05:17:06

Here’s six minutes worth on the subject.

“The real reason American health care is so expensive”

Comment by SandalTanLines
2018-04-08 06:07:18

I’m not sure going to a single payer system would save that $23 billion. It’s not like the provider going to the government for reimbursement is any quicker than going to an insurance company. Sure, you could try to “streamline” the process, which would just invite fraud, which also costs end users. Any takers for single payer malpractice insurance?

Comment by OneAgainstMany
2018-04-08 07:02:59

SandalTanLines, you ought to watch the vid that RMS posted. It does a decent job of showing how the private system jacks up prices in the US.

Comment by SandalTanLines
2018-04-08 07:49:43

I’ll have a look.

I don’t defend the current state of affairs in American healthcare unequivocally. I get that the current system is plagued by inefficiencies and perverse incentives, and I’m in favor of things like more price transparency to help get rid of that stuff.

That said, to my thinking those same inefficiencies and perverse incentives would remain in any currently realizable single-payer regime in the US.

Comment by tresho
2018-04-08 08:04:56

any currently realizable single-payer regime in the US.
I still wonder how other countries manage their own single-payer regimes. They can’t all be disasters.

Comment by Carl Morris
2018-04-07 12:33:29

a cr@ppy HD plan.

If you have a well funded HSA it isn’t a crappy plan. I think it’s actually a move in the right direction because people have to pay from an account with their name on it, even if their employer contributed. This makes them think more about how much they are willing to pay.

Comment by OneAgainstMany
2018-04-07 15:05:20

HSAs are a step in the right direction, but when an MRI costs $1150 in the US and $140 in Switzerland, your HSA isn’t going to get you very far. Also, we pay far more for prescription drugs and for health procedures in general, and have worse outcomes.

Astute comment from the MD in the comment section:

Something not addressed in the otherwise fine article is the role of doctor incentives. We have a fee-for-service modeli n the US. Surgeons don’t get paid to not operate. Clinician’s dont get paid to not order tests that they themselves might get compensation for (practice groups often own their own imaging systems and histology labs). I believe that there are frankly too many incentives to do things, and not enough incentives to not do things. That is why we over diagnose, over order, and over treat. It is, in my opinion, part of the reason why we spend so much more than other countries, but don’t show commensurate better outcomes.

If physicians were like school teachers, paid by the state and incentivised to provide good care, but not incentivised to simply do more, I believe our stats would move closer to those of other comparable industrialized nations.

Granted, this is not an opinion I express often in the doctor’s lounge

Eric Sschubert, MD
Chattanooga, TN


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Comment by Carl Morris
2018-04-07 15:52:45

HSAs are a step in the right direction, but when an MRI costs $1150 in the US and $140 in Switzerland, your HSA isn’t going to get you very far.

That is an issue. But if you put enough into the HSA every year to cover the high deductible, as soon as you have a good year or two you have a nice cushion that you would never have with a normal plan.

Comment by In Colorado
2018-04-07 16:20:48

as soon as you have a good year or two you have a nice cushion that you would never have with a normal plan

Unless you have ongoing procedures and pricey prescriptions. Say your knee hurts. Getting a cortisone shot at orthopedics office will set you back $500. Do that 3-4 times a year and it can add up. Or say you have a history of polyps. The colonoscopy won’t be considered “preventive”, meaning you’ll pay thousands for the procedure. Say you need to take blood thinners. Xarelto costs $500 a month. Find a funny looking mole on your face? That’s gonna cost you, pilgrim.

Unless you’re in perfect health, your HSA will get drained fast. And even if you are in good health, you still get to pay $20K to insure your family,

Comment by Mafia Blocks
2018-04-07 16:22:55


Paying cash opens up a whole different price structure.

Comment by Carl Morris
2018-04-07 16:47:14

I get it. But I’m talking about putting the max into the HSA, which is more than the deductible, at least on the plans I’m used to.

Comment by OneAgainstMany
2018-04-07 19:04:38

Say you need to take blood thinners. Xarelto costs $500 a month.

As always, consult your doctor (I’m not giving medical advice), but generally there is no need to take pricey Xarelto unless som MD is getting kick backs. Stick to generic warfarin and save lots of dough.

