July 17, 2015

Bits Bucket for July 17, 2015

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




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241 Comments »

Comment by Goon
2015-07-17 02:02:54

RENT

Comment by palmetto
2015-07-17 06:44:35

Well, the rental builders certainly agree with you.

http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2015-07-17/rental-builders-go-berserk-multi-family-permits-soar-most-1990

BTW, living in one of the corporate rabbit warrens is no picnic, either. Been there, done that.

Buy an RV and pay lot rent.

Comment by Goon
2015-07-17 07:01:46

I rent a top floor apartment with no shared neighbor walls

Designated off street parking for both of my vehicles

Electric bill under $30 eight months of the year

Heat and water included with rent

I mow and shovel nothing

Comment by Blue Skye
2015-07-17 07:28:35

I move my boat if I get tired of the neighbors.

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Comment by palmetto
2015-07-17 07:45:55

Exactly. I got that RV thing from a RE attorney who said it was the best way to limit government interference. Can’t lien the RV, at least not for property taxes or code violations or whatever. Can’t affirmatively force neighbors on you. Rent the lot, park the RV, move if rent goes up or things get weird in the neighborhood.

Not sure I could live in an RV, but it sounds like a good way to limit gov’t messing around with you.

 
Comment by MightyMike
2015-07-17 09:05:02

Not sure I could live in an RV

That’s the major drawback in the whole idea.

 
Comment by Mafia Blocks
2015-07-17 16:58:15

But paying a lifetime of earnings for a depreciating asset and ending up with nothing at the end is an upside?

Gotcha.

 
 
Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-17 08:03:22
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Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-17 08:42:52

Just remember: The same pattern of soaring costs followed by a crash that we recently witnessed in the Chinese stock market can also occur in the U.S. housing market, particularly since some of the same investors are involved in both cases.

 
 
Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-17 08:22:47

Excerpt:

Elsewhere, the index for rent increased 0.4 percent, the largest rise since August 2013. With the residential vacancy rate near a 22-year low as a firming labor market boosts household formation, shelter costs are likely to continue rising.

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Comment by nhtransplant
2015-07-17 09:54:41

If you can’t fit all of your belongings in to a bandana tied to the end of a stick, you’re doing something wrong.

Comment by rms
2015-07-17 11:48:25

I prefer a garage for my hand tools, the rigid tool girl calendar, storage for toyz, etc., the important things in life.

http://picpaste.com/toyz.jpg

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Comment by Blue Skye
2015-07-17 16:55:07

A man does not own a house, he carries it on his back.

 
Comment by MightyMike
2015-07-17 16:57:06

You mean like a turtle?

 
Comment by Mafia Blocks
2015-07-17 17:54:51

A house is a burdensome millstone my friend.

 
 
 
 
Comment by Goon
Comment by Pangolin
2015-07-17 06:57:19

Why are interest rates still artificially low if houses are appreciating so rapidly?

Comment by Rental Watch
2015-07-17 08:49:36

Because home prices (despite housing being a consumable, IMHO) are not included in the CPI measures the Fed uses.

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Comment by WPA
2015-07-17 09:06:43

Interest rates are not artificially low — due to the international savings glut, there’s too much money chasing bonds. Investors have bid the interest rates down to nothing. This is the real reason the Fed keeps procrastinating on raising rates: they are waiting for the bond markets to make the first move.

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Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-17 09:46:36

Interest rates are low and savers are suffering financial repression because the Fed will loan money at .25% and as we learned that includes foreign banks which often times will buy U.S. bonds with the loan and pocket the spread between the interest they are paying and what the bonds are paying.

 
 
Comment by Rental Watch
2015-07-17 12:46:51

Adan,

There is an argument (and a pretty compelling one at that) that interest rates are so low because demand for investment capital is low. This is one reason why so much of the liquidity the Fed has injected into the system has simply ended up as excess reserves, and not created inflation.

As the theory goes, if rates were “artificially” low, then the Fed’s actions should have created inflation. Some could argue that their actions DID create inflation, but they are simply measuring inflation incorrectly (since they don’t count asset prices like stocks and homes).

 
Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-17 13:42:56

If you increase the supply of money available at a time of relatively low demand wouldn’t you cause interest rates to get really low? I do not see the two theories as being contradictory as you see them.

 
Comment by Rental Watch
2015-07-17 15:20:45

Theory #1 The Fed has pushed rates to artificially low levels.
Theory #2 The demand for investment capital has pushed rates to low levels.

According to the guy with theory #2, if a Central Bank has rates too low relative to the natural level, they create inflation. If a Central Bank has rates too high relative to the natural level, they create deflation.

In other words, he would argue that the Fed is responding to the market of low rates to maintain low levels of inflation, not creating the market of low rates.

Because the Fed’s actions have not created inflation, it must be that the natural level of interest rate given the economy and demand for investment capital is low, NOT that the Fed is artificially keeping rates low.

Remember the fear of higher long-term interest rates because the Fed was going to stop QE? The theory at the time was akin to #1…that the Fed was artificially keeping long-term rates low due to their buying of bonds, and that once they stopped, long-term rates would naturally rise.

However, when the Fed stopped buying, rates didn’t really move.

So, what’s keeping rates low? The Fed? Or something else?

 
Comment by Blue Skye
2015-07-17 17:03:15

“something else?”

Deflation.

 
Comment by Mafia Blocks
2015-07-17 17:56:18

Let the deflationary spiral commence.

 
 
 
 
 
Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-17 04:10:24

Could the stock market swoon dent China’s much touted 7% GDP growth rate?

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-17 04:57:04

http://www.shanghaidaily.com/business/Chinese-shares-surge-over-3-percent/shdaily.shtml

I think you have the chart upside down today. Have some coffee.

Comment by Goon
2015-07-17 05:12:10

YAWN

 
Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2015-07-17 06:37:51

Central bankers NEVER let stawks close red on Friday. And with a third of Chinese stocks still not trading, manipulation becomes even easier. Enjoy your Potemkin market.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-17 06:48:16

Actually it is less than 20%. Tell which stock exchange today is not a Potemkin market?

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Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2015-07-17 15:47:14

So your leper has the most fingers left in the colony?

 
 
 
Comment by Rental Watch
2015-07-17 12:48:27

Adan, despite your views on the Chinese housing bubble, or GDP growth, you have to admit that a P/E in the Chinese market in excess of 90 was/is a bubble.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-17 13:22:50

I have not been able to get a clear measure of the PE, if it was 90 for the overall market it would be a bubble. However, I have seen sources that place the PE for the overall market as low as 30 which would not be a bubble in a high growth market. The high tech index did hit around 90 but compare that to Amazon or Tesla and it does not look too bad.

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Comment by Rental Watch
2015-07-17 15:22:04

“The high tech index did hit around 90 but compare that to Amazon or Tesla and it does not look too bad.”

It does when 90 is representative of ALL companies, not just those with the highest growth rates.

 
 
Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-17 13:54:10

For example look at this number from the Shanghai exchange:

http://english.sse.com.cn/

Now, I have tried to research this and figure out how some of the numbers quoted could be so high and the best explanation I could, find sorry I do not have the link at my figure tips, is the high estimates strip out bank shares which are a major part of the market and reduce the PE levels severely. It seems a little bit arbitrary to me to take them out, perhaps it makes the market more clear but I it always give me pause when people say if you leave x out then blah blah blah. Usually it is just a way to get a preconceived result despite the facts.

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Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-17 13:57:07

Here are the numbers with all stocks included:

Listed Companies 1071
Listed Securities 4621
Total Share Capital(100 million shares) 29315.76
Total Share Capital Tradable(100 million shares) 26518.17
Total Market Capitalization(RMB100 million) 323079.18
Total Free-float Capitalization(RMB100 million) 280020.63
Average P/E Ratio 19.51

 
 
 
 
Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-17 05:20:19

In China Daily but from the Asian Development Bank:

The Asian Development Bank cut its annual growth forecast for China to 7 percent from 7.2 percent on Thursday, blaming weak external demand, a declining working-age population and rising wages in the country.

China’s GDP grew by 7 percent year-on-year in the second quarter, higher than previous market estimate of 6.8 percent.

Jurgen Conrad, head of the economics unit, PRC resident mission of the ADB, told a news conference in Beijing that he did not see any reason to mistrust the figures.

However, he added, the “quarterly GDP statistics are less reliable than annual statistics” in assessing economic performance.

ADB has also trimmed its 2015 growth forecast for Asia to 6.1 percent from 6.3 percent, amid slower-than-expected economic activity in China and the United States.

Wei Shangjin, the bank’s chief economist, said slower growth in China is likely to have a noticeable effect on the rest of Asia given its size and close links with other countries in the region through regional and global value chains.

Official figures revealed on Wednesday that consumption’s contribution to the economy reached a record 60 percent in the first half, while the country’s fixed-asset investment fell to a 15-year low during the same period.

The same day, Janet Yellen, the US Federal Reserve chair, said she expected a US interest rate increase by the end of the year. The Fed is keeping an eye on the situation in Greece, too, as well as the stock market turmoil in China, according to media reports.

Wei insisted that the ongoing fluctuations in the Chinese stock market will not have a big impact on China’s GDP and real economy. The financial sector, he said, is also expected to contribute less to growth after the recent stock market correction, although the drop in stock prices is unlikely to have much impact on consumption.

Economists say the rate normalization could lead to a widening in the interest rate differential with the dollar likely to gain strength this year against other currencies. A stronger dollar will make other currencies weaker, but China may be “an exception”, Wei said.

A United Overseas Bank Ltd report on Wednesday, meanwhile, said China’s financial reform is on track, including interest rate liberalization and further opening of the capital account, which allows for greater participation by foreign players in China’s domestic capital markets as the country aims for Special Drawing Rights admission by the end of 2015.

Wei warned the opening of the capital account should remain at a cautious but reasonable pace, as some developing nations may have opened up their capital markets too quickly, which posed risks to their economic stability.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-17 05:29:47

Key quote:

China’s GDP grew by 7 percent year-on-year in the second quarter, higher than previous market estimate of 6.8 percent.

Jurgen Conrad, head of the economics unit, PRC resident mission of the ADB, told a news conference in Beijing that he did not see any reason to mistrust the figures.

Comment by Blue Skye
2015-07-17 07:31:42

China GDP up but there is no economic growth. There is a surprise or two sneaking up on you.

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Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-17 07:37:47

Then how is China responsible for almost 40% of the world’s growth.

 
 
 
 
Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-17 05:28:16

Wikipedia about ADP:
The Asian Development Bank (ADB) is a regional development bank established on 22 August 1966 which is headquartered in Metro Manila, Philippines, to facilitate economic development in Asia.[3] The bank admits the members of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP, formerly the Economic Commission for Asia and the Far East or ECAFE) and non-regional developed countries.[3] From 31 members at its establishment, ADB now has 67 members, of which 48 are from within Asia and the Pacific and 19 outside. The ADB was modeled closely on the World Bank, and has a similar weighted voting system where votes are distributed in proportion with members’ capital subscriptions. Since 2014, ADB releases annual report of Creative Productivity Index and comparatively includes Finland and United States for the list of Asia-Pacific members. [4][5]

At the end of 2013, Japan holds the largest proportion of shares at 15.67%. The United States holds 15.56%, China holds 6.47%, India holds 6.36%, and Australia holds 5.81%.

 
Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-17 08:06:56

International Business
Cooling of China’s Stock Market Dents Major Driver of Economic Growth
点击查看本文中文版 Read in Chinese
By NEIL GOUGHJULY 15, 2015
On Wednesday, China reported its economy in the second quarter increased by 7 percent, in line with government targets. Economists said the expansion had been helped by rising output from the financial industry. Credit Wu Hong/European Pressphoto Agency

HONG KONG — As the usual drivers of economic growth have faltered in China, the stock market euphoria has helped pick up the slack, driven by a slate of businesses feeding off the frenzy.

With the market now cooling, the Chinese economy is losing a major boost, adding pressure on the government to take further action.

Definitely, it can’t last,” said Julian Evans-Pritchard, a China economist at Capital Economics, referring to the stock market’s lift to the country’s growth. “It’s not sustainable.”

The stock market rise was fast and furious. At their peak in mid-June, China’s main share indexes, the Shanghai and Shenzhen exchanges, had more than doubled over the course of a year.

What stands out in China’s case is the sheer velocity of the increase in prices,” analysts at Goldman Sachs wrote this week in a research note. To find a comparable performance in the United States, they had to go back to the 12 months that ended in July 1933, when the Standard & Poor’s 500-stock index rose 124 percent after the inauguration of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt and the devaluation of the dollar against gold.

 
Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-17 08:08:59

CNN Money
Stocks tumble to slash $30 billion from China’s growth
By Sophia Yan
China’s economic growth could take a multi-billion dollar hit due to recent stock market volatility.

The world’s second-largest economy enjoyed a boost as Chinese markets rallied to incredible highs in the first half of the year. At its peak, the benchmark Shanghai Composite was up by 60%, while the smaller Shenzhen Composite more than doubled in size.

Then the bottom fell out of the market, at one point wiping away more than $3 trillion in value. Analysts expect GDP, a comprehensive measure of economic health, to suffer as a result.

