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  • Fri, Dec 12 2014
  • 11:58 AM » U.S. Senate appears set to pass spending bill, timing uncertain
    Published Fri, Dec 12 2014 11:58 AM by Reuters
    WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. Senate looked set to pass a $1.1 trillion spending bill in time for a Saturday night deadline, following a narrow House of Representatives vote that averted a government shutdown.
  • 10:32 AM » Would deflation really be that bad?
    Published Fri, Dec 12 2014 10:32 AM by CNBC
    The collapse in oil process may only be a few months old, but economists are already debating its long-term effects.
  • 10:25 AM » Preliminary December Consumer Sentiment increases to 93.8
    Published Fri, Dec 12 2014 10:25 AM by Calculated Risk Blog
    Click on graph for larger image. The preliminary Reuters / University of Michigan consumer sentiment index for December was at 93.8, up from 88.8 in November. This was above the consensus forecast of 89.5 and is at the highest level since before the recession. Lower gasoline prices and a stronger economy are probably the reasons for the sharp increase.
    Click Here to Read the Full Article

    Source: Calculated Risk Blog
  • 8:54 AM » US Producer Price Index down 0.2% in Nov vs. down 0.1% expected
    Published Fri, Dec 12 2014 8:54 AM by CNBC
    This is a breaking news story. Please check back for updates.. Analysts polled by Reuters expect producer prices were down 0.1 percent in November after rising 0.2 percent t he prior month..
  • 8:51 AM » Sacramento Housing in November: Total Sales down 6% Year-over-year, Active Inventory increased 37%
    Published Fri, Dec 12 2014 8:51 AM by Calculated Risk Blog
    During the recession, I started following the Sacramento market to look for changes in the mix of houses sold (equity, REOs, and short sales). For some time, not much changed. But over the last 2+ years we've seen some significant changes with a dramatic shift from foreclosures (REO: lender Real Estate Owned) to short sales, and the percentage of total distressed sales declining sharply. This data suggests healing in the Sacramento market and other distressed markets are showing similar improvement.  Note: The Sacramento Association of REALTORS® started breaking out REOs in May 2008, and short sales in June 2009. In November 2014, 11.5% of all resales were distressed sales. This was down from 12.1% last month, and down from 15.5% in November 2013. The percentage of REOs was at 5.3%, and the percentage of short sales was 6.2%. Here are the statistics for November. Click on graph for larger image. This graph shows the percent of REO sales, short sales and conventional sales. There has been a sharp increase in conventional (equity) sales that started in 2012 (blue) as the percentage of distressed sales declined sharply. Active Listing Inventory for single family homes increased 36.6% year-over-year (YoY) in November.  In general the YoY increases have been trending down after peaking at close to 100%, however this was a larger YoY increase than in October. Cash buyers accounted for 16.9% of all sales, down from 25.0% in November 2013 (frequently investors).  This has been trending down, and it appears investors are becoming much less of a factor in Sacramento. Total sales were down 6.1% from November 2013, and conventional equity sales were down 1.6% compared to the same month last year. Summary: Distressed sales down sharply, cash buyers are down significantly, and inventory up significantly (but increases slowing).   This is what we'd expect to see in a healing market.  As I've...
    Click Here to Read the Full Article

