September 29, 2013

Bits Bucket for September 29, 2013

Post off-topic ideas, links, and Craigslist finds here.

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Comment by Lenderoflastresort
2013-09-29 04:08:57

So, now, have we got this sorted? :) Or resorted? :) First! :)

Comment by Housing Analyst
2013-09-29 04:27:32

“housing makes you poor. Very poor.”

It certainly does at current massively inflated asking prices of resale housing considering prices are 250% higher than long term trend. If you buy a house in this environment, you’ll be deep in debt for the rest of your life.

Don’t do it.

Comment by Bill, just South of Irvine, CA
2013-09-29 06:50:31

What if the hous is equal to one sixth of your net worth and your neighbors all own their houses…all paid for?

Comment by JingleMale
2013-09-29 07:59:56

Housing Analyst’s position seems to be that you should never buy a house because you will always lose money. I have provided him with over 100,000 reasons why he is wrong, but he seems to be stuck in his own little world of 2006.

Comment by Housing Analyst
2013-09-29 10:01:16

Hypothetical Bill.

And as for you JingleBalls, you’re Exhibit A demonstrating how housing is always a loss. ALWAYS

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Comment by inchbyinch
2013-09-29 14:37:13

You are absolutely wrong. We had a nice profit on our McMansion, which we bought with proceeds from our 1st 2,000 sq ft starter home. That’s how we arrived in this rancher paid in full at the coe. (We had other savings as well.) “ALWAYS” lose $? I beg to differ. We’ve always had a net profit and will again on this home, if we sold. One reason, we always go FSBO and never over- improve.

Comment by Housing Analyst
2013-09-29 14:43:27

Spending $500k and netting $200k is “profit”?

No wonder you’re out of business and fetching coffee for wages at 60 years old.


Is Leslie Appleton Young a liar?

Are realtors liars?

Comment by inchbyinch
2013-09-29 16:35:24

Are you privy to our financial situation?
We’ve always had a net profit on housing. You’re wrong, babes.

I get the vibe your thing is being an antagonist. Yawn…it’s old.

Comment by Housing Analyst
2013-09-29 16:39:04

We no more trust realtors than your typical liar. You’re a realtor as we recall. You haven’t even gotten honest about your losses.

Now answer the questions;

Are realtors liars?

Is Leslie Appleton Young a liar?

Comment by JingleMale
2013-09-29 23:04:05


Comment by Housing Analyst
2013-09-30 04:21:59

Run liar run.

Comment by No Lawyers
2013-09-29 08:42:50

What is this fantasy land called?

Comment by Bill, just south of Irvine
2013-09-29 08:50:11

“What is this fantasy land called?” 1964, my parents’ neighborhood.

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Comment by No Lawyers
2013-09-29 09:26:18

No granite counter-tops
1000 sq feet for the family of 6
No garage
One bathroom for whole house

That sounds like jail to most exceptional US Americans.

Comment by Skroodle
2013-09-29 10:15:46

No garage?

Comment by Bill, just South of Irvine, CA
2013-09-29 11:06:31

No garage. True

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2013-09-29 04:44:12

The coming week should be great for Wall Street, except for one thing.

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2013-09-29 04:49:20

Chicago Tribune NEWS
House Republicans vote to delay healthcare law for one year
Tribune staff and wire reports
6:32 a.m. CDT, September 29, 2013

The House of Representatives early on Sunday brought the federal government closer to a shutdown as it voted to delay President Barack Obama’s landmark healthcare law for a year as part of an emergency spending bill.

By a mostly partisan vote of 231-192, the Republican-controlled House approved the “Obamacare” amendment, despite a veto threat from the White House.

It also voted 248-174 to repeal a medical device tax that aims to help fund healthcare programs under the 2010 law.

And in a sign that lawmakers might be resigned to a government shutdown beginning Tuesday, the House unanimously approved a bill to keep paying U.S. soldiers in the event the government runs out of money to run many programs.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid reiterated on Saturday that the House bill would be dead on arrival in the Democratic-controlled Senate, which is not scheduled to meet until 2 p.m. on Monday.

Obama also threatened to veto any bill that delays his healthcare restructuring.

There is a slight chance the two sides could reach a funding deal before the government’s fiscal year ends at midnight on Monday. Congress could also act at any time to end the impasse if a shutdown did occur.

But the bitterness of the House debate on Saturday night that spilled into early Sunday did not bode well for prospects of a compromise.

“You have been hijacked by a group called the Tea Party,” Democratic Representative David Scott of Georgia said angrily, referring to the powerful conservative, anti-government movement that holds significant sway over Republicans.

“The American people deserve to have time to see what this monstrosity will do before it is implemented,” shouted Republican Representative John Culberson of Texas, referring to “Obamacare.”

The high-stakes maneuvering between Democrats and Republicans is likely to continue through much of Monday.

The standoff is also a harbinger for the next big political battle in Washington: a far more consequential bill to raise the federal government’s borrowing authority. Failure to raise the debt ceiling by mid-October could result in the government defaulting on its obligations.

Comment by No Lawyers
2013-09-29 08:57:16

Why just one year? What’s behind this strategy?

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2013-09-29 09:54:20

They can execute it again in one year.

And two years.

And three years.

Etc etc etc…

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Comment by Skroodle
2013-09-29 10:17:09

They are planning on impeaching Obama next year and appointing Ted Cruz president.

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Comment by No Lawyers
2013-09-29 13:45:32

Ted Cruz is living rent free in your skull.

Comment by AmazingRuss
2013-09-29 14:09:08

So they don’t get blamed for shutting down the government, and have some kind of chance in the next elections.

Chickenshit politics at its finest.

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Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2013-09-29 04:56:44

Shutdown Showdown Intensifies Over Obamacare Delay
By AP / Alan Fram Sept. 29, 2013

(WASHINGTON) — The political and economic stakes mounting with each tick of the clock, the White House and congressional Democrats say a House-approved delay in President Barack Obama’s health care law does nothing but push Washington to the brink of the first government shutdown in 17 years.

Neither side showed signs of surrender early Sunday after the Republican-led House added a one-year delay in implementing health-care reform to legislation that would avert a shuttering of federal offices on Tuesday. The near party-line vote was 231-192, shifting the focus to the Democratic-run Senate less than 48 hours before government funds run dry.

Democrats said delaying the health care law would sink the bill. They also opposed a second provision the House added by 248-174: A repeal of a tax on many medical devices that helps finance the 2010 health care overhaul.

Comment by Montana
2013-09-29 07:33:08

meanwhile, local media are furiously working to ensure the expectation of entitlement is in place by jan. 1.

Comment by RioAmericanInBrasil
2013-09-29 08:38:52

local media are furiously working to ensure the expectation of entitlement is in place by jan. 1

Maybe because local media understands laws and The Constitution of the United States of America. “Conservatives” only respect the Constitution when it suits them. Much of the far right are all talk, lies and BS.

‘Constitutional conservatives’ ignore the Constitution on Obamacare

Conservative Republicans are so very fond of telling everyone else how no one loves the Constitution more than they do. Therefore, anyone who does anything they don’t like hates the Constitution (and by extension, America). And if you’re President Obama, your every action is a violation of our nation’s most sacred secular document. The whole thing is maddening because these very same folks are trying to thwart the Constitution’s basic tenets and take down the economy with their shenanigans over Obamacare.

Rep. John Culberson (R-Tex.) is one of those folks. He took to the House floor on Friday to rail against the Affordable Care Act.

Today, the constitutional conservatives in the House are keeping their word to our constituents and our nation to stand true to our principles, to protect them from the most unpopular law ever passed in the history of the country — Obamacare — that intrudes on their privacy and our most sacred right as Americans to be left alone.

What got me was the phrase “constitutional conservatives.”

According to Article 1, Section 7 of the Constitution, “Every bill which shall have passed the House of Representatives and the Senate, shall, before it become a law, be presented to the President of the United States; if he approve he shall sign it. . . .” This is how Obamacare became the law of the land. The House passed the Senate’s version of the health care bill on March 21, 2010 by a vote of 219 to 212. The Affordable Care Act was signed into law by the president two days later.

Since then, the House Republican majority has voted 42 times to defund, repeal or otherwise hobble Obamacare. Each time, the effort dies in the Democrat-controlled Senate. The most recent vote took place on Friday in a cat-and-mouse game that will lead to a government shutdown (or worse, a first-in-the-history-of-the-republic default) if the insanity of the Republican Party isn’t cured.

In between all those votes, the Supreme Court and the American people had their say.

“Constitutional conservatives” were certain that the guardians of the Constitution — the Supreme Court — would strike down Obamacare as unconstitutional. After all, the high court’s ability to invalidate a law that runs afoul of the Constitution (read, judicial review) was established in Marbury v. Madison in 1803. And yet, the Supreme Court upheld the constitutionality of the individual-mandate provision of Obamacare (its core provision) in a June 28, 2012 ruling.