Comment by In Colorado
2018-04-07 22:44:32

Warfarin is cheaper, but then you need frequent blood te$t$ and more office vi$it$

Comment by OneAgainstMany
2018-04-08 07:09:05

A PT/INR and PTT test is super cheap at our hospital. Most patients pay nothing out of pocket.

Comment by tresho
2018-04-08 07:32:07

Most patients pay nothing out of pocket.
Quite a few patients can’t be managed on warfarin, and a fair number still wind up with warfarin-induced bleeding that costs them more. Warfarin is nice, when and if it works.

Comment by OneAgainstMany
2018-04-08 09:57:40

Definitely. I see the appeal of the NOACs (Apixiban, Rivoroxiban, Edoxaban, Dabigitran) for various purposes (does pt have PEs or DVTs? How about kidney failure? Poor med compliance or memory issues?) But cost is dramatically lower for warfarin, so our hospitalist group will almost always default to that unless there is some reason to try something else.

“Both Pradaxa and Xarelto cost just under $6,000 per year. Coumadin is available as a generic and costs $200 per year. Patients taking Coumadin must also have their blood clotting monitored, to reduce their risk of bleeding. If they go to the doctor, it costs anywhere from about $290 to $950 per year[7]. Patients can also self-monitor their blood clotting time at home using a small drop of blood from a simple finger stick. Self-monitoring costs around $360 per year. [8] Even with monitoring costs, Coumadin is still much less expensive than Pradaxa and Xarelto. Medicare reimburses Coumadin in full, including monitoring and requires patients to pay part of the cost for Pradaxa and Xarelto.”


Comment by In Colorado
2018-04-07 16:13:14

So on top of spending 20 grand on the insurance, you have to spend thousands more to cover the deductibles. So you get a tax break - whoopie!

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Comment by MGSpiffy
2018-04-07 19:01:27

Paying $17K a year right now for just 2 kids who live with their mom in another state. I can’t change them to something better right now due to the rules regarding qualifying events. Open Enrollment last year was for only 14 days and I wound up missing it, out of the country for much of it (thinking it was a whole month as the previous year). My situation is admittedly complicated due to a divorce decree and an ex- who runs to the court at the drop of a hat.

Over the last 2 years, almost all the ‘open market’ options have gone away. What remains is (expensive) crap compared to just 2 years prior. I should be able to get them on an employer plan later this year when their COBRA eligibility is up, but I can’t just let it expire by non-payment (the way the rules work).

Comment by Mafia Blocks
2018-04-08 04:46:58

Housing my friend.

Castro Valley, CA Housing Prices Crater 14% YOY As Bay Area Tech Wreck Expands


Comment by Apartment 401
2018-04-07 08:00:26

The Atlantic — Walmart’s Future Workforce: Robots and Freelancers

Walmart is raising wages, but its plans to use more gig labor and automation put workers at a disadvantage:

“The Walmart of the future relies more heavily on the gig economy and automation. This is an indication of the fierce competition between Walmart, the world’s largest private employer, and Amazon. A pair of recent studies suggests that it’s also a sign that the U.S. economy is tilting further toward jobs that give workers less market power.

One study, by Arindrajit Dube of the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, Jeff Jacobs and Suresh Naidu of Columbia University, and Siddharth Suri of Microsoft Research, sought to learn whether crowdsourced workers benefit from being able to choose their tasks and hours. The answer matters to a lot of workers. Flexible work arrangements, which include crowdsourcing platforms such as Uber, as well as freelancers and independent contractors, increased about 50 percent from 2005 to 2015. These jobs account for 94 percent—nearly all—of the net employment growth in the United States over that time.

“Wages are going to fall,” Naidu predicts. “It’s interesting that Walmart is being so proactive in gig-ifying its own workforce. Retail is one of the sectors that you thought you couldn’t really outsource, but maybe that was wrong.”


No “pent-up demand” for $500,000 starter homes happening here…

Comment by In Colorado
2018-04-07 09:43:50

Say buh-bye to McJobs. I can definitely see automatons stocking the shelves in stores. And fast food places will also be automated.