    Source: Calculated Risk Blog
  • Thu, Dec 11 2014
  • 11:41 PM » Treasury Draws Most Demand Since June as Inflation View Eases - Bloomberg
    Published Thu, Dec 11 2014 11:41 PM by Bloomberg
    Treasury Draws Most Demand Since June as Inflation View Eases Bloomberg The U.S. Treasury Department's sale of $59 billion in notes and bonds this week attracted the most demand since June as inflation expectations tumbled and investors sought a refuge amid sagging global growth. The bid-to-cover ratio, which gauges demand ... and more »
  • 11:41 PM » Government looks set to stay open after spending bill squeaks through House
    Published Thu, Dec 11 2014 11:41 PM by Market Watch
    The Senate is poised to take up the House-passed $1.1 trillion spending bill but plans to first sign off on a short-term measure to avoid a government shutdown following a dramatic day on Capitol Hill.
  • 11:40 PM » Would you loan money to this guy?
    Published Thu, Dec 11 2014 11:40 PM by Calculated Risk Blog
    Would you make an unsecured personal loan to an individual so they can off $14,000 in credit card debt? If so, at what interest rate (the credit card debt is at 17%). The person has a 15 year credit history, a FICO score of 699, an annual income of $73,000 and a DTI of 17% (excluding mortgage debt). Maybe for a close friend or family member, I'd consider helping - if I knew all the circumstances.  However, for everyone else, my answer isn't no, it is Hell No! The first guideline of personal finance is to pay off your credit card balance every month (with exceptions for extraordinary events). This person has a 15 year credit history - is probably in their 30s - and still can't pay off their credit card balance every month? Maybe there was an extraordinary event - medical bills for a family member or maybe the borrower lost their job for some time.  That would make a difference.   But for most borrowers, I suspect they have just lived a little beyond their means. If so, imagine what will happen after they pay off their credit card. In a year or two, it seems likely they will have run up their credit card debt again. As long as the economy is expanding, and the person keeps their job - they will probably pay this personal loan.   So, with no recession on the horizon, a 3 year loan right now will probably perform well.  But what happens during the next recession? This is the average Lending Club borrower (that they call "quality").    Yes - an individual lender can diversify among a number of borrowers of the same credit quality (that is less risky than lending to one person), but this isn't for me. Friday: • At 8:30 AM ET, the Producer Price Index for November from the BLS. The consensus is for a 0.1% decrease in prices, and a 0.1% increase in core PPI. • At 9:55 AM, Reuter's/University of Michigan's Consumer sentiment index (preliminary for December). The consensus is for a...
    Click Here to Read the Full Article

    Source: Calculated Risk Blog
  • 5:03 PM » Latest on House spending bill
    Published Thu, Dec 11 2014 5:03 PM by CNBC
    The House delayed an expected 2 p.m. ET vote on the spending bill, raising suspicions that Republicans did not have the votes.
  • 5:03 PM » Learning the Wrong Lessons From Multiple Financial Crises
    Published Thu, Dec 11 2014 5:03 PM by rss.nytimes.com
    With the Fed ready to step in at every tipping point, the need to rethink regulation was overlooked, Floyd Norris writes.
    Click Here to Read the Full Article

    Source: rss.nytimes.com
  • 5:03 PM » Cheap Loans From E.C.B. Get Tepid Response Among Eurozone Banks
    Published Thu, Dec 11 2014 5:03 PM by rss.nytimes.com
    The response is likely to reinforce expectations that the European Central Bank will have to begin asset purchases to pump money into the flagging economy.
    Click Here to Read the Full Article

    Source: rss.nytimes.com
  • 5:02 PM » Mortgage Equity Withdrawal Still Negative in Q3 2014
    Published Thu, Dec 11 2014 5:02 PM by Calculated Risk Blog
    Note: This is not Mortgage Equity Withdrawal (MEW) data from the Fed. The last MEW data from Fed economist Dr. Kennedy was for Q4 2008. The following data is calculated from the Fed's Flow of Funds data (released this morning) and the BEA supplement data on single family structure investment. This is an aggregate number, and is a combination of homeowners extracting equity - hence the name "MEW", but there is still little (but increasing) MEW right now - and normal principal payments and debt cancellation. For Q3 2014, the Net Equity Extraction was minus $26 billion, or a negative 0.8% of Disposable Personal Income (DPI).  Click on graph for larger image. This graph shows the net equity extraction, or mortgage equity withdrawal (MEW), results, using the Flow of Funds (and BEA data) compared to the Kennedy-Greenspan method. There are smaller seasonal swings right now, perhaps because there is a little actual MEW (this is heavily impacted by debt cancellation right now). The Fed's Flow of Funds report showed that the amount of mortgage debt outstanding increased by $12 billion in Q3. This was only the second quarterly increase in mortgage debt since Q1 2008. The Flow of Funds report also showed that Mortgage debt has declined by almost $1.3 trillion since the peak. This decline is mostly because of debt cancellation per foreclosures and short sales, and some from modifications. There has also been some reduction in mortgage debt as homeowners paid down their mortgages so they could refinance. With residential investment increasing, and a slower rate of debt cancellation, it is possible that MEW will turn positive again soon. For reference: Dr. James Kennedy also has a simple method for calculating equity extraction: " A Simple Method for Estimating Gross Equity Extracted from Housing Wealth ". Here is a companion spread sheet (the above uses my simple method). For those interested in the last Kennedy data included in the graph...
    Click Here to Read the Full Article

