October 2, 2014

Bits Bucket for October 2, 2014

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

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Comment by peter a
2014-10-02 04:58:50

With Captain Trips here housing starts should go up. Who is going to live in an Ebola house?

Comment by Shillow
2014-10-02 07:19:21

Shelter in place.

Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2014-10-02 19:09:53

For the children.

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2014-10-02 05:10:51

Good economic news is bad for stocks if it means the Fed will tighten sooner.

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2014-10-02 05:50:24

Why you should ignore October crash warnings
Published: Sept 30, 2014 5:00 a.m. ET
By Amit Chopra

As we enter October, pundits will remind you that the markets’ biggest crashes have come in this month.

Fears of rising geopolitical tensions between Russia and Ukraine, the rising violence at the hand of ISIS, political turmoil in Pakistan, all and then some will be brought up to create anxiety and fear among investors. And with the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index (SPX, -1.32%) sitting at all-time highs, many will ask themselves “is this the market top? Should I sell?” After all, who isn’t afraid of losing their hard earned nest egg.

But should you act on these fears? When are they rational versus contrived?

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2014-10-02 05:56:20

Economic Report
U.S. layoffs tracking near the lowest level in years
Published: Oct 2, 2014 8:52 a.m. ET
Initial jobless claims fall by 8,000 to 287,000
By Jeffry Bartash
Getty Images
A “Help Wanted” sign is posted in the window of an automotive service shop in California. Companies aren’t laying off many workers these days.

WASHINGTON (MarketWatch) — The number of people applying for new unemployment benefits fell by 8,000 to 287,000 in the last week of September, offering yet another sign that layoffs remain low and the labor market continues to improve.

Initial jobless claims have been below the key 300,000 mark for three straight weeks and five of the last seven, according to Labor Department data issued Thursday.

Comment by rj chicago
Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2014-10-02 17:53:42

Workforce dropouts drive down the unemployment rate because unemployed workers who leave the workforce are no longer counted as unemployed.

There it is.

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Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2014-10-02 05:59:01

Adam Hamilton
Contrarian, gold & precious metals
Major Stock Market Selloff Looms As The Fed’s QE3 Ends
Sep. 27, 2014 12:41 PM ET
* Thanks to the Fed’s gross distortions of psychology, today’s stock markets are overextended, overvalued, and epically complacent.
* That means a major selloff is long overdue to rebalance sentiment, and the imminent end of the Fed’s QE3 bond-monetization campaign is the likely catalyst.
* Best case it will be a major correction approaching 20% like at the ends of QE1 and QE2, worst case a new cyclical bear cutting stock markets in half.

Comment by Blue Skye
2014-10-02 07:12:05

Silver is telegraphing a liquidity problem. As loose as the wheels are on this runaway train, who knows what October might bring?

Comment by Shillow
2014-10-02 06:12:12

The new QE will be announced after the November elections and the pen amnesty.

Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2014-10-02 19:11:01

Agree. Because the banks will be “hurting.” And Janet can’t abide that.

Comment by Ann Gogh
2014-10-02 10:29:50

I was thinking today the reason the stocks are falling is because home prices are not going up and sales are down. Oh goodie, another another housing bubble bust!

Comment by Housing Analyst
2014-10-02 13:49:13

Falling housing prices to dramatically lower and more affordable levels is positively bullish. Don’t you agree?

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2014-10-02 17:54:48

With stocks and high yield bonds tanking, risky, overpriced residential real estate investments can’t be long to follow.

Comment by Professor Bear
2014-10-02 05:44:52

Do you like oil at under $90 a barrel, even during a period of unrest in the Mideast?

Comment by Professor Bear
2014-10-02 05:46:57

Oil futures drop below $90 to 17-month low
Published: Oct 2, 2014 4:43 a.m. ET
By Sara Sjolin
Markets reporter

LONDON (MarketWatch) — Crude-oil futures slid below $90 for the first time since April 2013 on Thursday as news that Saudi Arabia cut its selling price continued to spook investors.

On the New York Mercantile Exchange, light, sweet crude futures for delivery in November (CLX4, -1.68%) lost $1.17, or 1.3%, to $89.56, setting it on track for the lowest settlement price in more than 17 months. November Brent crude on London’s ICE Futures exchange (LCOX4, -1.96%) fell $1.22, or 1.3%, to $92.91 a barrel.

The losses built on weakness seen on Wednesday, when a surprise decline in U.S. inventories wasn’t enough to stop a drubbing for oil futures, caught between slack demand and plentiful supplies worldwide.

Oil was also under pressure after Saudi Aramco, Saudi Arabia’s national petroleum company, on Wednesday cut its official selling price for crude oil to the U.S., Europe and Asia, with the largest cuts in Asia where oil producers are competing for market share.

“We consider that absent a supply disruption in Iraq, crude prices are likely to remain at subdued levels over the medium term as supply growth exceeds demand growth,” economist Phin Ziebell at National Australia Bank said in a report.

Comment by palmetto
2014-10-02 06:00:12


Comment by Blue Skye
2014-10-02 07:17:20

The problem is that demand is dropping off a cliff. This is a grow-or-die thing, not a let’s-take-a-breather thing. If the world cannot to continue to grow its way out of debt, the path is ugly. The longer extend and pretend goes the uglier the path looks.

Still, I welcome reduced gas prices and look forward to everything they are tied to dropping in price as well. Makes me wonder how the FedGov will manipulate and lie to report GDP growth, not that it will matter to me.

Comment by Puggs
2014-10-02 08:55:01

Massive debt write downs.

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Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2014-10-02 17:59:34

The other problem: U.S. supply is at one of its highest levels in history. Makes it kind of hard for OPEC nations to squeeze us.

U.S. Oil Price Falls Below $90, Then Recovers
Producers Show No Signs of Cutting Back Output
By Nicole Friedman, Cassie Werber and Laurence Fletcher
Updated Oct. 2, 2014 3:12 p.m. ET

U.S. oil prices dipped below $90 a barrel for the first time in over a year Thursday after Saudi Arabia signaled its comfort with current high global supplies and relatively low prices.

The benchmark U.S. oil futures contract later recovered, ending slightly higher.

Top producer Saudi Arabia cut its prices for November to multiyear lows on Wednesday, a sign to some market watchers that the kingdom is more concerned with preserving market share than with keeping prices high.

The news spooked an already skittish market, as investors lost faith that Saudi Arabia, widely seen as the world’s swing producer, planned to act quickly to contain booming supplies. With global economic growth expected to remain lackluster in the fourth quarter, traders and analysts say supply cuts are needed for oil prices to rebound.

The benchmark U.S. oil futures contract dropped to $88.18 a barrel, a 17-month low, before settling up 0.3% at $91.01 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Traders said the recovery followed an industry report showing an unexpected drop in supplies in Cushing, Okla., the delivery point for crude traded on the Nymex. Brent, the international benchmark, was on track to end at its lowest price in over two years.

Futures have been tumbling for months on concerns that ample oil output, especially from the U.S., is overwhelming demand for petroleum products. Forecasters have consistently cut their outlooks for oil demand this year and next. Meanwhile, U.S. production has exceeded expectations and Libya shocked the market with a resurgence in output in recent months.

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Comment by Selfish Hoarder
2014-10-02 07:47:58

In my part of California hybrid carss are more common than a white “progressive” in a 95% white neighborhood. Mostly Prious cars. Probably a lot of others but Prious types have a unique shape that says “hybrid.”

So that’s part of why demand for oil is reduced in some areas.

Comment by real journalists
2014-10-02 08:20:03

‘have a unique shape’

they have unique driving patterns too, specifically going 5mph under the speed limit in the left lane.

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Comment by Northeastener
2014-10-02 08:49:32


Comment by Selfish Hoarder
2014-10-02 08:56:59

Actually I cannot stand those “light” trucks. They are too dam slow. I always switch lanes to the next lane even if there are 2 cars extra, if I come up to one of those frigging light trucks. They are as bad as old volkswagen busses.

Comment by Blue Skye
2014-10-02 14:56:58

Demand for oil is not falling because of Prius cars! LOL!

I’d be willing to bet that the total energy footprint of one of those things is significantly larger than my gasoline fired clunker. I am sure it is so for the respective drivers.

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Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2014-10-02 06:00:38

Oil price hits two-year low after Saudi price cut
2 October 2014 Last updated at 06:44 ET
Global oil prices have fallen to their lowest level in more than two years after Saudi Arabia cut its official selling price.

Concerns of oversupply after higher output in the US, together with forecasts of lower global demand by the International Energy Agency (IEA), are driving prices down.

Brent crude fell by more than 1% to $93 a barrel, its lowest since June 2012.

US light crude fell below $90 for the first time in 17 months.

On Wednesday, Saudi Arabia announced it was reducing its selling price for oil in a move to protect its market share, analysts said.

“This is a structural change in the oil market, with Saudi Arabia explicitly stating that they are willing to compete on price,” said Bjarne Schieldrop, a commodities analyst at SEB.

Comment by MightyMike
2014-10-02 10:38:53

Do you like oil at under $90 a barrel, even during a period of unrest in the Mideast?

As opposed to oil over $90, yes I like that. Of course, those who work in the oil business probably don’t like it.

Comment by Housing Analyst
2014-10-02 15:42:23

Who cares what those in the oil biz likes?

Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2014-10-02 19:12:29

Unemployed people don’t drive.

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2014-10-02 05:48:05

Did Bill Gross’s departure from Pimco somehow trigger a bond rally?

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2014-10-02 06:03:49

Bond Report
Treasurys fall after biggest gain in nine months
Published: Oct 2, 2014 8:56 a.m. ET

NEW YORK (MarketWatch) — Treasury prices slipped Thursday as the market retraced some of its recent moves on the heels of the biggest one-day rally in U.S. government bonds in nine months.

