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Archive for Thursday, March 12, 2009

Foreclosures up 30 percent in February

March 12, 2009

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— Despite halts on new foreclosures by several major lenders, the number of households threatened with losing their homes rose 30 percent in February from last year’s levels, RealtyTrac reported today.

Nationwide, nearly 291,000 homes received at least one foreclosure-related notice last month, up 6 percent from January, according to the Irvine, Calif-based company. While foreclosures are highly concentrated in the Western states and Florida, the problem is spreading to states like Idaho, Illinois and Oregon as the U.S. economy worsens.

Comments

sandersen 5 years, 1 month ago

Bozo---

Sound, factual, and an interesting read. What many forget is that the lower and middle income earners are the true backbone of our economy. Uber-wealthy and the well-to-do don't buy the majority share of anything produced in this country. They are the few, and although they hold the lions share of the wealth, they are not the consumers whom most contribute to and impact to our economic liquidity. Hence my confusion as to the hatred of those who say they are for a healthy business community for the very folk who are their largest customer, You can prop up the business world, but without a thriving middle and lower class customer base, it is naught but a sham. Make more cars, tv's, clothes, houses... If not enough people earn enough money at their jobs to purchase them, you have no true consumer base.

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Tom Shewmon 5 years, 1 month ago

"...give the free-market time to adjust..." Aji

But Obama, Pelosi and Reid seem to want something different than a "free market" so how will something that doesn't exist, adjust? I need to go and prepare that lobster that isn't in the refrigerator for lunch now.

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just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 5 years, 1 month ago

cont.

"A Debtor Nation. America in 1929 was a major international creditor. Today, we are the world's biggest debtor. The financial bubble created the illusion of prosperity.

During the bubble years, the foreign borrowing disguised domestic weaknesses, such as our much-diminished manufacturing sector. For now, foreigners are still willing to lend us vast sums, but that may not continue indefinitely.

All these economic calamities have solutions, but each is more radical than what's currently on offer. The government will have to temporarily nationalize major banks, sort out good assets from bad ones, and then return banks to responsible private ownership. To cure the housing collapse, government should directly refinance mortgages, rather than bribing banks to ease terms.

Deficits will have to be a lot larger before they can get smaller. That should not require a war; this is just as grave a national emergency. Those deficits could purchase much broader prosperity.

This crisis doesn't yet have a name. It has all the hallmarks of a depression, but people are understandably reluctant to use the D-word. So let me suggest one: The Great Collapse, since this was both a financial collapse and an ideological one.

Can America recover from a Great Collapse? Can we avert a second Great Depression? To coin a phrase, yes we can. But we need the right strategies and we don't have much time.

© 2009 The Boston Globe"

http://www.boston.com/bostonglobe/editorial_opinion/oped/articles/2009/03/12/surviving_the_great_collapse/

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just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 5 years, 1 month ago

cont.

"Wealth, Deficits, and Demand. The economy now bears all the hallmarks of a depression. Between the housing collapse and the stock market crash, American households are out several trillion dollars (in the 1920s, there were no 401(k) plans and less than 2 percent of Americans owned stock).

When people are suddenly out a lot of money, they spend less. Weak demand in one sector is cascading into other sectors. People spend less on autos, air travel, hotels, restaurants, clothing - any optional purchase. Business sales and profits are down, which causes other layoffs, and the cycle deepens.

Roosevelt was said to be a big spender, but his biggest peacetime deficit was only about 6 percent of GDP. This year, the deficit will exceed 11 percent, and the recession will deepen all year. It took the truly massive deficits of World War II - nearly 30 percent of GDP - to finally end the Great Depression"

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just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 5 years, 1 month ago

http://www.boston.com/bostonglobe/editorial_opinion/oped/articles/2009/03/12/surviving_the_great_collapse/

"Surviving the Great Collapse by Robert Kuttner This economic crisis doesn't have to be a second Great Depression - if government does nearly everything right, and soon. But if government doesn't do more, and fast, this could be worse than the 1930s. Why? Three big reasons:

Finance: A Doomsday Machine. The financial system is in far worse shape than it was when the stock market crashed in October 1929. In the 1920s, there was a stock market bubble, mainly because people could play the market "on margin," borrowing to invest in stocks. There were also scams like the original Mr. Ponzi's. Like in the present decade, the Federal Reserve helped to enable the game, with low interest rates and few rules.

But today, thanks to "securitization" of loans and the ability of insiders to create exotic and unfathomable financial instruments, the speculative system makes buying stocks on margin look like child's play. In the aftermath of the crash of 2008, the process of sorting it all out and getting banks functioning again is something that markets simply cannot do.

We are not even clear who owns what. The wise guys on Wall Street invented a doomsday machine from which there is no market escape.

In 1929 when the stock market crashed, the banking system was relatively healthy. Bank customers played these speculative games and took the losses, not banks. This time, the banks drank their own Kool-aid.

It took until the awful winter of 1932-'33 for the general depression to fully infect the banking system, and cause over 7,000 banks to fail. But Roosevelt's cure - deposit insurance and a temporary bank holiday to sort out good banks from bad - quickly got the financial system up and running again. Today, the banking mess is still dragging down the real economy, with no effective cure in sight."

cont--

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sandersen 5 years, 1 month ago

Eight years of runaway spending, bridges and wars to nowhere, an explosion of graft, corruption, greed and executive-level crimes, and somehow, less than two months into his presidency, Obama is to blame for all? Rather disingenuous for eight weeks of time at the helm to earn full responsibility for the "war on prosperity" that was begun years ago under Bush command. That brings about a logical quandary for you... You cannot have it both ways. Either Bush bears responsibility in part for what occurred during his presidency of eight years, and can be judged in his efficacy as such, or you cannot deduce the same in less than two months of time under the new administration. No hate of either side need be involved, as the premise is devoid of emotional or ideological entanglement.

This may too be easy to digest, as the logic is unflappable.

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Larry_The_Moocher 5 years, 1 month ago

Blame Bush when Barney Frank and Chris Dodd were responsible for creating this mess.

Obama is not going to fix anything with his war on prosperity.

Think I will quit my job, sit back and wait for my new HDTV to get here complements of the taxpayer.

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AjiDeGallina 5 years, 1 month ago

Nancy,

Your God Bush took 8 years to create the worst crisis in a century, I would imagine it will take years to recover.

The stimulus is not meant to be a quick fix, it is meant to hold businesses and jobs in place to give the free-market time to adjust while trying to limit job-loss as best as possible.

The GOP nearly killed this country, recover from injuries like that take more than a few days.

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Tom Shewmon 5 years, 1 month ago

Wow! When is this stimulus package going to start working?

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