Once the court spoke, all eyes focused on the 2012 presidential election. …. if the GOP were to win the White House and take the majority in the Senate, Obamacare would be toast. Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney made repeal of the health-care law a central part of his campaign. “Our mission is clear: if we want to get rid of Obamacare, we are going to have to replace President Obama,” Romney said the day of the court ruling. “That is my mission. That is our work. And I’m asking the American people to join me.” And yet, voters reelected Obama with a decisive victory over Romney.

The president put what “constitutional conservatives” are doing with the debt ceiling and Obamacare in perspective when he asked listeners at his Business Roundtable speech last week to “flip the script.”

[I]magine a situation in which a Democratic Speaker said to a Republican President, I’m not going to increase the debt ceiling unless you increase corporate taxes by 20 percent. And if you don’t do it, we’ll default on the debt and cause a worldwide financial crisis. Even though that Democratic Speaker didn’t have the votes to force through that particular piece of legislation, they would simply say, we will blow the whole thing up unless you do what I want. That can’t be a recipe for government.

It’s not. That “constitutional conservatives” can’t accept that they have lost the argument, that elections have consequences is a recipe for disaster.

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Comment by Strawberrypicker
2013-09-29 09:34:26

And the republicans are taking constitutional votes to defund it or delay it. That’s there constitutional mandate also. So what is your point?

And where are you on all the rest of this Messiah’s acting unilaterally to ignore properly passed laws? Same place as always, carrying water.

Comment by Strawberrypicker
2013-09-29 09:39:08

Their, in before grammar Nazis

Comment by RioAmericanInBrasil
2013-09-29 10:09:00

republicans are taking constitutional votes to defund it or delay it….where are you on all the rest of this Messiah’s acting unilaterally to ignore properly passed laws?

Your argument falls apart because it contradicts itself or in fact, it is not there at all.

Are you implying the GOP, barely holding one branch of government, can Constitutional-wise, kill a signed law (upheld by the SCOTUS) because Obama has delayed parts of the law? Or the GOP is right and Obama was wrong?

You are wrong. Obama has done it legally and within his job description:

Delaying Parts of Obamacare: ‘Blatantly Illegal’ or Routine Adjustment?

The GOP says Obama’s decision to postpone implementing the “employer mandate” stomps all over the Constitution. It doesn’t, and here’s why.

Nor is the one-year delay of the employer mandate an affront to the Constitution…..The relevant text requires that the President “take care that the laws be faithfully executed.” Scholars on both left and right concur that this broadly-worded phrasing indicates that the President is to exercise judgment, and handle his enforcement duties with fidelity to all laws, including, indeed, the Constitution.

….both Republican and Democratic Justice Departments have consistently opined that the clause authorizes a president even to decline enforcement of a statute altogether, if in good faith he determines it to be in violation of the Constitution. But, McConnell contends, a president cannot “refuse to enforce a statute he opposes for policy reasons.” While surely correct, that contention is beside the point.

The Administration has not postponed the employer mandate out of policy opposition to the ACA, nor to the specific provision itself. Thus, it’s misleading to characterize the action as a “refusal to enforce.” Rather, the President has authorized a minor temporary course correction regarding individual ACA provisions, necessary in his Administration’s judgment to faithfully execute the overall statute, other related laws, and the purposes of the ACA’s framers. As a legal as well as a practical matter, that’s well within his job description.

Comment by Skroodle
2013-09-29 10:19:11

And yet, Ted Cruz, born in Canada is qualified to be President.

Comment by No Lawyers
2013-09-29 13:41:24

And yet, Ted Cruz, born in Canada is qualified to be President.

Actors are different but the dialogue is the same. America seems like a collection of bad movies with same dialogue.

Comment by ecofeco
2013-09-29 14:30:35

“Actors are different but the dialogue is the same. America seems like a collection of bad movies with same dialogue.”


Comment by Strawberrypicker
2013-09-29 17:10:39

Yes, they can, constitution wise kill a signed law if funding it requires them to exercise their constitutional duty to oversee the budget. They can vote however they want. There is nothing unconstitutional about what they are doing. That’s the way it is set up. If there was something unconstitutional about what they are doing, you know it would have already been brought to a court.

This is just different branches exercising their powers. You just hate that any GOP has any power because you are a hack. I wouldn’t vote for either side. You would only ever vote for one.

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2013-09-29 05:00:51

Sept. 27, 2013, 6:02 a.m. EDT
Gold, oil and government shutdowns
Stories You Might Like
America’s new leaders will be capitalists
America becomes giant version of ‘Biggest Loser’
House GOP to vote on delaying health law for year
By Myra P. Saefong, MarketWatch

SAN FRANCISCO (MarketWatch) — History, at least when it comes to gold, oil and U.S. government crises, may surprise you.

The federal government is facing a shutdown next week but that doesn’t automatically mean that oil prices will take a hit from the weaker economic environment that implies, or that gold will get a safe-haven boost from the uncertainty it creates.

In fact, in the weeks ahead of the last government shutdown from December 16, 1995 to January 6, 1996, oil prices generally climbed. Gold prices zigzagged before falling just days ahead of the actual shutdown.

And given the recent moves in gold and oil, it appears that traders in these markets barely even care about the risk of reduced government services, or even potential debt default.

As of Thursday, both gold and oil prices were set to end the week lower. Month to date, gold is down about 5% and oil has lost roughly 4%. At least part of those declines are attributable to expectations that the U.S. Federal Reserve will eventually taper its bond-buying program, even though it unexpectedly didn’t at its meeting earlier this month.

“There is a fascinating display of emotional burnout relative to U.S. budget and debt-ceiling fights,” said Jonathan Citrin, founder and executive chairman at CitrinGroup, an investment advisory firm. “Both gold and oil now seem to shrug off the majority of fears in the shadow of yet another round of bickering in the nation’s capital.”

Comment by Bill, just South of Irvine, CA
2013-09-29 06:53:45

Stocks did very well in 1996. Investors and anarchists like me say “shut it down!”

Comment by Strawberrypicker
2013-09-29 08:05:47

From the article I read in the paper yesterday it looked like most essential vital functions were going to continue. Social security check would go out, army and law enforcement still working, etc. one of the worst things they said would happen is people would have to wait for federally subsidized mortgages or postpone vacations to national parks.

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Comment by Skroodle
2013-09-29 10:21:11

It would suck if they would have to call off a war or two or maybe stop the NSA spying for a bit.

Comment by RioAmericanInBrasil
2013-09-29 10:26:19

it looked like most essential vital functions were going to continue.

Including Obamacare. That’s how f#@%!n’ dumb the GOP is today. It’s a hoot.

Hey GOP, a Government Shutdown Won’t Stop Obamacare

….what policy experts want to remind Republicans pushing for the defunding of Obamacare is that a government shutdown would not stop funding for the implementation of the health care reform. “A shutdown per se doesn’t stop the Affordable Care Act,” Doug Holtz-Eakin, a former director of the Congressional Budget Office who now leads the American Action Forum, an advocacy group opposed to the health care law, told Bloomberg.

The Affordable Care Act relies primarily on mandatory spending, not appropriations, meaning government inaction will not prevent the exchanges from being operational — the massive computer system will still connect federal agencies to determine whether customers are eligible for coverage and if they qualify for federal subsidies to make coverage more affordable. “None of these agencies will in their entirety shut down, and their computer infrastructure is a pretty essential thing,” Holtz-Eakin said in his interview with Bloomberg.

Comment by RioAmericanInBrasil
2013-09-29 08:21:32

anarchists like me

You consider yourself an “anarchist”? Really? An anarchist? Because you’ve been bragging about legally paying the least amount of taxes you can? Or that you own a couple guns? Or you buy gold? Or you read that book by the dude who says something about freedom and stuff? You’re an anarchist?

Are most “anarchists” delusional, selfish and narcissistic?

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Comment by Bill, just south of Irvine
2013-09-29 08:56:07

Most statists want to violate someone else’s natural right to life, liberty, and voluntary exchange to obtain property. if course doublespeak types like you think peaceful voluntary exchange an voluntary association must be forbidden. Your motto is “voluntary association” is coercion. What a retard you are.

Comment by RioAmericanInBrasil
2013-09-29 09:37:19

What a retard you are.

LOL. Hit a nerve huh? But again, how on earth do you consider yourself an “anarchists”? Seriously?

Do you have some kind of edgy bumper sticker on your Corolla?

Do you pee in the pool where you swim?

Do you listen to Rage Against the Machine blasting too loudly in your black earbuds?

Or every once in awhile, do you think about burning up one of you Military Industrial Complex funded checks? No?

IDK. Maybe you wear white after Labor Day or something.

Comment by RioAmericanInBrasil
2013-09-29 10:36:29

Most statists want to violate someone else’s natural right to life, liberty, and voluntary exchange to obtain property.

So Obama is an anti-statist. Because Obamacare eliminates violations to people’s natural rights to life, liberty and voluntary exchange to obtain property.

Obamacare promotes life, liberty and the voluntary exchange of property.

1. Healthcare promotes life. Obamacare gives access to healthcare

2. Obamacare promotes the liberty of choice in jobs, vocations and free movement because it does not tie one to specific jobs to get health care.

3. Obamacare promotes the individual in the exchange of property because it gives everyone the ability to purchase health insurance.