Comment by OneAgainstMany
2018-04-07 15:07:36

What did that MIT study say Uber drivers made per hour net of expenses and depreciation on their auto? Wasn’t it around $3.75/hour?

Comment by Professor 🐻
2018-04-07 15:21:50

Nobody is forcing them to take that occupation.

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Comment by toast on the coast
2018-04-07 17:55:37

with driverless cars in the near future can’t wait until realtorless real estate.

Comment by Mafia Blocks
2018-04-07 19:07:10

Expect driverless cars right after the development of the perpetual motion machine.

Comment by tresho
2018-04-08 07:35:05

Expect realtorless real estate after driverless autos propelled by perpetual motion machines become widespread.

Comment by oxide
2018-04-08 06:50:40

The local radio station (WTOP) had a story about a gig-economy app. The app gathers available shift work from participating companies. App users apply to work the shift, first come first serve. They fill the shift and get paid through the app. You could sweep a warehouse in the morning and deliver pizza in the evening.

I suppose this will “disrupt” the temp agency industry.

Comment by Apartment 401
2018-04-07 08:07:42

Los Angeles Times — As waves of homeless descend onto trains, L.A. tries a new strategy: social workers on the subway

“The Metro system has been a refuge for homeless people for decades. But as Los Angeles County’s homeless population has surged, reaching more than 58,000 people last year, the sanitation and safety problems on trains and buses are approaching what officials and riders say are crisis levels.

People looking for warm, dry places to sleep have barricaded themselves inside emergency exit stairwells in stations, leaving behind trash and human waste. Elevator doors coated in urine have stuck shut. Mentally ill and high passengers have assaulted bus drivers and other riders.

Amid a wave of complaints about homelessness, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority has bolstered spending on law enforcement and security by 37% this year. But the agency is testing a different approach, too: social workers on the subway.

How Metro addresses homelessness is crucial to the agency’s future. A perception that trains and buses are dangerous or dirty could undercut Metro’s ambitious expansion plans, which call for the construction of nearly a dozen new rail lines over the next four decades.

“This is a crisis,” said Los Angeles County Supervisor Hilda Solis at a recent Metro meeting. “If we don’t get a handle on it, it’s going to keep growing.”


Comment by In Colorado
2018-04-07 09:45:41

Just wait … soon LA will have 500K homeless as menial jobs go poof.

Comment by Apartment 401
2018-04-07 08:13:18

SFGate dot com — A citywide crisis in gentrification? New SF residents make far more money than those leaving:

“San Francisco’s newest residents are richer, younger and more educated than those leaving the city, a new study finds.

The former Gold Rush boomtown was once a place people went to make their fortunes, but a new BuildZoom study reveals most of San Francisco’s newcomers arrive with ample cash in their pockets, at least by national standards.

According to Issi Romem, the author of the study and chief BuildZoom economist, people who moved to San Francisco between 2005 and 2016 made $12,640 more annually than those who left the city in the same time period. This figure accelerated from 2010 to 2016, when newcomers made about $18,700 more than former residents.”


Comment by In Colorado
2018-04-07 09:48:12

So San Franciscans will be either richies or homeless who defecate on the sidewalks. As some are saying, in addition to watching out for #1, you’ll have be careful and not step on any #2.

Comment by Apartment 401
2018-04-07 10:31:30

Cue up the #MuhLargestEconomy narrative that Californians love to crow about and ignore the fact that your cities are literally sh*tholes.

Comment by Howard
2018-04-07 09:14:39

I dont get it I know house prices should be down, but just two days ago I saw a local california news (channel 4?), report housing price increases from last year and said “shortage of listings” on the market?? I dont get it???

Comment by Howard
2018-04-07 09:15:42

Sorry noting the area as San Fernando Valley specifically

Comment by jeff
2018-04-07 10:10:05

“I dont get it???”

What exactly don’t you get?


Comment by Professor Bear
2018-04-07 11:28:30

Fake news.

Comment by Mortgage Watch
2018-04-07 09:56:17

Simi Valley, CA 93065 Housing Prices Crater 5% YOY As Mortgage Defaults Ravage Los Angeles Area


*Select price from dropdown menu on first chart

Comment by aNYCdj
2018-04-07 10:47:37

This should be a very interesting series about washington

What happens when people who hate Big Government take over DC? Go behind the scenes in The Swamp, a groundbreaking new documentary series.