The 10-year Treasury note (10_YEAR, +1.26%) yield, which rises as prices fall, was up 1.5 basis points at 2.418%. The yield had dropped 11.5 basis points on Wednesday to its lowest level since the end of August as investors scrambled for the perceived safety of Treasurys.

“There has been some small fading of the ‘what just happened’ rally,” said David Keeble, global head of interest-rate strategy at Crédit Agricole Corporate and Investment Bank, in a note.

Nonetheless, an aversion to risky investments that has guided markets this week remains in place. Premarket trades suggested stocks would see another down day.

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2014-10-02 16:32:12

Did you dump your high yield junk on time to escape unscathed?

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2014-10-02 18:02:02

ft dot com
No love for junk bonds as investors yank $2.3bn
an hour ago (2 October 2014)

Signs of disenchantment in the junk bond market continue to mount.

After high-yield debt wrapped up its worst quarter since 2011 – with negative total returns of 2.2 per cent – the latest Lipper reading showed mutual funds and ETFs investing in the securities suffered another bout of massive redemptions, reports Vivianne Rodrigues in New York.

Ouflows from high-yield funds reached $2.28bn in the week ended Wednesday, the largest amount of withdrawal in two months. It follows net inflows of $528m in the previous week.

Demand for junk bonds has been hit by higher market volatility, the prospect of higher benchmark interest rates and fears of redemptions from bond funds in the aftermath of Bill Gross’ abrupt departure from PIMCO – a large holder of high-yield corporate debt.

The near-term outlook for the riskier securities has become cloudier this month as gains in the stock market also started to falter.

The junk bond market has been historically correlated to the fortunes in the equity market, with analysts saying the bonds now have less of a cushion to withstand a potential correction in stock prices.

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2014-10-02 18:04:43

…Bill Gross’ abrupt departure from PIMCO – a large holder of high-yield corporate debt.

Who knew a guy whose career inspiration was successfully counting cards in Vegas would gamble in junk?

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Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2014-10-02 23:12:01

Junk-Bond Rout Amplified by Gross Exit as Sales Expected
By Abigail Moses and Matt Robinson
Sep 29, 2014 12:35 PM PT

Bill Gross’s departure from Pacific Investment Management Co. is accelerating a flight from speculative-grade corporate debt on concern that the world’s biggest bond manager will need to liquidate positions as investors withdraw cash.

A credit derivatives index that gauges the risk junk-rated companies won’t be able to repay their obligations surged to highest in almost a year. Junk bonds globally are poised for their worst month in more than a year, losing 1.7 percent through Sept. 26, according to Bank of America Merrill Lynch Index data.

Gross’s abrupt departure is deepening a selloff that started after the U.S. economy grew at the fastest pace since 2011 in the second quarter, fueling speculation the Federal Reserve is closer to raising interest rates. Sanford Bernstein said in a report that Pimco may see withdrawals of 10 percent to 30 percent.

“Some redemptions and forced selling are likely,” Guy LeBas, chief fixed-income strategist at Janney Montgomery Scott LLC in Philadelphia, wrote today in a note to investors. “Treasuries felt the first round of pain, though credit spreads and illiquid asset classes were also impacted, proving how much a single person can move the markets.”

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2014-10-02 23:14:01

September 30, 2014, 11:00 A.M. ET
Junk Bonds Tanking In September, Down 2.47%
By Michael Aneiro

The high yield bond market is on track to close September with a 2.47% loss, including a 0.25% loss yesterday and a 1.54% loss over the past week, per a benchmark Bank of America Merrill Lynch index. That’s cut the market’s 2014 return to 3.22% and lifted the market’s average yield to 6.455%. It was barely over three months ago that the market’s average yield fell to an all-time low just under 5%; at that point 2014 returns already totaled 5.34%. In late July, the market saw a brief but intense pullback, but rebounded in August before the latest slide. The current malaise has been enough to cause five companies to postpone planned high-yield bond offerings.

I’ve gone hoarse in this blog and my Current Yield column warning that the high yield market has been on precarious footing all year, with high valuations, liquidity problems and Federal Reserve rate-hike expectations leaving the market prone to the occasional selloff, even as defaults remain a distant concern. Add to that the recent market volatility after Bill Gross’s exit from Pimco and the high yield market will be happy to see this month end tomorrow.

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2014-10-02 05:54:54

Market Pulse
Bankrupt Stockton can restructure CalPERS pension payments, judge rules: reports
Published: Oct 1, 2014 6:15 p.m. ET
By Tom Bemis

SAN FRANCISCO (MarketWatch) — Federal bankruptcy law supersedes a California law requiring cities to fund employee pensions, U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Christopher Klein ruled late Wednesday, according to published reports. Klein found that Stockton, which filed for bankruptcy in 2012, could adjust pension payments to the giant CalPERS pension fund, the Los Angeles Times and Sacramento Bee reported.
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Sal Gentile 7 hours ago

The City workers in Stockton still have a very good option open to them. They can and they should all go out on strike and shut the city government down entirely. No schools, no fire protection, no police protection. If the City can renege on their pension promises ___ them employees also can renege on their loyalty to the city they serve.
Thomas Ham 4 hours ago

@Sal Gentile

The Government giveth…and the Government taketh away.
Mark Dufresne 2 hours ago

@Sal Gentile And the city can then fire them, and replace them with people that want to work just like in the private sector.
Scott Knipfing 32 minutes ago

@Sal Gentile So where should Stockton get the money to pay for those pensions? They are bankrupt!
Chris Zamborsky just now

@Sal Gentile The PEOPLE (aka Citizens) of Stockton can start a petition to Vote on “right sizing” their government AND determine what they are going to pay their favored servants. Government workers are employed and paid by the taxpayer.
A. Miller 11 hours ago

Talk about job security. Whew ! PU !

They could merge this article with the one about companies’ complaints about older employees not retiring.

Or use the ADP glowing jobs report playing in the backgound.
Tom Roberts 12 hours ago

If the public union leaders have any brains at all they will read the writing on the wall and run full speed away from defined benefit plans and demand 100% guaranteed 401(k) plans for their members instead.
Sal Gentile 7 hours ago

@Tom Roberts Hi Tom, As you said ‘if they were smarter’. If they were smarter ____ they would have their state and municipal government employers pay into a pension plan that is run by the Union itself, instead of run by the city or state government. Jimmy Hoffa never reneged on the pensions that he ran. All of the pension defaults have been Company run pensions and government run pensions, but NEVER a union run pension.

Here in NJ ____the State stole $900 million out of the pension fund back around 1992 and the Gov. said it was ‘OVER FUNDED’ and the State did not pay in their matching share for 23 or the last 25 years___ while the city/state workers continued to pay in their share 8.5% of their salary share for all of those years. End result in NJ is that the state now tells their worker YOU have to pay in 10.5% of you salary because the pension fund is going broke, instead of the 8.5% the employees were paying in for all of these years ___ the state workers now also have to work 10 years longer to collect their pensions ___ yet Gov. Christie and the State on NJ STILL is not paying in their matching share___ just as they did not pay in their matching share for 23 or the last 25 years. In The City of Stockton they spent $800 million on a new sports stadium instead of paying into their employees pension plan. NJ has also spent $1.5 billion on the Meadowlands sports arena, but cannot find money to pay in their share to the State pension fund. What it comes down to is they are bigger crooks than the Mafia.
Scott Knipfing 26 minutes ago

@Sal Gentile @Tom Roberts You mean government lies? Shocking! Simply Shocking! Pensions and other plans like SS are nothing more than IOUs. The rules can be changed at anytime. Sad but true…

Comment by taxpayers
2014-10-02 06:00:04

any lessons or example for unwinding a 4 trillion bad debt possition ?
and WWii doesn’t count

tell Janet

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2014-10-02 06:04:56

Shift losses onto speculators in stocks, housing and gold?

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2014-10-02 06:08:47

Here’s a really dumb question: Why does the Fed ever need to unwind its balance sheet? Why not let it just keep expanding forever skyward if necessary?

Comment by real journalists
2014-10-02 06:23:53

as we asked the other day, remind us from the history books of all the successful empires based on fiat currency and debt?

Comment by Shillow
2014-10-02 06:45:06

So far, us and China.

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Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2014-10-02 07:29:16

With monetary policy on the boil in both…

Comment by Oddfellow
2014-10-02 07:53:51

Interesting short history of paper money here.


“The most famous Chinese issuer of paper money was Kublai Khan, the Mongol who ruled the Chinese empire in the 13th century. Kublai Khan established currency credibility by decreeing that his paper money must be accepted by traders on pain of death. As further enforcment of his mandate, he confiscated all gold and silver, even if it was brought in by foreign traders. Marco Polo was impressed by the efficiency of the Chinese system, as he chronicles in his The Travels of Marco Polo (Il Milione):

“All these pieces of paper are issued with as much solemnity and authority as if they were of pure gold or silver; and on every piece a variety of officials, whose duty it is, have to write their names, and to put their seals. And when all is prepared duly, the chief officer deputed by the Khan smears the seal entrusted to him with vermilion, and impresses it on the paper, so that the form of the seal remains imprinted upon it in red; the money is then authentic. Anyone forging it would be punished with death. And the Khan causes every year to be made such a vast quantity of this money, which costs him nothing, that it must equal in amount all the treasure of the world.”

As is to be expected, paper money did not succeed everywhere.”

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2014-10-02 18:13:01

“All these pieces of paper are issued with as much solemnity and authority as if they were of pure gold or silver; and on every piece a variety of officials, whose duty it is, have to write their names, and to put their seals. And when all is prepared duly, the chief officer deputed by the Khan smears the seal entrusted to him with vermilion, and impresses it on the paper, so that the form of the seal remains imprinted upon it in red; the money is then authentic.”

Hard to do that when the money is electronic and you create billions a month.

“Anyone forging it would be punished with death.”