The stock market accounted for a disproportionate share of growth during the first quarter due to high trading volumes,” said IHS Global Insight China economist Brian Jackson. “If those volumes evaporate, it could bring growth to below 6.5%.

Jackson estimates that market volatility will knock 195 billion yuan ($31.4 billion) or over half a percentage point off GDP growth. The loss could result in a significant slowdown from the 7% expansion posted so far this year.

 
Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-17 08:11:12

Markets | Wed Jul 15, 2015 7:59am EDT
China growth beats forecasts but stocks dive again
BEIJING | By Kevin Yao and Pete Sweeney

China’s economy grew an annual 7 percent in the second quarter, beating analysts’ forecasts, though its volatile stock markets took a sharp dive in a reminder of the threats to Beijing’s efforts to direct the economy out of a slowdown.

Policymakers had already unleashed a series of measures to pull stocks out of a 30 percent nosedive and appeared to have succeeded last week, but Wednesday’s tumble could reawaken concerns over the government’s ability to manage the economy.

The day began on a positive note with the growth figures and monthly activity data that also beat expectations across the board, with factory output hitting a five-month high, following reports of increased bank lending on Tuesday.

As the National Bureau of Statistics released the upbeat figures, it described the stock markets as key to economic stability. As if on cue, the key indexes, already down in morning trade, fell more than 4 percent in the afternoon.

The CSI300 index eventually ended down 3.5 percent, while the Shanghai Composite Index lost 3 percent.

“Investors liquidated their positions as the GDP data failed to impress,” said Steven Leung, a director at UOB Kay Hian in Hong Kong.

It has been a difficult year for the world’s second-largest economy, with slowing growth in trade, investment and domestic demand compounded by a cooling property sector, deflationary pressure, then the equity market panic from mid-June.

 
Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-17 08:59:27

ft dot com
Asia-Pacific Equities
Global Economy
Last updated: July 17, 2015 8:32 am
China’s biggest state banks recruited into stock market rescue
Gabriel Wildau in Shanghai
A man sits in front of the People’s Bank Of China building in Beijing, China, 09 July 2015. Chinese stocks jumped sharply after falling on opening for the third consecutive day, amid aggressive measures by the authorities to shore up share prices.
EPA/WU HONG
©EPA

The huge scale of Chinese government intervention to staunch a stock market sell-off has been revealed by reports showing the country’s biggest state-owned banks have provided the equivalent of more than $200bn to help prop up equities.

Much larger than previously disclosed, the lending to the country’s margin finance agency highlights the sense of urgency with which top officials viewed the threat to the financial system and the broader economy as the stock market cratered earlier this month.

The Shanghai Composite index lost more than a third of its value in roughly three weeks, dropping from a seven-year high in mid-June to hit a low point on July 9. Markets have since rebounded, recovering by 17 per cent. But the magnitude of state support casts doubt on whether the rally is sustainable without government support.

According to the latest revelations, the big state-owned banks have lent a combined Rmb1.3tn ($209bn) in recent weeks to the China Securities Finance Corp, for lending on to brokerages to finance their investment in shares and to purchase mutual funds directly.

The operation echoes a move by the Hong Kong authorities in 1998 to prop up the local stock market by buying 11 per cent of the Hang Seng, funded by drawing on foreign currency reserves.

 
Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-17 09:02:01

China Unleashes $483 Billion to Stem the Market Rout
July 17, 2015 — 2:43 AM PDT

China has created what amounts to a state-run margin trader with $483 billion of firepower, its latest effort to end a stock-market rout that threatens to drag down economic growth and erode confidence in President Xi Jinping’s government.

China Securities Finance Corp. can access as much as 3 trillion yuan of borrowed funds from sources including the central bank and commercial lenders, according to people familiar with the matter. The money may be used to buy shares and provide liquidity to brokerages, the people said, asking not to be named because the information wasn’t public.

While it’s unclear how much CSF will ultimately deploy into China’s $6.6 trillion equity market, the financing is up to 25 times bigger than the support fund started by Chinese brokerages earlier this month. That’s probably enough to restore confidence among China’s 90 million individual investors, says Bocom International Holdings Co. The Shanghai Composite Index jumped 3.5 percent on Friday, capping a two-week rally that’s turned it into one of the world’s best-performing equity gauges.

“It doesn’t have to use up all the money, as long as it can make the rest of the market believe that it has enough ammunition,” said Hao Hong, a China strategist at Bocom International in Hong Kong. “It is a game of chicken. For now, it seems to be working.”

Fighting Panic

CSF, founded in 2011 to provide funding to the margin-trading businesses of Chinese brokerages, has transformed into one of the key government vehicles to combat a 32 percent selloff in the Shanghai Composite from mid-June through July 8. At 3 trillion yuan, its funding would be about five times bigger than the new proposed bailout for Greece and exceed China’s 2.3 trillion yuan of regulated margin financing during the height of the stock-market boom last month.

“What the authorities are demonstrating to the market is that if panic does take hold, they have the resources at their disposal to deal with that,” said James Laurenceson, the deputy director of the Australia-China Relations Institute at the University of Technology in Sydney. “Monetary authorities around the word regularly send the same signal in credit and foreign exchange markets.”

 
 
Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-17 04:12:05

Is greed still trumping fear these days?

Comment by Mr. Banker
2015-07-17 05:42:02

“Is greed still trumping fear these days?”

Feed the greed. Greed is good.

The “reality” of greed is euphoria, the “reality” of fear is despair.

Greed produces higher prices, higher prices produces more equity, more equity means greater wealth.

Greater wealth means more happiness, less despair. Greater wealth means more spending, more spending generates jobs, more spending saves children.

But greed is not enough; Money must be made available to feed the greed, and money IS available - go see your local banker and ask him how, ask him:

How can I feed the economy? How can I create happiness instead of despair? How can I save the children?

Do it today!

Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2015-07-17 06:38:54

No, but greed is fearing Trump (me so clever!).

Comment by Pangolin
2015-07-17 07:02:02

How do you think they are going to take Trump down? And when?

I’m sure he has many many many skeletons in his closet waiting to dance out. Some say he is a Democrat plant. I think he may tend to be an Oligarch plant, helping both sides by showing that anyone who is against open borders is obviously a racist crazy. That way neither side needs to discuss it.

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Comment by palmetto
2015-07-17 07:25:46

Most of his “skeletons” have already danced.

 
Comment by MightyMike
2015-07-17 09:07:14

He’ll probably take himself down shooting off his mouth.

 
Comment by ibbots
2015-07-17 10:28:15

“He’ll probably take himself down shooting off his mouth.”

That’s the thing though, he isn’t beholden to anyone, not for money anyway. He isn’t a politician and speaks his mind which apparently many people find refreshing.

I think he’d make a good one term president. It would hit the reset button on the Clinton-Bush dynasty and hopefully on a lot of other things as well.

If we end up with a Clinton - Bush race next fall, I’m taking hostages.

 
Comment by MightyMike
2015-07-17 10:35:22

Some people find it refreshing now. Obviously, many Mexican-Americans don’t. As a brash, proud New Yorker I could easily imagine him getting caught saying that people in Iowa or New Hampshire are a bunch of dumb hicks. Maybe it’ll happen like Romney’s 47% remark, when Trump doesn’t know that a tape recorder is running.

 
Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2015-07-17 15:49:40

If we end up with a Clinton - Bush race next fall, I’m taking hostages.

Has an MRAP shown up outside your house yet?

 
 
 
 
Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-17 08:18:56

Opinion: Greed is still trumping fear, and that’s bad for stocks
Published: July 17, 2015 5:15 a.m. ET
The bull market is in the final stages of its life
By Mark Hulbert
Columnist
20th Century Fox
Gordon Gekko: ‘Greed, for lack of a better word, is good. Greed is right. Greed works. Greed clarifies and cuts through to the essence of the evolutionary spirit.

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (MarketWatch) — Here’s another straw in the wind that we’re close to a stock market top: Greed sells, while fear does not.

I draw this worrisome conclusion from this week’s San Francisco Money Show, where hundreds of investment gurus are giving workshops and seminars to thousands of investors. I count on the fingers of one hand the presentations dedicated to managing risk and how to avoid losses.

In contrast, there were numerous workshops catering to greed, with advisers enticing investors with the prospect of triple- and even quadruple-digit returns.

This is a worrisome situation, according to contrarians, because at market tops greed completely replaces fear as investors’ primary concern. (Disclosure: I am also speaking at the Money Show, focusing on a contrarian analysis of prevailing market sentiment.)

At market bottoms, by the way, fear dominates greed — just the opposite of what prevails today. Consider the Money Show held in May 2009, in the wake of the 2007-2009 bear market: As I wrote at the time, its workshop titles were dominated by the themes of “safety,” “managing risk” and “survival during market crashes.”

In true contrarian fashion, that came just as the great bull market was taking off.

My inspiration for using the Money Show in this way to gauge investor sentiment comes from the late Martin Zweig, who used to do something similar with newsletter ads appearing in Barron’s. Until the mid-1990s, Zweig edited two top-performing investment newsletters, and thereafter until his death focused his energies running his money-management empire.

When Zweig began to use Barron’s ads to measure sentiment in the early 1970s, he reasoned that, whatever else you might want to say about newsletter advertisers, they are incredibly sensitive to which way the wind is blowing among individual investors. If the pendulum that swings between greed and fear is closer to the former, then newsletter ads will brag about the editors’ successes in helping you get rich quickly.

When the pendulum swings to fear, in contrast, capital-preservation strategies will be what sells investment products. Newsletter advertisers then will boast about how their clients can reduce risk and help us sleep better at night. For example, Zweig found that for a number of weeks in the latter stages of the 1973-74 bear market, he could find no bullish newsletter ads at all in Barron’s. Not one.

That’s the contrarian hallmark of a bear-market bottom, just as the current situation is what typically is seen as a market top.

 
 
Comment by azdude
2015-07-17 05:30:14

houses are still appreciating rapidly.

Comment by Pangolin
2015-07-17 07:06:03

And interest rates are still ZIRPY.

 
Comment by Mafia Blocks
2015-07-17 10:03:58

Housing demand collapsing rapidly?

 
 
Comment by Goon
2015-07-17 05:36:15

I went to Drudge to get my TwoMinutesHate™ about the Tennessee terrist and found this:

http://www.bizjournals.com/seattle/blog/2015/07/seattle-mayor-offers-plan-to-help-followers-of.html

Sharia compliant housing

Bwa ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha

Just like you were warned when that Kenyan muslim moved into the White House

P.S. and vote for Lindsey Graham, only she can save us from these terrists

Comment by oxide
2015-07-17 06:45:43

No, it’s a Sharia compliant loan, which is something different. They can’t pay interest on a mortgage. I guess the easiest workaround is to simply add up the principle and interest into the sale price and then offer a loan at “0%” interest.

So what are these Muslims doing now? Paying rent? Now they are paying their landlord’s interest. Or, if they are paying taxes, they are paying interest on the bonds for the city, right? I guess they only need to be one step removed from interest payments. Otherwise, they’d have to pay cash or live in a box.

[I can imagine what a "Sharia compliant" house would include but I probably shouldn't post it.]

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-17 06:59:21

Oxide, shut-up be his third wife, cover yourself from head to foot when you go outside and take your beatings like a good wife.

 
Comment by Pangolin
2015-07-17 07:10:24

A bunch of religious phonies, what’s new?

 
 
 
Comment by Goon
2015-07-17 05:59:38

Speaking of TwoMinutesHate™ this linked from Google News about the “religion of peace”

http://www.foxnews.com/world/2015/07/17/multiple-suicide-bombs-blamed-on-boko-haram-kill-64-during-muslim-holiday-in/

The most important question now, is how will William Kristol get PAID

 
Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2015-07-17 05:59:46

The Fed’s monetary policy continues to enrich the .1% in the financial sector while screwing over savers, pensioners, and non-speculators in Wall Street’s rigged casino. Fortunately for Goldman Sachs, their unfettered looting and market manipulation has been sanctioned by 95% of the US electorate who continue to vote for their water carriers like Obama, McCain, Romney, and now HillaryJeb.

http://www.businessinsider.com/goldman-sachs-billionaire-ceo-lloyd-blankfein-net-worth-2015-7

 
Comment by Goon
2015-07-17 06:06:53

Article linked from Google News about millennials and housing:

http://www.forbes.com/sites/nealegodfrey/2015/07/12/buy-rent-the-millennial-struggle-for-the-american-dream/

P.S. there is no “pent-up demand” for $500,000 starter homes happening here

Comment by rj chicago
2015-07-17 08:12:29

To reiterate - I hate Millineals!!

 
 
Comment by Goon
2015-07-17 06:11:46

Newest Fox News poll (article dated today) reports Trump polling 18% Walker at 15% and Jeb! at 14% with no other GOP candidate polling double digits…

Comment by palmetto
2015-07-17 06:23:36

Ted Cruz met with Trump Wednesday. According to CNN, they had a delightful conversation.

I would guess that Cruz will drop out and throw his support to Trump.

JEB!’s getting pounded. Hope it continues.

Comment by Goon
2015-07-17 06:33:14

Juck Feb

Comment by Pangolin
2015-07-17 07:19:56

Hick Lillary

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Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-17 06:34:55

Ted Cruz has raised a ton of money, he is not dropping out but he wants Trump’s support when he drops out.