Comment by Professor Bear
2018-04-07 11:29:31

Did you recently buy the dip, only to regretably realize that you caught yourself a falling knife?

Comment by Professor Bear
2018-04-07 11:40:32

Whatever you do in this volatile market, DON’T PANIC!

Stock Market Has Worst Start To 2nd Quarter Since Great Depression
With Fears Of Trade War Brewing, Wall Street Has Worst Start To A Second Quarter Since The Great Depression
April 2, 2018 at 11:10 pm

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — After a strong start to the year, Monday was the worst start to a second quarter for stocks since the Great Depression.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average plunged more than 700 points Monday afternoon. Shares rebounded some, but the big board still closed down 458 points. The NASDAQ dropped 193 points and the S&P fell 50.

The severe swing had financial analysts warning: Don’t panic.

“It’s a very emotional market,” financial analyst Tim Ghrisky said. “There are certain days that often result in more volatility.”

Comment by Professor 🐻
2018-04-07 14:20:41

“Don’t panic.”

This brings to mind a fond memory of a music gig that used rental parts. A previous musician had scribbled that helpful advice by the most difficult passage to play.

Generally, the advice to not panic is offered at exactly the point when panicking would be the natural course of action.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2018-04-07 14:34:18

The Dow Jones is higher than it was at the beginning of 2018, just a bunch of globalists trying to tell us the sky is falling because we will not allow China walk all over us. The techs are getting smashed since they were way overvalued, take them out of the equation and the market has hardly moved since its all time high.

Comment by Professor 🐻
2018-04-07 23:58:43

I love the photos of Wall Street types looking up with an expression that suggests the sky might be about to fall.

Stocks broke key level in sell-off that signals potential for bigger correction
- An ugly sell-off Monday signals more pain ahead for the market as stocks broke key technical levels.
- The S&P 500 closed below its 200-day moving average for the first time since June 2016.
- But strategists say while the reasons for a sell-off are piling up, the market could change focus in coming weeks to a very strong earnings season.
- Meanwhile, the February lows, at around 2,530, could be the next test for the S&P 500, which broke its important 200-day moving average.
Patti Domm | @pattidomm
Published 4:21 PM ET Mon, 2 April 2018 Updated 2:08 PM ET Tue, 3 April 2018 CNBC.com
Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange, Monday, April 2, 2018.

Monday’s broad-based sell-off pushed stocks below important technical levels, signaling more pain ahead for the market.

“The story you just can’t avoid is the cracking leadership of this market,” said James Paulsen, chief investment strategist at Leuthold Group. In afternoon trading, 10 of 11 major S&P sectors were trading at correction levels Monday, 10 percent or more from their highs.

Consumer discretionary and technology shares, former market stars, were the worst hit Monday, with declines of more than 3 percent. The best performer was the defensive utilities sector, down only 1 percent, followed by real estate, off just 1.5 percent.

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Comment by Jingle Male
2018-04-08 23:40:41

Danny! Who let you out of prison?

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Comment by Professor Bear
2018-04-07 11:46:07

Here is a word of precautionary advice to stock, housing and cryptocurrency gamblers in these volatile market conditions: CAVEAT EMPTOR.

Bogle on stock turbulence: ‘never seen a market this volatile to this extent in my career’
Published: Apr 7, 2018 11:58 a.m. ET
Jack Bogle hasn’t seen moves like these in his career.
By Mark DeCambre

Vanguard founder Jack Bogle has been around the block. The 88-year-old investing titan, who is basically the father of passive investing, says this renewed regime of volatility in stocks is uncanny.

How uncanny? He’s never seen anything like it in his 66-year career. Here’s what he had to say during a CNBC interview on Thursday:

‘I have never seen a market this volatile to this extent in my career. Now that’s only 66 years, so I shouldn’t make too much about it, but you’re right: I’ve seen two 50-percent declines, I’ve seen a 25-percent decline in one day and I’ve never seen anything like this before.’

– Jack Bogle, Vanguard Group founder and retired CEO

Comment by Professor Bear
2018-04-07 11:47:26

It will certainly be interesting to see if the housing market is decoupled from the stock market this time, unlike every previous time.