    Source: Calculated Risk Blog
  • 3:42 PM » Oil is new housing bubble: Trader
    Published Thu, Dec 11 2014 3:42 PM by CNBC
    What happened in housing from 2000 to 2006 has happened to the oil market from 2009 to 2014, argues trader Rob Raymond.
  • 3:42 PM » CFPB requires credit bureaus to identify furnishers and industries with highest dispute rates and issues study of collections tradelines
    Published Thu, Dec 11 2014 3:42 PM by www.cfpbmonitor.com
    Barbara S. Mishkin In conjunction with its field hearing today on medical debt collection, the CFPB released a study that “describes characteristics of the medical and non-medical collections tradelines on consumers’ credit reports and the processes by which they appear and disappear.” However, what deserves to be the headline grabber is the CFPB’s accompanying announcement that “the major... More >
    Click Here to Read the Full Article

    Source: www.cfpbmonitor.com
  • 2:38 PM » 'Yellen index' says Fed could hike
    Published Thu, Dec 11 2014 2:38 PM by CNBC
    BlackRock's 'Yellen index' says the labor market is strong enough for the Fed to end the era of zero rates now.
  • 1:48 PM » WSJ Survey: Housing Dinged 2014 Economic Growth
    Published Thu, Dec 11 2014 1:48 PM by WSJ
    What was the biggest disappointment for the economy as 2014 unfolded? It was housing, most economists surveyed by The Wall Street Journal say.
  • 1:47 PM » Fed's Flow of Funds: Household Net Worth "dipped slightly" in Q3
    Published Thu, Dec 11 2014 1:47 PM by Calculated Risk Blog
    The Federal Reserve released the Q3 2014 Flow of Funds report today: Flow of Funds . According to the Fed, household net worth decreased slightly in Q3 compared to Q2: The net worth of households and nonprofits dipped slightly to $81.3 trillion during the third quarter of 2014. The value of directly and indirectly held corporate equities decreased $0.7 trillion and the value of real estate rose $245 billion. Prior to the recession, net worth peaked at $67.9 trillion in Q2 2007, and then net worth fell to $54.9 trillion in Q1 2009 (a loss of $13.0 trillion). Household net worth was at $81.3 trillion in Q3 2014 (up $26.4 trillion from the trough in Q1 2009). The Fed estimated that the value of household real estate increased to $20.4 trillion in Q3 2014. The value of household real estate is still $2.2 trillion below the peak in early 2006. Click on graph for larger image. The first graph shows Households and Nonprofit net worth as a percent of GDP.  Household net worth, as a percent of GDP, is above peak in 2006 (housing bubble), and above the stock bubble peak. This includes real estate and financial assets (stocks, bonds, pension reserves, deposits, etc) net of liabilities (mostly mortgages). Note that this does NOT include public debt obligations. This ratio was increasing gradually since the mid-70s, and then we saw the stock market and housing bubbles. The ratio has been trending up but decreased slightly in Q3. This graph shows homeowner percent equity since 1952. Household percent equity (as measured by the Fed) collapsed when house prices fell sharply in 2007 and 2008. In Q3 2014, household percent equity (of household real estate) was at 53.9% - up from Q2, and the highest since Q1 2007. This was because of an increase in house prices in Q3 (the Fed uses CoreLogic). Note: about 30.3% of owner occupied households had no mortgage debt as of April 2010. So the approximately 50+ million households with mortgages have far less than 53.9% equity - and millions...
    Click Here to Read the Full Article