That would tend to help uphold the value of fiat money.

“And the Khan causes every year to be made such a vast quantity of this money, which costs him nothing, that it must equal in amount all the treasure of the world.”

Easy to do this when you have a currency monopoly; not so easy when a currency war is underway.

Comment by Oddfellow
2014-10-02 07:07:51

Has an empire based on consumerism, pop culture, and junk food ever fallen?

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Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2014-10-02 19:13:37

On some level, it already has.

Comment by Max Power
2014-10-02 13:03:16

As was wisely noted yesterday, no empires have survived regardless of what the currency is based on or the amount of debt.

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Comment by Housing Analyst
2014-10-02 13:55:15

Debt destroys lives. Debt destroys nations.

Debt is a complete moral failing.

Comment by Blue Skye
2014-10-02 07:23:45

“unwind its balance sheet…”

To whom, and in exchange for what? The Fed balance sheet expansion simply kept the banks from failing, nothing more. Declare the assets worthless and wipe them off the books. Then ask if it was worth it for us all to transfer what little money we had to the banks. Then get the torches and pitchforks.

Comment by Rental Watch
2014-10-02 09:10:54

It doesn’t need to unwind it unless they are seeing inflation that they feel they need to stop.

Comment by Blue Skye
2014-10-02 12:57:46

Ironically, you are the one who causes inflation. The Fed is just your facilitator.

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Comment by Housing Analyst
2014-10-02 14:03:07

Debt results in collapse.

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Comment by phony scandals
2014-10-02 06:00:36

This calls for a new letter because this couple is obviously from the…

RLGBT community.

Ohio lesbian couple sues sperm bank after racial mix-up

Posted: Oct 01, 2014 10:01 PM EST Updated: Oct 01, 2014 10:48 PM EST
By Tiffani Tucker - email
Posted by 19 Action News Digital Team - email

(WOIO) -

Jennifer Cramblett and her partner, Amanda Zinkon, looked forward to becoming parents. They went to the Midwest Sperm Bank in Downers Grove, a Chicago suburb, back in 2011.

They requested sperm from a white donor with blue eyes, because they wanted their child to look similar to them.

“It was the most amazing feeling to know that I had a child that I was going to be able to raise, to call my own,” said Cramblett

However, that excitement turned to concern when Cramblett, five months pregnant, called the sperm bank requesting the same donor’s sperm so Zinkon could also get pregnant.

That’s when they heard the news. The sperm bank gave Cramblett the vials of an African-American donor. She was told the mix-up happened because the sperm bank keeps handwritten records instead of electronic ones, which allowed the donor numbers to be misread.

“After a moment of panic, oh Lord, everything’s changing in me so quickly I knew I had to be strong. I have this child in my stomach,” Cramblett said.

She gave birth in 2012 to a beautiful biracial girl named Payton. However, Cramblett is afraid that raising Payton in their predominately white Uniontown, Ohio community may be challenging.

“I want her to feel like she has a place with the people she has a place with; White, Black, Asian; whoever she feels comfortable to be around.

Midwest Sperm Bank has apologized, saying, “We are so very sorry for the mix-up, we would like to refund the cost of your vials.”

http://www.cbs46.com/…/26682976/ohio-lesbian-couple-sues-sperm-bank-after-racial-mix-up -

Comment by Cracker Bob
2014-10-02 07:25:52

“Jennifer and her partner Amanda” Are they accountants?

Comment by phony scandals
2014-10-02 07:45:48

“I want her to feel like she has a place with the people she has a place with; White, Black, Asian; whoever she feels comfortable to be around.”

I’m just guessing but I think the kid would be most comfortable with a Native American family who is actively protesting the name of the Washington Redskins.

Comment by Oddfellow
2014-10-02 09:17:17

That would make a good tv sitcom. An updated “Different Strokes”.

Comment by rms
2014-10-02 12:15:17

“…we would like to refund the cost of your vials.”

You just can’t make-up chit like this. LOL!

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2014-10-02 06:06:46

Consumers spending a record share of their income on college
October 1, 2014, 2:18 PM ET

Americans are spending a greater percentage of their income on college than ever before.

Okay, that’s not exactly stunning news. Yet even one of the nation’s worst recessions in modern times did nothing to slow the advance. Indeed, spending on college rose right through the 2007-2009 downturn and only recently have the yearly increases slowed a bit.

In August, Americans spent an average of 1.58% of their income on college costs, according to annualized figures produced by the Commerce Department. That matches the all-time high set in 2013.

Just 14 years ago, Americans spent about 1.13% of their income on higher education. The percentage rose steadily to 1.31% in 2007 – the Great Recession began in December of that year – and jumped to 1.51% by 2010 as the economy began to recover.

That may not sound like much until you translate it into dollars. Higher-education expenses totaled $182.36 billion in 2013, up from $128.29 billion in 2007 and $76.78 billion in 2000, government data show.

That’s a 138% increase since the turn of the century.

Comment by real journalists
2014-10-02 07:03:32

There is $1.2 trillion of outstanding student loan debt, and that amount is growing every day.

All the Amy Hoax articles in the world can’t change the fact that millennials are broke @ss loosers who will not be buying $500,000 starter homes.

Not today, not tomorrow, not ever.


Comment by Puggs
2014-10-02 09:04:55

I can’t believe people still pay what they do for college when you can easily go to a state college for $16,000/year. DUH!

Comment by In Colorado
2014-10-02 11:03:39

It’s getting harder to get into State. I think that a lot of those $100K+ student debtors went to a pricey private U because they couldn’t get into state due to mediocre grades

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2014-10-02 18:45:18

Meanwhile, you can take online courses with top professors online for free (albeit not for college credit — YET):


Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2014-10-02 18:46:18

That was a misfire…


Comment by phony scandals
2014-10-02 06:11:49

Report: “Disaster Teams Were Notified Months Ago They Would Be Activated in October”

Mac Slavo
October 1st, 2014

A public tweet from a large government supplier of emergency response products specializing in “high risk events” says that Disaster Assistance Response Teams were told to prepare to be activated in the month of October. The shocking revelation, made on the Goldenstate Fire/EMS Twitter page, suggests that not only did someone know that the Ebola virus would be reaching America, but that they knew exactly when it would happen.

“What we are now hearing is just the tip of the iceburg as we enter October,” noted the company’s Twitter spokesperson. “Ebola virus will cripple EMS and hospitals.”

When Future Money Trends, a follower of the page, asked what they meant by this statement, Goldenstate Fire/EMS responded with a shocking revelation.

“DART teams were notified months ago they would be activated in October. Timing seems weird. Source: current DART member.”

Twitter exchange:

The full twitter exchange is available here and a screenshot has been archived.

GoldenStateFIRE/EMS @GoldenStateEMS

What we are now hearing is just the tip of the iceburg as we enter October. #Ebola virus will cripple EMS and hospitals. The wait is over!
5:25 PM - 30 Sep 2014

Future Money Trends @FutureMoneyTren

@GoldenStateEMS Why do you think that?

GoldenStateFIRE/EMS @GoldenStateEMS

@FutureMoneyTren DART teams were notified months ago they would be activated in October. Timing seems weird. Source: current DART member.
7:29 PM - 30 Sep 2014

GoldenStateFIRE/EMS @GoldenStateEMS

Be prepared to self quarantine yourselves if you experience flu like symptoms. Do not venture out as EMS & hospitals will be overwhelmed.
5:35 PM - 30 Sep 2014

GoldenStateFIRE/EMS @GoldenStateEMS

There is speculation that this #DallasEbola case is not Ebola. DART teams were told months ago they would be activated in October.
5:30 PM - 30 Sep 2014

http://www.shtfplan.com/…were-told-months-ago-they-would-be-activated-in-october_10012014 - 211k -

Comment by real journalists
2014-10-02 06:58:28

October surprise?

Count on the real journalists to frame your narrative, kidz

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2014-10-02 07:31:15

October surprise: ebola

Comment by real journalists
2014-10-02 07:36:43

Ebola, ISIS, stock market crash, housing market crash, amnesty, it’s all coming together exactly as planned.

And Eric Holder won’t be resigning, he still has several false flags up his sleeve. As Rahm Emmanuel said, “never let a crisis go to waste.”

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Comment by phony scandals
2014-10-02 09:19:03

How Bad Could It Get? US Government Order Of 160,000 HazMat Suits Gives A Clue

Who will get sick next and how bad could it get?

by Zero Hedge | October 2, 2014

Now that Ebola is officially in the US on an uncontrolled basis, the two questions on everyone’s lips are i) who will get sick next and ii) how bad could it get?

We don’t know the answer to question #1 just yet, but when it comes to the second one, a press release three weeks ago from Lakeland Industries, a manufacturer and seller of a “comprehensive line of safety garments and accessories for the industrial protective clothing market” may provide some insight into just how bad the US State Department thinks it may get. Because when the US government buys 160,000 hazmat suits specifically designed against Ebola, just ahead of the worst Ebola epidemic in history making US landfall, one wonders: what do they know the we don’t?

From Lakeland Industries:

Lakeland Industries, Inc. (LAKE), a leading global manufacturer of industrial protective clothing for industry, municipalities, healthcare and to first responders on the federal, state and local levels, today announced the global availability of its protective apparel for use in handling the Ebola virus. In response to the increasing demand for specialty protective suits to be worm by healthcare workers and others being exposed to Ebola, Lakeland is increasing its manufacturing capacity for these garments and includes proprietary processes for specialized seam sealing, a far superior technology for protecting against viral hazards than non-sealed products.

“Lakeland stands ready to join the fight against the spread of Ebola,” said Christopher J. Ryan, President and Chief Executive Officer of Lakeland Industries. “We understand the difficulty of getting appropriate products through a procurement system that in times of crisis favors availability over specification, and we hope our added capacity will help alleviate that problem. With the U.S. State Department alone putting out a bid for 160,000 suits, we encourage all protective apparel companies to increase their manufacturing capacity for sealed seam garments so that our industry can do its part in addressing this threat to global health.