Maybe this time is different?

Comment by Professor Bear
2018-04-07 12:08:22

Heh heh…we’re gonna have the last laugh.

Housing bubble or not, the real estate market is in trouble
By Brad Finkelstein
March 28 2018, 7:54am EDT

First, some good news. Despite the meteoric rise in home prices, the real estate market hasn’t ventured into housing bubble territory.

The bad news? Home prices are still going to decline, and mortgage defaults are likely to rise.

It’s simply the nature of a cyclical market.

“It’s interesting to watch the dynamics of the market. What we see is prices rise, sales activity slows down, prices weaken and then sales pick back up,” said Carrington Mortgage Holdings Executive Vice President Rick Sharga. “It’s the way a housing market is supposed to behave in a normal environment. But it’s been so long since we’ve seen a normal environment that we forget how it’s supposed to work.”

While it’s true that certain housing markets are overheated, “it doesn’t mean necessarily that tomorrow or next week or next month or even next year prices are going to crash. But it’s prudent being a little more cautious about investments in those metro areas,” said CoreLogic Chief Economist Frank Nothaft.

Comment by Professor Bear
2018-04-07 11:57:58

Dow tumbles 572 points as trade war fears pummel stocks
by Nathaniel Meyersohn
April 6, 2018: 5:24 PM ET
Dow tumbles as trade war fears pummel stocks
Stocks tumbled Friday as trade tensions between the United States and China heated up.

The Dow closed down 572 points, a drop of 2.3%, after President Trump threatened to escalate a confrontation with China over trade. It fell as much as 767 points earlier in the day. The S&P 500 and the Nasdaq each declined more than 2%.

Friday’s losses wiped out gains for the week, and the Dow sank back into correction territory — 10% below its all-time closing high in January.

Comment by Professor Bear
2018-04-07 12:19:46

Whatever became of the Plunge Protection Team?

Comment by rms
2018-04-07 12:22:44

Looks like they couldn’t get it up.

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Comment by Professor 🐻
2018-04-07 12:26:56

Maybe the aging Wall Street bulls should try taking more Viagra?

Comment by Carl Morris
2018-04-07 12:40:29

Whatever became of the Plunge Protection Team?

I’m not certain that they want Trump to succeed. So if we were ever going to take our medicine now might be the time. I still don’t think they have the stomach to take on the aborted overdue 2008 avalanche PLUS the extra buildup since, even if they can perfectly control the blame for it. But I’m very curious to find out.

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Comment by Professor 🐻
2018-04-07 14:51:38

Trump may also be interested in taking down the stock market this year so that it is roaring back by when he is up for reelection in 2020.

Comment by Carl Morris
2018-04-07 15:55:22

That could easily backfire if someone is stupid enough to think they can just take it down a little and then let the good times roll again with no risk of it getting out of control. Trump has his stupid moments but I don’t think he would want to take that risk.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2018-04-08 12:32:19

Do not think for a minute that Trump took it down. More likely the PTB trying to convince him that interfering with globalism is bad for the economy. The irony is the correction was needed and he will probably have a better market both this November and in 2020 because of it. The gang trying to get Trump cannot shoot straight. Trying to get Trump the deep state exposed itself and proved that Hillary did indeed get special treatment for her crimes.

Comment by Professor 🐻
2018-04-07 12:35:08

It’s hard to not appreciate the benefits of a crashing stock market, which include maintaining low rates during the Fed’s Great Quantitative Easing Unwind, plus incentivizing foreign investors to purchase Treasurys. It’s a stroke of genius. Don’t fight the Fed’s Great Quantitative Easing Unwind!

Comment by Montana
2018-04-07 18:14:03


Comment by Professor 🐻
2018-04-07 14:49:11

Did Treasury yields rise or fall last week? I find this article completely confusing on this. If yields fell for the week, how could they have also climbed?

30-year Treasury bond yield posts largest weekly climb in more than two months

By Mark DeCambre and Sunny Oh
Published: Apr 6, 2018 5:07 p.m. ET
The 30-year Treasury marks its largest weekly yield climb since Feb. 2

Treasury prices rose on Friday, pushing yields lower, as President Donald Trump said he was considering tariffs on another $100 billion in Chinese goods, potentially heightening a trade spat between the U.S. and China.

