Recent comments by Mook

Blackhalo wrote:

I ain't buying until median house prices are > 2.5 X median wages.

I assume you meant "less than".

Another Got Popcorn? moment in the making: when median house prices do get there, and the PITI to buy then is even higher than it is now at 3.5x.

Blackhalo wrote:

I just wish they would adopt the targeted rate now, instead of the inevitable Lehman moment, first.

I think the Fed should go to a targeted long-bond rate and nominal GDP growth rate! Watching them fail at two things simultaneously would be much more Got Popcorn?-worthy than just one.

Antipodes wrote:

I was able to avoid paying PMI because I paid 20% of the original purchase price with a cash down payment, so it was definitely equity in the house at original purchase price and not 20% of principal.

Yes, fair point. It's 20% and 22% of original purchase price of the home written in the law, not of loan value.

Antipodes wrote:

Isn't property tax often based on appreciation? I recall my property taxes increased based on appreciation, not the purchase price.

Took the words right out of my mouth.

State law can, and often does, provide for inclusion of equity through appreciation - as determined by appraisal - in determining the cutoff threshold for PMI. Federal law does not.

And I'm simply dying to understand the error of my ways in stating "22% principal".

azurite wrote:

If we'd impeached Bush II, Cheney would've become prez and the Congress at the time could've made a new record of impeaching & convicting two prezs in a row. I think whoever was Speaker then would've been next in line (don't remember who that was).

The standard of impeachment and conviction is (and should be) extremely high for a POTUS. Congress' mistake is attaching that same stratospheric standard to other "civil officers of the United States", as evidenced by it having been 137 years since they last impeached a non-Presidential member of the executive branch.

If you aren't gonna exercise that power against someone who lied directly to your body, under oath, just months ago, you might as well not have the power at all.

Rob Dawg wrote:

Apple stock $4. Screw that last year of tuition, drop out, those 2500 shares are worth $1.25m today.

Almost enough to snag yourself a 900 sq. ft. piece of paradise in a pre-war Manhattan walk-up!

Huh. Well, now, this is interesting:

FTC - Cancellation of Private Mortgage Insurance: Federal Law May Save You Hundreds of Dollars Each Year - BBB News Center

For home mortgages signed on or after July 29, 1999, your PMI must - with certain exceptions - be terminated automatically when you reach 22 percent equity in your home based on the original property value, if your mortgage payments are current. Your PMI also can be canceled, when you request - with certain exceptions - when you reach 20 percent equity in your home based on the original property value, if your mortgage payments are current.

Emphasis mine. Meaning it's 22% principal paydown, not 22% equity. Appreciation don't count.

I believe certain states have different (meaning less stringent) laws in place.

Outsider wrote:

I haven't kept up - isn't pmi permanent now with the loan? I remember once you hit 20% equity, you could discontinue it, at one point.

Other way around - Congress passed a law not too far back stating that once you hit 22% equity it's automatically discontinued. Don't remember when, though. Maybe the '90s?

Blackhalo wrote:

Good thing real median wages went up 25% this quarter. Otherwise, we might be in a bubble.

A bit of a rhetorical question, I know, but why is all well with the world when prices make unsustainable moves to the downside but panic room time when regression to the mean begins?

It isn't normal for Americans to spend just 6% of their income on food. It isn't normal for a finite resource with declining supply and increasing demand like crude oil to cost $40 a barrel. And it isn't normal for an average American to be able to borrow $300,000 from a bank and only expect to pay $850 a month in interest.

These things are all regressing (or in this case, progressing) to the mean, and will continue to do so. Just because Americans don't like the results doesn't make it less inevitable.

Outsider wrote:

pmi is an interesting concept. Why should you have to buy insurance so that the lender is covered in case of default?

Because why settle for n sources of skim when you can have n+1?

azurite wrote:

Refusing to appropriate money is another tool, also mostly unused when it comes to "defense" (apparently against people living in US as well as people living outside the US).

Defunding is a blunt object. Impeachment is a scalpel. Both can be useful in the right situation.

But If Congress is unwilling to impeach an executive branch appointee who clearly and provably lied to them under oath, they might as well round up a Constitutional Congress and pass a 28th Amendment that just does the No one 17 and under admitted away with themselves.

azurite wrote:

but will it motivate Congress to do anything?

The power of impeachment was the Founding Fathers' prime check on executive branch overreach.

A Congress unwilling to exercise that power basically writes the executive a carte blanche.

Why should we be surprised that this is exactly what has happened?

Put more starkly: As long as Bubble, Bubble, Toil and Trouble serve to move wealth and assets up the socioeconomic pyramid on net, there will be more of them, GDP growth or no GDP growth.

adornosghost wrote:

But the Second Law always wins

Just because there isn't any more water flowing into the bathtub doesn't mean I can't generate a tidal wave with what's there.

josap wrote:

Check back after 2050.