Comment by palmetto
2015-07-17 06:47:50

I don’t see how he’s eligible for prez if he was born in Canada.

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Comment by Pangolin
2015-07-17 07:21:25

John McCain was born in the Panama Canal Zone but he ran. Rules don’t matter anymore anyway, if you are part of the comfortable class.

 
Comment by Albuquerquedan
 
Comment by Blue Skye
2015-07-17 07:36:23

If he was born of US citizen parents, he is a natural born citizen. This is not complicated.

 
Comment by palmetto
2015-07-17 07:47:56

Well now. Doesn’t apply to Obama, does it? His purported father was not a US citizen.

 
Comment by Pangolin
2015-07-17 08:04:49

Like Chapo Guzman’s kid with an American mom?

 
Comment by oxide
2015-07-17 08:49:21

American parentage is American citizenship, but it does not mean natural born for running for President. Chapo threw the mom-to-be over the border to bear the kid on American soil. At that point, parentage doesn’t matter.

 
Comment by Rental Watch
2015-07-17 08:53:20

What about Obama’s mom, wasn’t she an American Citizen? I don’t think both parents need to be citizens in order for the child to be a citizen.

 
Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-17 09:16:00

American parentage is American citizenship, but it does not mean natural born for running for President

it is the reason why there will be a challenge. However, I agree with most scholars on this issue that the phrase natural born citizen would include a child of citizen since they would not need to be naturalized and that was the purpose of this provision to exclude people that were naturalized.

 
Comment by Blue Skye
2015-07-17 17:18:24

“but it does not mean natural born…”

Of course it does. He didn’t have to go through a process (naturalization) to become a citizen. He was at birth. This is not complicated.

 
 
 
Comment by Albuquerquedan
Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-17 06:46:17

Cruz already lost the support of the PTB due to his opposition to “comprehensive immigration reform” a.k.a amnesty. Having Trump put this issue front and center was a gift from the gods for him. As a Hispanic he is in the best position to make this issue the center of his campaign, harder to hang the racist label on him.

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Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2015-07-17 15:52:33

Cruz already lost the support of the PTB due to his opposition to “comprehensive immigration reform” a.k.a amnesty.

Trust me, anyone who has raised the sums Ted has been bought and paid for by the Oligopoly. Rhetoric from such captured tool means nothing. Follow the money - it tells all.

 
 
 
Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2015-07-17 06:43:31

Jeb and Hillary should just run on a unifed “Republicrat” ticket as co-Presidents, since they are clones of each other. Both plutocrats. Both solely focused on further enriching their .1% oligarch cronies. Both slavish neo-cons. Both corporate statists. Both eager to hold down ‘Muricans while their Wall Street pals pull a train on them.

Comment by Pangolin
2015-07-17 07:25:32

With iPhones, Taco Bell and legal marijuana, I have to thank the oligarch masters for taking care of us better than ever. They have built us a beautiful and entertaining cage.

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Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-17 07:53:50

You can exercise on the debt wheel to your heart’s content.

 
 
 
 
Comment by Goon
2015-07-17 06:27:54

Wall Street Journal (also owned by evil rich FoxNewsHate Rupert Murdoch) reporting: Signs of Stress Build For Rand Paul Campaign, Kentucky senator is slipping in presidential polls, lagging in fundraising and losing some of his father’s loyalists

Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2015-07-17 06:40:58

He lost the trust of a vast section of his base, including me, by endorsing Mitt Romney for President.

Comment by palmetto
2015-07-17 06:53:06

He lost me when he weaseled out on Rep Steve King so he wouldn’t have to deal with the Dreamers.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7HCpkVlX5OA

I figure if he can’t even confront a couple of illegal immigrants, he wouldn’t be much use as President.

Wonder if he ever got that yellow stripe off his back?

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Comment by Pangolin
2015-07-17 07:37:14

He’s a doctor and Congressman’s son. Has he ever had to work a day in his life? Born Plutocrat of the comfortable class?

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Comment by palmetto
2015-07-17 07:52:32

I’m no fan of the guy, but that’s not true. He’s a doctor himself, an opthamologist. Had his own practice. He most certainly had to work and he did. His father was well off, but hardly rich. More like upper middle class.

 
Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-17 08:42:10

+1

 
Comment by MightyMike
2015-07-17 09:10:49

I saw him on C-SPAN. He described his upbringing as being middle class. Then he corrected himself and said upper middle class. I think that most Americans would say that he probably grew up rich if his father was a doctor.

 
Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-17 09:37:22

I grew up in a very blue collar family and I will not. I would say he is upper middle class. I know people that actually are rich and he is not one.

 
Comment by Rental Watch
2015-07-17 13:03:39

I once heard someone refer to themselves as middle class. And then their friends corrected him, since both of his parents were surgeons and made $500k+ per year.

For perspective, a family making $250k per year is in the top 5% of income earners (top 2.4% as of 2012).

How is the top 2.4% anywhere close to the middle? Someone making $250k per year are UPPER CLASS, damn close to the top 1%, not Upper Middle.

The top 1% starts at about $400k of income per year.

 
Comment by MightyMike
2015-07-17 13:15:01

Yeah, it would great if a survey could be done of people on high incomes to determine at what level of income most people will call themselves rich. If most people with household incomes of half a million a year call themselves middle class, how high up the income scale do you have to go to get to point where most just admit to being rich?

 
Comment by Rental Watch
2015-07-17 13:30:48

Some would say that income levels is only a part of feeling “rich”.

There are plenty of families who have so much wealth that the kids don’t work. There are no W-2s. They own their property without debt, and so don’t need massive incomes on which to live, and they have advisors who help them generate cash in the most tax efficient manner possible (tax loss harvesting, etc.).

I’m willing to wager that a lot of people who are making $250k per year don’t feel “rich” because 1) they feel they earned the right to make that money based on years and years of “paying dues” through education, working their way through the ranks and putting in long hours today and 2) to maintain anything close to their lifestyle, they still need to get up everyday and go to work.

My goal is to become “rich”. However, my definition of “rich” is to not have to go to work, and be able to travel anywhere in the world for indefinite lengths of time without needing to sell assets. And for that, I have some ways to go.

 
Comment by MightyMike
2015-07-17 13:41:09

I’m willing to wager that a lot of people who are making $250k per year don’t feel “rich” because 1) they feel they earned the right to make that money based on years and years of “paying dues” through education, working their way through the ranks and putting in long hours today and 2) to maintain anything close to their lifestyle, they still need to get up everyday and go to work.

If that’s true, those people hold views that don’t really make sense. If you told these people that professional athletes who make $10 million a year also paid their dues, they wouldn’t think that that means that those athletes aren’t rich.

I think another possibility is that most people know other people who have higher incomes and thinks that those people are the rich people.

 
Comment by RioAmericanInBrasil
2015-07-17 13:51:17

There are plenty of families who have so much wealth that the kids don’t work

And their kid’s kids won’t have to work either. Thomas Jefferson is rolling over in his grave.

You can’t take it with you

http://www.economist.com/blogs/lexington/2010/10/estate_tax_and_founding_fathers

If there was one thing the Revolutionary generation agreed on — and those guys who dress up like them at Tea Party conventions most definitely do not — it was the incompatibility of democracy and inherited wealth.

With Thomas Jefferson taking the lead in the Virginia legislature in 1777, every Revolutionary state government abolished the laws of primogeniture and entail that had served to perpetuate the concentration of inherited property. Jefferson cited Adam Smith, the hero of free market capitalists everywhere, as the source of his conviction that (as Smith wrote, and Jefferson closely echoed in his own words), “A power to dispose of estates for ever is manifestly absurd. The earth and the fulness of it belongs to every generation, and the preceding one can have no right to bind it up from posterity. Such extension of property is quite unnatural.” Smith said: “There is no point more difficult to account for than the right we conceive men to have to dispose of their goods after death.”

The states left no doubt that in taking this step they were giving expression to a basic and widely shared philosophical belief that equality of citizenship was impossible in a nation where inequality of wealth remained the rule.

 
Comment by In Colorado
2015-07-17 15:40:06

I think another possibility is that most people know other people who have higher incomes and thinks that those people are the rich people.

+1

 
Comment by Rental Watch
2015-07-17 15:58:53

“If that’s true, those people hold views that don’t really make sense. If you told these people that professional athletes who make $10 million a year also paid their dues, they wouldn’t think that that means that those athletes aren’t rich.

I think another possibility is that most people know other people who have higher incomes and thinks that those people are the rich people.”

I think the athlete example is a bad one given that in addition to hard work, many athletes have also won a genetic lottery, which puts them into the position of having that hard work potentially pay off. Do you think Michael Jordan would have been as highly paid if he wasn’t 6′6″?

The people to whom I’m referring might have spent $100k-$200k on a professional degree, worked like dogs for 10 years making $150k-$250k per year, and only after 10 years start to make $500k or more.

I recall an attorney friend of mine joking that because the firm he worked for capped all associate bonuses, that on the margin, once he hit that bonus cap based on billable hours, he would make more money if he got an extra job flipping burgers at night and didn’t bill as many hours. Instead however, he essentially worked more hours for no more pay in order to stay in the good graces of the partners to put him on the “partner track”.

 
Comment by MightyMike
2015-07-17 16:12:30

There’s an argument you attorney friend also won a genetic lottery. A lot of people would argue that a person’s IQ largely genetically determined. Most lawyers who make the big bucks also had parents who pushed them to do well in school and also helped pay for their education.

Thought that’s really irrelevant when it comes to determining whether or not a person is rich. It’s the amount of income and wealth that a person has that determines whether he should be consider rich, not how he got it.

The motivation is puzzling. These people who make $250k or $500k could easily just say, “Yes, I’m rich. I’m rich because I work hard”, not “I work hard, there I’m not rich, regardless of how much money I have.”

 
Comment by Rental Watch
2015-07-17 17:18:00

“And their kid’s kids won’t have to work either. Thomas Jefferson is rolling over in his grave.”

What’s the saying? Shirtsleeves to shirtsleeves in three generations?

The laws of primogeniture were such that the wealth was passed down through the firstborn male, and thus kept the money very concentrated over long periods of time.

Today, that is not really the case…the money is usually divided among all heirs. As such, it is pretty rare that family wealth lasts a long time–only in the case of massive wealth does that happen–and even then there are cases like the Vanderbilt’s, where the money disappears over just a few generations. The Vanderbilt family went from being the wealthiest in the US (peak wealth in today’s dollars of well over $100 Billion) to having no Vanderbilt millionaires by the 1970s.

There was some wealth in my family about 100 years ago. My family name is on a historic building (ie. in the historic building register). Not a significant building that anyone on this board would notice, but a building of some significance where it is located.

The money was lost (Great Depression), spent, squandered, etc., and the last small bit was divided among my grandparents’ generation (and siblings). What I will ultimately receive will perhaps be enough for an expensive car repair, but probably nothing. I’m certainly not expecting anything, and none of that money had any influence on my life–other than hearing stories about how wealth can disappear if not protected.

Without the appreciation for money that comes from needing to earn money on your own, it becomes very easy to spend.

Do you think Jefferson would roll over in his grave more because:

1. Some families have been able to keep their wealth after creation of something of great value (the Ford family, the Gates family, the Brin family, the Jobs family, etc.)?
2. There is a very real prospect that we might have yet another Bush or Clinton in the White House? Or
3. People being elected to serve in office are, after serving, using their political fame to make themselves (and their heirs) fabulously wealthly?

 
Comment by Rental Watch
2015-07-17 17:35:56

“The motivation is puzzling. These people who make $250k or $500k could easily just say, “Yes, I’m rich. I’m rich because I work hard”, not “I work hard, there I’m not rich, regardless of how much money I have.””

They can’t easily say that in open conversation. Speaking about money is generally taboo in our culture, especially if you make a lot of money. However, it’s considered heroic to publicly talk about taxing the rich more and more.

So, rich people I know feel constantly attacked–and so they would rather be quiet about how much they make, but doesn’t change the fact that they “feel” less rich than they are.

In large part, people that I know who are are rich are rich because have worked their butts off to get where they are. They saved and invested money, put in longer hours in school and work than everyone else, etc. Are they smarter? In many cases, yes. But I know smart people with no work ethic that got nowhere.

And when people say they’re better off than 99% of the population and they shouldn’t complain. That they “didn’t build that” and they should be happy that they are rich, and should be willing to pay even more in taxes, I’ll have made my point as to why people don’t talk about being rich (for whatever reason)–and try to play down their successes.

 
Comment by Mafia Blocks
2015-07-17 18:01:28

Another DingBat story.

How do you ever expect to be rich when you paid a lifetime of earnings for depreciating junk like a house?

 
Comment by MightyMike
2015-07-17 18:01:58

I didn’t literally mean that rich people who call themselves upper middle class talk about whether they’re rich on a regular basis. It’s really the attitude that I’m describing.

Whether rich people should be taxed more is a completely separate issue. But you’ve got an interesting theory. Maybe these people who make $250k or $500k claim not to be rich in an effort to convince the bottom 99% that only a million bucks a year should be considered to be rich. That way if a consensus develops that taxes on the rich should be increased, these upper middle people won’t get hit.

