Sunday, August 22, 2004

More on the economy

Remember what I said about the housing market, the economy, and the increase in interest rates by the Fed?

Fuck you very much. Oh, and 'amid these recessionary fears', how much you wanna bet the Fed raises interst rates another 25 basis points next meeting? Greenspan is getting senile. Good luck all you folks with adjustable rate mortgages. Let's see what Bush does when the bottom falls out the housing market.

Now, when you take this in concert with rising interest rates, which will slow the housing boom considerably and probably lead to a rash of foreclosures, we're gonna be in deep shit six months from now.

Today, this from The Nation:

The crash of the housing market will not be pretty. It is virtually certain to lead to a second dip to the recession. Even worse, millions of families will see the bulk of their savings disappear as homes in some of the bubble areas lose 30 percent, or more, of their value. Foreclosures, which are already at near record highs, will almost certainly soar to new peaks. This has happened before in regional markets that had severe housing bubbles, most notably in Colorado and Texas after the collapse of oil prices in the early eighties. However, this time the bubble markets are more the rule than the exception, infecting most of real estate markets on both coasts, as well as many local markets in the center of the country.

[. . .]

As with the stock bubble, the big question in the housing bubble is when it will burst. No one can give a definitive answer to that one, but Alan Greenspan seems determined to ensure that it will be after November. Instead of warning prospective homebuyers of the risk of buying housing in a bubble-inflated market, Greenspan gave Congressional testimony in the summer of 2002 arguing that there is no such bubble. This is comparable to his issuing a "buy" recommendation for the NASDAQ at the beginning of 1999. More recently, Greenspan has done everything in his power to keep mortgage rates as low as possible, at one point even offering markets the hope that the Fed would take the extraordinary measure of directly buying long-term Treasury bonds. The man who testified that the Bush tax cuts were a good idea apparently has one last job to perform for the President.

Full story.

Yup, you think the economy was bad before? Wait.

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