Of course, purchases by the US government are bought and paid for by taxpayers. For everyone else there’s $1200 mail-order delivery:

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Comment by cactus
2014-10-02 15:19:08

I read the apartment were this guy was staying has not been cleaned up yet. Can’t find anyone to do it .

I read that he was vomiting all over the place as he was carried to a ambulance.

I read this was how he got it in Liberia helping a sick girl to a hospital.

not good

Comment by Cracker Bob
2014-10-02 07:33:21

If the Ebola crisis was blowing up in Sweden, the government (theirs and ours) would block casual travelers from entering and leaving the country (theirs and ours).

However, since Liberia is in an “African” country, it would be racist to inhibit travel or immigration just because of a silly little epidemic.

By the way, isn’t Liberia the country that was formed by former US slaves? How is that working out?

Comment by phony scandals
2014-10-02 08:04:22

“Disaster Teams Were Notified Months Ago They Would Be Activated in October”

Executive Order — Revised List of Quarantinable Communicable …
http://www.whitehouse.gov/…ecutive-order-revised-list-quarantinable-communicable-diseases - 52k - Cached - Similar pages
Jul 31, 2014 …
Obama Signs Executive Order to Allow Detention of Americans With ‘Respiratory Illnesses’

Amendment comes in wake of Ebola scare

by Paul Joseph Watson | August 1, 2014

As the Ebola outbreak continues to cause concern, President Barack Obama has signed an amendment to an executive order that would allow him to mandate the apprehension and detention of Americans who merely show signs of “respiratory illness.”

The executive order, titled Revised List of Quarantinable Communicable Diseases, amends executive order 13295, passed by George W. Bush in April 2003, which allows for the, “apprehension, detention, or conditional release of individuals to prevent the introduction, transmission, or spread of suspected communicable diseases.”

The amendment signed by Obama replaces subsection (b) of the original Bush executive order which referred only to SARS. Obama’s amendment allows for the detention of Americans who display, “Severe acute respiratory syndromes, which are diseases that are associated with fever and signs and symptoms of pneumonia or other respiratory illness, are capable of being transmitted from person to person, and that either are causing, or have the potential to cause, a pandemic, or, upon infection, are highly likely to cause mortality or serious morbidity if not properly controlled.”

Although Ebola was listed on the original executive order signed by Bush, Obama’s amendment ensures that Americans who merely show signs of respiratory illness, with the exception of influenza, can be forcibly detained by medical authorities.

Although the quarantining of people suspected of being infected with the Ebola virus seems like a perfectly logical move, the actual preconditions for this to happen aren’t restricted to just those suffering from the disease.

As we highlighted earlier this week, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has measures in place for dealing with an outbreak of a communicable disease which allow for the quarantine of “well persons” who “do not show symptoms” of the disease.

In addition, under the Model State Emergency Health Powers Act, public health authorities and governors would be given expanded police powers to seize control of communications devices, public and private property, as well as a host of other draconian measures in the event of a public health emergency.

When the legislation was introduced, the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons warned that it “could turn governors into dictators.”

Yesterday it was reported that Emory University Hospital in Atlanta was set to receive a patient infected with Ebola. A hospital in Germany also accepted an infected patient earlier this week. Some critics have raised concerns about the risk of deliberately importing infected individuals into the west.

http://www.infowars.com/…/ - 69k -

Comment by phony scandals
2014-10-02 15:06:18

Experts: Ebola Could be Transmitted “At a Distance” From Infected Victims

Professors say health workers being put at risk

by Paul Joseph Watson | October 2, 2014

Professors at the University of Illinois in Chicago assert that the Ebola virus has the potential to be transmitted via “infectious aerosol particles both near and at a distance from infected patients,” suggesting that the current understanding of Ebola only being communicable via direct contact is inaccurate.

In a piece published by CIDRAP, the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy, authors Dr Lisa Brosseau and Dr Rachael Jones highlight how Ebola currently has “unclear modes of transmission.”

“We believe there is scientific and epidemiologic evidence that Ebola virus has the potential to be transmitted via infectious aerosol particles both near and at a distance from infected patients, which means that healthcare workers should be wearing respirators, not facemasks,” states the article.

Making reference to “controversy about whether Ebola virus can be transmitted via aerosols,” the authors assert that the current understanding that Ebola can only be transmitted by by direct contact with virus-laden fluids is “incorrect and outmoded.”

The authors note that US health professionals currently tackling Ebola are being put at risk because of the failure to offer them proper “respiratory protection,” making reference to hundreds of fatalities of Ebola health workers in West Africa due to facemasks or surgical masks which offer “very minimal protection from infectious aerosol particles.”

“Being at first skeptical that Ebola virus could be an aerosol-transmissible disease, we are now persuaded by a review of experimental and epidemiologic data that this might be an important feature of disease transmission, particularly in healthcare settings,” states the article.

Earlier today, Anthony Banbury, the United Nations’ Ebola response chief warned of the “nightmare scenario” that Ebola could go airborne as a result of a mutation if it continues to infect new hosts.

“The longer it moves around in human hosts in the virulent melting pot that is West Africa, the more chances increase that it could mutate,” said Banbury, adding, “It is a nightmare scenario, and unlikely, but it can’t be ruled out.”

As we reported yesterday, the Public Health Agency of Canada deleted information from its official website which indicated that the “airborne spread” of Ebola was strongly suspected by health authorities.

Michael T. Osterholm, director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota, also acknowledged in a recent New York Times op-ed that virologists are “loath to discuss openly but are definitely considering in private” the possibility that Ebola has gone airborne.

Comment by real journalists
2014-10-02 06:21:39

wall street journal subscriber paywall article blurb:

‘apartment rents have risen nationally for 23 straight quarters and are 15.2% higher than they were at the end of the recession in 2009. the figures suggest the five-year squeeze on renters shows little sign of easing.’


Comment by real journalists
Comment by Rental Watch
2014-10-02 10:42:27

You should read PREAs “Compendium of Statistics”. They update it monthly. Here is the link to the report from September 29th:


Of particular interest to me are their pages 12 and 13. These pages show, by property type, what kind of space is being built, and how much is being absorbed (addition of supply, and whether demand is utilizing the new space) for 54 major markets.

Office: Less space being added than space being rented…vacancy rates are falling, but still high at 12%, and well above the last trough at about 10%. Users of office can be more flexible with space needs due to technology–this should be unsurprising.

Retail: Less space being added than space being rented…vacancy rates are falling, but within about 1 point of the pre-recession lows.

Apartments: More space being added than space being rented…vacancy rates are rising–still about equal to pre-recession lows, but rising.

Warehouse (Industrial): Less space being added than space being rented…vacancy rates are falling AND already less than the pre-recession lows.

In other words, apartments is the only product type that appears to be building more than they need…this COULD BE a sign of the top (for occupancy and rents).

Other product types are not there yet–but industrial and retail appear to be to a point of occupancy where rents should rise (thus spurring additional development).

The above data and dynamics is why I own industrial REITs and one retail REIT (but no apartment REITs, or office REITs).

Comment by Housing Analyst
2014-10-02 17:36:35

Residential vacancy rates have been a record levels for a decade now.

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Comment by real journalists
2014-10-02 06:30:23

amy hoax guest column in the washington post advises first time debt donkeys how to donk:

‘first-time home buyers have the double obstacle of a tighter credit economy and a low number of homes for sale in their price range. this doesn’t mean a first-timer should give up hope, it just means he or she needs to take a more active approach to getting on the property ladder.’


Comment by phony scandals
2014-10-02 13:44:04

“amy hoax”


Comment by iftheshoefits
2014-10-02 14:42:43

“take a more active approach”

Go deeper in hock, sucker! You know you want to. Gotta play to win!

Comment by real journalists
2014-10-02 06:37:31

somebody should tell these warmist walruses to read more drudge report links:

‘the walruses are telling us what the polar bears have told us and what many indigenous people have told us in the high arctic … and that is that the arctic environment is changing extremely rapidly and it is time for the rest of the world to take notice and also to take action to address the root causes of climate change.’


Comment by real journalists
2014-10-02 06:50:30

From Bloomberg:

“More than 80 people in Dallas are being monitored for symptoms of Ebola after coming into contact with patient Thomas Eric Duncan or others who Duncan had met, health officials said.”

Is this the October surprise for this year’s election?

Or is this the first event to trigger Go Time?

Comment by rj chicago
2014-10-02 08:17:33

The telling part of this article has nothing to do with fee hikes - read toward the bottom and you will see Rahms’ comment on the ‘after effects’ of the man stricken with Ebola and the stress on the med system etc.
I would like to ask Mayor Rahm a question - what say you about your diabolical brother Zeke and his comments on Ebola - as usual Zeke continues to minimize the unknown affect in this regard.
Folks - Obummer is nothing but a puppet acting at the behest of his handlers and the Emmanuel’s IMHO are at the center of this diabolical unfolding before our very eyes!!
Be mindful of who you vote for - elections and voting have consequences - this on both sides of the divide.


Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2014-10-02 18:16:55

For the record, it was just like this back in 2003 when the SARS epidemic took hold. And it blew over as fast as it started once medical authorities took appropriate quarantine measures (an outcome I expect to soon be repeated).

Comment by rms
2014-10-02 06:56:51

A little peep acting like a member of congress.

“Former eBay exec gets jail for insider trade”

A former eBay executive was sentenced Wednesday to 15 months in federal prison for insider trading tied to the Internet auction site’s 2011 acquisition of a King of Prussia-based e-commerce firm.

Christopher Saridakis, 45, of Wilmington, Del., pleaded guilty in May, admitting he tipped off friends and relatives to a pending $2.4 billion deal between San Jose-based eBay and GSI Commerce, where he worked as a marketing director.