Comment by Bill, just South of Irvine, CA
2013-09-29 11:09:44

Commie goes “blah blah blah.” I did not read your Orwellian doublespeak. Nothing new. If you know me, post my OC address below. If you know who my company’s customers are you would post the name of my company below too. Otherwise you have made it known you are worse than a fool. An idiot yes.

Comment by RioAmericanInBrasil
2013-09-29 11:37:41

I did not read your Orwellian doublespeak.

Of course you did. That’s why you know I referenced your Military Industrial Complex job history and were defensive about it.

“If you know who my company’s customers are”

Your current company might not be government teat, but most of your career was as you’ve mentioned many times.

Mr. “anarchists” Anarchist? What a joke wrapped up in a solitary narcissistic delusion.

Comment by RioAmericanInBrasil
2013-09-29 11:49:36

your Orwellian doublespeak

My Orwellian doublespeak? Where? What is doublespeak about the statement below? Both sentences are fact. Explain in a rational manner how both are not facts. All my points were facts that you can’t even begin to debunk, which in turn rattles your narrow-minded cage.

1. Healthcare promotes life. Obamacare gives access to healthcare

Doublespeak? No. You are floundering.

Comment by In Colorado
2013-09-29 11:53:18

Your current company might not be government teat

IIRC, he’s working for a medical devices company. A lot of that gear is paid for with Medicare and Medicaid checks. And I’m sure that the DoD and other government agencies are also customers.

Comment by In Colorado
2013-09-29 11:58:53

Commie goes “blah blah blah.”

I love it when you resort to ad hominem attacks. They appear like clockwork when you can’t refute arguments.

Comment by No Lawyers
2013-09-29 13:37:04

Honestly no point in trying to refute somebody who regurgitates talking points constantly.

Comment by RioAmericanInBrasil
2013-09-29 14:29:46

Honestly no point in trying to refute somebody who
does his research and who deals with facts.

For example: Refute these. Try to “No Lawyers”. You won’t because you can’t. You’re done.

Obamacare promotes the liberty of choice in jobs, vocations and free movement because it does not tie one to specific jobs to get health care.

Healthcare promotes life. Obamacare gives access to healthcare

Comment by Housing Analyst
2013-09-29 14:40:19

You mean the insidious script read and posted over and over by “Colorado”?

Those talking points?

Comment by Strawberrypicker
2013-09-29 17:13:25

Rio has lost her mind today!

Comment by alpha-sloth
2013-09-29 19:38:33

Rio has lost her mind today!

And you guys clearly lost the argument with him. Hence the name calling, because you’ve got nothing else.

Comment by Housing Analyst
2013-09-29 20:10:16


That’s all you’re interested in is arguing. You have no interest in seeking the truth, hence you lie and do so consistently.

Carry on liar.

Comment by alpha-sloth
2013-09-29 20:30:55

Carry on liar.

Hence the name calling, because you’ve got nothing else.

Comment by Housing Analyst
2013-09-29 21:00:36

I see you don’t like being known as a liar. You know what to do.

Comment by ahansen
2013-09-29 23:15:00

LMFAO, Rio. Thanks.

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2013-09-29 05:03:52

Sept. 27, 2013, 6:01 a.m. EDT
A shutdown or debt default isn’t in the market
Commentary: Why are investors so complacent?
By Howard Gold

The clock is ticking on the prospects for a government shutdown and, even worse, a technical default on U.S. obligations — and investors seem almost blasé about it.

The Standard & Poor’s 500 index (SPX -0.41%) is down barely 1% since reaching its all-time high last Wednesday after the Federal Open Market Committee declined to “taper” its $85-billion monthly bond purchases.

Meanwhile, since Labor Day, the yield on the 10-year Treasury note has dropped from nearly 3% to 2.65%. September may be a record month for investment-grade corporate bond issuance. And the CBOE Volatility Index (VIX +9.96%) has barely budged.

And every day we move closer to a government shutdown or debt default, with far knottier politics than we had during the debt-ceiling fiasco of summer 2011, after which the U.S. lost its AAA rating from Standard & Poor’s.

“The complacency on this issue is alarming,” Chris Krueger, Washington analyst for Guggenheim Partners, told me earlier this week. “Clearly with Washington policy, everybody’s been focusing on the Fed and the taper,” he said, and are only now looking at the prospects of shutdown or default — and aren’t worrying too much about it.

“Our growing concern is that everyone is far too complacent that just because there has been a deal in all the prior fiscal cliff fights that there has to be a deal in this debt ceiling fight,” he wrote in a note to clients. “There is no evidence to suggest that the debt ceiling will be raised in time.”

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2013-09-29 10:13:46

“And the CBOE Volatility Index (VIX +9.96%) has barely budged.”

I found that sentence especially interesting. How much does the VIX have to jump in one day to be considered a significant move?

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2013-09-29 05:09:20

Playing chicken with locomotives is quite the metaphor!

29 September 2013 Last updated at 03:16 ET
US shutdown looms amid political rifts over health law
The US Capitol dome in Washington. Photo: September 2013
The US Congress remains deadlocked over the funding bill

The US government has less than 48 hours to avert a shutdown of government services amid political divisions over President Obama’s healthcare law.

“(The) House and Senate (are) like two locomotives barreling toward one another … in slow motion,” tweeted Republican Representative Scott Rigell.

Comment by Combotechie
2013-09-29 05:15:25

“… except for one thing.”

which is …?

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2013-09-29 05:19:40

No Octaper.

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2013-09-29 05:21:00

Sept. 20, 2013, 9:52 a.m. EDT
‘Octaper’ depends on Congress
Commentary: As much as data, it’s fiscal decisions that will drive taper

WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) — You’ll hear a lot between now and Oct. 30 — when the next Federal Reserve decision will be announced — about the possibility of tapering depending on economic data.

St. Louis Fed President James Bullard said as much Friday morning. Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke said that on Wednesday.

And there’s some truth in it. But to be clearer — it’s dependent on Congress.

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Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2013-09-29 20:38:57

Wall Street will owe Congress a debt of gratitude if the government shuts down, as a further taper delay would follow as the night the day.

September 29, 2013, 5:11 pm 45 Comments
Wall Street Uneasy in Face of Government Shutdown
Clouds over the Capitol, where members of Congress were at odds over a bill to avert a shutdown.
J. Scott Applewhite/Associated Press

Wall Street has wearily grown accustomed in recent years to periodic market flare-ups caused by fiscal fights in Washington.

But the current battle — and the looming threat of a government shutdown on Tuesday — is beginning to cause greater unease than past political disputes and may rattle markets when they reopen on Monday. In trading in Asia early Monday, the markets were down, with the Nikkei index of Japanese stocks around 2 percent lower.

For investors, the chief fear is that a government shutdown would set the stage for a more momentous battle over the so-called debt ceiling. If there is no agreement to raise the borrowing limit by mid-October, the government will not be able to issue more bonds and could default on its outstanding borrowing.

While Congress in the past has waited until the last minute to raise the debt ceiling, a growing number of analysts say that the political disagreements appear to be more intractable this time around.

“The threat of a default, however remote, seems to be on the table now,” said Gregory R. Valliere, the chief political strategist at Potomac Research Group.

Comment by Combotechie
2013-09-29 05:25:42

And the spin doctors can make this no Octaper thingy a good thingy or they can make it a bad thingy as they so choose.

And the Wall Street sheeple will respond accordingly.

Suck ‘em in, shake ‘em out.

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Comment by jose canusi
2013-09-29 06:22:44

Hey, combo, I read that JFK summary you posted yesterday. Whew! It was one helluva load of nasty sh*t to confront, but offered great insight as to how evil some of our gobmin officials are. Whatever you can dream up about these turds, they’ve probably done it and more. After reading that, all I had to say was “what goes around, comes around”.

Comment by Combotechie
2013-09-29 06:54:55

Glad you liked it. You might want to read the other post of excerpts as well, the one I posted just below the JFK post; It has to do with Nixon and Kissinger and Haig.

This Seymour Herst guy doesn’t pull any punches. I’m looking forward to reading the book that he is now in the process of writing.

Comment by Combotechie
Comment by jose canusi
2013-09-29 07:38:00

I started, but I have some stuff to do today and want to keep on an even keel.

The truth is, though, it’s not hyperbole to say, for the most part, that we are “governed” by a group of insane, syphilitic whores, both male and female. People can’t confront that, though. If they could, we wouldn’t be governed by such.

What’s not addressed, however, is whether they’re nuts to begin with, or the insanity is induced by the STDs. Probably some combo.

There have been rumblings about pedophilia in high places, and I’m beginning to think the rumors of a pedo-ring at upper levels of gubmin are probably backed by some truth.

So is it any wonder we are where we are now? The real wonder is that we managed to get this far. But the signs of collapse are there. No organization survives the level of perversion promoted under the law these days. History is strewn with such examples. I had a feeling things had gone over the top the day I witnessed a store clerk working for a big box chain calmly and placidly viewing snuff films on her “smart” phone during her lunch break, like a cow chewing its cud.

