Right on time:Via: AP:
Wholesale prices rose more than expected last month as food prices surged by the most in 26 years.
The Labor Department said the Producer Price Index rose by 0.7 percent in March, compared to analysts’ forecasts of a 0.4 percent rise. A rise in gas prices also helped push up the index.
I say it, folks think i'm nuts, and then its mainstream news. or is the Wall Street Journal suddenly a tin-foil hat blog?
I've been telling folks to default on their debt, dump their houses and rent, for years. I fully expect my rent to go down
when the contract ends -- compare that to any house loan out there. And yet, our friends still look at us soulfully, wondering why we don't "get it" and buy when we can afford to? Because as long as rents keep going down nationwide, my landlord knows that if i move out it could be months
before another qualified renter comes along. A tiny price cut more than makes up for that threat. And so it will go for a loooooong time -- as in the rest of my life.
I do intend to buy someday, only because i have certain goals in mind: i need productive land, and I need to build a home
that can house my tribe. Meanwhile, the old house we left still hasn't fully sold -- although the company is obligated to take it over per our contract, they're dickering around on it. understandable -- but we intend to enforce the contract. All things in time.
Meanwhile: don't aspire to home ownership right now -- its not what they sell it as.
Via: The Australian:
IMPLODING equities, exploding credit default swaps, soaring gold and slumping oil — if, at any time over the past 18 months, it seemed that markets were in the grip of lunacy, it may be because investors are, technically, lunatics.
The market mayhem since the global financial meltdown began in 2008 has provided fertile soil for proponents of a branch of investment theory which holds that market cycles move in phase with the Moon.
Now, backed with decades of data and behaviour that can no longer be explained by purely rational analysis, the lunar theory has slipped into the mainstream.
... Macquarie Securities has arrived at a startling discovery: the two days on either side of the new lunar month represent most of the positive returns on equity markets for the next four weeks.
All that talk about new orleans "coming back" after Katrina?
yeah, about that.... they've got 180 square miles under their jurisdiction with infrastructure to maintain... but only 1/2 of the previous population to support it. Oopsie.
Down in the heart of things, at least half of the french quarter is boarded up/ for sale. vacant. Prime locations, right on Decatur st. in the heart of tourist country. There's just too many businesses for the level of demand. In most of the quarter, getting dinner after 6pm is a challenge: the empty shops simply close the doors. Sure, bourbon street soaks up the remaining demand, and is a hopping party -- and one street away its a ghost town. That's not a "French Quarter", its a street.
The city will have to shrink radically to stay solvent -- i'd say by 2/3 of its current size, if not more, and simply stop providing services to the remainder. Otherwise, they'll default on all their debt, and have no cash for payroll, within just a couple more budget cycles. If you're holding their bonds, you're screwed. Financiers know this, and are running for cover.
There will always be a new orleans here, of some kind. But fast change is in the air.
There's lotsa good food in new orleans... and lotsa bad food, too. I'll go easy on 'em, in light of their commitment to the delights of Cheesy Grits, red beans and rice, jambalaya, the beignets
, and damned fine dutch process cocoa. I've always loved french and creole indian culture, anyhow.
meanwhile, much of the french quarter is full of bullshit tourist traps, and embarassing bloody marys. but then, locals don't much hang there anyhow.
As is my custom as a macroeconomist specializing in public finance and infrastructure, I can't help but look around at the things that make a city tick. Result: this city will be here for a long time, in some fashion. A radically altered, severely diminished
fashion, certainly - but with access to water and land, and the LOOP
, it'll be here for awhile. Much of the surrounding suburbia will revert to... something interesting. Fortune favors the prepared and nimble.
Lotsa great window shopping to do, some ghost tours, mebbe get out onto a steam ship for dinner. And I'm on the quest for the perfect gumbo.
Halloween is coming up, i'll likely spend it at the House of Blues
and seeing old friends at the New Orleans Voodoo Temple.
Typically back home we host an annual Dumb Supper, but, being away, that's not possible for us this year. Next year, I hope to resume that ritual.
i say it, folks think i'm nutz, then it becomes mainstream talk
"Come to Cleveland, where the economy is based on LeBron James, the streets are filled with drifters, and broken-down homes can be had for the price of a VCR."
Ohio is a powder-keg.
There is opportunity in that, but mostly for the heavily armed and highly savvy. Same goes for a number of similar rust-belt spots. Still, many places are far worse-off, they just don't know it yet: Phoenix is a walking corpse, they don't even have the water for 1/3 of their population. No-brainer, a mass-exodus is a guarantee. In Ohio, at least there is arable land and a working-class tradition. Some/many will make do, get by, and some will even do well through the change. Phoenix, by comparison, has no such skills to draw upon, and no land to draw it through. T.o.a.s.t.
The bigger danger for Ohio is that the people there will be pissed off and dangerous, while in phoenix they'll have no choice but to pack up and get the fuck out. They'll be angry, but they'll be on the road while they're angry. Thus, the heavily armed and savvy in Ohio have a leg up.
Oh and all this? not long now.
According to those crazy tinfoil hatters at Fitch
, New Jersey home prices have another 20% to fall.
I think they're bats, and the real number will be more like 50%. Nonetheless, its hard to think of groups like Fitch as uninformed.
Makes me sad for any folks who've had the misfortune to buy property in the past year (or this).
Tick, tock, tick, tock... Housing Bubble Smackdown: Bigger Crash Ahead
In March, housing prices accelerated on the downside indicating bigger adjustments dead-ahead. Trend-lines are steeper now than ever before--nearly perpendicular. Housing prices are not falling, they're crashing and crashing hard. Now that the foreclosure moratorium has ended, Notices of Default (NOD) have spiked to an all-time high. These Notices will turn into foreclosures in 4 to 5 months time creating another cascade of foreclosures. Market analysts predict there will be 5 MILLION MORE FORECLOSURES BETWEEN NOW AND 2011. It's a disaster bigger than Katrina. Soaring unemployment and rising foreclosures ensure that hundreds of banks and financial institutions will be forced into bankruptcy. 40 percent of delinquent homeowners have already vacated their homes. There's nothing Obama can do to make them stay. Worse still, only 30 percent of foreclosures have been relisted for sale suggesting more hanky-panky at the banks. Where have the houses gone?
Have they simply vanished?
Just keep on waiting. 3 years from now, full farmable spreads will be available for barter, pennies on the buck. Think 80% off
whatever they're asking now. Actual working farms, now... probably not. Those are gonna go way up in value. Waaaay up. "Farmable" is the operative word. Be preparing now; get your skills, gather tools slowly, and be ready to join a network when the time comes. Be able to bring something to the table for the group,
and you'll be able to snag plenty of space and infrastructure. But for gods sake, save your cash in the meanwhile.