Also, it sounds like you’ve heard or read the “didn’t build that” phrase misquoted somewhere. For example, the whole computer/software industry benefited from government R & D for decades since its beginning in the late 1940s. So people like Gates and Jobs did build their companies, but they built them in an industry that was built on corporate welfare.

 
 
 
 
 
Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-17 06:22:32

If you don’t like what the measurements are showing change how you are measuring, doesn’t matter people that understand what is going on only trust the satellite measurements:

http://wattsupwiththat.com/2015/07/15/both-noaa-and-giss-have-switched-to-noaas-overcooked-pause-busting-sea-surface-temperature-data-for-their-global-temperature-products/

Comment by Goon
2015-07-17 06:40:13

Repost from yesterday

And to paraphrase McFadden & Whitehead, “Ain’t No Stopping Warming Now”

http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2015/jul/16/warming-of-oceans-due-to-climate-change-is-unstoppable-say-us-scientists

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-17 06:51:07

Fear is trumping true data.

 
 
Comment by WPA
2015-07-17 08:09:15

Watts Up With That is the Zero Hedge of “science”

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-17 08:40:50

It only cites to studies, attacking the source since you can’t refute the science is just old.

Comment by WPA
2015-07-17 09:17:54

I don’t need to refute WUWT’s science — a very strong consensus of scientists have already done it.

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Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-17 09:41:27

Consensus is not science, all anyone has to do is look at the climate record to have serious doubts about the claim. When you are still 2 degrees Celsius below the normal interglacial warming the science is not settled. The scientific question should be is why are we still so cool?

 
Comment by RioAmericanInBrasil
2015-07-17 11:29:01

Consensus is not science, all anyone has to do is look at the climate record

Like this record?

It’s official — 2014 is the hottest year on record. NOAA and NASA jointly released their global temperature data, indicating that this year topped both 2005 and 2010 as the hottest since record keeping began in 1880. The global temperature was 1.24°F above the long-term average, besting the previous record holders by 0.07°F.

The global ocean temperature was also the highest on record, coming in at 1.09°F degrees above average while many land areas were also warmer than normal or set records such as many countries in Europe and the western U.S. The only major blue spot for 2014 was the eastern half of the U.S.

With 2014 in the record books, this means that 13 of the 15 hottest years on record have all occurred since 2000
climatecentral dot org

 
Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-17 11:53:03

I have posted numerous links how they are doctoring the numbers. Show the satellite data it is the only data that is not being manipulated at least so far.

 
Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-17 12:04:17

The real data, no warming outside the margin of error for about twenty years despite a surging of co2 in the atmosphere:
http://www.drroyspencer.com/latest-global-temperatures/

 
Comment by RioAmericanInBrasil
2015-07-17 12:09:41

I have posted numerous links how they are doctoring the numbers.

Since 1880. It’s a conspiracy.

“2014 is the hottest year on record…..this means that 13 of the 15 hottest years on record have all occurred since 2000″

 
Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-17 12:16:24

Real scientists do not need to massage data as the advocates of CAGW have repeatedly done and been caught doing. Perhaps they really believe there is a problem and ends justifies the means but that type of thinking has no place in science. It is a pyrrhic victory to overestimate the temperatures today and underestimate previous years for short term political gain, they just have lost all credibility and if the temperatures really start rising, it will be harder to convince people immediate action should occur. I say no money should go to this boondoggle. However, I am so sure that it is false that I would be willing to exchange a block on EPA’s ability to regulate co2 for a high carbon tax that is imposed if and when we have a 1 degree F increase in temperature as measured by the satellites. If AGW is real that is a certainty to happen even if it is not real it might happen due to natural causes but it is worth the risk to avoid any further waste of resources being given to third world dictators with the environmental cover.

 
Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-17 12:28:56

It must be very frustrating for the PTB, it was such a brilliant plan to justify the transfer of wealth from the developed to the developing world, assume that temperatures would rise consistent with a normal interglacial period and then claim that manmade co2 emissions were causing it. The simple minded would not even question it. Moreover, it addressed a real problem the world was running out of fossil fuels thus the need to move to alternative energy sources would have to happen eventually and getting people to just use less without the environmental angle was difficult and getting them to send their money to third world sh#tholes was impossible. But due to the religion of AGW and its simple minded disciples it was possible. But now the world is failing to warm, bummer.
From climate4U:

The diagram above (Fig.2) shows a reconstruction of global temperature based on ice core analysis from the Antarctica. The present interglacial period (the Holocene) is seen to the right (red square). The preceding four interglacials are seen at about 125,000, 280,000, 325,000 and 415,000 years before now, with much longer glacial periods in between. All four previous interglacials are seen to be warmer (1-3oC) than the present. The typical length of a glacial period is about 100,000 years, while an interglacial period typical lasts for about 10-15,000 years. The present interglacial period has now lasted about 11,600 years.

 
Comment by RioAmericanInBrasil
2015-07-17 12:39:16

Real scientists

And Real Americans would never vote for Obama, Real couples could always get married and Real Republicans are not Rinos.

 
Comment by RioAmericanInBrasil
2015-07-17 12:51:31

It must be very frustrating for the PTB, it was such a brilliant plan to justify the transfer of wealth from the developed to the developing world

It must be very frustrating to the right to be unable to understand science because of their complete obsession with money.

 
Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-17 13:13:34

You claim to be in the developing world correct? I think that explains your view and it is all about money.

 
Comment by Rental Watch
2015-07-17 13:14:34

Adan,

Did you see this?

http://astronomynow.com/2015/07/17/diminishing-solar-activity-may-bring-new-ice-age-by-2030/

What piqued my interest was the fact that 1) the people doing the research aren’t stupid, and 2) their new model of sunspot activity is reported to be accurate to 90%+.

However, just like back-testing the stock market, there is no guarantee that they simply didn’t find a theory to match the data, and not a theory to predict the future. I guess we’ll find out soon enough.

 
Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-17 13:45:48

Yes and remember in the 20th Century we had the most active solar activity in seven to eight thousand years.

 
Comment by RioAmericanInBrasil
2015-07-17 13:56:18

You claim to be in the developing world correct? I think that explains your view and it is all about money.

Makes no sense in my context. Anyone with any knowledge of South America/Brazil knows Brazilians are much less concerned about excess money than are Americans. They live for life. I’m not Brazilian but I live with them.

You on the other hand, look at every issue mostly in the context of money - as if China is a nice, clean and fair country because of its “7% growth. Right.

 
Comment by Lola
2015-07-17 18:06:32

LolaLOL

 
 
 
 
 
Comment by oxide
2015-07-17 06:36:19

From yesterday:

————-
Comment by jane
2015-07-16 20:24:27
Anybody here from Des Moines?

Des Moines seems a likely destination for insurance companies looking for new centers of operation. The city is not likely to go in the wrong direction any time soon…

Oxy’s link shows a cute little housie - a “cutie patootie” (c) for an affordable price…

Is Des Moines one of those towns where you can’t tell where the “bad” sections are? If so, I’m SOL. Got terrrrible radar for that kind of thing unless there are signifiers that even I can’t miss…

—————-

Hello Jane,

I didn’t intend that house link to be an Oil City type house. I posted it as a comparison to those downtown microapartments. The $145K house was near downtown, 2007 build, same monthly payment as the microapartment, but more room. Something an entry-level Millenial could afford.

As for Oil City plan, Zillow showed many many more cheaper houses all over the area for under $100K. There were a lot of houses under $50K — those are probably the bad neighborhoods. I haven’t live in Des Moines, but I’ve lived in the Midwest. It’s cold and windy. Banking and insurance industries mean computers, and computers mean H1-Bs and anchors. And good jobs means skyrocket prices and eventual lib policies no matter where you go.

To find a bad neighborhood, scroll down any Zillow listing to look at the ratings of the schools. Bad schools = bad neighborhood. Consistently cheap prices and chain-link fences are a good indicator. Also check google maps for debris in the neighboring yards.

I know people hates libs and taxes, but the best way to avoid taxes is to make low income and live in a cheap house. Check out these Oil City houses in high-tax NY. 1988 ranch in the semi-stix, only $60K.

http://www.zillow.com/homedetails/7106-Brennon-Ave-Rome-NY-13440/31561271_zpid/

1981 ranch on half acre, $55K:

http://www.zillow.com/homedetails/511-S-Madison-St-Rome-NY-13440/31558128_zpid/

Even in high-tax NY the taxes are $123/month, which IMO isn’t too bad. I’m used to paying a lot more.

Comment by taxpayers
2015-07-17 07:11:05

in upstate ny the house is free
you just pay taxes and utilities

Tina

 
Comment by Mafia Blocks
2015-07-17 10:02:37

But instead you paid double that for a depreciating asset, doubled down on that loss by financing it with no buyer in sight at half the amount you got in it.

 
Comment by jane
2015-07-17 19:23:27

Thanks, Oxy, for your insight on Mid-West. I’ve always found it to have much nicer people than in DC and in the NE: for that reason alone it’s attractive.

As a NE veteran, I can say for sure that DC metro was a shock to the system from the standpoint of milder weather. Would hate to give that up. Winter here is survivable even during a (heaven forbid) EMP. Not comfortable (imagine hunkering down in a four season tent in the living room using a candle for heat until ambient temps once again went above 55) - but survivable. Not so in the NE.

When I hang up on the ol’ secure server farm, I’ll consider a destination an Oil City if it lacks public transportation and e-z access roads. As long as I can buy a house using my checkbook, it qualifies. The other model is flyover. Des Moines is attractive because it has civilized infrastructure, inexpensive housing, dog-walking venues, and the legendary Mid-West niceness.

Generic metro downside: any hint of money, public transport, and ez in-out via highways, attracts drug trade and illegals. A stick-in-the-mud place that time has forgotten and all but the retirees have fled does not have enough dough floating around for drug wars, although until recently a place like that would be rife with meth labs.

Last time I was in SW Virginia - economically devastated by King Coal’s rapid fall from grace - the blasted houses I witnessed on a former trip had been rebuilt. The modern method of cooking requires only a two liter plastic bottle and produces no explosions.

I talk big now, but I may choke on the reality of actually dwelling in a homogenous area such as the stick-in-the-mud place I describe. Even if it’s only for half a year.

Jeez, I should just buy a multi-family and rent to genteel hippies of a certain age, as long as they’ve got dough to pay the rent. With my luck, I’d wind up with a buncha FSA wannabes, reminiscing fondly about their Marches on Washington. They’d be likely to coast on the rent when I’m not there screeching at them to pay up. Peoples’ Liberated House and all, as their basis.

Thought experiments.

Thank heavens I’m up to my elbows again. If I had more free time, I’d probably blow half a mill on testing them out till I found the right solution.

My issue is I just don’t want to be stuck in one place, even though the idea of living on nothing more than property taxes and maintenance is attractive. Plan C is RV’ing around to the Parks. Mebbe I should make that Plan A.

Oxy, thanks again!

Comment by localandlord
2015-07-17 20:06:51

If you don’t want to be stuck in one place go the RV route.

If you find a place you like enough for half a year living - buy a lot with a burnt out old trailer for the septic and electric pole.

 
 
 
Comment by Goon
2015-07-17 06:36:38

This is an article written by real journalists at the New York Times (doesn’t get much more real than that, eh MikeyMite?) about reddit creating a SafeSpace™ for precious little millennial snowflake SJWs who can’t have their feewings hurt :(

http://www.nytimes.com/2015/07/17/technology/reddit-steve-huffman.html

Comment by Pangolin
2015-07-17 07:39:37

Um, yeah, Reddit is going to be a safe space. Hahahhahahhahahhahahhahahahhahahhahanahhahaahahhahahahhahahahahhanahahanahahahhahahahnanananahahhhahahhhhha ha ha.

What is your Reddit username? Mine is petgeo.

Comment by Ethan in nova
2015-07-17 10:27:27

/r/lostgeneration

 
 
 
Comment by 2banana
2015-07-17 06:42:32

A muslim shoots up a Marine recruitment center (an official gun free zone) in Chattanooga killing four Marines to further islam.

obama says nothing. No singing “We shall overcome,” no talking about symbols of hate (koran and mosque), no shaming, no talking about islams evil past and evil present…

The MSM is still talking about Bruce Jenner. This mulsim killing story barely makes a blip. No 24/7 coverage. No editorials. No soul searching.

The government is not rushing millions of dollars to help the families. In fact, it is still importing thousands of muslim without properly vetting them.

No protests. No Al. No Jesse. No marches.

The double standard is STUNNING.

But we all know it is about power. muslims vote overwhelming democrat - so not a wordwill be said.

Comment by Goon
2015-07-17 07:12:23

Sheldon Adelson buys what you’re allowed to think

But nice try…

 
Comment by MightyMike
2015-07-17 07:54:41

Obama Offers Condolences, Vows Prompt and Thorough Probe Into Chattanooga Rampage

President Barack Obama offered the condolences of the American people to the families of four Marines who were killed in an attack on two military facilities in Chattanooga Thursday morning, and vowed an “thorough and prompt” investigation.

“My main message right now is obviously the deepest sympathies of the American people to the four marines that have been killed,” Obama said Thursday afternoon, hours after a gunman killed four Marines and at a reserve center.