Comment by jose canusi
2013-09-29 08:01:25

lol (bitterly) imagine what would happen if people who consigned a son, daughter, other relative or friend to the military woke up and realized what they were really doing. Allowing, or even encouraging, family and friends to do the dirty work of a bunch of insane syphlitic whores. And possibly get killed, maimed or otherwise traumatized in the process. Vietnam should have been a huge clue, but even closer to the present, how about that dick who shot up Ft. Hood? In a sane society, there would have been a military coup over that. Heck, in a sane society, it would never have gotten that far.


Comment by Combotechie
2013-09-29 08:13:51

“Power is an aphrodisiac” - Henry Kissinger

I think of power as a drug that some love to take and after they take enough of the stuff they get hooked and their life gets taken over by it - which means gaining more and more of it becomes the central driving force of their lives - and at the same time they build up a tolerance to it and hence need more and more of the stuff to get the same pleasureable effects.

Comment by Combotechie
2013-09-29 08:23:44

If drive is what gets you to the top the the top will eventually be filled with those who have the most drive.

If the drive to the top needs to be accompanied by lies then the ones with the most drive AND the best lies are the ones who will make it to the top.

Comment by No Lawyers
2013-09-29 08:29:34

One word of caution, Hersh has been caught “fabricating” stories in the past. He’s still better than most of the “investigative journalists” out there.

Comment by No Lawyers
2013-09-29 08:33:13

The truth is, though, it’s not hyperbole to say, for the most part, that we are “governed” by a group of insane, syphilitic whores, both male and female. People can’t confront that, though. If they could, we wouldn’t be governed by such.

It’s human nature..pure and simple. In history of mankind, we served the mad strong men….then came mad Kings….now mad politicians. Our brain is not evolved as much as we would like it to.

Comment by alpha-sloth
2013-09-29 08:48:37

now mad politicians

Except whatever politician one supports. S/he is the real deal, and not like the others!

Comment by jose canusi
2013-09-29 08:51:54

Some mad, some not. I’ve always been fascinated by the history of Good Queen Bess. Not that she didn’t have her own escapades. But at least she learned her lesson and kept England out of foreign wars and as a result, England experienced a time of peace and prosperity under her reign. She also knew that keeping her head on her neck depended upon staying single and not creating a marriage alliance with a foreign country. A brilliant stateswoman who gave up much personal happiness in the service of her country.

Of course, she was wise enough to realize that even the most devoted lover would stoop to betray her, if the stakes were tempting enough. So she married her country and for that, the people loved her. Would that we had a statesman or woman wise enough to do the same.

Comment by spook
2013-09-29 08:54:42

“So is it any wonder we are where we are now? The real wonder is that we managed to get this far. But the signs of collapse are there. No organization survives the level of perversion promoted under the law these days.”

OK, so what should a person do about it?

Here is one suggestion I find increasingly attractive:

Comment by Combotechie
2013-09-29 08:58:35

“One word of caution, Hersh has been caught ‘frabricating’ stories in the past.”

That’s good - good that he has been caught. Now that he has been caught maybe he’ll take care to clean up his act.

It’s also good that those who frabricates stores can have their asses sued.

Comment by Anon In DC
2013-09-29 09:11:59

Comment by jose canusi
2013-09-29 08:51:54
Some mad, some not. I’ve always been fascinated by the history of Good Queen Bess…

Yep she was one shrewd /sharp ruler. Also very diligent to the point of obsessive compulsive disorder about debt and the country’s financial health. The US could use some leaders like that.

Comment by jose canusi
2013-09-29 09:15:23

“Here is one suggestion I find increasingly attractive:”

Excellent. I’ve had a similar conversation with a friend recently, on how, thoughout history as we know it, civilizations are either building up or dying. But even during the death part of the cycle, there are always those that survive and even thrive and that one doesn’t have to join those who are dying. In other words, one can, as an individual, not decay along with others.

Thanks for posting that, very powerful.

Comment by No Lawyers
2013-09-29 09:16:43

The US could use some leaders like that.

Good luck getting virgins elected to the government. We may have to start robbing the cradle.

Comment by jose canusi
2013-09-29 09:27:39

“Good luck getting virgins elected to the government.”

I hope you’re not serious here, Bess was no virgin. That Virgin Queen business was strictly public relations and symbolism.

One thing I like about Good Queen Bess was that her reign brought forth a talent such as old Shakey-the-Speare. What a writer! PBS is running a series of his works made into movies. Good stuff.

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2013-09-29 10:03:09

So the interesting question for investors, unless the govt somehow avoids a shutdown by coming to some kind of literal 11th-hour 59th minute agreement tomorrow evening, is how the shutdown will balance out against no Octaper.

Because it seems quite clear that the market-rattling effect of a shutdown, with the looming specter of a possible govt debt default in a couple of weeks, will be enough to keep the Fed on hold.

Comment by azdude02
2013-09-29 11:10:16

just buy some pennies and twitter stock.

Comment by Dale
2013-09-29 11:24:40

Wouldn’t a shut down be sort of like a “sequester” only with the “essential” parts of the govt. exempt?

Comment by polly
2013-09-29 12:24:14

Count in Jose as a US voter who loves Public Television. Me too.

Comment by jose canusi
2013-09-29 13:11:13

Like any other TV station, there’s some programming I like and some I tune out. But the Shakespeare stuff has been pretty good lately. And PBS introduced me to Riverdance and Michael Flatley. I enjoy the Celtic Women. (sorry, gents, the ladies have you beat here). And where else can you see Jay Black hold a note for minutes, even though he’s in his 70s now? I also enjoy the Moyers interviews sometimes, especially the one he did recently with Robert Reich.

There was also a local production on human trafficking in the Tampa Bay area the other evening, it was pretty riveting despite the painful effort they made to be politically correct about the issue.

Comment by jose canusi
2013-09-29 13:14:50

I wish PBS would have picked up “Kings” from NBC. Every once in a while NBC does something good, and they scare themselves and kill it off. Looks like Fox is going to do the same thing and screw the pooch with Sleepy Hollow.

Comment by alpha-sloth
2013-09-29 19:49:22

And where else can you see Jay Black hold a note for minutes, even though he’s in his 70s now?

So government social spending is fine, as long as you’re the beneficiary.

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2013-09-29 15:06:24

Daily Pfennig
Octaper Gets Added To The Dictionary
EverBank World Markets Thu, Sep 26 2013, 11:26 GMT
by Chuck Butler | EverBank World Markets

Good day. And A Tub Thumpin’ Thursday to you! Well, I’m back! Back from Houston, and the MD Anderson Cancer Center. Just in time, it appears, as Chris was sounding as though he was really missing his morning workouts to write the Pfennig! I guess, I should not throw that at him so often, as his workouts are important to him! But, I thank him so much for taking the conn! Sans workouts.

Well. As I turned on the currency screens today, I noticed that not too much has changed since I signed off last Friday. The euro has traded back and forth around the 1.35 figure, British pound sterling is well over 1.60, and Gold is still giving back its gains from the no tapering decision. There have been quite a few Fed Heads on the speaking circuit since last week. I saw that Fed Head Lacker was quite adamant about how the markets would get used to tapering, and that St. Louis Fed Head, Bullard, threw a cat among the pigeons late last week by creating a new word, “Octaper”. The markets had just digested the no Septaper, and Bullard shoved the Octaper in their collective faces.

Chris sent me a note about something that my friend John Mauldin had in his “out of the box” letter the other day regarding Tapering. Let’s listen in to Ben Hunt, PhD.

“The WHY of the Fed - its meaning - changed this week. Or rather, it’s been changing for a long time and now has been officially presented via a song-and-dance routine. What Bernanke signaled this week is that QE is no longer an emergency government measure, but is now a permanent government program. In exactly the same way that retirement and poverty insurance became permanent government programs in the aftermath of the Great Depression, so now is deflation and growth insurance well on its way to becoming a permanent government program in the aftermath of the Great Recession. The rate of asset purchases may wax and wane in the years to come, and might even be negative for short periods of time, but the program itself will never be unwound.

Chuck again. Of course I agree with this, for many of you that have come to listen to me talk the past couple of years, have heard me say things like “sometime down the road, when someone else is giving you this talk, he’ll be talking about QE 24″ And so on. And don’t forget what I’ve told you over and over again that this dance is gonna be a drag, no wait, over and over again that even though the Fed might end the current QE # they are on, the ending is just temporary, for they’ll find out soon enough that the economy had become addicted to stimulus, and can’t go on without it!

It’s a tight corner the Fed Heads have painted themselves into folks. Getting out of it will be a very messy process. Speaking of a very messy process. what about the Debt Ceiling stuff? Crazy! In one corner you have the President who says he won’t negotiate, but I think in the end he will have to, and in the other corner you have the House Republicans who hold the keys to the bank, and the question is whether they are willing to have tons of blame heaped on them for shutting down the Gov’t should they hold the President’s feet to the fire for not negotiating?

This defunding of the Affordable Healthcare Act (AHA) sounds catchy, but that dog ain’t going to hunt folks. In other words, I doubt very seriously that the House gets that concession. But they might get the delay of 1 year for the individual mandate, and then they could claim a victory. But in the end no one wins, because, the Debt Ceiling just keeps getting raised.