Saridakis was named a senior vice president at eBay after GSI’s purchase. His friends made more than $300,000 in illegal profits when GSI’s stock price jumped more than 50 percent upon the announcement of its sale.

Appearing before U.S. District Judge Stuart Dalzell on Wednesday, Saridakis sought probation. He has already settled a separate civil action with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for $664,800, said his lawyer, Richard Zack.

“Mr. Saridakis has accepted responsibility for his actions,” Zack said. “He has resolved all matters with the government and wishes to move forward with his life.”

Dalzell, however, likened a probationary sentence to a slap on the wrist, saying some prison time was warranted in the case. However, the 15-month sentence he handed down was half of what prosecutors had recommended.

The SEC suit also named Jules Gardner, 53, of Villanova, Pa., as a defendant and detailed a text-message conversation between him and Saridakis just days before the sale of GSI was announced.

Comment by CHE
2014-10-02 07:02:14

Oops.. price drop at the 710 sq ft West Hollywood, CA condo where I trolled the realtor at an open house last Sunday.

Pictures make it look good, but it wasn’t staged when I walked through and though described as “turnkey,” to me “turnkey” doesn’t mean plaster patches on the wall over existing paint. Also it “faces west” with a patio, but that patio faces west right in to a huge ugly wall.

Last Sunday’s price - $409k
Today’s price - $399k

2006 price…wait for it….$400k.

Still a crappy unit. I’ll still rent for half the price.


Comment by Ben Jones
2014-10-02 07:28:59

HOA Dues $396/month

Comment by rms
2014-10-02 12:34:08

HOA Dues $396/month

My 30-yr fixed mortgage payment for a 1550-sqft stick built SFH was $425.84/month.

Comment by CHE
2014-10-02 12:37:16

Yep $400 in HOA dues and who knows when another assessment or HOA hike could come…

Comment by rj chicago
2014-10-02 07:50:36

Yep - HOA at near 400 a month in addition to payments, utilities and the ‘luxury’ of living in Beverly Hills / W. LA -
W. LA has turned into a dump -
When I was in architecture school out there in L.A. / Santa Monica area in the early 80’s we used to refer to these parking under living as “ding bat apartments.’ Now the ding bat apt. has turned into ding bat condo with the attendant costs!! What a difference a mere 30 years makes.

Comment by Ben Jones
2014-10-02 08:05:58

‘Pictures make it look good’

The Soviet Era grey is a plus.

Comment by Cracker Bob
2014-10-02 09:07:00

Looks like one of those L.A. complexes you saw on The Rockford Files back in the 1970’s. The place where the thug or the snitch lived.

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Comment by Ella58
2014-10-02 11:37:19

I guess we keep tabs on the same neighborhood. Have you seen this 304 sq ft gem?


The basement units here look like converted storage cages! The $620 per month fee is also amusing, especially considering this is a building that centrally controls the air/heat, so you get one or the other, but the building decides which on any given day. If that’s not worth $289k + $620 a month, I don’t know what is!

Comment by CHE
2014-10-02 14:36:07

Just ran the numbers on that. 289k with 20% down and $620 HOA - you’re looking at $2100 a month!!!! To stare at a wall!

Comment by Ella58
2014-10-02 15:42:42

And taxes on top of that! The miracle of it is this place went sale pending. WHO would sign a contract on this?

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Comment by CHE
2014-10-02 17:14:18

Hey WeHo peeps… my friend just sent me this one…

800 sq ft.. 1 bedroom… $500 HOA and they want $599k!


Comment by Housing Analyst
2014-10-02 18:14:59


West Hollywood, CA Sale Prices Plummet 7% YoY; Dive 20% QoQ


Comment by samk
2014-10-02 15:12:23

304 sq ft. Amazing! Look at where the HDTV is hung!


426 sq ft but those mirrors make it look at least 852! Looks like a motel that got turned into condos.

Comment by Ella58
2014-10-02 15:45:20

Lol! The wall-through A/C is particularly special. $439k for that is just unreal.

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Comment by phony scandals
2014-10-02 07:03:54

From the Border, Whistleblowin’ in the Wind

When Ron Zermeno warned of the secret relocation of illegal immigrants,

CBP disciplined him.
By Ryan Lovelace
October 1, 2014 4:00 AM

A whistleblowing Border Patrol agent alleges that the Department of Homeland Security ignored health and safety concerns in attempting to transport illegal immigrants to a facility in Murrieta, Calif., the site of a high-profile confrontation between DHS and local citizens this past summer.

In a whistleblower disclosure document obtained by National Review Online, the agent alleges that the federal government knowingly transported illegal immigrants to facilities that were unequipped to process them; disregarded repeated warnings from a Border Patrol agent about the public-health risks posed by the immigrants, many of whom were suffering from infectious diseases; rejected multiple offers of assistance from local officials; and suspended law-enforcement operations at part of America’s southern border while denying a congressman’s repeated requests for information about the government’s plan to process the immigrants and about the startling events unfolding in his district.

The whistleblower disclosure was filed by Border Patrol agent Ron Zermeno, the health and safety director of National Border Patrol Council Local 1613. Zermeno writes in the disclosure about how, as early as May of 2014, when he learned of the government’s plan to relocate the immigrants, he began raising the alarm, reaching out to Border Patrol management, local officials, and a congressman. He gained no ground with these warnings, he says. He also spoke with NRO and other media about his concerns but was disciplined — for the first time in his decades-long career — for allegedly exposing sensitive law-enforcement information to the press. Zermeno declined to comment for this story.

His disclosure suggests that while the images coming out of Murrieta showed American citizens fighting the arrival of illegal immigrants, the confrontation would have been avoided entirely if only the federal government had heeded the warnings of its employees. Zermeno says in the document that on May 7, he received word from a senior agent of the federal government’s plan to send 140 illegal immigrants every 72 hours to the Murrieta Border Patrol Station, despite its inability to accommodate their arrival. His disclosure says he was concerned for the safety of the agents because of reports that the detainees would be carrying infectious diseases, scabies, and lice. The facility could not safely house the incoming women and children, he writes.

But the senior agent, according to Zermeno, said that immigrants would nonetheless be processed and then released to the community, and that the directive was “concealed for unknown reasons.”

“We got a phone call a couple of days beforehand from Zermeno — he’s the one that informed us,” Calvert says. “Maybe that’s one of the reasons he’s in trouble.” Other Border Patrol agents also spoke with him privately and appeared fearful of retribution from the federal government, Calvert says.

http://www.nationalreview.com/article/389232/border-whistleblowin-wind-ryan-lovelace - 100k -

Comment by phony scandals
2014-10-02 07:39:35

Maybe if we sent some Ebola patients over it would slow the beheading.

What Islamic State militant would want to behead an Ebola patient?

ISIS beheads three women, puts the heads of the Kurdish fighters on display

BY Corky Siemaszko
Published: Wednesday, October 1, 2014, 8:35 AM

They behead women, too.

Brutal Islamic State militants chopped the heads off three female Kurdish fighters and displayed them on a cement block as a warning to anyone who would defy them.

The gory display, believed to be in the ISIS-held northern Syrian city of Jarabulus, was reported Wednesday by the British-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which has activists on the ground.

The Kurds have been locked in a fierce battle with the Sunni Islamic fanatics in the contested corner of Syria as well as in the Kurdish areas of Iraq. And as many as 500 Kurdish women have been on the front lines, engaged in guerilla warfare against a bloodthirsty enemy that uses rape as a weapon and considers women inferior.

Six other Kurdish fighters — all men — were beheaded along with the women, the Observatory reported. They were captured during fighting for the Syrian town of Kobani, near the Turkish border.

http://www.nydailynews.com/…losions-syria-kill-17-including-10-children-article-1.1959106 - Similar pages

Comment by X-GSfixr
2014-10-02 09:32:25

Fixr Fantasy Headline:

“In an move to reduce costs, the Ebola patients will be quarantined with the illegal immigrant detainees”

Two birds, one stone. What’s not to like? :)

Comment by phony scandals
2014-10-02 08:26:10

Official Mascot Of Financial Crisis Still Unsure Why Everyone Is So Mad At Him

Sep 3 2014 @ 3:39pm
by Alex Pareene

Angelo Mozilo, the co-founder and former CEO of notorious subprime lending machine Countrywide, was was one of the first top industry figures to be publicly blamed for the financial crisis, and he remains among the very few individuals to be actually punished for his role. He didn’t go to jail or anything, but the SEC made him pay a few million dollars in fines for fraud and insider trading. In exchange, the government dropped its criminal investigation. That seemed, to many people who aren’t Angelo Mozilo, like a decent deal, but now the U.S. Attorney’s in Los Angeles bringing a civil case against him, and Mozilo has emerged from wherever we keep disgraced former financial executives (it’s somewhere really, really nice, btw) to complain to Bloomberg’s Max Ableson that everyone is picking on him for no reason.

Mozilo is being mocked (and rightly) for his insistence that Countywide didn’t do anything wrong, when, in fact, it did a lot wrong, but at times in the interview, Mozilo approaches accidental insight:

“You’ll have to ask those people, ‘What do you have against Mozilo, what did he do?’” he said in a 30-minute call with Bloomberg News before Labor Day, one of his few interviews since the firm’s downfall. “Countrywide didn’t change. I didn’t change. The world changed.”

That’s sort of true! Mozilo’s confusion stems from the bubble in which he spent much of his adult life. He likely never read one remotely negative thing about himself, or his company, before 2007. He was much-admired and frequently adulated in business press, which could not stop giving him honors and awards:

In 2005, Fortune placed Countrywide on its list of “Most Admired Companies,” and Barron’s named Mozilo one of the thirty best C.E.O.s in the world. The following year, American Banker presented him with a lifetime-achievement award.

dish.andrewsullivan.com/…/ - 69k -

Comment by Puggs
2014-10-02 08:57:41

I bet even his liver is tan!