“It is a heartbreaking circumstance for these individuals who have served our country with great valor to be killed in this fashion,” Obama said.

“And although the families are still in the process of being contacted, I want them to know that I speak for the American people in expressing our deepest condolences, and knowing that they have our full support as they try to overcome the grief that’s involved here,” Obama said.

http://www.nbcnews.com/storyline/chattanooga-shooting/obama-offers-condolences-vows-vigilant-probe-chattanooga-rampage-n393486

Comment by 2banana
2015-07-17 08:38:16

No obama singing of “We shall overcome?”

Comment by MightyMike
2015-07-17 09:13:46

Who is it that breaks out into song when they hear about murders?

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Comment by 2banana
2015-07-17 08:44:39

NOTE: This song can only be sung if you can politize and event to get more democrat votes Which is ironic as this song was sung black slaves owned by democrat slave masters.

Amazing grace! How sweet the sound
That saved a wretch like me!
I once was lost, but now am found;
Was blind, but now I see.

’Twas grace that taught my heart to fear,
And grace my fears relieved;
How precious did that grace appear
The hour I first believed.

Through many dangers, toils and snares,
I have already come;
’Tis grace hath brought me safe thus far,
And grace will lead me home.

The Lord has promised good to me,
His Word my hope secures;
He will my Shield and Portion be,
As long as life endures.

Yea, when this flesh and heart shall fail,
And mortal life shall cease,
I shall possess, within the veil,
A life of joy and peace.

The earth shall soon dissolve like snow,
The sun forbear to shine;
But God, who called me here below,
Will be forever mine.

When we’ve been there ten thousand years,
Bright shining as the sun,
We’ve no less days to sing God’s praise
Than when we’d first begun.

Comment by MightyMike
2015-07-17 09:16:26

So nobody was thinking the Charleston massacre in political terms until the president started singing at the funeral. And he did that to get more black people to vote for the Democrats because he’s not satisfied with 95% of the African-American vote.

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Comment by 2banana
2015-07-17 09:48:34

Gotta to keep them on the plantation.

Economy failing
Jobs for blacks failing
Minority schools failing
Cities failing and going bankrupt
Abortion mills mostly in minority neighborhoods
Sky high crime rate in minority neighborhoods
Illegals taking traditional black jobs
Health care out of reach
Affordable Housing - HAHAHAHAHA!
Etc.

All this despite having the first black president, a filibuster proof senate, a super-majority in the House and a Supreme Court that would not know the US Constitution if it it them on the head to support all the democrat liberal policies.

Blacks might wake up one day and only vote 85% for democrats after the total failure of democrats and liberal policies to help them.

 
Comment by MightyMike
2015-07-17 10:02:17

Blacks might wake up one day and only vote 85% for democrats after the total failure of democrats and liberal policies to help them.

And singing will prevent that.

 
Comment by RioAmericanInBrasil
2015-07-17 13:04:43

a filibuster proof senate,

Obama never had a “filibuster proof” Senate when one looks at timing, math and reality. It’s a right-wing myth.

The Myth of the Filibuster-Proof Democratic Senate
sandiegofreepress.org/…/the-myth-of-the-filibuster-proof-democratic-sen…

Sep 11, 2012 - The Myth of the Filibuster-Proof Democratic Senate. September … “For two years,” he told the “Morning Joe” crew, “he (Obama) had complete, …

The Democratic Super Majority Myth
| 538 Refugees
https://538refugees.wordpress.com/…/the-democratic-super-majority-myt...
Jun 22, 2011 - Many critics of the Obama administration often claim that the President … Having a filibuster proof Senate majority was only possible under a …

The Democrats’ Filibuster-Proof Majority & Other Wingnut …
https://southernbeale.wordpress.com/…/the-democrats-filibuster-proof-m...
Dec 20, 2011 - … to quash this myth that President Obama had a filibuster-proof Democratic Congress to work with. Pretty please? Just stop spreading this shit.

 
Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-17 14:35:57

Name a president that had more members of this own party than Obama in the last 70 years. Ronald Reagan would have been able to pass anything he wanted with his numbers. So Obama is either completely incompetent or his policies have completely fail or perhaps both.

 
Comment by RioAmericanInBrasil
2015-07-17 15:02:08

So Obama is either completely incompetent or his policies have completely fail or perhaps both.

In 20 years Obama will outrank Reagan in Presidential ranking and be far in the top 20% and probably higher.

ACA, Cuba, Iran, ending wars, inheriting and shepherding USA out of the greatest financial crisis since the Great Depression partly overcoming USA’s past and current racism, social issues and possible criminal justice reform.

Barack H. Obama is the Greatest President of Modern Times

…..Not only did Barack H. Obama face the deeply entrenched racism of the nation that elected him, but a Republican Party determined to obstruct his every move, to make him a one term president and that term an utter failure. All the while, he had to face his real work, that for which he was elected: digging our nation out of the hole into which his predecessor had dragged us.

…And not only did he end the wars (and without getting us into any of the new ones proposed by Republicans) and restored the economy, but he helped speed along social change by embracing marriage equality, kicking DOMA to the curb and ending Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell; he has supported women’s rights, including equal pay and the right to manage their own reproductive rights; He has fought for workers and for a living wage; battled on behalf of the environment; and fought for the rights of immigrants. And with the Affordable Care Act, known fittingly as Obamacare, he has given all Americans access to healthcare for the first time in our nation’s history.

His list of accomplishments, even minus any opposition, would be staggering. Considering the odds against him, they are truly monumental. In all these areas, he has made life better for Americans. Not just for the rich, but for all Americans.

http://www.politicususa.com/2014/12/29/barack-h-obama-greatest-president-modern-times.html

 
 
Comment by RioAmericanInBrasil
2015-07-17 12:05:07

NOTE: This song can only be sung if you can politize and event to get more democrat votes

This coming from the guy who defends church movements, says church’s are under attack, but then criticizes his president for singing a gospel song about God’s grace at a funeral in a church.

“The double standard is STUNNING.”

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Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2015-07-17 15:55:48

Not one mention of the “T” word that justifies our liberties being abridged and trillions of dollars for “security.”

 
 
Comment by RioAmericanInBrasil
2015-07-17 12:00:20

it is about power. muslims vote overwhelming democrat

Power? Muslims are 0.9% of the population and a lot of them can’t even vote. Your fear and propaganda websites are hindering your math imo.

A muslim shoots up a Marine recruitment center …killing four Marines…obama says nothing

On what website did Obama say “nothing”

Obama calls Chattanooga Marine killing ‘heartbreaking’ USA Today

President Obama condemned the “heartbreaking” shooting deaths of four Marines Thursday in Tennessee, and said a full investigation is under way.

“We don’t know yet all the details,” Obama said. “We know that what appears to be a lone gunman carried out these attacks.”

The president said he wanted to extend “the deepest sympathies of the American people” to the four Marines and their families, and asked all Americans to pray for them.
USA Today

 
 
 
Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2015-07-17 06:47:38

Chinese bubble-chasers now think they have the Beijing version of the Bernanke Put. This won’t end well.

http://www.rt.com/business/310086-china-shenzhen-stock-skyrockets/

 
Comment by 2banana
2015-07-17 06:47:51

When democrats (and their public union goons) have total and complete power.

Lord help you if you own a home or business in Chicago.

And it is for the CHILDREN.

——————-

Emanuel Fiddles While Chicago Burns; Public Schools Over the Edge; 9% Cloud Tax on Data Streaming; Emanuel Eyes Property Tax Hikes
Mish - 7/17/2015

Chicago public schools are effectively bankrupt. Its pension plans are countless billions of dollars in the hole, the worst in the nation. And Chicago bonds carry a junk rating, the worst of any major US city.

This month, Emanuel rewarded those technology companies with a 9% Cloud Tax on Online Movies, Music, Game, Real Estate Data Feeds.

Streaming data? Movies? Real estate Feeds?

If you have a Chicago business address expect to pay 9% more to do so thanks to an amusement tax and property lease tax extension.

Just outside Chicago, there’s a place called Illinois. And Illinois is not a good place to do business.

Illinois has ….

The second-highest property taxes nationwide.
The fourth-highest workers’ compensation costs in the country.
The ninth-highest regulatory burden in the U.S.
The ninth-highest overall tax burden nationwide.
Forced unionism.

Progressives have been angling for a massive income tax hike.

Anyone living in Chicago has to deal with Chicago schools. The district is both politically and fiscally bankrupt.

Instead of facing the fact that the system is bankrupt, Emanuel wants still higher property taxes.

The Chicago school budget assumes $500 million is coming from the state. Is that going to happen?

If you think so, please recall this headline from June 25, Rauner vetoes Illinois budget, cites $4 billion deficit.

The public schools borrowed $1 billion to make a $630 million payment due to the teachers’ pension fund. The teachers then wanted to borrow $500 million of it right back, to support ongoing budget needs.

Short Synopsis: A report by Nuveen shows a pension payment spike looms in 2016, and the potential tax hike to fix it is staggering. Nuveen estimates property tax hikes of close to 50% will be needed.

Comment by phony scandals
2015-07-17 07:05:53

Pension Funds Burn Cities as $1 Trillion Shortfall Set to Grow

by Brian Chappatta

July 17, 2015 — 12:01 AM EDT

The cost to American cities for their cash-strapped pension funds is starting to look a lot worse, and it’s not because the stock-market rally may be losing steam.

Houston was warned by Moody’s Investors Service this month that it may be downgraded because of mounting retirement bills, the latest municipality put on notice as the company ignores bookkeeping gimmicks that let cities mask the size of their debt for years. The approach foreshadows accounting rules for even top-rated issuers that are poised to cause pension shortfalls to swell as new financial reports are released.

More Coming

Moody’s, which in 2013 began using a lower rate than governments do to calculate future liabilities, has estimated that the 25 largest U.S. public pensions alone have $2 trillion less than they need. Cincinnati and Minneapolis are among cities Moody’s has since downgraded.

“You’ll probably start to see a lot more negative outlooks,” said David Ashley, who helps oversee $10 billion of munis at Thornburg Investment Management in Santa Fe, New Mexico. “That’s on the horizon.”

http://www.bloomberg.com/…/pension-funds-burn-cities-as-1-trillion-shortfall-set-to-grow - 140k -

Comment by phony scandals
2015-07-17 07:07:30

Why does Moody’s hate kittens?

 
Comment by In Colorado
2015-07-17 15:45:20

Houston was warned by Moody’s Investors Service this month that it may be downgraded because of mounting retirement bills,

That’s unpossible! Houston is in Tejas, where the streets are paved with gold.

 
 
Comment by rj chicago
2015-07-17 08:24:14

Keep bringin it 2B -
Ch*tcago is a sh*t hole - a true Potemkin Village.
Trash in the streets, Millineals with their little f…ing dogs on a lease pissing and sh*tting all over the downtown nabe sidewalks, bums increasing each week, an anger I have not experienced in the 30 years i have live here, not to say the weather, Da’ Bears, Da Cub, Da Sock - only hope here is the Blackhawk that acts as a distraction on an annual basis for a few weeks.
One more for you list above is ILLANNOY has the most municipal govt. orgs in the United States by far and each of these agenicies sucks on the taxpayer like mosquitoes on a bad camp out.
You gotta be here to understand what a swamp this dump is. Don’t move here you won’t like it.
I am taking a very quick short trip to Doug Co. in an attempt again to find a place to move to where at least the air is clear and the sun shines.
Goon, IN CO and all - made up my mind - moving back but not to Denver.

Comment by 2banana
2015-07-17 08:41:06

Wherever you move -

If it is under long term democrat and public union goon control.

These problems will follow you.

Comment by Goon
2015-07-17 08:56:58
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Comment by 2banana
2015-07-17 09:04:31

FYI

Public unions are pushing to overturn TABOR.

They feel it is not fair for the children (cough, their pensions, cough).

Other states had laws and state constitutions that defined a marriage as between one man and one woman.

All it takes it ONE Federal judge to disagree.

This is COMING for your beloved TABOR.

For ’tis the sport to have the engineer. Hoist with his own petard…

 
Comment by In Colorado
2015-07-17 15:51:06

Public unions are pushing to overturn TABOR.

Good luck with that. Public unions have been “pushing to overturn TABOR” for over 20 years and haven’t made a dent in it. Meanwhile, continue enjoying your high tax home state. :-D

 
 
Comment by Califoh20
2015-07-17 13:55:12

Unless it is silicon valley with the highest average wages in the world.

Thanks Gov Brown (DEM) for the recovery.

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Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2015-07-17 15:57:28

People get the government they deserve.

 
 
Comment by rj chicago
2015-07-17 08:29:06

Oh, add to this the 1% increase in Crook County sales tax hike just put in play yesterday that makes sales tax in Chicago THE highest in the nation.
When interviewed by a local talkie station - 90% of those randomly selected on the street said that they would start to shop outside Crook County to save a bit of money on large purchases.

Comment by 2banana
2015-07-17 08:59:33

Growing tax burden will push people out of Cook County and Chicago
Illinois Policy | July 15, 2015 | Ted Dabrowski

City officials are pushing property-tax hikes, sales-tax hikes, and even a commuter tax and financial-transaction tax.

Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle’s wish for a $474 million sales-tax increase to help pay for the county’s growing pension debt has been granted.