OK. I’ve had tons of time in waiting rooms the past few days to read, and brother did I do some reading about this stuff. Listen I don’t care about all the politicization of the process. I just care that when all the dust settles, the debt ceiling will be raised, and our elected representatives will kick the can down the road once again. And that deepens my belief that the U.S. dollar will continue to be held hostage by debt. That’s how this weak dollar trend began, and why it will continue.

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Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2013-09-29 15:34:20

Is it safe to conclude that nobody, save perhaps for Ben Bernanke’s dog, believes at this point that QE is ever going away?

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2013-09-29 14:52:44

Sept. 29, 2013, 1:01 p.m. EDT
Government shutdown risk may trump jobs report
September job creation won’t mean much if budget showdown spurs shutdown
By Jeffry Bartash, MarketWatch

WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) — The U.S. jobs report usually commands Wall Street’s attention at the start of each month, but the budget standoff in Washington could steal the spotlight absent a speedy resolution.

Large swaths of the federal government could shut down next week barring a last-minute agreement. And the U.S. could even do the unthinkable — default on part of its debt — unless Democrats and Republicans compromise on a bill to raise the legal limit on how much the government can borrow. The Treasury could effectively run out of money in late October.

Similar showdowns in the past have always been resolved, though in some cases the disputes have dragged on long enough to trigger temporary damage to the economy. The U.S. experienced a short but sharp slowdown in the summer of 2011 during the last standoff over the so-called debt ceiling.

“We saw in 2011 that it weighs on business and consumer confidence,” noted economist Ryan Sweet at Moody’s Analytics. “Hopefully it ends better than it did last time.”

While investors on Wall Street have grown increasingly concerned about the standoff in Washington, they for now appear to be taking it mostly in stride. “If an adverse political outcome does occur, even just a brief government shutdown, the financial pain could be swift because investors don’t appear to be positioned for it,” said Scott Anderson, chief economist at Bank of the West.

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2013-09-29 15:43:34

Would a govt shutdown put the Friday jobs report on indefinite hold?

Or is this considered an “essential” government function, as otherwise how will Wall Street traders know whether to buy or sell without the employment situation update?

Key report on jobs at risk in shutdown

By Gregory Wallace
@CNNMoney September 29, 2013: 2:12 PM ET
The closely-watched monthly jobs report set for release on Friday could be delayed if the federal government shuts down.

Bureau of Labor Statistics commissioner Erica Groshen said in a memo Friday that “all survey and other program operations will cease and the public website will not be updated.” Nearly all of the agency’s 2,400 employees will be part of government-wide furloughs.

The government has not labeled the release of economic data as essential and necessary to produce in a shutdown.

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2013-09-29 18:05:00

Are Congress folks working behind the scenes to propose 11th hour 59th minute compromises? Or is a shutdown in the bag?

We’ll know by 12 midnight tomorrow.

Updated September 29, 2013, 8:17 p.m. ET
Government Heads Toward Shutdown
Senate Doesn’t Reconvene Until Monday Afternoon, Hours Before Deadline

WASHINGTON—The nation braced for a partial shutdown of the federal government, as time for Congress to pass a budget before a Monday midnight deadline grew perilously short and lawmakers gave no signs Sunday they were moving toward a resolution.

Leaders of both parties said they wanted to avoid the first federal closure since 1996, but their public appearances seemed aimed more at affixing blame for the impasse.

Government workers brace for another potential shutdown, with the possibility of no back-pay, while Americans are wondering if they’ll get their mail. Laura Meckler joins the News Hub with what to expect when you’re expecting a government shutdown. (Photo: AP)

House Speaker John Boehner (R., Ohio) urged Senate leaders to pass legislation that the Republican-controlled House had approved early Sunday morning, which would fund the government through mid-December. But that prospect was remote, as the House legislation included a one-year delay of the new federal health law that Democrats have vowed to reject, as well as a repeal of the new law’s tax on medical devices.

Democrats say Mr. Boehner himself could end the stalemate quickly by asking the House to pass the Senate plan for extending federal funding, which includes no provisions aimed at the health law.

Such a move would anger conservatives in Mr. Boehner’s ranks and likely materialize only at the last minute, after keeping up the fight against the health law to the end. But it would bring relief to the many Republicans who fear that the public would hand their party the largest share of blame for a shutdown.

The tense maneuvering surrounded a bill that otherwise might be uncontroversial: an extension of current funding for the government for the early months of the new fiscal year, which begins Tuesday. But a determined faction of conservative Republicans has argued that the deadline gives the party its best opportunity for derailing the new health law before one of its central elements, health-insurance marketplaces for individuals, are launched Tuesday.

Some Republicans held out hope that the prospect of a government shutdown would pressure Senate Democrats to make even a symbolic concession to their demand for changes in the Affordable Care Act, perhaps by agreeing to the repeal of the medical-device tax intended to help fund the law.

“We will not shut the government down,” said House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy (R., Calif.), speaking Sunday on Fox News. “If we have to negotiate a little longer, we will continue to negotiate.”

Comment by alpha-sloth
2013-09-29 19:58:53

But a determined faction of conservative Republicans has argued that the deadline gives the party its best opportunity for derailing the new health law

Oh yes, we must keep our extremely expensive, inefficient, anti-entrepreneurial, and cruel health care system at all costs!

It’s our modern-day peculiar institution.

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2013-09-29 18:10:46

The prospect of a U.S. government shutdown is raining havoc on Asian stock markets.

But Wall Street traders needn’t worry, as it is different over here.

Market Pulse Archives
Sept. 29, 2013, 8:40 p.m. EDT
Japan stocks slide on strengthening yen
By Carla Mozee

LOS ANGELES (MarketWatch) — Japanese stocks dropped early Monday, with exporting shares under pressure by strength in the Japanese yen (USDJPY +0.11%) as a looming U.S. government shutdown weighed on the U.S. dollar. The Nikkei Stock Average (JP:NIK -1.95%) fell 291 points, or 2%, to 14,469, in broad-based losses.

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2013-09-29 20:24:34

For the Washington Area, a Second Lightning Strike
Published: September 29, 2013

WASHINGTON — A temporary shutdown of much of the federal government, disruptive though it might be, would probably have only a modest effect on the government’s cost of doing business and would do minimal damage to the economy over all. But not so for the capital region.

For a decade, Washington has been the town that the recession forgot, a bastion of economic confidence, low unemployment, growing wealth and healthy property values. But as the rest of the country has started to recover, Washington and its close-by suburbs in Maryland and Virginia have stalled, hit hard by the $1 trillion in budget cuts known as sequestration, as well as by hundreds of billions of dollars in additional cuts to the military.

If the government has a lapse in spending, or if Congress cannot approve an increase in the government’s borrowing limit in mid-October, the pain would only get worse, economists said.

“There’s been a dramatic slowdown in growth” in recent years, said Stephen Fuller, the director of the Center for Regional Analysis at George Mason University. “A potential shutdown, the debt ceiling — those headwinds would come in combination with sequestration, furloughs, job reductions and contract cutbacks.”

“The economy is just limping along,” he said.

Federal workers, in Washington and elsewhere, would feel the brunt of a shutdown if a spending measure were not approved by Congress on Monday, having already faced furloughs this year because of sequestration.

Greg Nudd, an Environmental Protection Agency employee who works on dust and haze issues, was furloughed for a total of 47 hours this year.

“When it became clear sequestration wasn’t going to be resolved, we stopped putting money in the kids’ college fund and put it in an emergency fund,” Mr. Nudd said, adding that he had started looking for a job outside the government. “We’ve cut back on a number of things. We canceled cable, we got rid of our land line, we cut out luxuries, the housekeeper’s not coming — things like that.”

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2013-09-29 20:30:17

The way this unwinds could make or break political careers of those who are responsible for driving the bus off the cliff.

ft dot com
September 29, 2013 7:02 pm
Washington faces shutdown in budget stand-off
By James Politi in Washington
Washington, District of Columbia, U.S. - Storm clouds over hang over the dome of the U.S. Capitol building in Washington, D.C.©Alamy

Parts of the US government will shut down at midnight on Monday for the first time since 1996 unless Congress and the White House find a way out of their latest stand-off on fiscal policy.

After a weekend of political drama, angst and mutual blame, all non-essential staff of the federal government could be placed on unpaid leave, with agencies closing down many of their services.

Highlighting the cost of political deadlock over US fiscal plans, a Financial Times analysis shows that automatic US government spending cuts which took effect in March are causing the most damage in regions that weathered the recession better than the rest of the country.

Cuts under so-called “sequestration” have hit federal funding for scientific research, forced civilian government employees into unpaid leave and reduced anti-poverty programmes including jobless benefits, housing vouchers and early childhood education.

According to data compiled by the FT and the Washington-based Center for Public Integrity based on 2010 US Census figures, sequestration has hit the wallet of each American by slightly more than $240 this year. Cuts have started to crimp communities – from Alaska to New Mexico, Kansas, Virginia, and Georgia – that had previously been protected from big economic downturns by the influx of federal dollars.