Will my explosive illudium Q-36 space modulator be ready by then?

adornosghost wrote:

When we get a extended GDP growth of 3%, I'll take you seriously.

Quest We've averaged well below that figure for the past 13 years, but that hasn't stopped us from blowing at least 3 multi-trillion-dollar Bubble, Bubble, Toil and Trouble in that span.

Bubble, Bubble, Toil and Trouble are increasingly a substitute for GDP growth, not a side effect of it.

Black Star Ranch wrote:

...and everything plunges for the remainder of the year (as is typical)....

"Where is the second-half recovery? I was promised an earth-shattering second-half recovery!"


adornosghost wrote:

We will all be dead.

Bubble, Bubble, Toil and Trouble cycles are becoming ever shorter. There is literally an entire generation of Americans graduating from university who have never been alive during a time when slow-but-steady growth was the maxim.

I'd love to think we'll go 75 years before seeing another RE mania. But I'd put long odds against it.

lawyerliz wrote:

my dearest wish is that I could go back to closing real estate loans for lenders making reasonable loans and underwriting with reasonable thoughtful requirements.
I will retire first.

Nothing personal, but you will most likely die first.

Because I don't think underwriting as we knew it is ever coming back. Too much institutional memory lost, and when the next RE up cycle begins in earnest, I suspect (and fear) the banks will find it quicker and cheaper to rely on algorithms than on hiring and training a whole new generation of personnel.

Rob Dawg wrote:

Damn, looks like one of the sock puppets is back from the dry cleaners.

"Show Unrated or better" FTW!

Yoringe wrote:

May bad english..... sorry:-)

YouTube - Bad English - When I See You Smile

And I'm sorry too. Smile

I hate having to link to a non-CR chart, but for some reason Bill's only goes back to '08:

Gives you an idea of exactly what this increase means in perspective and how far starts still have to go to get back to "normal".

robj wrote:

The Defaulters?

New Keyboard

I was gonna suggest "Inflationistas", but that works too.


All Blacks, Wallabies, Springboks & Argentina Rugby

BTW, they should never have let Argentina join until they at least came up with a catchy team name.

Antipodes wrote:

So now that you're here: When the hell did Tri-Nations become "Four Nations"? I'm getting so old.
2012, when Argentina joined.

Wait - looks like this year's tourney kicks off on Saturday?!

Four Nations Rugby Championship and Tri Nations - All Blacks, Wallabies, Springboks & Argentina Rugby

I am so tempted to head back to Auckland! If I catch the first plane out tomorrow morning, I might just touch down ... in time for kick-off. Puzzled

Antipodes wrote:

In :Aaawk: - land, we only go up!

Speaking of beer: the most fun I've ever had in a bar (on a family blog, at least) was in Auckland, during the opening game of the Tri-Nations, on our honeymoon in 2003. 4am when we left the bar and there were people queued up to get in. Party

So now that you're here: When the hell did Tri-Nations become "Four Nations"? I'm getting so old.

Hackman wrote:

I had some Leinenkugel's (sp?) recently. It tasted pretty good to me. Of course, it was about 103 degrees in the late afternoon and the beer was teeth shattering cold, so context could have been everything.

Leinie's Summer Shandy is surprisingly good. It's unequivocally the only (non-Belgian lambic) beer my wife and I have ever both been happy drinking.

Of course, it's August now, so good luck finding it in between the aisles of Oktoberfest beers. My Head Just Exploded

ResistanceIsFeudal wrote:

What about the hard lifelong work of the rent collectors?

Or the senior executives at TBTF banks? My God, if their demon spawn progeny receive any less than 100 cents on dead Daddy's dollar, we might as well all up sticks for Cuba.

Blackhalo wrote:



There are precisely two places in the country that, no matter what town you're in or how two-bit the bar is, you can always, always be assured of a decent beer on tap.

The greater Philly metro area with Yuengling, and Texas with Shiner.

Every place else it's a crapshoot.

sum luk wrote:

The painful truth is that in the most unequal developed nations – the UK and the US – the intergenerational transmission of income is stronger. In more equal societies such as Denmark, the tendency of privilege to breed privilege is much lower.

But remember kids, the estate tax is Evil incarnate! Because it unfairly plunders the lifelong work of the small businessman and family farmer!

Blackhalo wrote:

Apparently folks are drinking more craft beers, instead of Miller or Bud...

Implying that Miller or Bud are beers? Rookie mistake.

Ed S. wrote:

I can't think of any small business much worse that owning a B&B. Inconvenient, hard work, little money. At least in the United States.

I've stayed in dozens of B&Bs and I'm hard-pressed to think of more than one or two that were run with even half an eye towards turning a profit.

IMO it's a lot like owning a Now back to the yacht race - you do it for the companionship more so than the money. (Of course, the definition of "companionship" varies a bit between the two.)

