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  • Tue, Dec 20 2011
  • 10:12 PM » HUD, VA TO PROVIDE PERMANENT HOUSING, SUPPORT TO HOMELESS VETS IN U.S.
    Published Tue, Dec 20 2011 10:12 PM by HUD
    WASHINGTON - U.S. Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan and U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric K. Shinseki announced today that HUD will provide $2.4 million to public housing agencies to supply permanent housing and case management for homeless veterans in the U.S.
  • 6:17 PM » Stocks Rally as Treasuries, Dollar Retreat on Economic Data
    Published Tue, Dec 20 2011 6:17 PM by Business Week
    Stocks rallied, with the Standard & Poors 500 Index rebounding from its lowest level of the month, and Treasuries fell as U.S. housing starts topped economists estimates and German business confidence unexpectedly grew.
    Click Here to Read the Full Article

    Source: Business Week
  • 6:10 PM » Fed Proposes New, Tougher Rules for Big Banks
    Published Tue, Dec 20 2011 6:10 PM by CNBC
    Fed Proposes New, Tougher Rules for Big Banks http://www.cnbc.com//id/45740746
  • 5:53 PM » White House Considering Former Treasury Official for FDIC Board
    Published Tue, Dec 20 2011 5:53 PM by www.americanbanker.com
    The Obama administration is considering nominating Jeremiah Norton, an executive director for JPMorgan Chase's investment bank, to sit on the FDIC's board of directors.
    Click Here to Read the Full Article

    Source: www.americanbanker.com
  • 5:53 PM » Housing Starts, Permits Amp Up on US Recovery Hopes
    Published Tue, Dec 20 2011 5:53 PM by CNBC
    Housing Starts, Permits Amp Up on US Recovery Hopes http://www.cnbc.com//id/45736368
  • 5:53 PM » Bond Prices Fall as Bank Funding in Focus
    Published Tue, Dec 20 2011 5:53 PM by CNBC
    Bond Prices Fall as Bank Funding in Focus http://www.cnbc.com//id/45729223
  • 5:53 PM » Cheat Sheet: New Details - and Questions - in the Fed's Dodd-Frank Proposal
    Published Tue, Dec 20 2011 5:53 PM by www.americanbanker.com
    While the plan offered a lot of specifics, some burning questions, including how much certain firms will pay as a capital surcharge, were left unanswered.
    Click Here to Read the Full Article