Early on Sunday, the Republican-controlled House of Representatives voted to renew funding for the government until December 15, but maintained a tough line in tying the measure to a one-year delay in the healthcare law known as “Obamacare”.

The 2010 health reform – whose main provisions take effect next year – is deeply unpopular with conservatives. House Republicans on Sunday also voted to repeal a medical devices tax intended to help pay for the expansion of health coverage under the law.

Democrats in the Senate immediately said the legislation approved by the House was unacceptable and driven by the staunchly conservative Tea Party wing of the Republican party. The White House signalled it would be vetoed by President Barack Obama.

Economists at Goldman Sachs have estimated that a government shutdown could deliver an $8bn hit to the US economy each week, based on the experience of the mid-1990s when Democratic President Bill Clinton and Newt Gingrich, the Republican House speaker, locked horns during a 21-day closure of federal operations.

With the deadline approaching, Republicans in the House sought to deflect blame for a possible shutdown and pin it on Mr Obama’s party.

Comment by alpha-sloth
2013-09-29 20:58:08

. Cuts have started to crimp communities – from Alaska to New Mexico, Kansas, Virginia, and Georgia – that had previously been protected from big economic downturns by the influx of federal dollars.

A good opportunity for the red states to learn how tightly they are attached to the government teat.

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2013-09-29 05:12:23

Housing bubble symptom numero uno is official denial.

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2013-09-29 05:17:14

David Cameron: there is no housing bubble
Speaking on BBC One’s The Andrew Marr Show, David Cameron explained why the Government is launching Help-to-Buy three months early.
11:45AM BST 29 Sep 2013

Prospective homeowners will be able to use the Government’s subsidised mortgage scheme from as early as next week after the Coalition decided to bring the launch date forward by three months.

On the even of the Conservative party conference in Manchester, David Cameron revealed that the state-backed lenders, Royal Bank of Scotland and Lloyds Banking Group, would be offering deals under the Help-to-Buy scheme from next week instead of January.

It will initially be available under the Nat West, RBS and Halifax brands. A Tory spokesman said that other banks are expected to take part over time.

The second phase of the controversial scheme will help people buy a home worth up to £600,000 with just a 5pc deposit. The Government will guarantee the next 15pc of the loan for a fee, reducing the banks’ risk of loss so they can offer cheaper mortgages to higher-risk customers.

The scheme will be available for three years on up to £130bn of mortgage lending.

Comment by azdude02
2013-09-29 07:04:04

people who are making money dont see a bubble.

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2013-09-29 05:22:47

Sept. 20, 2013, 2:00 p.m. EDT
Bullard doesn’t see any major asset-price bubbles
By Polya Lesova

NEW YORK (MarketWatch) - St. Louis Fed President James Bullard said Friday that he doesn’t see any asset-price bubbles in the markets at the moment. The tech bubble of the 1990s and the housing bubble of 2008 were “gigantic and obvious,” he said. “At least right now, you don’t have anything of that magnitude going on,” Bullard said.

Comment by azdude02
2013-09-29 07:10:01

If you held first position on a deed of trust would you subordinate to a flipper who wanted a construction loan?

Comment by localandlord
2013-09-29 19:39:46

That depends. What is the amount of the first and the maximum amount on the construction loan. What is the track record of the flipper. Is the house so bad it needs rehab to be marketable or is this speculative granisteel upgrade.

At the very least talk to a lawyer.

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Comment by No Lawyers
2013-09-29 08:26:10

The tech bubble of the 1990s and the housing bubble of 2008 were “gigantic and obvious,” he said.

I don’t think Bulltard saw them either.

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2013-09-29 10:15:04

He sees them clearly now, through the lens of the Fed’s rear-view mirror.

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Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2013-09-29 05:27:39

January 12, 2010, 10:31 am
Bubble Denial

Via Mark Thoma, Economics of Contempt has done [did] a yeoman job [back in 2008] of assembling quotes from pundits/economists who insisted that there was no housing bubble. [At first I failed to note the date of EoC's post; special kudos to Mark for remembering it and providing the link]. Just as a reminder, the facts:

EoC’s list consists largely of the usual suspects — the WSJ op-ed contributors/Kudlow guests. As he suggests, some of this was my fault: I said there was a housing bubble, which to them was sufficient demonstration that there wasn’t. (They hate me! They really hate me!) Beyond that, to suggest that there was a housing bubble was to denigrate the wonderful Bush Boom.

Can I add anything to Mr. Contempt’s list?

One question is whether you can find clear bubble denial, or at least denial that anything really bad was going to happen, from more respectable economists. Ben Bernanke is one well-known example; I’ve found this from Glenn Hubbard on Face the Nation, August 21, 2005:

I think we do have a great deal of froth in housing markets. There’s no doubt about it. I don’t think we’re likely to see a large nominal price collapse, that is largely falling house prices, but I think we’ll see much slower rates of growth in house prices after 2005.

Comment by azdude02
2013-09-29 07:06:11

I’m bird dogging for tom vu today.

Comment by azdude02
2013-09-29 05:32:43

housing bubbles make a lot of insiders rich. it appears they seem to like them a lot. they sure went back to goosing housing fast.

I’m just going with the flow these days. trying to put personal feelings aside and make some money. I got bills to pay too.

Comment by Combotechie
2013-09-29 05:35:31

“they sure went back to goosing housing fast.”

Think “save the banks” and it will all make sense.

Comment by azdude02
2013-09-29 05:46:06

yep thats so true. if the banks werent involved they wouldnt care.

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Comment by rms
2013-09-29 07:30:44

“housing bubbles make a lot of insiders rich. it appears they seem to like them a lot. they sure went back to goosing housing fast.”

+1 The insiders are looting their country’s treasury because the first ingredient required for a bubble is government guarantees of the accumulated debt. These “well meaning, but disguised programs” are first launched to help the poor. Later with lobbying money these programs are quickly expanded and greeted with middle-class applause. Eventually the losers realize their gullibility and the few winners who rigged the game step in to buy these deflated assets with their contrived gains. Apparently his recipe works quite well in many cultures and languages.

Comment by sleepless_near_seattle
2013-09-29 10:42:26

Housing bubble symptom numero uno is official denial.

That, and the fact that it appears to be running out of steam. Why the immediacy in bringing it forward 3 months?

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2013-09-29 05:38:43

China Business & Economy
China’s Economy on the Verge of Collapse
By Tianlun Jian | September 25, 2013


State officials at every level have sought to wring instant benefits out of real estate in China, distorting the economy and setting banks up to fail. Now, the debate about China’s economy is no longer over whether the real estate bubble will burst, but when.

China initiated reform of real estate policy in 1998, and within one year, China had three rate cuts. Interest rates on deposits underwent a rapid reduction from 5.7 percent in 1998 to 1.98 percent in February 2002. In the following decade, interest rates hovered at a low level, between 2 and 4 percent.

The interest rates on deposits either matched with or were lower than the inflation rate. The real interest rate—the nominal interest rate less the inflation rate—was either negative or zero.

Keeping savings in a bank, then, was a losing proposition. The Chinese people had two outlets open to them for getting a return on their money: investing in stocks or real estate.

In 2003, China’s State Council said that real estate would be strategically promoted as a pivotal industry to grow China’s economy. Loans for purchasing real estate should be processed with priority. China’s real estate prices started continuously escalating in 2004.

Local governments fueled the rise in prices with surcharges called “land-transfer fees” and layers of taxation.

In 1997, the total land-transfer fees collected by all levels of governments across the country were only 6.7 billion yuan (US$1 billion). In 2009, the metropolis of Hangzhou alone collected 120 billion yuan (US$20 billion) in land-transfer fees.

According to the calculations of Dr. Ye Tan, a famous financial commentator in China, governmental surcharges and fees have contributed between 50 and 80 percent to real estate prices. In many areas nowadays, the land transfer fees alone constitute about 40 percent of the final real estate price.

Hu Cunzhi, deputy minister of Land and Resources, pointed out on July 11, 2013, that a tacit understanding existed in the land market between the governments that are selling and the developers who are buying. Developers are allowed to illegally take a large amount of land off the market, leaving it undeveloped or underdeveloped. This artificially keeps the supply of land and housing low, which pushes up their price, benefiting local governments.

The regime’s practice of rating officials’ performance by the increase in GDP registered in their area has also driven up real estate prices. Local politicians treat development projects, such as railroads and airports, as political achievements.

However, they devour large amounts of investment, and many are not really needed. Once built, many airports are simply idle, with the number of runways higher than the number of flights the airport hosts in a day.

Distorted Economy

Highly inflated real estate pricing has distorted China’s economy, causing many industries to divert investment toward real estate. For example, some clothing companies have stopped making clothes, and some electronic appliance manufacturers have dropped making appliances in order to throw all their money into real estate.

The profit margin of Chinese enterprises keeps dropping, with increasing labor costs causing operating costs to rise. At the same time, the profit margin on real estate has kept going up. Buying real estate has been equivalent to buying a guaranty of profit.

Although everyone has been aware that the bubble would burst one day, so long as the bubble keeps swelling, nobody wants to miss the last train to make money.

At the same time, Beijing and Shanghai have benefitted from what are called conglomeration effects. Jobs are available in these two cities, and people are willing to move there for the sake of a job, which helps drive demand for housing.