The hike pushes the sales-tax rate back up to 10.25 percent in Chicago – the same as it was when Preckwinkle took office in 2010.

And that’s not the only new tax residents have to face. Preckwinkle is just the latest local leader to usher in a tax increase.

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel created a new tax earlier this month that taxes Internet cloud services such as Netflix. The mayor has also warned that increased property taxes are on the way to bail out both the city and the Chicago Public Schools.

Here’s the catch: Taxpayers with the means and flexibility to leave Cook County can avoid the ever-growing tax burden by simply picking up and moving, which is what many have done for 20 years.

According to Internal Revenue Service data, from 1992 to 2011 Cook County suffered a net loss of 370,000 taxpayers to its collar counties and Lake County, Indiana. Those taxpayers took over $18.3 billion in taxable income with them when they left, creating an ever-growing hole in Cook County and Chicago’s budgets.

Comment by rj chicago
2015-07-17 09:18:17

Sadly - these same taxpayers are the very same blue pill morons who live off their pensions in low tax FL. I recall here on HBB that there was an example of some woman and her husband who live 6months + 1 day to avoid the taxes in IL - holding two homes - one in FL and the other in ILLANNOY - coming back here I would assume to be with family in the warmer months of the year.
Anyone out there remember this lady - she was a state worker as I recall.

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Comment by rj chicago
2015-07-17 09:53:20

2B - you might get a laugh from this…..

From the comment section on ZH this morning on the rise in multi fam housing link by Tyler Durden…….
I kid you not this is the mind set of some of the unwashed masses who reside here…..Yikes….
yogi bear started a meme followed on by a couple of others…..it is the others who have no clue…..I continue to say “You just cannot fix stupid”.

yogibear

Stay out of tax-crazy states like Illinois. Cook county’s and Illinois goal is have the highest taxes in the world.
Illinois has become a take-everything state. Rents are high as well as living there. Better scenery and weather elsewhere.

Budnacho

Lived in Illionis my entire life.
Yes it’s expensive…but we have plenty of water, good people (mostly) and Deep Dish Pizza and Italian Beef. Winter kills everything with more than 4-legs every year like a natural reset…
Ya suck it up and realize that soon the debt madness will be over and we will go back to our normal kind of Crazy.
Come and visit Chicago people….you’ll like it!
(My comment to Bud…..No you won’t - you will hate it here!!!)

markitect

While Illinois has it’s faults in governance it’s really just a couple decades ahead of every other state in it’s financial hell. Older industrial states just got a head start on the debt parade than the sun belt states. That said, Illinois is still only ranked 22nd in tax burden for residents, or basically middle of the pack as far as states go but the media loves to make it seem like tax purgatory. Corporate rate was 5th last I checked. Really, Illinois at least has the potential to marginally increase taxes to pay for past extortion by public sector unions whithout turning into Jersey or California size tax burdens so thats a positive. But winter, man o balls, it get harder each year it seems.
(My comment - not sure where this guy gets his data but it ain’t good- Il Policy has repeatedly for YEARS cited the onerous taxes here in ILLANNOY).

Comment by Elanor
2015-07-17 13:06:59

So move somewhere else. Nobody’s stopping you.

Comment by rj chicago
2015-07-17 13:54:49

Moving is not as simple as I think your response indicates.
I have responsibilities that I need to slowly unwind in a responsible way before I go - these take time and I am not one to just walk away leaving damage in my wake. I will eventually get out of here and in a good way, not before even thought I HATE it here.

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Comment by Elanor
2015-07-17 14:23:54

The abundance of fresh water and the lack of horrible weather events (winter and the rare tornado notwithstanding) make the Great Lakes region very desirable IMO. Of all the Great Lakes states, Minnesota has its act most together. Michigan is arguably the most beautiful but oh, how messed up are its politics. Ditto Wisconsin (and it has high taxes too). Indiana and Ohio, no thanks. Too many yahoos.

 
Comment by Califoh20
2015-07-17 16:43:01

“lack of horrible weather events (winter and the rare tornado notwithstanding) ”

Not exactly the same standards we have out here in CA> ;)

 
Comment by Mafia Blocks
2015-07-17 18:11:42

You shameless flunkies have no standards.

 
 
Comment by Califoh20
2015-07-17 16:41:24

That’s what I think. Must be afraid to move. Change scares people. Why live in a place you despise?

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Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2015-07-17 06:50:46

German parliament votes to START TALKS on a bailout for Greece, not to actually give Greece a bailout. But with their track record of serving as bankster adjuncts when it comes to putting German taxpayers on the hook for the bad debts run up by their bankster handlers, they exceed even the Republicrats when it comes to slavishly serving the Masters of the Universe.

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/business/news/greece-news-live-merkel-schuble-germany-gives-green-light-for-greek-bailout-in-landslide-vote-10396753.html

 
Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2015-07-17 06:52:09

Where all the stimulus is going: artificially goosing stock valuations so CEOs and company officers can make bank with the Fed’s limitless free money.

http://www.marketwatch.com/story/how-stock-buybacks-have-become-wall-streets-new-drug-2015-07-17

Comment by 2banana
2015-07-17 06:57:33

Where did the nearly TRILLION dollars of obama stimulus go?

Shovel ready jobs?

No.

It went to avoid layoffs and to keep the pensions going for public union goons.

Because goons vote democrat and goon unions give lots of money to democrats.

The stimulus was all pissed away.

Comment by Califoh20
2015-07-17 13:54:04

Under Obama, the economy has added 7.2 million jobs, and the unemployment rate is now lower than the historical median.

Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2015-07-17 16:02:02

Under Obama, middle class jobs are disappearing, to be replaced by waiter and bartender jobs. Our manufacturing base continues to be off-shored and factories shuttered. A record 93.6 million Americans are “out of the labor force” (independently wealthy, I suppose) and 47 million (another record) are on food stamps.

But the Wall Street grifters are thriving as never before, so it’s all good.

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Comment by MightyMike
2015-07-17 16:56:04

Under Obama, middle class jobs are disappearing, to be replaced by waiter and bartender jobs

That sounds unlikely, given that millions of jobs have been created.

A record 93.6 million Americans are “out of the labor force” (independently wealthy, I suppose) and 47 million (another record) are on food stamps.

Actually, the number of people on food stamps has come down over the past few years, so we’re a bit below the record.

 
 
Comment by beetlejuice
2015-07-17 16:29:31

Idiot Alert

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Comment by 2banana
2015-07-17 06:53:13

You know it is a ad day for any democrat politicians when the public union goons question their support for you.

—————

Teacher’s union members want Hillary endorsement withdrawn
New York Post | July 16, 2015 | By Marisa Schultz

WASHINGTON — Furious American Federation of Teachers members are demanding the union withdraw its endorsement of Hillary Rodham Clinton, calling it premature and undemocratic.

“There was no internal discussion. Zero. Zip,” said Steve Conn, president of the Detroit Federation of Teachers. “This is wrong and something needs to be done.”

 
Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-17 07:00:58

It is the duty of millenials to make boomers look responsible so far so good:

http://finance.yahoo.com/news/a-college-student-blows-inheritance-bert-show-205833329.html

Comment by Pangolin
2015-07-17 07:56:30

in just short three years she had managed to blow through a $90,000 college fund left to her by her grandparents. Kim has one year left of school and no way to cover her remaining $20,000 tuition balance.

That’s not that outrageous, blowing through 90K for 3 years of college. The government blows through that same amount every year for the whalefare recipients with no return.

Plus the government will lend her all she needs to finish her worthless degree.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-17 08:12:40

Plus the government will lend her all she needs to finish her worthless degree.

isn’t that the point, just get loan and stop expecting any more help? I did not get any help from my parents and did not expect it from them. I would have loved to have a trust fund which had more than enough money to pay for four years of college. She needs to develop a work ethic or find a sugar daddy.

 
Comment by cactus
2015-07-17 12:39:35

Plus the government will lend her all she needs to finish her worthless degree.’

parents have to co-sign

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-17 13:04:54

I did not have many loans in college but my parents never had to co-signed.

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Comment by Califoh20
2015-07-17 16:05:44

banks loan the money.

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Comment by Shrimpsaladsandwich
2015-07-17 19:36:16

Banks only loan because the govt guarantees and backstops and bails out. It is basically just the govt lending but worse than direct from the govt because it costs the cost of a middleman.

 
 
 
 
 
Comment by taxpayers
2015-07-17 07:09:18

VIX at 11.99
time to buy?

baaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhhh

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-17 08:27:45

How long are the contracts? It’s been near this level at the bottom of its range forever, with the occasional volatility spike to above 20 at least once a year.

 
 
Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-17 07:59:58

Warning:

Off-topic thread to follow below (about economics of crime, not U.S. two-party politics, the Chinese GDP growth miracle, anthropogenic greenhouse warming, conservatives versus liberals, etc)

Use the Joshua Tree Extension if not interested

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-17 08:45:16

The economics of crime
Is crime rational?
Jul 23rd 2012, 16:53 by R.D. | LONDON
Timekeeper

THIS week, Free exchange takes a look at whether corporate crime makes economic sense. (The full article, from the print edition, is here.) Banks, drug companies and weapons makers have all been stung with record fines recently. But while fines keep going up, corporate rule breaking—for example, the LIBOR banksters—seems to be booming. Why aren’t high fines deterring bad behaviour?

One reason could be that the fines, which can be seen as the price of crime, are too low. The economics of crime would support this idea. Many crime economists use a framework set out by Gary Becker of the University of Chicago. (Mr Becker’s blog is here.) The idea is that would-be criminals rationally weigh up the expected costs and benefits of breaking the rules. If the probability of being caught or the level of fine is too low, then the expected costs might be outweighed by the benefits. In this case, crime does pay and crime can be rational. The same logic applies to much more minor rules, which is why Mr Becker sometime chooses not to buy a parking ticket, as he explains in a 2006 interview with Tim Harford.

The notion of rational crime can be used to assess whether fines are set at sensible levels. One rule of thumb antitrust economists use is that cartels can achieve overcharges of 20-30%. But the agencies that police cartels use fines of between 10-40% (Britain’s watchdog is at the weak end of the scale, America’s is more beefy). Mr Becker’s crime calculus shows the problem with this: with a 50% detection rate, and fines ranging between 10-40%, the expected cost of cartel crime is in the 5-20% range. Use a 10% detection rate, and expected punishment costs fall to 1-4%. So the expected benefits outweigh the costs. At the moment, it seems, some corporate crimes pay handsomely.

 
Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-17 08:49:03

Inspired Life
The controversial method that helped turn one of America’s most murderous cities into one of its safest

By Terrence McCoy
June 1, 2015
A 31-year-old mother and her 7-year-old son were found shot to death in a West Baltimore home on Thursday morning (Juliet Linderman/Associated Press)

It was early Thursday morning, and news of another killing had just arrived, this one more chilling than the others. There were two bodies. One was a young woman, aged 31. The other was her 7-year-old son. Both had been shot in the head. It wasn’t long before police and onlookers swarmed the West Baltimore street to bear witness to another grim annotation in the city’s skyrocketing murder toll.

“The screams I’m hearing right now as the bodies are removed from the house would rip your heart out,” one reporter wrote on Twitter.

Even in Baltimore, where killing is a distinct part of its urban reality, the weeks since Freddie Gray’s controversial death have been exceptionally grisly. To mark May’s passage was to count bullets and bodies. Around 10 people were shot dead the second week of the month, the most in a week in more than two years. Then it happened again the next week. And again the week after that. In all, 43 people were killed in May — the most in a single month in four decades.

“We see violence as a public health problem,” Baltimore City Health Commissioner Leana Wen said. “It’s something that’s contagious, that spreads from person to person, perpetrators to victims. This sounds negative, but just like if this is a disease, there’s a way to treat and prevent it.”

More than 10 years ago, in a city afflicted by the same urban repercussions of economic decline, officials considered this disease and wondered at a treatment. It was June of 2005 in Richmond, Calif., a city of 100,000 residents nestled along the San Francisco Bay. April there had been a particularly violent month, even for a city that one state senator compared to Iraq and others called a “war zone.” Another car shooting had just claimed three more lives. So now the city council wanted to declare a state of emergency in an urban landscape called the nation’s 12th most dangerous.

“We’re living in extreme times that call for extreme measures,” one council member said. Some wanted canine patrols. Others wanted surveillance cameras overlooking drug hot spots. But the city also did something substantially more extreme — and radical — than any of those measures.

The city gave the green light to a law-trained community activist who brought years of experience working with the chronically violent. His name was Devone Boggan. He wears fedoras, was once busted for selling drugs, and speaks of urban violence with such passion he shouts. And he had an idea so unusual — and so promising — that officials today travel from across the country to learn the model. It’s simple, he said. Pay people not to kill.

Actually, the plan was substantially more complex, but to understand what he did — and more importantly, why — he says you first need to understand the underpinnings that gird urban violence. You can’t treat a disease without accounting for the mechanisms that drive it. This dissection of Richmond’s violence occurred in a city-funded report of urban crime around that time. It clocked in 51 pages, tracked how violence in Richmond had changed over the years and provided Boggan the raw data he needed to learn which neighborhoods to target — and how to do it.