Rob Dawg wrote:

Makes a nice halfway house: 

FTL: "Lender owned and they want an offer. Also for rent or lease. This is a former Bed and Breakfast that did very well."

New Keyboard
Now, I don't speak Realtor, but I'm pretty sure any rational definition of "did very well" stops a wee bit short of "the bank repossessing your place of business".

Mike in Long Island wrote:

floor-to-ceiling French doors opening to a tree-shaded, 9-foot-9 by 42-foot-4’’ back yard.

Perfect for the professional bocce player looking for a place to park his millions in winnings!

Mike in Long Island wrote:

A tape measure would only stretch to a cinched-in 8 feet and 4 inches wide in the widest rooms — narrow enough for the lankiest Knick to nearly touch two side walls at once.
The gussying up allowed it to rent for a healthy $14,000 a month.

I'm pretty sure Ken gave us the My Head Just Exploded icon precisely for times like this.

Merk: Are There Any ‘Safe’ Assets Left? | The Exchange - Yahoo! Finance

Of course there are. Plenty of them. You just shouldn't expect a return from them. [/dryfly]

Put another way: After a three-year stretch in which there weren't any 'risky' assets to speak of, where exactly did people expect we'd land? Or were these particular trees all supposed to grow to the sky?

poicv2.0 wrote:

5 year chart on SRS looks like a triple black diamond.

Except there aren't enough moguls.

Seriously, for sheer day-in, day-out Cash, and no, I dont need a receipt Quick, fetch a pail! reliability, not even the 2000-'03 dot-coms can hold a candle.

sum luk wrote:

I think poic is about due for an audit on the commentariate's investment: SRS Basic Chart | ProShares UltraShort Real Estat Stock - Yahoo! Finance

There are few things funnier than a 5-year chart of that ticker.

"I'm holding strong ... this puppy's headin' back to $3,000 a share any day now!"

black dog wrote:

Why is Bernanke's Fed dragging its feet on bank regulations? - Aug. 15, 2013

C'mon, everybody, you know the words; sing along!

Needs More Cowbell Needs More Cowbell Needs More Cowbell
"Because it helps the ... Because it helps the ...
Because it helps the banks!"

ResistanceIsFeudal wrote:

You'd want DC, SoCal, or Houston, judging by our regulars. NYC works too.

Fat Cat: I can haz ETF for $1.6M "starter" apartments?

arthur_dent wrote:

if Ben is going to push-back as promised against rates, it has to be massive and unpredictable to capture the fear factor for subsequent control.

It's cute the way you think the Fed is looking to control Wall Street instead of the other way around.

poicv2.0 wrote:

Too busy updating the newsletter given all the suddenly new opportunities.

Ooh, is there a new 4x long homebuilder ETF I didn't know about?

ResistanceIsFeudal wrote:

Yes... BUT this is a special chicken!

My patented combination of Cold Turkey and Economics is hard hasn't steered me wrong once yet!

Comrade Kristina wrote:

Congressman: Financial Crime Needs A Gun - Business Insider

If by that he means we should shoot the guilty - and bill their estate for the bullet - I'd be hard-pressed to argue.

Rob Dawg wrote:

Central and west coast Florida were seriously awakening from a long construction slumber last month when I visited.

East coast as well. Reports from the in-laws' side indicate the presence of beachfront cranes for the first time in 6 years, working sunup to sundown including weekends.

But buy now, 'cause they're not making any mo.... oh, wait a minute.

Mike_PNW wrote:

A company named "Quintiles" actually did an IPO a while back...something in the health care space iirc.

Quintiles Transnational is the possessor of the famous (or infamous) single-letter "Q" ticker: Quintiles - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

I remember them primarily because their former ticker used to be QTRN ... and at some point in the deep, dark past I remember Jim Cramer mashing the "Buy, buy, buy!" button during the Lightning Round while exhorting a caller to "Riiiide the Q-Train!!!!"

/hangs head in shame

Tommy Vu wrote:

For the majority of home buyers that is

Who needs quintiles when you can call a $1,000,000 house a "starter home"?

ResistanceIsFeudal wrote:

History is irrelevant. Its different this time and there has never been a better time to buy!

Or sell. There's never been a better time to buy or sell! Or trade up! Or trade down! Or all of the above at once!

Contact a Realwhore™ today.

CR quoted:

Builder confidence in the market for newly built, single-family homes rose three points to 59 on the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index (HMI) for August, released today. This fourth consecutive monthly gain brings the index to its highest level in nearly eight years.

Five seconds spent looking at Bill's chart tells you that sizable gaps 'twixt builder confidence and housing starts have historically resolved themselves via sharp declines in the former rather than sharp increases in the latter.

I hesitate to use the word "useless" for any indicator, but, well ...

BTW, in this bubble-and-bust world, it's really rare to see a chart of reliably lower highs and (generally) lower lows dating back a full half-century.

If only it weren't our country's industrial capacity utilization as the metric.