However, even in Beijing and Shanghai, the wealthy often own several apartments, and many apartments stand empty. In 2007, 36 percent of the apartments in Beijing were empty, and the number is now certainly higher.

Comment by phony scandals
2013-09-29 05:41:39

Welcome to Jamaica have a nice day. :)

Comment by jose canusi
2013-09-29 06:24:29

Jamaica? Welcome to the jungle is more like it. Old Axl Rose knew whereof he sang.

PS. Compared to Axl, Fergie did a crap job on “Sweet Child of Mine”.

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2013-09-29 10:18:01

Where did you read that?

Comment by azdude02
Comment by Skroodle
2013-09-29 10:30:07

What a load of BS -

President Barack Obama: If you like your doctor, you will be able to keep your doctor. Period.

Mr. President, tell that to tens of thousands of retirees at IBM and Time Warner and dozens of others, who’ve been dumped from their coverage and told to find their own coverage. Fox News didn’t break that news to them, Mr. President. Their companies did.

Companies have been getting rid of retiree medical for years.

Besides, only Socialist would want health insurance from a company they retired from. Real Mericans would buy it directly from an insurance company.

Comment by ecofeco
2013-09-29 14:43:54

“Companies have been getting rid of retiree medical for years.”

2 decades actually. Stealing retirees money began in earnest in the 1990s.

Comment by AbsoluteBeginner
2013-09-29 06:06:12

‘The coming week should be great for Wall Street, except for one thing.’


Comment by jose canusi
2013-09-29 06:59:47

lol, Nibiru

Comment by AbsoluteBeginner
2013-09-29 12:18:48

‘lol, Nibiru’

Yeah, but imagine the kickstart to the economy based upon the rebuilding of the whole planet. WS should be pricing in the growth with higher multiples soon.

Comment by phony scandals
2013-09-29 07:30:06

Hardest Hit applications top 17,000, process still open

by Kim Miller

Application numbers for Florida’s Hardest Hit Fund Principal Reduction program topped more than 17,000 as of 9:00 this morning. The online application process opened on Wednesday and will remain open until applications reach 25,000.

Homeowners interested in applying for the program should visit the website,, review the eligibility criteria, and then click the “Start Now” button to begin.

The Florida Housing Finance Corporation, which oversees the state’s $1 billion Hardest Hit Fund, expects to provide another update on application numbers later today.

This entry was posted on Friday, September 27th, 2013 at 8:33 am and is filed under Uncategorized. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

Comment by phony scandals
2013-09-29 07:35:31

Posted: 5:43 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 25, 2013

Anxious homeowners hit early web glitch applying for mortgage reductions

By Kimberly Miller

Palm Beach Post Staff Writer

Florida homeowners eager to get in on a unique and limited mortgage reduction program pounced on a state website Wednesday as the first come, first served application process opened at 9 a.m.

But they were greeted with an unsettling message — the 25,000 application threshold for the Hardest Hit principal reduction program had already been met.

Comment by ecofeco
2013-09-29 14:49:10

Wow. :shock:

Comment by Ben Jones
2013-09-29 07:30:46

‘The two presidents have spoken: Barack Obama and Hassan Rouhani. And they are on the same page. By that I mean not they agree about the issues dividing the two countries but that they are both ready to move forward, to test each other and see if agreement is possible.’

‘As tentative as this is, it is also huge — as anyone who has paid even a little attention over the past 34 years knows.’

‘However, I do not see this process leading anywhere because the Netanyahu government and its lobby, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), are both determined to end the process and have the ability to do it.’

‘Remember what AIPAC’s former #2 guy, Steve Rosen (later indicted under the Espionage Act) told New Yorker writer Jeff Goldberg in 2005. Goldberg asked Rosen just how powerful AIPAC is. Goldberg described Rosen’s response.’

‘A half smile appeared on his face, and he pushed a napkin across the table. “You see this napkin?” he said. “In twenty-four hours, we could have the signatures of seventy senators on this napkin.”

Comment by Combotechie
2013-09-29 07:45:18

“In twenty-four hours, we could have the signatures of seventy senators on this napkin.”

Wiki-up “AIPIC” for an interesting read.

Comment by Combotechie
2013-09-29 07:48:21

er, make that “AIPAC”.

Comment by jose canusi
2013-09-29 08:20:41

Ah, yes, read about our great ally Israel here:

The truth is, they despise us with a passion. But we’re useful idiots to them.

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Comment by No Lawyers
2013-09-29 08:23:35

It’s got be close to 90 senators in 2013.

Comment by No Lawyers
2013-09-29 08:52:24

Menendez, McLame & Shoomer?

America’s Exceptional Progressive senators….say no more.

Comment by jose canusi
2013-09-29 09:31:14

I was looking up the word “creep” in the dictionary the other day and it had pictures of all three next to the definition, dang!

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Comment by Housing Analyst
2013-09-29 10:14:35

Good work No Lawyers. Love the username whoever you are.

Can we get another truth teller to take up the moniker “Lawyers Are Liars”?

Comment by Skroodle
2013-09-29 10:34:30

NEOCons must be sorely disappointed at this roadblock in their quest to bring Democracy to Iran.

Comment by Bill, just South of Irvine, CA
2013-09-29 16:13:29

Very sad. They put tens of thousands of American heads on the chopping block just for Israel. America the world cop. Then we get blowback in the form of 9/11.

The only power we have is to each reduce our own tax burden and build up movable, hidable wealth. Starve the beast of big government. Voting won’t do anything other than perpetuate the system we have now. We have seen this in B.O.

Comment by Bill, just South of Irvine, CA
2013-09-29 16:15:04

If B.O. Can shake of “the lobby” my opinion of him will change for the positive (although I will still resist his Marxism).

Comment by Bill, just South of Irvine, CA
2013-09-29 16:17:33

Of…offL and by “the lobby” I do not mean gun lobby. I have the important firearms I want. They are hidden. Bammy will only help the gun industry by threatening confiscation…again.

Comment by phony scandals
2013-09-29 07:46:36

Kerry signs UN arms treaty, senators threaten to block it

Published September 25, 2013

Secretary of State John Kerry on Wednesday signed a controversial U.N. treaty on arms regulation, riling U.S. lawmakers who vow the Senate will not ratify the agreement.

As he signed the document, Kerry called the treaty a “significant step” in addressing illegal gun sales, while claiming it would also protect gun rights.

“This is about keeping weapons out of the hands of terrorists and rogue actors. This is about reducing the risk of international transfers of conventional arms that will be used to carry out the world’s worst crimes. This is about keeping Americans safe and keeping America strong,” he said. “This treaty will not diminish anyone’s freedom. In fact, the treaty recognizes the freedom of both individuals and states to obtain, possess, and use arms for legitimate purposes.”

U.S. lawmakers, though, have long claimed the treaty could lead to new gun control measures. They note the U.S. Senate has final say on whether to approve the agreement.

Sen. Bob Corker, R-Tenn., in a letter to President Obama, urged his administration not to take any action to implement the treaty without the consent of the Senate.

He claimed the treaty raises “fundamental issues” concerning “individual rights protected by the Second Amendment of the United States Constitution.”

The National Rifle Association blasted the plan, claiming it would impose an “invasive registration scheme” by requiring importing countries to give exporting countries information on “end users.”

Sen. Jim Inhofe, R-Okla., one of the most vocal opponents of the treaty, also sent a letter to Kerry declaring the treaty “dead in the water,” since a majority of senators has gone on record against the agreement.

“The administration is wasting precious time trying to sign away our laws to the global community and unelected U.N. bureaucrats,” he wrote.

Kerry, who is in New York attending the U.N. General Assembly session, announced earlier this year that the administration planned to sign the treaty. - 29k -

Comment by rms
2013-09-29 07:50:08

Well, off to work again; sweet double-time!

Comment by azdude02
2013-09-29 08:19:53

u should just buy a house.

Comment by Resistor
2013-09-29 12:52:19

FHA. Don’t forget type of loan. Can’t use your own money…

Comment by azdude02
2013-09-29 14:21:53

leverage, leverage, leverage! Got equity?

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Comment by inchbyinch
2013-09-29 14:39:53

aka as muggy?

How are your two adorable kids?
How old are they now?
Are you still in education?

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Comment by rms
2013-09-29 18:18:54

“u should just buy a house.”

+1 Own one…outright. Zero debt almost two years now!

Comment by Housing Analyst
2013-09-29 15:25:40

“Housing makes insiders rich…. and buyers poor. Very poor.”

No question. Paying in excess of $35/sq ft for a resale house is counted as loss. Your losses are magnified tremendously if you finance it for 15 or 30 years.

Comment by azdude02
2013-09-29 15:37:03
Comment by AbsoluteBeginner
2013-09-29 16:14:04

Casey Serin

Comment by Rental Watch
2013-09-29 21:58:43

“”The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change claimed it was 95 percent sure that global warming was mainly driven by human burning of fossil fuels that produce greenhouse gases. The I.P.C.C. also glossed over the fact that the Earth has not warmed in the past 15 years, arguing that the heat was absorbed by the ocean.”