“The study looked at who was committing the violence, who was doing the shooting and when,” said Barry Krisberg, a criminologist at the University of California-Berkeley. “And it came down to a small number of people. … Violence tends to be concentrated in certain social areas, and most of the people who engage in criminal violence engage people they know, or are related to, and it spreads from generation to generation.”

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-17 23:16:11

We left Richmond at year-end 2004, just before the advent of this program. It’s actually quite an amazing place, in both good and bad senses. I’ve never lived in such a true multicultural American melting pot either before or since, and have missed the ethnic and racial diversity after we left.

Sounds like we were flirting with danger by living there. It is a bit disconcerting to put your kids to bed while hearing the sound of gunshots from the nearby streets. That said, there are few better fundamental factors to keep housing affordable than frequent gun violence in close proximity.

 
 
Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-17 08:55:02

Grey City » Q & A
The economics of crime with Gary Becker
“To get people upset, I like to say there’s an optimal amount of crime.”
Posted May 25, 2012 by Mahmoud Bahrani
Photo: Tiffany Tan

In 1968, University of Chicago economist Gary Becker solved the problem that had plagued law enforcement officers, politicians, and city planners since, well, the dawn of civilization: How do we stop criminals from committing crimes, and is stopping crime even desirable? Becker’s paper, “Crime and Punishment: An Economic Approach,” looks at criminals as rational individuals, just like anyone else. Criminals, like ordinary citizens, seek to maximize their own well-being, but through illegal instead of legal means. Radical in its time, the Becker Model has stood as an authoritative theory on crime since it was published.

Becker was also the first economist to apply economic models to non-market social structures (think Freakonomics), an achievement for which he was awarded the 1992 Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences. Becker’s current research focuses on the repercussions of an increase in students pursuing higher education, the value of increasing life at old age, and the various intricacies of human capital. Professor Becker sat down with GREY CITY to discuss misconceptions about crime, the effects of drug legalization, and whether or not it’s possible to stop crime.

Comment by X-GSfixr
2015-07-17 12:53:18

This is what i keep trying to explain to my right winger friends.

They view poor economic decisions made by poor people as a lack of moral fiber.

I contend that many decisions are made because of the lack of viable options.

Why, for example, are black people disproportionately employed by government, and/or large corporations with minority friendly hiring policies?

I contend that a big reason is that caucasian-owned small businesses refuse to hire black people, especially for any position that pays above minimum wage, unless it is totally, unavoidable. Because they don’t want to deal with the “hassles” (real and perceived) of hiring blacks/African Americans (or pretty much any other minority, for that matter)

Better to hire legal and illegal Mexicans, and people raised in the states of the Old Confederacy as low and mid-level managers of same.

They have been indoctrinated into the “plantation owners/rich man knows best” model, and will politely serve their massas without bitching.

Which BTW, is what bitching about “over-regulation” boils down to. They don’t want to be told what they can/have to do by the wretched refuse (either directly, or by federal/state/local laws).

 
 
Comment by Neuromance
2015-07-17 16:00:15

A thought provoking and informative book is “Thinking About Crime” by James Q. Wilson.

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-17 23:05:39

He’s another Chicago guy (besides Gary Becker). But it appears Becker’s work on the economics of crime had precedence. It would be interesting to look into the cross influence…

 
 
 
Comment by WPA
2015-07-17 08:21:25

HuffPo disrespects The Donald: they are boycotting his political campaign and moving all Trump-related news item to the Entertainment section because, they say, his campaign is not serious and is just a sideshow. I do not agree with HuffPo on this decision. The guy is pulling double digits in the latest polls ahead of Jeb and Walker. He should be respected for that.

Comment by Goon
2015-07-17 10:00:01

Typical Social Justice Warrior™ cowardice

Evil rich racis Republican the Donald hurt their feewings, need SafeSpace :(

 
 
Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-17 08:22:10

The pros are getting whipped by this market
Published: July 17, 2015 11:06 a.m. ET
By Simon Maierhofer

Deriving pleasure from another person’s misfortune seems to be ingrained in the human DNA, especially when someone had it coming. Germans call it schadenfreude. That’s why “America’s Funniest Home Videos” has been on TV for over a quarter century.

Well, if you are wired like most humans, you will probably enjoy this:

Professional money managers — the ones who should know and are telling everyone that they do know — are getting worked over, and it’s not the first time.

I invite you to inspect the chart below, which plots the S&P 500 against investment managers’ exposure to U. S. equities, based on the National Association of Active Investment Managers (NAAIM) survey.

The green arrows reveal that this crowd of advisers — paid to guide other people — has a pretty stellar track record of selling low. This is great for outsiders like us, who consider their advice a contrarian indicator, but a huge bummer for the folks who trust those advisers with their money.

In all fairness, professional money managers started reducing their exposure back in March, so they avoided the “whopping” 4% meltdown from the S&P 500 all-time high, but they failed to buy at last week’s low and missed out on potential gains.

Believe it or not, the purpose of this column is actually bigger than just to rip on the pros. The chart illustrates a much more important lesson for investors afraid of a major crash or new bear market (my indicators suggest, and have been suggesting, there are many concerned investors).

Here is how the July 8 Profit Radar Report tackled the issue of “too many bears for a bear market.”

“Now is an appropriate time to revisit a theme we’ve touched on many times in the past, such as in March 2013:

‘From the February 2013 high to low, the S&P 500 lost a very shallow 3%. The negligible decline however caused significant sentiment shifts. The VIX soared 54%. Investors have become very suspicious and finicky. The smallest decline can cause extreme mood swings accompanied by almost instant bearish extremes. The propensity for investors to turn instantly bearish is likely to keep selloffs contained in the foreseeable future.’

‘In comparison, from June 22 to July 7, the S&P lost as much as 3.9%, while the VIX gained as much as 54.4%. Greece no doubt added an extra shot of panic, but the end result is the same. Such extreme fear and panic spikes tend to limit the down side.

A few sentiment indicators (I.e. commitment of traders report for major U.S. equity index futures, NAAIM poll, equity put/call ratio) are actually delivering bullish readings.’”

The saying “a watched pot never boils” applies in principle also to the stock market. ‘A watched market doesn’t crash.”

 
 
Comment by WPA
2015-07-17 08:44:26

It’s Friday. Come on down to the pub for some handcrafted microbrews, WPA is buying! My Zestimate just shot up +3.5%, woo-hoo! Day-umm, I’m really feeling that “Wealth Effect” now. After we’re done with drinks I’m going to continue the celebration and take out a HELOC. Cheers!

Comment by Mafia Blocks
2015-07-17 18:09:57

Hello MT Pockets.

 
 
Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-17 08:52:27

Inspired Life
Meet the outsider who accidentally solved chronic homelessness

By Terrence McCoy May 6, 2015
Sam Tsemberis, founder and CEO of Pathways to Housing, stands near one of the buildings in NE Washington D.C. that offers housing to formerly homeless. (Photo by Reza A. Marvashti for The Washington Post)

The process of innovation is often one of mystery. Where does an idea come from? How do innovators find it? What makes them different from everyone else fumbling around in the dark?

Compounding the puzzle is the irony that those most likely to innovate are rarely the experts. They’re outsiders who see things freshly.

And so, on a recent morning, one such outsider picks his way down a sun-splashed Brookland street. Face patched in scruff, wiry frame crammed into a Patagonia jacket, he doesn’t at first seem like an innovator who has had national impact. But few thinkers today are in greater demand.

Meet Sam Tsemberis. According to academics and advocates, he’s all but solved chronic homelessness. His research, which commands the support of most scholars, has inspired policies across the nation, as well as in the District. The results have been staggering. Late last month, Utah, the latest laboratory for Tsemberis’s’s models, reported it has nearly eradicated chronic homelessness. Phoenix, an earlier test case, eliminated chronic homelessness among veterans. Then New Orleans housed every homeless veteran.

Homelessness has long seemed one of the most intractable of social problems. For decades, the number of homeless from New York City to San Francisco surged — and so did the costs. At one point around the turn of the millennium, New York was spending an annual $40,500 on every homeless person with mental issues. Then came Tsemberis, who around that same time unfurled a model so simple children could grasp it, so cost-effective fiscal hawks loved it, so socially progressive liberals praised it.

And now, here he is again, peering up at another brick building on another urban street in another city that’s dabbling with his models. “This building,” he declares of the Irving Street structure, “is great.”

He pauses for a moment, eyes flashing.

“See that sign over there? It says, ‘Now Leasing.’ That’s what we look for.”

It’s that simple, he said. Give homes for the homeless, and you will solve chronic homelessness.

Comment by 2banana
2015-07-17 09:07:00

There is no problem that bigger and bigger government with more and more regulations and higher and higher taxes cannot solve.

Comment by Goon
2015-07-17 09:56:04

Does Iran count as one of these “problems”

Or do you just borrow to pay for it, as the preferred method of your Neocon Dark Lord “deficits don’t matter” Dick Cheney?

 
Comment by Califoh20
2015-07-17 13:50:07

“There is no problem that bigger and bigger government with more and more regulations and higher and higher taxes cannot solve.”

Did Reagan say that?

Reagan grew the size of the federal government tremendously. Reagan promised “to move boldly, decisively, and quickly to control the runaway growth of federal spending,” but federal spending “ballooned” under Reagan. He bailed out Social Security in 1983 after attempting to privatize it, and set up a progressive taxation system to keep it funded into the future. He promised to cut government agencies like the Department of Energy and Education but ended up adding one of the largest — the Department of Veterans’ Affairs, which today has a budget of nearly $90 billion and close to 300,000 employees. He also hiked defense spending by over $100 billion a year to a level not seen since the height of the Vietnam war.

Reagan was a serial tax raiser. As governor of California, Reagan “signed into law the largest tax increase in the history of any state up till then.” Meanwhile, state spending nearly doubled. As president, Reagan “raised taxes in seven of his eight years in office,” including four times in just two years. As former GOP Senator Alan Simpson, who called Reagan “a dear friend,” told NPR, “Ronald Reagan raised taxes 11 times in his administration — I was there.” “Reagan was never afraid to raise taxes,” said historian Douglas Brinkley, who edited Reagan’s memoir. Reagan the anti-tax zealot is “false mythology,” Brinkley said.

Reagan nearly tripled the federal budget deficit. During the Reagan years, the debt increased to nearly $3 trillion, “roughly three times as much as the first 80 years of the century had done altogether.” Reagan enacted a major tax cut his first year in office and government revenue dropped off precipitously. Despite the conservative myth that tax cuts somehow increase revenue, the government went deeper into debt and Reagan had to raise taxes just a year after he enacted his tax cut. Despite ten more tax hikes on everything from gasoline to corporate income, Reagan was never able to get the deficit under control.

Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-17 14:41:42

Added two trillion, Obama did that in a year and half.Unlike Reagan that did not purchase a rebuilt military, a win in the cold war and a restored economy. I do not know what it bought it just seemed to be pissed away.

(Comments wont nest below this level)
Comment by RioAmericanInBrasil
2015-07-17 15:06:14

Added two trillion, Obama did that in a year and half

Right. 1981 dollars are the same as 2015 dollars.

Reagan tripled the debt. Obama inherited Bush’s mess, Reagan’s TrickleDown lie and will barely double the debt.

Not only did Reagan triple the debt, he reversed decades of a declining debt/gdp trend. Reagan totally changed the course of USA’s debt policies - the same debt trend policies that Obama inherited. Obama didn’t change the course of USA’s debt reality. Reagan did.

 
 
 
 
 
Comment by MightyMike
2015-07-17 11:09:28

Fat kids don’t know they’re fat anymore

The kids are not all right. But they think they are.

A team of researchers at Georgia Southern University found an alarming rise in the lack of self awareness among children and teenagers in the United States. Specifically, way more overweight adolescents are oblivious today to the fact that they ought to lose weight than were in decades past—and it’s a big problem.

“The trend is very dangerous,” said Dr. Jian Zhang, who describes the phenomenon as a vicious cycle.

It’s also very complicated. Teenagers suffer through a lot of things, including an acute pressure of appearance. As a result, this is a worry that stems from health concerns, but requires a difficult balance in educating young people without causing or furthering anxiety about body image.

The researchers used data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, an in-depth study of the nutritional status of adults and children in the United States, which tracked, among other things, the health of nearly 2,000 teenagers between the ages of 12 and 16 in the early 1990s and over 2,500 teenagers in the same age range between 2007 and 2012. As part of the study, participants’ body mass index—which is a fairly reliable measure of obesity among children, though less so among adults—was collected, along with the response to this rather straightforward question: “Do you consider yourself to be overweight, underweight, or just about the right weight?”

When the two were juxtaposed—what each adolescent said in response to the question, and what their corresponding BMI said about their weight—Zhang’s team noticed a pretty clear trend: Far fewer kids believe that they are overweight today, even though many more of them should.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/wonkblog/wp/2015/07/17/fat-kids-dont-know-theyre-fat-anymore-and-thats-a-big-problem/

Comment by rj chicago
2015-07-17 11:40:04

Out here in the fields, I fight for my meals
I get my back into my living
I don’t need to fight to prove I’m right
I don’t need to be forgivenDaltrey}
Out here in the fields, I fight for my meals
I get my back into my living
I don’t need to fight to prove I’m right
I don’t need to be forgiven
Don’t cry, don’t raise your eye
It’s only teenage wasteland
Sally, take my hand, we’ll travel south ‘cross land
Put out the fire and don’t look past my shoulder
The exodus is here, the happy ones are near
Let’s get together before we get much older
Teenage wasteland, it’s only teenage wasteland
Teenage wasteland, oh, oh
Teenage wasteland, they’re all wasted!