    Source: www.americanbanker.com
  • 10:44 AM » Bank Failures Cost U.S. $88 Billion
    Published Tue, Dec 20 2011 10:44 AM by Bloomberg
    More than 400 bank failures since 2007 have cost the fund, which is fed by banks and backstopped by taxpayers, an estimated $88 billion. That volume shows the need for more transparency in bank regulation, which is largely conducted in the dark, said Paul Atkins, a former Republican commissioner at the Securities and Exchange Commission. More than 400 such failures since 2007 have cost the fund, which is fed by banks and backstopped by taxpayers, an estimated $88 billion. That volume shows the need for more transparency in bank regulation, which is largely conducted in the dark, said Paul Atkins, a former Republican commissioner at the Securities and Exchange Commission.
  • 10:32 AM » Already Low, Housing Inventory Drops More
    Published Tue, Dec 20 2011 10:32 AM by WSJ
    The number of homes listed for sale in the U.S. fell for the sixth straight month in November to the lowest level since the housing bust began in 2006. The 2.01 million homes listed for sale was down by 4.8% from October and by 21.3% from one year ago, according to data compiled by Realtor.com. While visible inventories are down sharply in many markets from one year ago, whether that is helping housing markets because many buyers have been complaining for months about a lack of attractive supply. Moreover, inventories could rise in the coming year if banks begin to become more proactive in moving properties through the foreclosure process. Banks own hundreds of thousands of properties and millions more are in some stage of delinquency and foreclosure. The Realtor.com figures include sale listings from more than 900 multiple-listing services across the country. They don’t cover all homes for sale, including those that are “for sale by owner” and other properties that aren’t marketed through multiple-listing services. Inventories typically decline in November on a monthly basis as the holiday season begins, but this year’s late autumn drop-off was larger than usual. Over the past 28 years, listings have typically fallen by about 1.8% on a national basis from October to November, according to Zelman & Associates, a real-estate research firm. Inventories were down in all but one of the 30 major metro areas during November, with an increase of 1.5% reported in New York. The largest declines were reported in Seattle (-10.7%), San Francisco (-9.4%) and Boston (-8.4%). Meanwhile, the median asking price has been unchanged over the past six months but was up by 4.1% from one year ago, when sales were depressed following the expiration of home-buyer tax credits. For the year, median asking prices are down most sharply in Detroit (-12.5%), Chicago (-12.3%), and Atlanta (-7.7%). Median asking prices are up by 29.5% in Miami, by 10.5% in Phoenix, and by 10.3% in Washington, D...
  • 10:30 AM » The 2012 Blind Side: China’s Housing Bust
    Published Tue, Dec 20 2011 10:30 AM by The Big Picture
    As the world’s attention focuses on the death of Kim Jong Il and shorts keep piling up in the Euro, China’s real estate bubble appears to have finally burst. This is the one macro swan that could really smack developed markets in 2012 as few are focused even though the Shanghai composite and Hang Seng are down over 25 percent from their highs earlier in the year. Both are with Shanghai closing at its lowest weekly close for the year on Friday. Foreign Affairs has just posted a must read piece, , which will sound very familiar to Global Macro Monitor readers. Here are a few money quotes, For years analysts have warned of a looming real estate bubble in China, but the predicted downturn, the bursting of that bubble, never occurred — that is, until now. In a telling scene two months ago, Shanghai property developers started slashing prices on their latest luxury condos by up to one-third. Crowds of owners who had recently bought apartments at full price converged on sales offices throughout the city, demanding refunds. Some angry investors went on a rampage, breaking windows and smashing showrooms. Shanghai homeowners are hardly the only ones getting nervous. Sudden, steep price reductions are upending real estate markets across China. According to the property agency Homelink, new home prices in Beijing dropped 35 percent in November alone. And the free fall may continue for some time. Centaline, another leading property agency, estimates that developers have built up 22 months’ worth of unsold inventory in Beijing and 21 months’ worth in Shanghai. Everyone from local landowners to Chinese speculators and international investors are now worrying that these discounts indicate that “the biggest bubble of the century,” as it , has just popped, with serious consequences not only for one of the world’s most promising economies — but internationally as well… The next three months will be a watershed moment for a Chinese investor class that has been flush with cash for years...
    Click Here to Read the Full Article

    Source: The Big Picture
  • 10:29 AM » Financial Industry Interconnectedness
    Published Tue, Dec 20 2011 10:29 AM by The Big Picture
    Check out this academic paper by profs Monica Billio, Loriana Pelizzon, Andrew W. Lo, and Mila Getmansky. The paper tries to come up with hard definitions of interconnectedness and systemic risk. > Click to enlarge: Source: SSRN, November 1, 2011
    Click Here to Read the Full Article

    Source: The Big Picture
  • 10:29 AM » Credit Stress Indicators
    Published Tue, Dec 20 2011 10:29 AM by Calculated Risk Blog
    There are several possible channels of contagion from the European financial crisis. The most obvious is the trade channel. A recession in Europe will negatively impact U.S. exports. Although Europe is a major U.S. trading partner, exports only make up a small portion of U.S. GDP. Also some of the impact from trade would probably be offset by lower oil prices – and of course lower interest rates as investors seek safety (the European crisis is a key reason the U.S. 10 year bond yield is at 1.81%). A more significant channel would be tightening of U.S. credit conditions in response to the European crisis. That is why I looked so closely at the Fed’s October that was released in November. The survey showed “considerable” tightening on lending to European banks, and some tightening to European firms, but the survey showed no tightening in the U.S. (although lending standards are already pretty tight). There are other possible channels of contagion, such as less European lending to emerging markets and a slowdown in those economies – and then fewer exports from the U.S. to those emerging markets. But the most significant channel will probably be credit stress. Here are a few indicators of credit stress: • The three month LIBOR has : Data from the British Bankers' Association showed the three-month dollar London Interbank Offered Rate, or Libor, was higher at 0.56695% from 0.56315% Friday. ... The spread between the three-month dollar Libor and overnight index swaps, a barometer of market stress, widened to 48.1 basis points from 47.5 basis points Friday. The three-month LIBOR rate peaked during the crisis at 4.81875% on Oct 10, 2008. This is rising again, but still low. • The TED spread is at 0.57, and has been rising recently. the TED spread is the difference between the three month T-bill and the LIBOR interest rate. The 5 year graph shows that recent increase in comparison to the U.S. financial crisis in 2008. Here is a screen shot of the from Bloomberg. Click on...
    Click Here to Read the Full Article