    Source: Calculated Risk Blog
  • 11:26 AM » Sales of newly built home struggle in November
    Published Thu, Dec 11 2014 11:26 AM by CNBC
    Mortgage applications to purchase a newly built home dropped dramatically in November, signaling a slowdown in sales for the nation's builders.
  • 10:24 AM » 57 Percent of Mortgage Licenses Submitted for Renewal
    Published Thu, Dec 11 2014 10:24 AM by www.csbs.org
    57 Percent of Mortgage Licenses Submitted for Renewal<br/>http://www.csbs.org/news/press-releases/pr2014/Pages/120214.aspx
  • 10:21 AM » Mortgage Rates Inch Up Slightly
    Published Thu, Dec 11 2014 10:21 AM by freddiemac.mwnewsroom.com
    Mortgage Rates Inch Up Slightly
    Click Here to Read the Full Article

    Source: freddiemac.mwnewsroom.com
  • 10:21 AM » Fannie, Freddie to Start Paying Into Fund for Low-Income Housing - Bloomberg
    Published Thu, Dec 11 2014 10:21 AM by Bloomberg
    Fannie, Freddie to Start Paying Into Fund for Low-Income Housing Bloomberg Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac will start making payments that could total hundreds of millions of dollars annually into a fund for affordable housing. Melvin L. Watt, director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency, today instructed the companies to start setting ... and more »
  • 9:16 AM » Rising Dollar and Falling Oil Could Be Recipe for a U.S. Asset Boom
    Published Thu, Dec 11 2014 9:16 AM by WSJ
    The Wall Street Journal's Daily Report on Global Central Banks for Thursday, December 11, 2014. Jon Hilsenrath assesses the risk that a strong dollar and weak oil prices could lead to an asset price surge.
  • 9:15 AM » U.S. jobless claims fall; continuing claims up
    Published Thu, Dec 11 2014 9:15 AM by Reuters
    WASHINGTON, Dec 11 (Reuters) - The number of Americans filing new claims for unemployment benefits fell last week, pointing to a strengthening labor market.
  • 9:15 AM » Solid U.S. retail sales point to brisk consumer spending
    Published Thu, Dec 11 2014 9:15 AM by Reuters
    WASHINGTON, Dec 11 (Reuters) - U.S. consumer spending advanced at a brisk clip in November as lower gasoline prices gave the holiday shopping season a boost, offering the latest sign of underlying momentum in the economy.
  • 9:15 AM » Import prices in largest drop in 2-1/2 yrs
    Published Thu, Dec 11 2014 9:15 AM by CNBC
    U.S. import prices recorded their biggest decline in nearly 2-1/2 years in November as the cost of petroleum products tumbled.
  • 9:14 AM » Home-Builder Results Provide Muddled, Sober Outlook For 2015
    Published Thu, Dec 11 2014 9:14 AM by WSJ
    The latest quarterly results of home builders Toll Brothers Inc. and Hovnanian Enterprises Inc. provide minimal optimism for the new-home market going into 2015.
  • 9:13 AM » U.S. 30-Year Bonds Head for Best Year Since 2011 Before Auction - Bloomberg
    Published Thu, Dec 11 2014 9:13 AM by Bloomberg
    U.S. 30-Year Bonds Head for Best Year Since 2011 Before Auction Bloomberg Treasury 30-year bonds headed for the biggest annual gain in three years as the outlook for inflation dims, while the U.S. prepared to sell $13 billion of the securities today. The debt has returned 27 percent, the most since a 36 percent gain during the ...
  • 9:08 AM » Fed Bubble Bursts in $550 Billion of Energy Debt: Credit Markets - Bloomberg