But Treasury yields were mostly higher for the week as the 10-year Treasury yield attempted to break above the 2.80% after rallying last week on haven-related buying.

How did Treasurys perform?

The 10-year Treasury note yield (TMUBMUSD10Y, -1.97%) fell 5.1 basis points to 2.779%, paring its weeklong yield gains to 3.8 basis points, its largest weekly climb since March 9.

The 2-year note yield (TMUBMUSD02Y, -1.76%) the most sensitive to the monetary policy outlook, was down 3.2 basis points to 2.274%, trimming its yield climb to 0.4 basis points.

The 30-year bond rate (TMUBMUSD30Y, -1.81%) dropped 4.9 basis points to 3.021%, contributing to a 4.7 basis-point drop for the week, the largest weekly yield climb since Feb. 2

Bond prices fall as yields rise.

Comment by Professor 🐻
2018-04-07 15:00:17

A quick look at this site reveals that the 30-year Treasury yield peaked on February 21, 2018 at 3.22% and has since dropped sharply to its present level of 3.01%. What the writer of the above article is talking about beats me.

Comment by Professor Bear
2018-04-07 11:35:02

American families who for generations have paid taxes that fund higher education here have to make room for all the newly arrived immigrants crowding out our children from their best higher education opportunities…

Middle-Class Families Increasingly Look to Community Colleges
With college prices in the hundreds of thousands of dollars, more middle-class families are looking for ways to spend less for quality education.
APRIL 5, 2018

Comment by Professor Bear
2018-04-07 12:04:07

Is the the beginning of the end for the higher education bubble? Free college for everyone!

“Free Initiatives

In recent years, Pasadena City College has had a 320 percent increase in students whose parents make more than $100,000 a year, to 828 students last year from 197 in 2007. And it’s not alone.

A 2017 study that looked at tax records and college attendance data found that hundreds of two-year colleges are now magnets for well-off students, with many — like Williston State College in North Dakota, and Colorado Northwestern Community College in Rangely — having clocked notable increases. More recently, colleges like Northern Virginia Community College have reported their own increases. The number of first-time students there whose family income is $60,000 or above rose 69 percent, to 6,104 this past year from 3,610 in 2010.

Academics who study college pricing say they think the phenomenon is likely to take off further as more cities, states and institutions start free programs like the one Gov. Jerry Brown of California signed into law in October. Already, some free community college initiatives have become magnets for middle-class students. Oregon is making changes to its program, Oregon Promise. But last school year, the majority of the $11.8 million in aid went to upper-income families.

Ms. Shahverdian is taking advantage of a free-college program Pasadena began, as it waits for the state to fund Mr. Brown’s plan.

And this fall, Princeton will join a growing group of selective colleges that are focusing more on transfer students. The initiative is directed at attracting more low-income students, but middle-class ones are also likely to see benefits.

To lure students, some two-year colleges are starting to look a lot like their four-year peers, offering study abroad programs, modern dorms and renovated cafeterias.”

Comment by Taxpayers
2018-04-08 05:06:14

That’s why u go to ivy league colleges. To hob knob w the poor.

Comment by rms
2018-04-07 12:21:32

Ours did their first two years locally at community college.

Comment by rms
2018-04-07 12:25:16

I should add that here in WA there are no bargain prices in community college unless your family is low/no income.

Comment by In Colorado
2018-04-07 16:26:11

In some states they cost almost as much as the locsl State U. In California they have long been a bargain.

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Comment by MGSpiffy
2018-04-07 19:15:00

I believe part of it is that today’s 18-years olds are less prepared for independent living, functioning autonomously, and the work it takes to get a 4-year degree. Combine that with less “conviction and certainty” as to what they want to do with their lives, because developmentally they are behind (on average) prior cohorts at the same age, and you have lots of parents that are saying “Lets do community college first, see what sticks and what doesn’t, save a bunch of money, and then transfer to a 4-year program if warranted.”