“Scientists have been struggling to explain the 15-year hiatus in global warming, and governments have been urging them to whitewash the fact that temperatures have not been rising because such data would impact the upcoming climate negotiations in 2015.

The Associated Press obtained documents that show the Obama administration and some European governments pressured UN climate scientists to downplay or even omit data that shows the world hasn’t warmed in over a decade.”

So, how can we “believe the science”, when the results are politically skewed?

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2013-09-29 23:44:31

Why does it matter so much whether humans or nature “cause” global warming, especially given the 15-year hiatus?

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2013-09-29 23:48:18

Yield on 10-year note down 3 bp to 2.601%
32 min ago
- Barbara Kollmeyer

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2013-09-29 23:50:34


Sept. 30, 2013, 1:52 a.m. EDT
U.S. stock futures tumble as shutdown looms
By Barbara Kollmeyer

MADRID (MarketWatch) — U.S. stock market futures traded sharply lower early Monday as investors faced down the possibility of a U.S. government shutdown. Congress failed to agree on a new budget over the weekend, while the threat of new elections out of Italy and a report showing that China’s manufacturing sector grew at a slower pace than expected also weighed on sentiment. Futures for the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJZ3 -0.76%) fell 98 points, or 0.6%, to 15,097, while those for the Standard & Poor’s 500 index (SPZ3 -0.77%) dropped 10.9 points, or 0.7%, to 1,675.50. Futures for the Nasdaq 100 (NDZ3 -0.59%) slid 15.25 points, or 0.5%, to 3,207.75.

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2013-09-29 23:55:50

Mark McSherry, Contributor
I write about markets and companies
9/30/2013 @ 1:53AM
Week Ahead: Stock Markets Enter Choppy, Uncharted Waters

U.S. stock exchanges and other securities markets enter choppy, uncharted waters this coming week as the political stalemate continues in Washington with Republicans and Democrats at loggerheads over urgent budget and debt ceiling deals. Early Monday, stocks in Asia tumbled amid the chaos in the Capitol, with the benchmark Nikkei index down more than 2% at one stage.

We are getting awfully close to the edge

U.S. stock index futures fell on Sunday as the uncertainty over funding for the U.S. Government affected confidence.

If Republicans and Democrats do not reach agreement on an emergency budget by midnight on Monday, much of the federal Government will shut down.

The sticking point is Republican opposition to the funding of the Affordable Care Act, President Barack Obama’s health care reform. The Republicans want the law delayed for a year and amended.

While stock markets have survived previous Government shutdowns, this time it is, well, more complicated.

Because after Monday’s midnight deadline comes the even more important deadline of October 17, by which time Congress must agree to raise the United States’ $16.7 trillion debt ceiling so America can avoid a default.

U.S. Treasury Secretary Jack Lew has warned that the United States will exhaust its current borrowing limit no later than October 17, when it would have only $30 billion cash on hand.

The S&P 500 stock index has climbed almost 19% so far this year. Valuations of stocks are high. Given those facts, it would not be surprising if investors took a break from stocks until the pantomime in Washington has played out.

If no deal is reached to fund the Government by midnight Monday, many stock investors may be tempted to take profits in the short term and who can blame them? Then again, if a last-minute deal is done, equities may even get a boost.

In the past week, the S&P 500 fell 1.1% and the Dow Jones index dropped 1.3% amid the jitters.

The threat of a government shutdown or a default on the federal debt reminds many investors of 2011 when a similar stand-off in Washington led to the United States losing its AAA credit rating and helped prompt a stock market correction.

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2013-09-29 23:58:43

Is it too late at this point to assume the crash position?

Nikkei 14,455.80 -304.27 -2.06%
Hang Seng 22,922.70 -284.38 -1.23%
S&P/ASX 200 5,218.90 -88.16 -1.66%

Dollar at Month Low Versus Yen as Shutdown Looms; Euro Declines
By Candice Zachariahs & Kevin Buckland - Sep 29, 2013 11:09 PM PT

The dollar dropped to a one-month low against the yen as political wrangling over the budget threatened a U.S. government shutdown from tomorrow.

The U.S. currency extended its first quarterly drop versus the yen since a year ago with Congress deadlocked over Republicans’ insistence on delaying the 2010 health-care law. The yen climbed against all 16 major peers and reached a three-week high per euro as demand for safety increased with Italian Prime Minister Enrico Letta’s government on the verge of collapse. The pound was at the highest since January before data tomorrow forecast to show U.K. manufacturing accelerated.

“With the government shutdown coming into sight, what is happening in the market is risk aversion and the yen is rising,” said Kengo Suzuki, the chief currency strategist in Tokyo at Mizuho Securities Co. “Concerns that Congress would also fail to agree on raising the federal debt limit may accelerate risk aversion in the near-term.”

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2013-09-30 00:03:05

First U.S. Shutdown in 17 Years at Midnight Seen Probable
By Roxana Tiron, Kathleen Hunter & Michael C. Bender -
Sep 29, 2013 10:48 PM PT

The U.S. government stands poised for its first partial shutdown in 17 years at midnight tonight, after a weekend with no signs of negotiations or compromise from either the House or Senate to avert it.

Republicans and Democrats in Congress say they don’t want a shutdown, though neither side is budging from their positions to avoid one. House Republicans want to delay President Barack Obama’s Affordable Care Act for a year and make other changes to the health law. The Democrats vow not to let that happen.

Hanging in the balance are 800,000 federal workers who would be sent home tomorrow if Congress fails to pass a stopgap spending bill before funding expires tonight. Standard & Poor’s 500 Index futures slid and Asian stocks retreated on concern of a shutdown, while Treasuries advanced.

Asked yesterday if he thought the government would shut down, Illinois Senator Richard Durbin, the chamber’s No. 2 Democrat, said, “I’m afraid I do.”

“We know what is going to happen,” Durbin said on CBS’s “Face the Nation” program. “We are going to face the prospect of the government shutting down.”

The fallout would be far-reaching: national parks and Internal Revenue Service call centers probably would close. Those wanting to renew passports would have to wait and the backlog of veterans’ disability claims could increase.

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2013-09-30 00:05:00

Can’t say I will mind the falling gasoline prices!

European, U.S. Index Futures Drop as Yen Strengthens

By Kyoungwha Kim & Emma O’Brien - Sep 29, 2013 11:18 PM PT

European and U.S. equity-index futures declined with Asian stocks before a potential U.S. government shutdown. The Japanese yen rose with Treasuries, while crude oil and emerging-market currencies fell.

Euro Stoxx 50 Index futures lost 1 percent as of 7:17 a.m. in London, while Standard & Poor’s 500 Index contracts sank 0.8 percent. The MSCI Asia Pacific Index tumbled 1.5 percent, trimming September’s advance to 6.6 percent. Treasuries and Australian bonds climbed. The dollar declined 0.4 percent versus the yen, while strengthening against currencies from Malaysia to Indonesia. West Texas Intermediate oil fell 1.3 percent, heading for an almost three-month low.

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2013-09-30 00:15:00

It looks as though stock market bulls all around the globe have stampeded and are running off the cliff. Enjoy the air before you reach the ground below!

Global Dow Realtime USD
2,314.26 Change
-18.12 -0.78% Volume
Sep 30, 2013 3:11 a.m.
Previous close 2,332.38

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2013-09-30 00:10:22

Mortgage debt a threat for near-retirees
September 25, 2013, 4:51 PM
By Matthew Heimer

Getting to retirement debt- and mortgage-free has always been a financial-planning ideal – and, like all ideals, it’s a goal that many people fall far short of hitting. In some recently published research, economists AnnaMaria Lusardi of George Washington University and Olivia Mitchell of the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania take a closer look at the debt load of the boomer generation – and they show how the changing dynamics of the housing market have put these near-retirees in a particularly tricky predicament.

To get a sense of how debt patterns are shifting across generations, Lusardi and Mitchell looked at data on cohorts of people between the ages of 56 and 61, collected for the years 1992, 2002 and 2008 through the University of Michigan’s Health and Retirement Survey. That gave them data for near-retirement children of the Depression in 1992, and for near-retirement boomers in 2008.

Among the born-in-the-1930s crew, 40.5% had outstanding mortgages in their near-retirement years; among the boomers, 47.8% did. That difference was significant, but not enormous. More problematic was the average size of their outstanding debt – a little over $26,000 for the 1930s cohort, but more than $66,000 for the boomers. (That’s a bigger gap than inflation alone would explain: $26,000 in 1992 would amount to about $40,000 in 2008 dollars.)

What boosted the boomers’ balances so high? The housing bubble, in a nutshell. In a conference last month sponsored by the University of Michigan’s Retirement Research Center, Lusardi and Mitchell noted that compared to older groups, many of the boomers had been able to buy more expensive houses with smaller down payments – leaving them with a larger, more difficult-to-retire debt burden. The researchers also noted that 17% of the boomers were underwater on their mortgages in 2008 and 2009—owing more than their homes were worth. That’s one arena where some boomers benefited from being older; since the housing crash, younger, newer homeowners have been more likely to find themselves underwater.

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