    Published Thu, Dec 11 2014 9:08 AM by Bloomberg
    Fed Bubble Bursts in $550 Billion of Energy Debt: Credit Markets Bloomberg The danger of stimulus-induced bubbles is starting to play out in the market for energy-company debt. Since early 2010, energy producers have raised $550 billion of new bonds and loans as the Federal Reserve held borrowing costs near zero, according to ... and more »
  • 9:08 AM » German Bonds Rise Fourth Day as ECB Allots Second Round of Loans - Bloomberg
    Published Thu, Dec 11 2014 9:08 AM by Bloomberg
    German Bonds Rise Fourth Day as ECB Allots Second Round of Loans Bloomberg German 10-year government bonds rose for a fourth day before the European Central Bank allots a second round of targeted loans to the region's lenders as part of its plan to boost inflation. Benchmark 10-year yields matched a record low. The value of ...
  • Wed, Dec 10 2014
  • 7:13 PM » Toll Falls Most Since Early 2013 as Sales Outlook Weakens - Bloomberg
    Published Wed, Dec 10 2014 7:13 PM by Bloomberg
    Toll Falls Most Since Early 2013 as Sales Outlook Weakens Bloomberg Toll Brothers Inc. (TOL), the largest U.S. builder of luxury homes, dropped the most in almost two years after forecasting weaker sales of its City Living condos and saying it's unable to raise prices in much of the country. The market "is certainly a bit frustrating ...
  • 7:11 PM » Lawler: Preliminary Table of Distressed Sales and Cash buyers for Selected Cities in November
    Published Wed, Dec 10 2014 7:11 PM by Calculated Risk Blog
    Economist Tom Lawler sent me the preliminary table below of short sales, foreclosures and cash buyers for a few selected cities in November. On distressed: Total "distressed" share is down in these markets mostly due to a decline in short sales (the Mid-Atlantic was unchanged). Short sales are down significantly in these areas. Foreclosures are up in Las Vegas and the Mid-Atlantic (working through the logjam). The All Cash Share (last two columns) is declining year-over-year. As investors pull back, the share of all cash buyers will probably continue to decline.   Short Sales Share Foreclosure Sales Share Total "Distressed" Share All Cash Share Nov-14 Nov-13 Nov-14 Nov-13 Nov-14 Nov-13 Nov-14 Nov-13 Las Vegas 9.5% 21.0% 8.7% 7.0% 18.2% 28.0% 32.8% 43.7% Reno*             26.5% N/A Omaha             21.1% 21.6% Memphis*     15.1% 20.5%         *share of existing home sales, based on property records *GAMLS
    Click Here to Read the Full Article

    Source: Calculated Risk Blog
  • 3:51 PM » Elizabeth Warren is really angry about Dodd-Frank change
    Published Wed, Dec 10 2014 3:51 PM by CNN
    Elizabeth Warren came out swinging against a Capitol Hill compromise that she says undermines protections established after the financial crisis.
  • 3:50 PM » Millennials can afford to become homeowners â€" just not where most of them live
    Published Wed, Dec 10 2014 3:50 PM by Washington Post
    Millennials tend to gravitate to certain cities. They're more likely to live in San Diego than Newark, in Austin than Cleveland, in Washington than Tampa. But these geographic patterns bode poorly for their homeownership prospects: Millennials make up a larger share of the population in many metropolitan areas where they're least likely to afford the housing. Read full article >>
    Click Here to Read the Full Article