Oh yeah.. parents have also been seeing what happens when you give huge loans to college students for just a signature and tell them “Here’s even more cash to help with your living expenses, and rent and food/drink”.

Comment by BlueSkye
2018-04-08 06:18:46

Someone should invent self driving kids.

Comment by Cryptonick
2018-04-07 11:55:08

Going, going, going…

Bitcoin takes cue from stock market, extends decline
Published: Apr 6, 2018 4:54 p.m. ET
Coinbase said to seek regulatory approval as licensed broker
By Aaron Hankin
AFP/Getty Images

Digital currencies traded lower Friday in New York, unable to capitalize on solid gains earlier in the week.

The price of the No. 1 digital currency, bitcoin (BTCUSD, +6.79%) was down 2.4% late Friday, trading at $6,610.67, slightly off its overnight low of $6,513.10.

Digital currencies followed equities, which posted significant losses; the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA, -2.34%) slumped more than 700 points at its session low.

The slide in bitcoin, which makes up 45.2% of the total market cap of cryptocurrencies, has pushed the overall value of the market below $250 billion, just about $7 billion away from making a five-month low (see chart below from CoinMarketCap.com):


Comment by Professor Bear
2018-04-07 11:59:56

“Vacancy rates ticked up to their highest point since 2014 in March — 4.08 percent — as the flood of high-end rentals hit the market. More than half of the vacant units in the county were asking more than $2,000 a month in rent. ‘What we noticed was some of the older stuff pushed rents a little too much,’ said Russ Valone, CEO of MarketPointe. ‘We saw a number of new projects where they rolled the rent back.’”

That’s awesome news. This may be the year we start shopping for a new rental home, and it sounds like there will be plenty of great choices by the fall.

Comment by Mafia Blocks
2018-04-07 12:45:01

They only get honest about about the 25 million excess empty and otherwise vacant housing units until the truth cannot be concealed any longer.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2018-04-07 14:39:03

As people move into the suburbs and exurbs, they may want employment options other than long commutes into urban cores — a threat to the sparkling new corporate campuses built for this cycle. These questions will become more pressing whenever we get an economic downturn and downtown demand softens.

racis code for the millennials are getting tired of the inner city problems, can’t you just hear the dog whistles?

Comment by Apartment 401
2018-04-07 17:40:11

I almost stepped on a needle across the street from the Denver Public Library (Civic Center Park) a few weeks ago. East Colfax (Capitol Hill) is a wasteland of lost humanity. I got panhandled inside of Wendy’s while eating lunch by a scabby faced methhead and told the restaurant manager about it.

“Millennials” with kidz only come downtown when they want to protest the repeal of the 2nd Amendment.

Comment by jeff
2018-04-07 22:41:41

“I got panhandled inside of Wendy’s while eating lunch by a scabby faced methhead”

I now have a picture of scabs flaking off into someone’s chili while they are distracted by being panhandled.

Comment by tresho
2018-04-08 07:40:30

they are distracted by being panhandled.
I have learned to make an ugly face and snarl in these situations. It usually works.

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Comment by In Colorado
2018-04-07 18:42:58

FWIW, workers will go where the jobs are.

Comment by DF
2018-04-07 18:45:03

I’m certain Rio Rancho will develop its own homeless junkie problem to match ABQ’s.

Comment by Mortgage Watch
2018-04-07 16:17:26

Vashon Island, WA Housing Prices Crater 16% YOY As Seattle Economy Deteriorates


Comment by MGSpiffy
2018-04-07 19:22:13

MW, is this your day job? Mind with the spreadsheet? :p

Comment by Mafia Blocks
2018-04-07 19:52:42

Agoura Hills, CA Housing Prices Crater 24% YOY As Housing Correction Roars Through Southern California


Comment by Mr. Banker
2018-04-07 16:21:51

A nation of dummies …

“A Third Of Millennials Aren’t Sure The Earth Is Round, Survey Finds”

“A new survey has found that a third of young millennials in the U.S. aren’t convinced the Earth is actually round. The national poll reveals that 18 to 24-year-olds are the largest group in the country who refuse to accept the scientific facts of the world’s shape.”


Comment by Apartment 401
2018-04-07 17:43:39

Millennials deserve to live in the filth and rot that they voted for.