The Who

 
Comment by WPA
2015-07-17 13:48:24

…and there’s the bogus non-science based fad called HAES (health at every size). The whole thing is built around the idea that obese people can be healthy at any weight and that if your doctor tells you need to lose weight to avoid serious diseases that is equivalent to fat-shaming, because facing the reality than obesity is unhealthful might hurt your feelings. My guess is Goon would say this is an extension of the SJW crowd.

Comment by In Colorado
2015-07-17 15:58:25

Just look at the obits in any newspaper. All the folks who die at an advanced age are thin, thin, thin. The Fats all die young.

 
 
 
 
Comment by X-GSfixr
2015-07-17 11:44:15

Zero Hedge weighs in on China’s “7% Growth” rate

http://tinyurl.com/pii8s7j

“…….. china has resorted to such childish manipulation methods that it has become impossible to ignore them, even among those (in ABQ?) who have tacitly agreed to stick their heads in the sand……”

Comment by X-GSfixr
2015-07-17 11:55:27

And the comments are good.

Especially the discussion on whether child-selling and organ harvesting are part of the GDP.

 
Comment by Albuquerquedan
2015-07-17 12:55:58

IMF, World Bank and Asian Development Bank all support the 7% growth figure and you have what on your side?

Comment by X-GSfixr
2015-07-17 15:24:20

Common Sense, and a finely honed “BS Detector”.

 
 
 
Comment by X-GSfixr
2015-07-17 12:18:12

China’s plan:

Import economic activity/jobs with mercantilist regulation and policies, and export unemployment/domestic turmoil.

The USA steps up to the plate as “Sucker #1″, with our “free market” brainwashing, and laws favoring business and oligarchs over the wretched refuse.

Remains to be seen how the rest of the world will allow China’s policies to put their own citizens out of work.

http://tinyurl.com/pm7uhbg

Comment by In Colorado
2015-07-17 14:33:48

Remains to be seen how the rest of the world will allow China’s policies to put their own citizens out of work.

Most other countries, unlike us, jealously protect their jobs and industries.

 
 
Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2015-07-17 16:08:08

China has dumped a record $143 billion in US Treasuries in the past three months. Propping up the Ponzi must be getting expensive.

http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2015-07-17/china-dumps-record-143-billion-us-treasurys-three-months-belgium

When the latest Treasury International Capital data was released yesterday, many were quick to conclude that not only had China’s selling of US Treasury ceased, but that with the addition of $7 billion in US government paper, China’s latest total holdings of $1270.3 billion were the highest since May of 2014. And if one was merely looking at the “China” line item in the major foreign holders table, that would be correct.

Comment by azdude
2015-07-17 17:42:37

Does that mean uncle fed will have to step up to the plate and buy more treasuries that are rolled over every year?

The buyer of last resort to prevent rising rates and massive defaults on debt?

 
Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-17 20:11:27

“China has dumped a record $143 billion in US Treasuries in the past three months. Propping up the Ponzi must be getting expensive.”

Seems like Chinese folks are selling anything liquid these days, including Treasurys and gold, to raise cash to repay margin loans.

Might be a great time to buy the dip in gold or Treasurys!

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-17 23:08:30

Gold just hit a 5-year low
Akin Oyedele
Jul. 17, 2015, 11:22 AM

Gold just hit a five-year low.

On Friday morning, the precious metal fell more than 1% to as low as $1,129.80 an ounce, the lowest since 2010.

In a morning note to clients on Friday, Accendo Markets wrote: “Gold ($1,144) lower yet again after the German conservatives voted to start talking about the details of a third Greek bailout while Grexit plans were locked away for the time being. So when investors are confident, they sell gold; when they’re worried, they don’t buy it. A strong US dollar with all this talk of interest-rate hikes likely contributing to gold’s seeming change of purpose of late with the three-month downtrend intact.”

On Friday, China disclosed how much gold it’s holding for the first time in six years. Its reserves rose 57%, and it is now the fifth-largest holder of gold.

Gold mining stocks are getting slammed. Shares of Barrick Gold Corporation, the largest gold miner in the world, fell more than 5% – the lowest in 24 years. Newmont Mining shares fell 2%.

 
 
 
Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2015-07-17 16:14:30

Anyone that slams HuffPo - vapid, PC drek masquerading as a news blog - is A-OK in my book.

http://www.businessinsider.com/donald-trumps-feud-with-the-huffington-post-2015-7

 
Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2015-07-17 16:22:15

Raff out Roud.

http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2015-07-17/furious-china-lashes-out-critics-its-rigged-gdp-data

That China has been fabricating its economic data has been clear to virtually anyone who has cared to look at the epic discrepancy between China’s goalseeked headline GDP and its consistent components (a recent snapshot was shown in “Beijing, You Have A Big Problem - In Ten Charts”).

However, while the sellside has been grudglingly willing to play ball with data that is as centrally-planned and as artificial as China’s stock “market” the recent disclosure of the Q2 GDP print of precisely 7.0% may have been the straw that finally broke the camel’s back, leading to a chorus of revulsion and complaints from even the “most serious people” that China is cooking its books.

The reason, as we showed previously, is that China is now resorting to such childish manipulation methods that it has become impossible to ignore them even among those who have tacitly agreed to stick their heads in the sand, and diplomatically talk up Chinese numbers. Which in turns lead to a narrative breakdown and for once, China has been faced with official allegations it is openly fudging its economic growth statistics which come at a time when many suspect Chinese growth is flat if not in outright decline.

So how does China respond? One way is petulantly protesting too much, and in the process admitting it is all fake:

CHINA’S GDP ‘NOT OVERESTIMATED’, NBS SHENG SAYS

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-17 22:55:43

News Economics
China’s unravelling: Will it devalue the yuan next?
by Annabelle Williams
17 July 2015 1:59am
China could likely join so-called currency wars by devaluing the renminbi, or yuan.

China could be gearing up to join the global currency wars by devaluing the renminbi. So far this year more than 30 central banks from all over the world, including South Korea and Australia, Canada and Hungary have cut interest rates – which works to weaken their currency.

Since the global financial crisis, central banks around the world have been manipulating their currencies, using QE money printing and other methods to force down the value of their currency. This makes the country’s goods cheaper to buy, and makes the value of debt seem lower. This competitive devaluation is known as the “currency wars”.

STRENGTHENING
But China’s renminbi has been gradually strengthening, in part because it is effectively pegged to the value of the US dollar. The yuan has risen close to 20 per cent against the euro over the last year but is essentially flat against the dollar. That’s because as the dollar has risen, the yuan has too.

Meanwhile, Japan is in the midst of a massive QE programme and one of its chief aims is to force down the value of the yen. The yuan has rise 16 per cent against the yen in just a year. This means, on the currency front, China is feeling the squeeze from one of its oldest foes.

Although China has cut its interest rates too – which normally has the effect of weakening a currency – this hasn’t been enough. If the US raises rates later this year as many expect, that will cause the dollar to strengthen further. This will leave China with an even greater appreciation in currency.

WHY SLASH THE YUAN?
The main reason for China to devalue is to make its goods cheaper and boost manufacturing. “Added to the yuan’s rise in value are the salary increases there have been, and China is no longer the competitive manufacturing powerhouse that it was in the noughties. It has lost its competitiveness,” says Gareth Lewis at Tilney Bestinvest.

STOCK MARKET MADNESS
Meanwhile, despite being a centrally planned, controlled economy, parts of China’s system have gone bonkers in the last year, and the effects are being felt across every strata of society. China’s wayward economy has built up a $28 trillion debt mountain, and part of this has been through shady, off balance sheet, “shadow banking” practices.

That borrowed money has found its way into assets. The stock market has rocketed in the last 12 months – which some analysts are calling a bubble – but it is unravelling and the authorities have made desperate attempts to prevent a massive stock market slump.

Property prices too were in overheated bubble-like territory, but this has started to turn. “It’s pretty clear the property market has changed drastically and the hot money situation has become the opposite, outflows,” says John Hardy of Saxo Bank.

It may seem odd that China’s ever-watchful authorities would allow these kinds of excesses to happen, but for ordinary people “having the equity market booming and allowing people to borrow and make money on stocks is a great wealth effect for China’s citizens”, explains Eric Verleyen of Societe Generale Private Banking. It makes people feel they are participating in a booming economy.

DESPERATE TIMES
With all this going on, China’s growth is slowing. Some economists believe official figures paint a rosier picture than what is happening on the ground. “Glitches in the way [China] calculates GDP have caused it to overstate growth in recent quarters,” says Mark Williams of Capital Economics.

Authorities have recently made a string of policy changes all aimed at preventing crisis. “If you look at the overt interventions [in markets and the economy], it smacks of desperation,” Lewis says.

Devaluing the currency would be China’s latest bid to shore up its economy. “One of the ways the state can kick-start demand is by lowering the currency,” Lewis adds. “There is a possibility that the next policy tack will be to devalue.” He believes this is a possibility at the end of 2015 or early next year.

One effect would be deflation in the West, “imported” from overseas. This is problematic since Europe and the UK have been struggling to raise inflation rates above zero. “If there was a 20 per cent devaluation in the yuan, China’s goods and services would become cheaper and there would be a wave of deflation around the world,” Lewis says.

 
 
Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2015-07-17 16:51:11

Rand Paul: Restrict immigration from Muslim countries. How about if we cut off ALL immigration from ALL countries unless the immigrant in quesiton is A) a member of the Swedish bikini team; or B) has some highly desireable skill set that would make them a valued asset rather than a security risk or welfare drain?

Comrad Pelosi will not be amused.

http://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2015/07/17/exclusive-rand-paul-on-tennessee-terror-restrict-immigration-from-muslim-nations/

Comment by MightyMike
2015-07-17 17:18:20

Your plan sounds better than Rand’s. He’s turning collectivist.

 
 
Comment by Raymond K Hessel
2015-07-17 16:54:44

There’s a shock…virtually all “sanctuary cities” are Democrat-controlled. Of course name a corrupt, dystopian urban center that DOESN’T have Democrats running/looting it.

http://www.nationalreview.com/article/421286/sanctuary-magnet-illegal-aliens

Comment by MightyMike
2015-07-17 17:13:41

Virtually all big cities of any kind are controlled by Democrats.

 
Comment by azdude
2015-07-17 17:15:28

we need to sell some more treasuries to uncle fed and help these people obtain the american dream.

 
 
Comment by azdude
2015-07-17 17:45:40

WE need more benis for immigrants. They need a huge @ss pension too.

We can print some more cash and help these people. Its the right thing to do. Humanitarian efforts will come back to help us in the long run.

 
 
Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-17 20:15:59

What a great evening to not be driving where we were on the way home earlier this week…

“Oh, no, not stuck in traffic again on the way home from Las Vegas.

OH NO! RUN FOR IT…OUR CAR JUST CAUGHT FIRE!!!”

5 homes and dozens of cars burned; fast-moving fire brings 15 Freeway to a standstill
Cajon Pass fire
A big-rig burns on the 15 Freeway in the Cajon Pass as a brush fire that has grown to more than 2,000 acres moves toward two mountain communities. (KTLA)
By Soumya Karlamangla, Ryan Parker, Marisa Gerber and Richard Winton contact the reporters

A fast-moving brush fire swept over the 15 Freeway in San Bernardino County on Friday, destroying 20 vehicles, damaging 10 others and threatening several mountain communities. Five homes have been damaged.

In a region where brush fires are a way of life, the scene on the main route between L.A. and Las Vegas was surreal. For more than an hour, cars, trucks and even a boat burned as news helicopters recorded the destruction.

Helicopters made dramatic water drops on burning vehicles.

Dozens of vehicles were abandoned on the freeway as drivers fled the flames.

“I’ve never seen anything like this before,” said California Highway Patrol Officer Steve Carapia.

Carapia said that 60 to 70 cars were abandoned on the road, making it difficult for emergency responders to maneuver through all the cars left behind. They were able to turn some cars around that were outside the immediate hot zone through an access road between the north- and southbound sides of the highway, he said.

CHP officers were escorting people to their cars – if drivable – so they could leave the area. The southbound side remains closed to all traffic other than the motorists being escorted, Carapia said.

The CHP has taken water to stranded motorists, he added.

There were no reports of injuries.

As of 7:15 p.m., the fire was at 0% containment, said Robert Taylor, a spokesman for the U.S. Forest Service.

Comment by rms
2015-07-17 22:59:06

“Oh, no, not stuck in traffic again on the way home from Las Vegas.”

Good time to stop at Del Taco rather than sit in Sunday evening traffic on the 15 backed-up the el Cajon Pass.

Comment by Professor Bear
2015-07-17 23:09:50

The news footage looks like a scene out of The Day After Tomorrow.

 
 
 
Comment by phony scandals
2015-07-18 04:07:09

phony scandals

 
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