    Source: Washington Post
  • 3:00 PM » Fannie Mae Taps Reinsurers in Mortgage Risk-Sharing Deal - Bloomberg
    Published Wed, Dec 10 2014 3:00 PM by Bloomberg
    Fannie Mae Taps Reinsurers in Mortgage Risk-Sharing Deal Bloomberg Fannie Mae bought insurance to cover a portion of losses on $6.4 billion of home loans in the mortgage giant's latest effort to share risks with private investors. The policy will cover as much as $193 million of losses on a pool of mortgages with a group of ... and more »
  • 3:00 PM » Where Will Aging Baby Boomers Buy Homes?
    Published Wed, Dec 10 2014 3:00 PM by WSJ
    Raleigh, N.C., Albuquerque, N.M. and Boise, Idaho are among the cities that the National Association of Realtors thinks are poised to get an influx of older baby boomers.
  • 1:22 PM » Congress Deal to Avoid Shutdown Includes Victory for Banks - Bloomberg
    Published Wed, Dec 10 2014 1:22 PM by Bloomberg
    Congress Deal to Avoid Shutdown Includes Victory for Banks Bloomberg Congress will vote this week on a $1.1 trillion spending plan that would avert a U.S. government shutdown as Democrats agreed to roll back rules affecting banks, clean water and rest for truckers. The House will vote on the plan tomorrow, Speaker John ... and more »
  • 11:59 AM » News Release - Fannie Mae Taps Reinsurance Industry in ...
    Published Wed, Dec 10 2014 11:59 AM by Fannie Mae
    Fannie Mae announced today that it has completed a new credit risk sharing transaction that further diversifies its counterparty exposure and reduces ...
  • 10:53 AM » Crowdfunding real estate
    Published Wed, Dec 10 2014 10:53 AM by CNBC
    Watch iFunding CEO William Skelley model his big idea to "Power Pitch" panelists Ryan Serhant, Dolly Lenz and Alicia Syrett.
  • 10:53 AM » FNC: Residential Property Values increased 5.7% year-over-year in October
    Published Wed, Dec 10 2014 10:53 AM by Calculated Risk Blog
    In addition to Case-Shiller, and CoreLogic, I'm also watching the FNC, Zillow and several other house price indexes. FNC released their October index data today.  FNC reported that their Residential Price Index™ (RPI) indicates that U.S. residential property values decreased 0.1% from September to October (Composite 100 index, not seasonally adjusted). The other RPIs (10-MSA, 20-MSA, 30-MSA) decreased between 0.1% and 0.3% in October. These indexes are not seasonally adjusted (NSA), and are for non-distressed home sales (excluding foreclosure auction sales, REO sales, and short sales). Notes: In addition to the composite indexes, FNC presents price indexes for 30 MSAs. FNC also provides seasonally adjusted data. The year-over-year (YoY) change was lower in October than in September, with the 100-MSA composite up 5.7% compared to October 2013.   In general, for FNC, the YoY increase has been slowing since peaking in February at 9.0%. The index is still down 19.6% from the peak in 2006. Click on graph for larger image. This graph shows the year-over-year change based on the FNC index (four composites) through October 2014. The FNC indexes are hedonic price indexes using a blend of sold homes and real-time appraisals. All of the price indexes have been showing a slowdown in price increases. The October Case-Shiller index will be released on Tuesday, December 30th, and I expect Case-Shiller to show a further slowdown in YoY price increases.
    Click Here to Read the Full Article

    Source: Calculated Risk Blog
  • 10:53 AM » CFPB posts video of Nov. 18th webinar on new closing disclosure
    Published Wed, Dec 10 2014 10:53 AM by www.cfpbmonitor.com
    Barbara S. Mishkin The CFPB has posted a video of its November 18th webinar that addressed questions about the final TILA-RESPA Integrated Disclosure Rule that will be effective for applications received by creditors or mortgage brokers on or after August 1, 2015. The webinar was the fourth in a series to address implementation of the new rule. (To... More >
    Click Here to Read the Full Article

    Source: www.cfpbmonitor.com
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