Generation Z is based, some of them anyway. At least there’s a few out there that may be around to resist, and repair, the financial and cultural rot started by baby boomers (worst generation ever) and accelerated by Millennials.

Comment by xstate
2018-04-07 16:45:34

I still say that housing prices will fall down to the price of a used car.

Comment by aNYCdj
Comment by rms
2018-04-07 21:18:25

Hehe… didn’t see any portraits of Bobby Seal in that artist’s rendering.


Comment by Mortgage Watch
2018-04-07 19:11:35

Culver, OR Housing Prices Crater 7% YOY As Heroin Epidemic Ravages West Coast


Comment by Albuquerquedan
2018-04-08 06:51:53


It is already starting US soybeans are already being bought up by other countries. Fungible products are hard to tariff when there is inelastic demand for them. Of course, the globalists are going to want to stop Trump even more now since he is having too much success.

Comment by BlueSkye
2018-04-08 08:29:37

Herding cats. The Chinese will order through straw buyers to work around their own government.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2018-04-08 09:04:57

All one has to do is look at a map to see that shipping soybeans from Brazil to China will increase costs for China and Chinese consumers due to the extra costs of shipping. Meanwhile shipping soybeans to Europe from America will mean less costs than shipping to China. It is not inconceivable that U.S. farmers will end up with higher prices due to not having to compete with Brazil for the European market.

Comment by tresho
2018-04-08 08:06:23

Roof re-possessed for non-payment: Louisiana roofer arrested after taking back roof

Comment by rms
2018-04-08 10:33:30

Any contractor worth their salt knows something about home equity loans, e.g., the work doesn’t begin until the “John Hancock” is on the contract, and the bank releases the initial payment.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
Comment by Mafia Blocks
2018-04-08 09:12:25

Housing Daniel A. Crowman. . . Housing.

Kenmore, WA Housing Prices Crater 6% YOY


Comment by OneAgainstMany
2018-04-08 10:15:47

And then there is this:

“Chevrolet Sonic while Ford Motor plans to ditch the Fiesta in the U.S., spelling the death of two subcompact cars.”

“The Wall Street Journal, which reported the plans Wednesday, also said that Ford plans to ax the full-size Taurus sedan while GM is considering ending the full-size Impala sedan.”

“He noted that the company has already announced plans to make trucks, SUVs and crossovers nearly 90% of its lineup by 2020.”


Cars are ending in the US. Trucks, SUVs, and crossovers are ascendant. EPA fuel efficiency restrictions have been scrapped. And oil and gas prices are rising. Add this all together and this could be the shock that starts to squeeze consumers and be the beginning of a recession.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2018-04-08 12:44:51

It is shame that many people have purchased SUVs with the expectation of continuing low oil prices, many based on news reports caused by the EIA’s absurd projections. However, higher oil prices are no longer a bad situation for the US. Oil and gas jobs pay well, the US economy slowed down when Obama engineered a price collapse with the Saudis help trying to bring down Putin. Of course, Putin got the last laugh as I said he would at the time. Reagan ran the same play to bring down the Soviet Union. However, Obama was no Putin and he did not understand how to keep oil prices low enough and long enough to bring down Putin. I have fuel efficient cars including a six speed Chevy Cruz that gets 45 miles to the gallon bought through Costco. Dealership practically gave it to me so it could sells its SUVs, averaging out those fuel miles.

Comment by OneAgainstMany
2018-04-08 16:41:11

I have fuel efficient cars including a six speed Chevy Cruz that gets 45 miles to the gallon bought through Costco. Dealership practically gave it to me so it could sells its SUVs, averaging out those fuel miles.

Wise purchase.

However, Obama was no Putin and he did not understand how to keep oil prices low enough and long enough to bring down Putin.

You mean Obama was no Reagan, right?

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Comment by Albuquerquedan
2018-04-08 16:48:31

Yes, Obama was no Reagan.

Comment by Carl Morris
2018-04-08 15:19:46

Add this all together and this could be the shock that starts to squeeze consumers and be the beginning of a recession.

I think it’s all signs of a top already having happened, kinda like the skyscraper index. The upcoming recession may get blamed on those things, but it was going to happen regardless.

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