    Source: Calculated Risk Blog
  • 10:29 AM » U.S. Stock Futures Rise as Housing Starts Jump to One-Year High
    Published Tue, Dec 20 2011 10:29 AM by Business Week
    U.S. stock futures rose, following yesterday’s decline in the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index, amid expectations the world’s largest economy will avoid a recession as housing starts rose to the highest level in a year.
    Click Here to Read the Full Article

    Source: Business Week
  • 10:27 AM » Exterior Replacement Projects Rated Best Investment
    Published Tue, Dec 20 2011 10:27 AM by Google News
    According to the 2011-12 Remodeling Cost vs. Value Report, exterior improvements are among the most valuable home investment projects.
  • 10:26 AM » Federal Reserve Board approves application by The PNC Financial Services Group and PNC Bancorp
    Published Tue, Dec 20 2011 10:26 AM by Federal Reserve
    Federal Reserve Board approves application by The PNC Financial Services Group and PNC Bancorp
    Click Here to Read the Full Article

    Source: Federal Reserve
  • 10:26 AM » Housing Starts Surge Entirely Due To Year End Channel-Stuffed Multi-Family Units
    Published Tue, Dec 20 2011 10:26 AM by Google News
    Once again the US Department of Truth succeeds in fooling the algos: today's number was a blockbuster: at 685K annualized units, it came higher than the highest estimate (range was 600K to 655K), and certainly higher than the average estimate of 635K. It was obviously higher than the downward revised previous number of 627K. All great: housing soaring, employment must be back. Right? Wrong. One peek under the covers shows where all the "growth" comes from - the entirety of the surge was due to the absolutely hollow 5+ multi-family units which jumped by a whopping 25% sequentially, and which as everyone in the industry knows are nothing but inventory padding by homebuilders who "build just to build." Unfortunately, as the all important 1 Unit structure trendline shows, there is absolutely no improvement in this critical series. But hey - it fooled the robots. And now it will take at least 12-24 hours before vacuum tubes process the reality of this latest spin. By then, however, we may well have had our Christmas rally.
  • 10:21 AM » News Release - Economy Ends the Year On a Positive Note <b>...</b>
    Published Tue, Dec 20 2011 10:21 AM by Fannie Mae
    Economy Ends the Year On a Positive Note According to Fannie Mae's Economics & Mortgage Market Analysis Group. PrintEmail. News Release. ...
  • 10:06 AM » Italian, Spanish Bonds Rally Before 3-yr ECB Tender
    Published Tue, Dec 20 2011 10:06 AM by Reuters
    Italian and Spanish bond yields fell on Tuesday, with investors hoping banks will borrow a large amount of three-year funds from the European Central Bank later this week and spend some of the money on peripheral debt. A sharp fall in one-week borrowing from the ECB and a large one-day loan take-up on Tuesday supported the view, as the figures reflected banks were managing their cash to better position for Wednesday's three-year injection. Volumes in bond markets were thin, however, with many reluctant to join the rally on the view that banks, under pressure to deleverage, will use the money to roll over their own debt rather then buy bonds that could eventually generate mark-to-market losses. Demand from banks at the three-year tender is expected to be around 250 billion euros, according to a Reuters poll, although forecasts ranged from 50 to 450 billion, indicating a high degree of uncertainty. "The expectations are massive," one trader said. "A higher take-up is going to give the periphery some support, but we're possibly setting ourselves up for a fall. It's not guaranteed that they're going to buy (peripheral bonds)."
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