Comment by Neuromance
2014-10-02 09:14:04

What would be very interesting would be a chart of median house prices versus median and average incomes for an individual.

The following is from Nate Silver’s site.

The American Middle Class Hasn’t Gotten A Raise In 15 Years
by Ben Casselman

In 1988, the typical American adult was 40 years old, white and married, with a high school diploma. If he was a man, he probably worked full time. If she was a woman, she probably didn’t.

Twenty-five years later, Americans are older, more diverse and more educated. We are less likely to be married and more likely to live alone. Work is divided more evenly between the sexes. One thing that hasn’t changed? The income of the median U.S. household is still just under $52,000.


Between the Fed’s relentless inflation (stealth tax - going to who?) and Wall Street’s continued financialization and gambling on necessities, is it any wonder it seems like the US is headed in the wrong direction?

Productivity is increasing, technology is improving and yet a sizable majority of Americans think the country is headed in the wrong direction.

Comment by Neuromance
2014-10-02 10:32:20

“Trickle down” economics is taken as an article of faith. Is there any actual evidence to support that? Or in reality, does it just lead to oligarchy?

Rolls Royce just had its best sales year ever.

I think when the page is turned on this economic chapter, a few things will become apparent:

• The government and central bank socialized the losses incurred by the FIRE sector, which simply was an upward wealth redistribution mechanism.

• The government and central bank actively protected the architects of the financial crisis from both monetary and legal repercussions because the government is under regulatory capture and due to the revolving door.

• By protecting the broken business model which led to the financial crisis (by privatize profits / socialize losses of which public insurance of private debt is the pillar; and further encouragement of allowing lenders to shed repayment risk - a method which would be self correcting if the government were not protecting and encouraging it by insurance of private debt), and by redistributing wealth upwards, it guaranteed more economic stagnation and it sowed the seeds of a future crisis.

• Ultimately by preventing “creative destruction” at the top - the sources of the financial crisis - the central bank and government encouraged more of the same behavior resulting in further stagnation and sowing the seeds of the next crisis.

• By actively distorting market signals, it further enhanced economic stagnation and favored insiders to the detriment of the citizenry.

Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2014-10-02 19:19:11

The American middle class has willingly grabbed its ankles for the Wall Street-Federal Reserve looting syndicate since 1988 (and before). I have no sympathy. This is what they voted for: this is what they got. How’s that hope ‘n change working out for you, dipshits?

Comment by X-GSfixr
2014-10-02 09:26:09

Another non-crisis crisis:


What makes me LMAO is the assertion that adding a secondary door will only cost $10K, per the “government experts”.

When proposing an “Airworthiness Directive”, the FAA always gives an estimated cost of compliance. These are typically 50% lower than the defacto cost.

As it so happens, the fixr was recently involved in getting quotes for the installation of a similar door in a large cabin business jet. And this wasn’t a “security door”, which has extra requirements.

Average bid/quote for installation of this door? $140-$150K. And this door was a retrofit of an optional door, not a start from scratch installation.

Fixr’s favorite conversation this week: With an small-business owner who bitched about taxes, then followed up by commenting on how he was going to have to buy a new helicopter, because the depreciation writeoff on his current one was running out.

Comment by rj chicago
2014-10-02 09:26:15

This one’s for you there guy.
Interesting gov race developing out there in the land of dopers.


Comment by real journalists
2014-10-02 10:22:20

I don’t watch TeeVee so I have yet to see a single campaign commercial.

The last radio commercial I heard was just prior to the GOP primary.

Comment by real journalists
2014-10-02 09:27:44

File this under: subprime is contained

“Some of the same dynamics — the seemingly insatiable demand for loans as the market heats up and the dwindling pool of qualified borrowers — that helped precipitate the 2008 mortgage crisis are now playing out, albeit on a smaller scale, in the auto loan market. Under pressure to generate more and more loans, salesmen at some used-car dealers are suspected of getting inventive.

In the second quarter, according to Experian, banks and credit unions reported their largest year-over-year increase in seriously delinquent auto loans since the second quarter of 2009″


Comment by Puggs
2014-10-02 10:45:58

Great dealz on repo’d cars coming to a lot near you!!

Comment by X-GSfixr
2014-10-02 09:42:39

Meanwhile, in fornication news:


Fixr’s favorite fantasy quote:

“The student was treated at the hospital and released. He sustained injuries to both hands and arms, reportedly due to the large number of “high-fives” he received from fellow students in the past two weeks”.

And……..what is the deal with LSU? Numerous underachieving #1 NFL draft picks (see “KC Chiefs #1 Draft picks 2000-2014)………teacher graduates boinking seventeen year olds.

Comment by phony scandals
2014-10-02 10:43:39

Maybe the kid had learning difficulties and he needed some intensive tutoring.

After-school Tutoring and Summer Intensive Tutoring Program
Small Group After-school Tutoring

Everyone Reading offers an after-school tutoring program for students with dyslexia and other learning difficulties. The program extends through the fall and spring and provides students with 1 hour, 2 days a week of evidence-based instruction in decoding and encoding. This program for students in grades 3-5 and is free of charge. Everyone Reading’s after-school tutoring program offers a great opportunity for children to get extra help from an experienced teacher in a small group setting.


· The tutoring program uses multisensory techniques to help students with decoding and spelling, a multisensory teaching system based in the Orton Gillingham method that is frequently used in many classrooms.

everyonereading.org/programs/tutoring-programs-2/ - 17k -

Comment by X-GSfixr
2014-10-02 13:09:59


Yeah, I’ve got my “multisensory” hangin’……. ROTFLMAO

Comment by phony scandals
2014-10-02 11:23:10

How about changing the Redskins to the Washington Undocumented Immigrants?

Let’s see if we just tweak the Hail to The Redskins fight song…

Hail to the Undocumented Immigrants!
Hail Victory!
We got Immigration reform!
Thanks to old D.C.!
Run or pass and score — we want a lot more!
Beat ‘em, Swamp ‘em,
Give em SNAP! — Health insurance holy cr@p!
Fight on, fight on ‘Til you have won
El Salvador to Wash-ing-ton. Rah!, Rah!, Rah!

Hail to the Undocumented Immigrants!
Hail Victory!
We got Immigration reform!
Thanks to old D.C.!

Comment by phony scandals
2014-10-02 12:03:40

Rev. Louis Farrakhan calls Ebola a ‘race-targeting bioweapon’

Farrakhan argues that the United States “has a desire for world depopulation” by using bioweapons

by Jessica Chasmar | The Washington Times | October 2, 2014

Rev. Louis Farrakhan argued in a blog post Tuesday that the deadly Ebola virus is a race-targeting bioweapon created by white people.

“Methods of Depopulation: Disease infection through bio-weapons such as Ebola & AIDS, which are race targeting weapons,” the Nation of Islam leader tweeted to his 308,000 followers.

In an article, Mr. Farrakhan argues that the United States “has a desire for world depopulation” by using bioweapons “such as Ebola and AIDS, which are race targeting weapons.”

“There is a weapon that can be put in a room where there are Black and White people, and it will kill only the Black and spare the White, because it is a genotype weapon that is designed for your genes, for your race, for your kind,” he writes.

Comment by taxpayers
2014-10-02 12:09:18

is he a favored guest at WH like Sharpton

Comment by X-GSfixr
2014-10-02 13:05:37

Fifteen years ago, I’d have put this in the “Tinfoil/Armadillo hat” file.

Now? Killing off a bunch of the 47%ers/wretched refuse/takers (no matter what race/nationality) would solve a bunch of perceived problems,

We are a little more sophisticated in this country. We don’t overtly whack a bunch of voters. We just implement policies to help the serfs die off faster.

Comment by Cracker Bob
2014-10-02 13:16:15

And his point?

Comment by taxpayers
2014-10-02 12:07:44

the gov will steal your 401k
Hungary 2010- Poland now- Portugal 2012? Argentina 2002 and soon again

no shots fired

got ammo?

Comment by Selfish Hoarder
2014-10-02 12:27:23

Got ammo, yes.

Got precious metals. Before government will go door to door to steal precious metals it will electronically steal from your 401k and IRA.

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2014-10-02 18:18:27

Ammo won’t protect you from electronic theft.

Comment by Selfish Hoarder
2014-10-02 20:30:01

It will protect you against those who try to confiscate your tangibles and have no right to. Government has no right to take any gold. That goes for 1933 too. It was theft, even if government made the law. If I was around in 1933 the takers would have gotten lead instead of gold.

Comment by phony scandals
2014-10-02 12:16:21

“I don’t think anyone should question our motives and what we are trying to accomplish,” Dudley said today in defense of his institution.

“Dudley, himself a former chief U.S. economist and managing director at Goldman Sachs,”

Is the New York Fed a Pushover for Big Banks? Dudley Fires Back

By Matthew Boesler Oct 2, 2014 2:32 PM ET

William C. Dudley, president and chief executive officer of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.

William C. Dudley, president of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, defended his bank-supervision staff following allegations that they had been too deferential to large financial firms.

“I completely stand behind the integrity and work of our supervision staff,” he said after a speech today in New York. “They are operating completely in the public interest.”

Dudley’s comments were his first public reaction to reports last week on the radio program “This American Life” and ProPublica, a nonprofit news organization. The radio program broadcast excerpts of conversations it said were secretly recorded by Carmen Segarra, a former New York Fed bank examiner fired in 2012, with some of her colleagues and her supervisor.

In a transcript of the tapes, Segarra described how she felt that her Fed colleagues were afraid of Goldman Sachs Group Inc. (GS) and handled it with kid gloves.

“I don’t think anyone should question our motives and what we are trying to accomplish,” Dudley said today in defense of his institution. “Examiner independence is completely paramount.”

