Real Estate Spin Continues by Mainstream Media
By Greg Hunter’s USAWatchdog.com
The mainstream media was at it again last week–putting a positive spin on the awful real estate market. The USA Today headline on top of the “Money” section last Thursday read “Optimism for home sales adds up.” The story said, “The trend is starting to move in the right direction,” says Diane Swonk, chief economist at financial services firm Mesirow Financial. A string of new housing data is building optimism. Existing home sales in November rose 5.6% from October to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.68 million, the National Association of Realtors reported Wednesday. Demand has steadily improved since bottoming in July following the end of the buyers’ tax credit.” (Click here for the complete USA Today story.)
The headline and the beginning of the story would lead you to believe everything is turning around and the worst of the housing meltdown is behind us. The article failed to include the true context of that whopping 5.6% rise in sales. Here’s how Marketwatch.com reported the exact same story, “Sales of existing homes rose 5.6% to a seasonally-adjusted annualized rate of 4.68 million, the National Association of Realtors said Wednesday . . . Even so, sales were still 27.9% below prior-year levels and below the 5.26 million in June when a homebuyer tax credit existed.” (Click here to read the complete Marketwatch.com story.) Yes, the spin from USA Today left out the fact home sales were still nearly 28% below last year’s levels.
This is despite the homebuyer tax credit program that doled out up to $8,000 for buying a home. USA Today buried the real headline and that was this little morsel, “Home prices, down almost 30% from their 2006 peak, will fall 5% to 7% more before potentially rebounding later in the year, says Patrick Newport, IHS Global Insight economist. Banks will repossess 1 million U.S. homes next year, on top of 1 million this year, says market researcher RealtyTrac.” How are back to back years with millions of “home repossessions” and declining prices of another “5% to 7%” not the lead in a story? What does “Optimism for home sales adds up,” mean? Optimism adds up to another million foreclosures and another price decline? This is just another attempt to put lipstick on a pig of a housing market.
The best road map of where housing is going in the next couple of years can be foretold by looking at this mortgage reset chart from Credit Suisse. (see below) Look at the tsunami of mortgage resets for all sorts of Adjustable Rate Mortgages that don’t fall off until the end of 2012. I know I have used this chart in the past, but when it comes to predicting the real estate market, this is the proverbial picture that is worth a thousand words!
In the latest report from Shadowstats.com, economist John Williams says the “housing crisis appears to be intensifying.” Here’s what Williams says the so-called “recovery” looks like on a graph when it comes to housing start data. Do you see any recovery there? Is that what a “move in the right direction” looks like?
The NAR and USA Today omitted an important fact about those 4.68 million sales of existing homes. Williams says, “Foreclosure activity remained a major distorting factor for home sales, with “distressed” activity accounting for an estimated 33% of existing sales in the NAR’s November reporting. . .”
That means 1/3 (1.56 million homes) of that 4.68 million total were foreclosure sales. There’s not much “optimism” for the million and a half families who lost their homes this year. There is just no good way to spin that American tragedy.
@Ken, who said “That’s why so many people are getting their news from the ‘net nowadays. It may well be humanity’s salvation.”
Ken, why do you think they’re pulling the WikiLeaks “false flag” operation right in broad daylight in front of us? It’s so they can start the process of putting the Internet Genie back in the bottle. If they fail, it’s “Game Over!” for the PuppetMeisters and all their Obsequious Toadies, Sycophant SockPuppets, and Apologising Acolytes.
What an excellent and pertinent comment.
Would you not just love to meet some of the numb skulls and mentally challenged in the mainstream media that write this rubbish. They usually have their own agendas of course.
By the way did you know that President Obama is the most admired man in America right now according to a USA Today news story (today). Yes they ran a USA Today/Gallup Poll of – wait for it – “1019 adults”. I would have loved to see the questions and how they picked the respondents. Apparently this sample is so representative it rates an entire news story all of its own.
Don’t you just love America.