Segarra didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment made through her spokesman, Jamie Diaferia.

The allegations prompted Massachusetts Democratic Senator Elizabeth Warren to call for a congressional probe into the Fed, which is already under fire from lawmakers on Capitol Hill who want its actions to be more closely audited.

Dudley, himself a former chief U.S. economist and managing director at Goldman Sachs, said that his bank-supervision staff were rotated regularly to ensure their independence from any individual financial firm.

“Let’s focus on the actual track record of what we’ve actually accomplished,” he said. “Have we made the banking system safer? I don’t think there can be any dispute to that, and we’re committed to continue to push in that direction.”

Dudley was speaking after he made remarks about efforts to overhaul the London Interbank Offered Rate, a series of benchmarks for $300 trillion in financial securities worldwide, which has been at the center of official inquiries since 2008.

To contact the reporter on this story: Matthew Boesler in New York at mboesler1@bloomberg.net

Comment by X-GSfixr
2014-10-02 12:57:45

Must be lying. His lips are moving.

As should become painfully apparent by now, it’s not what they say, it’s what they do.

Corporate America has perfected the PR playbook, saying the “right things” in public, and on paper, but putting undocumented pressure on the troops on the ground to do the exact opposite.

Example: Local Bizjet fueling/handling business makes a big deal about their “safety culture”, but makes following the rules impossible for the grunts, by constantly being understaffed.

Book says three guys are required to tow/reposition an airplane. But they only have two guys on duty after 7pm. Yeah, and they are going to tell some flight crew/owner that his airplane can’t be moved until 6am. So the guys “do what needs to be done”, and if something gets damaged, they fire the guys and say they “violated policy”.

Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2014-10-02 19:22:22

Why talk to the monkey when the organ grinder is in the room?

Comment by Housing Analyst
2014-10-02 19:27:16

“I don’t think anyone should question our motives and what we are trying to accomplish,” Dudley said today in defense of his institution”

Fawk u arrogant pig.

Comment by CHE
2014-10-02 14:25:48

So, at the radio station I work at I was just asked to voice a spot that starts by asking if the listener is disappointed about being outbid by multiple offers.

It then goes on to say the agent can provide exclusive inside information like pocket listings not available on the MLS.

It’s almost like the peak of the last bubble.

Guess this shiz is about to get real….

Comment by Housing Analyst
2014-10-02 15:03:48

Interesting these “multiple bid offers” are never substantiated.

Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2014-10-02 16:00:44

The inevitable end-state of every corrupt socialist entitlements-for-votes scheme. Learn something, Nancy Pelosi & Co.


Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2014-10-02 18:20:17

Here is a story that trickled down all the way from the Financial Times of London to the local news.

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2014-10-02 18:23:22

I know at least one individual mentioned in this story personally. My questions:

1) How do you know inflation will be high enough to undercut the value of future repayments at 10X priniciple?

2) Can’t homeowners just sell now if they are worried about future taxes being too high? If you are going to take your money and run, it pays to be the first to do so.

Bonds dominate PUSD candidate forum
By Elizabeth Marie Himchak

Poway Unified School District’s capital appreciation bonds were the focus of a board candidates forum on Tuesday night, an issue that clearly irked the two incumbents and a decision all the challengers criticized.

All Poway Unified School District candidates attended Tuesday night’s forum in Rancho Bernardo. From left, Michelle O’Connor-Radcliff, T.J. Zane, Todd Gutschow, John P. Riley, Katie Newbanks, Charles Sellers, Jeannie Foulkrod and Marc Davis. Photo by Elizabeth Marie Himchak

All eight candidates for the three seats — incumbents Marc Davis and Todd Gutschow of Poway, and challengers Jeannie Foulkrod and Katie Newbanks of Rancho Bernardo; Michelle O’Connor-Radcliff, Charles Sellers and T.J. Zane of Rancho Penasquitos; and John P. Riley of Poway — were in attendance. However, the audience was light, with a little over two dozen coming to hear them, which filled less than half of the available seats in the Ed Brown Senior Center at Rancho Bernardo Community Park.

Davis and Gutschow defended their and fellow board members’ decisions a few years back to borrow $105 million in bonds that will cost almost $1 billion in taxpayer money to pay back since the 20 years of payments will not begin for another 17 years and the board decided not to spend more to take advantage of interest rates that drop in the future.

Gutschow said the bond money was spent on “fundamental” renovation work needed on campuses, saying the projects were “not cosmetic” but for plumbing, electrical upgrades and asbestos removal — reconstruction an original bond years earlier could not cover due to rising costs as work commenced on campuses district-wide.

“We promised not to raise taxes more than $55 per $100,000 assessed value … we chose a long-term tax to honor our commitment,” Gutschow said.

Davis said people are quick to criticise the board’s decision, yet also quick to proclaim how great their renovated campuses are due to money that came from the decision.

“Are (the CABs) expensive? Yes,” Davis said. “But (voters) said don’t raise taxes, use CABs. Please don’t buy into the (campaign) hyperbole.”

Sellers called the CABs “a colossal blunder” and many fellow challengers echoed similar sentiments, expressing dismay that their children and grandchildren will bear the financial burden of the CABs and some said it could hurt property values in years to come.

Newbanks was among those who called for a slowdown to finding a way to get taxpayers out of the situation and wants several options explored over the next few years since the payments will not begin for many years.

In recent weeks the board has been considering a possible solution that might save around $100 million by raising property taxes now. A decision has been postponed until after the Nov. 4 election.

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2014-10-02 18:26:45

Financial Times
August 9, 2012 8:35 pm
School bonds could trigger fiscal shock
By Gillian Tett
San Diego sees dangerous cocktail of financial innovation and debt

A decade ago, San Diego county in California was at the cutting edge of some dangerous financial games.

As the housing boom got under way, bankers and mortgage brokers became adept at flogging subprime loans to households across the area using “innovative” structures. That episode, of course, ended in tears, not just in San Diego but elsewhere in America.

Now, some new financial games have come to light involving a dangerous cocktail of innovation and debt. This time, it is not private households involved but public sector bodies – specifically, schools.

The issue at stake revolves around some exotic bonds issued by San Diego educational authorities in recent years. Once upon a time (think six long decades ago), US school authorities used to finance themselves primarily by using taxes. Then they started to issue a swelling volume of bonds to supplement those taxes.

But as the fiscal situation in California has deteriorated, voters have become so upset they have imposed various fiscal straitjackets on educational boards. Worse, property tax revenues, which have been used to fund schools, have declined as the housing market has crashed.

That has left schools in a bind. So, local financial advisers have offered some “innovative” solutions. Last year, Poway Unified, one San Diego educational district, issued some $105m worth of “capital appreciation” bonds to finance previously planned investment projects.

These are similar to zero-coupon bonds, meaning the district does not need to start repaying interest or capital until 2033.

As a result, Poway’s local authority has been able to promise to keep local taxes unchanged while completing previously promised investments (building projects, computers and so on).

But, there is a big catch: to compensate for this payment deferral, these bonds are paying highish (7 per cent) interest rates and cannot be redeemed early. When the bond is repaid in 2051, the total bill will be more than 10 times the initial loan.

The Poway local authorities insist this still makes sense. After all, they argue, their children cannot wait for new schools until tax revenues grow again. But the danger is clear. Though these bonds shield taxpayers (and politicians) from expenditure today, they create a headache later. At best, this is a case of kicking the can down the road; at worst, a case of the government dancing with loan sharks.

It is difficult to tell just how many other capital appreciation bonds exist. As the Securities and Exchange Commission pointed out last week, the $2.7tn municipal bond market is alarmingly opaque. In the Poway case, the details came to light because of some excellent investigative reporting by Joel Thurtell, a blogger, and Will Carless, a reporter at the Voice of San Diego, a local news group.

Carless has unearthed similar but slightly less extreme schemes at other San Diego school authorities, such as Oceanside Unified (which borrowed $30m but will need to repay $280m), Escondido Union (borrowed $27m, faces $247m repayments) and San Diego Unified (borrowed $164m, will repay $1.2bn).

However, the really big unknown is the degree to which this reflects a bigger, national pattern. Optimists might argue California is an extreme example; after all, its fiscal woes are among America’s worst.

In some regions such as Michigan, state entities are banned from capital appreciation bonds, and even where these bonds are not explicitly banned, there are corners of America where local officials are trying to inject a new level of responsibility into their finances, often with a zeal that puts Washington to shame. Rhode Island is a case in point.

Yet, as a report from Dick Ravitch and Paul Volcker last month pointed out, the overall picture for local finances is dire. They estimate, for example, that the level of underfunding for local public pension schemes is about $3tn-$4tn.

While some regions are trying to tackle this, many others are burying their heads in the sand, hoping that either the problem remains under wraps until they leave office, or that a combination of growth, inflation and federal bailouts provides a future fix.

So I, for one, salute the efforts of local media groups such as the Voice of San Diego to scrutinise these opaque local financial structures. I also applaud the moves the SEC is making (albeit very belatedly) to force that murky muni bond world to become more transparent to investors and taxpayers alike.

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2014-10-02 18:38:03

This story leads me to daily thank The Lord My God that we don’t own a home within the Poway Unified School District boundaries.

Where Borrowing $105 Million Will Cost $1 Billion: Poway Schools
By: Will Carless
Connect | August 6, 2012

Last year the Poway Unified School District made a deal: It borrowed $105 million from investors to fund a final push in its decade-long effort to revamp aging schools.

In many ways, the deal was unspectacular. Some of the money was used to pay off previous debts from delayed and over-budget construction projects. The rest went towards finishing upgrades that Poway taxpayers had been promised as far back as 2002. To a casual observer, it was just another school bond.

But Poway Unified’s deal was far from normal.

In 2008, voters had given the district permission to borrow more money to finish its modernization, and they had received a big promise from the elected school board in return: No tax increases.

Without increasing taxes, the district couldn’t afford to borrow money in the conventional way. So, instead of borrowing from investors over 20 or 30 years and paying the debt down each year, like a mortgage, the district got creative.

With advice from an Orange County financial consultant, the district borrowed the money over 40 years in a controversial loan called a capital appreciation bond. The key point for the district: It won’t make any payments on the debt for 20 years.

And that means the district’s debt will keep getting bigger and bigger as interest on the loan piles up.

The bottom line: For borrowing $105 million in 2011, taxpayers will end up paying investors more than $981 million by 2051, or almost 10 times what the district borrowed. That’s wildly more expensive than a typical school bond, in which a district pays back two or maybe three times what it borrowed.

As well as being expensive, capital appreciation bonds work by tapping future growth in property values to pay today’s debts, a concept considered by many in the school bond business to be both risky and inequitable. In 1994, the state of Michigan banned school districts from issuing bonds like this, deeming them too toxic to taxpayers.

Nevertheless, California’s ever-strapped districts have increasingly looked to capital appreciation bonds to raise money for improvements without increasing taxes on current residents. Across the state, districts have borrowed billions this way, using exotic financing to shift the burden for paying for today’s school construction to future generations of Californians.

Poway Unified, a district more accustomed to praise for its fiscal austerity, has found itself at the center of the debate over these bonds. For a year now, it’s come under fire from taxpayer groups and concerned elected officials around the state, for whom Poway’s bond has reached legendary status.

This is way worse than loan sharking,” said Michael Turnipseed, executive director of the Kern County Taxpayers Association in central California, which has lobbied the state Legislature to tighten laws on school district borrowing. “And Poway is the poster child. What they have done is absolutely insane.”

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2014-10-02 18:43:30

Would you borrow $105 million with agreement to repay principle plus $877 million in interest? What if future inflation turns out “lower than expected”?

I’d love it if someone could post on a related historical example.

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2014-10-02 18:49:57

PUSD homeowners must feel like the characters in those old sci-fi movies about an asteroid approaching the earth with the prospect of killing all life on the planet. How does it feel to own a home knowing that future school tax assessments are eventually likely to sink its value?

Comment by rms
2014-10-02 18:50:07

I’ve mentioned a co-worker with a Detroit house that he couldn’t sell when he left five years ago. It’s been a “break-even” rental ever since.

Fast forward to the present, his current renter wants to buy it for nearly $200k, and apparently he found a lender too. Problem now is coming up with $3,200 to cover the closing fees. I told my co-worker to run to the nearest ATM, withdraw it, and hire the hottest stripper in town to hand deliver it. CLOSE IT NOW!

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2014-10-02 18:51:23

I’ve mentioned a co-worker with a Detroit house that he couldn’t sell when he left five years ago. It’s been a “break-even” rental ever since.

I thought the all-cash Chinese investors were snapping up those Detroit investment homes like hot cakes. Why can’t your co-worker sell to one of them?

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2014-10-02 18:57:01

“I told my co-worker to run to the nearest ATM, withdraw it, and hire the hottest stripper in town to hand deliver it.”

Awesome suggestion!

My family will be selling my parents’ home about 500 miles southwest of Detroit within the next several months. The area is not quite as blighted, but it isn’t great. I tried to convince my siblings and parents to go for a fall sale, as I have serious concerns the bottom will have dropped out of the market by early next year, but was outvoted.

So we’ll take whatever the market will bear during the red-hot spring sales season in 2015. Maybe looser credit spigots will be in place by then to help with the sales effort?

I’ll keep y’all posted how this turns out.

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2014-10-02 19:01:06

David Sims
Long/short equity, special situations, event-driven, activist investor

FHFA Promotes President Obama’s Housing Program In Detroit
Oct. 2, 2014 9:02 PM ET | About: Fannie Mae (FNMA), Includes: FMCC

Today, at the Detroit Public Library, FHFA Director Mel Watt held a town hall meeting to promote the Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP). FHFA is engaged in a campaign to push borrowers through the HARP program and lower interest rates for responsible homeowners all over the country. FHFA estimates nearly 28,000 borrowers in the Detroit area are eligible for HARP.

In Director Watt’s words, “800,000 more people would benefit from the HARP program if they would just step forward.” And “the HARP program is designed to reward those people that are the most committed borrowers in this country.”

Investors Unite, a shareholder advocacy group representing shareholders of Fannie Mae (OTCQB:FNMA) and Freddie Mac (OTCQB:FMCC) was in attendance. A shareholder named Richard P. Sabb, Sr. shared his thoughts on the situation.

Mr. Sabb started buying shares of the companies in 2007, before the mortgage crisis. After the companies were placed in Conservatorship, he continued buying shares as the price dropped. He said that the lower price was “a way for the little guy to step into that stream that the big fish swim in.”

Today, he is hopeful that FHFA will begin to represent all the stakeholders and acknowledge that not all shareholders have the deep pockets of a hedge fund.

Origins of the Home Affordable Refinance Program

In 2009, the Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP) was established under the direction of the FHFA. No legislation was passed to establish HARP except for the establishment of the FHFA and it’s authority over Fannie and Freddie. Unlike other modification programs, the mortgages refinanced through HARP are typically in good standing with no credit issues.

Since the start of the HARP program, 9 million mortgages have been refinanced through Fannie and Freddie, fully meeting goals established in early 2009.

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2014-10-02 19:06:26

It sure sux this year to own Fannie Mae stock!

Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2014-10-02 19:15:31

This is yet another sign the Echo Bubble is toast. Denoument is underway, which is A-OK with the PTB thanks to the underlying strength in the U.S. economy.

Wall Street 10/01/2014 @ 9:49AM 29,518 views
The End Of The Fannie And Freddie Stock Boom?

The quest to make a big score out of the securities of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, which has been joined by both big shot and retail investors, has been dealt a significant setback by a federal judge who tossed a group of lawsuits that was seen as key to the effort.

U.S. District Judge Royce Lamberth threw out on Tuesday lawsuits filed by Richard Perry’s hedge fund and Bruce Berkowitz’s Fairholme Funds that claimed the government acted illegally by getting Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to pay the government nearly all of their massive profits in the form of dividends.

Shares of Fannie Mae fell by 36% to $1.72 in Wednesday morning trading and are now down by 73% since spiking to a 52-week high of $6.35 back in March. Shares of Freddie Mac tumbled by 32%. Shares of the government-sponsored enterprises trade on the Over The Counter Bulletin Board. Fannie Mae’s Series S preferred shares fell by 47%.

The Obama Administration wants to wind down the mortgage giants that have been operating in conservatorship since receiving $188 billion from the Treasury Department amid the financial crisis. But Fannie and Freddie paid the bailout out money back and are now hugely profitable. Perry and Berkowitz bought Fannie and Freddie junior preferred securities a long time ago in the hopes that some of those profits would eventually flow to them. Other investors, including Berkowitz and, more recently, William Ackman’s Pershing Square Capital Management, took positions in the common shares of the GSEs.

Comment by Tarara Boomdea
2014-10-02 19:34:34

“They” will not be happy until all joy in your life is gone. They will continue to party hearty. UK, but soon to come to a neighborhood near you:

New drug for ‘mild alcoholics’ drinking two glasses of wine a night

Andrew Langford, chief executive of the British Liver Trust, said: “The range of people who put themselves at risk through their drinking is quite wide. Some have not yet experienced social problems and are functioning well until they develop an alcohol-related physical illness such as high blood pressure, cancer or liver disease; while others lose their social supports and then tend to fit the stereotype of the ‘alcoholic’.

I quoted that part because I think “British Liver Trust” sounds funny.

Comment by Tarara Boomdea
Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2014-10-02 21:23:09

This post would show up on an evening when I drank two glasses of wine…

Comment by rms
2014-10-02 19:47:23

“Ex-federal worker pleads guilty to stealing $843K from the government”

By Rebecca Shabad - 10/02/14 01:31 PM EDT

A former federal worker pleaded guilty Thursday to stealing more than $840,000 from the government.

Brian Thompson, 53, pleaded guilty to one count of wire fraud in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia.

Between May 2013 and March 2014, Thompson stole government money when he worked as a loan guarantee specialist for the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).

Thompson sold real estate properties on behalf of HUD, after borrowers defaulted on mortgages from the department. For several properties, the Justice Department says he made “materially false representations” to third parties and diverted $843,000 to his own bank accounts.

“Brian Thompson exploited his government job to rob the American taxpayer of more than $800,000,” U.S. Attorney Ronald C. Machen, Jr. said in a statement. “This crooked HUD employee diverted the proceeds of real estate sales from the U.S. Treasury to his own pockets through lies and trickery. He now faces serious prison time as a result of criminal breach of the public trust.”

The charge carries a maximum of 20 years in prison and potential financial penalties. The Justice Department said the involved parties have agreed Thompson likely faces between about 2.5 to 3.5 years in prison and a fine of up to $75,000.

Thompson will also have to pay $843,000 in restitution back to the federal government, according to the plea agreement.

His sentencing has been scheduled for Jan. 7.


Comment by Whac-A-Bubble™
2014-10-02 23:08:19

Gold is poised to test $1200/oz. Will it remain above this level until interest rates go up, or will it correct preemptively?

Comment by tresho
2014-10-03 00:13:24

You Know It’s a Tough Market When Ben Bernanke Can’t Refinance

Ben S. Bernanke said the mortgage market is so tight that even he is having a hard time refinancing his own home loan.

The former Federal Reserve chairman, speaking at a conference in Chicago yesterday, told moderator Mark Zandi of Moody’s Analytics Inc. — “just between the two of us” — that “I recently tried to refinance my mortgage and I was unsuccessful in doing so.”

When the audience laughed, Bernanke said, “I’m not making that up.”

Why does 60-year-old Ben still have a mortgage?

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