We are indeed fortunate to have sites like yours and a few others that will tell the truth instead of the spin dispensed by the MSM. People deserve to know what our real circumstances are- they need to know.
Yes Greg, The story missed the real mark. They can hide the problem for so long. I expect to see the housing market to continue to be soft. One indicator that I see is not the foreclosures but the number of home that the banks have their contractors go take a picture of. See, once you fall behind a few months the bank sends a contractor around to take a picture to make sure that the owner has not abandoned the home and to make contact. I don’t know the numbers but that is one factor to look at.
There are many problems within the economy. First the FED poilicies; the banking industry; our industrial base and local government debts. Our economy can not continue in a bubble and burst cycle without serious conquesences.
I am afraid of this perfect economic storm is coming and there is nothing we can do if we continue to follow the same policies.
I must believe the game of the main street media is to keep up a positive front no matter what the reality in hoping the masses will believe it. Time again it has worked before so why not now is their mind set. If people believe the turn around is just around the corner and start spending the hope is the train will start to move again. The problem is different this time, but main street media fails to see it. There are real serious problems with the economy which will not allow the old model to work as did in the past. It is real sick and not just going through a cold as before. The main street media simply does not have any other ideas to help the government, the fed, and wall street, not to mention the fat cats behind them all, so they go with what they have hoping it will work again; but not this time, it too sick. Remember MSM have their own jobs to protect and they enjoy their life styles. The simple truth is that the crash has been coming for a long time but has been delayed by more and more money borrowing. For years alot of people spoke out for deficit cuts but it fell on deaf ears and the spending continued. Pork barrel after pork barrel with no end in sight; it has now caught up with them. Frankly, MSM influence is decreasing each day with stories as you outlined, for not all of us believe in fairy tales.
I think what may be happening is that a lot of people are letting their houses foreclose (if you’re upside-down enough, it only makes sense) and then going out with the money saved with over a year of defaulting and picking up a foreclosed property for a LOT less. HUD houses are much cheaper than the others, and I’m seeing ones that cost up to 500K! (A HUD house at 500K!? Just think what it was before!)
People are starting to realize it’s all just ‘business’ and they are treating the banks like they have treated us. Why pay a fortune for an overpriced lawyer-foyer piece of crap matchstick built house that had its price artificially inflated by a bunch of criminals when you can default, walk away and get the same thing for 1/3 the price? This reset needs to happen and if it brings down a few banks in the process, so much the better. Now we need to start clawing back OUR money from the banksters and throwing their criminal asses in jail.
My daughter the terrorist.
Sunday, Dec. 26th 6:30 AM, my wife and three teens off loaded curbside their suitcases at Tampa, FL international headed for Pittsburgh, PA to visit my wifes dying mother for the last time. I stayed behind sick with a viril infection contagious enough to kill my mother in law now on oxygen around the clock.
Dressed in winter coats holding tickets for the brisk PA air my 4
left their bags and headed for TSA inspection. Upon arriving my son, Tyler, oldest daughter Lindsey, and wife, Debbie cleared the usual check. Morgan, my 15 year old daughter, neatly dressed in jeans and
a shirt carry a furry panda bear shaped back pack best described as a trim blonde blue eyed beauty without an ounce of fat on her developing form with interests in art and photography was quickly picked out of my four travelers and shown to the full body scan being told to step through under the orders of some older male TSA agent without any explanation or choice of enhanced pat down. Morgan had the common sense to remember my instructions about full body porno scanning so she resisted telling the male TSA “no”. At this point she was lead away where my wife joined her to a private room for an enhanced pat down. Morgan still resisted. Finally in desperation the 2 TSA females explained to Morgan it was just their job and the gov. required the enhanced pat down. She left the room in tears after being brutalized and threatened finally accepting the criminal humiliating enhanced pat down. What has happened to our society that we terrorize an innocent beautiful 15 year old teen? We have voted away our freedoms and believed the political lies of progressives making a contract with Satan himself.
My daughter is no more a terrrorist than you are? She is still a child in many ways enjoying the fun of young teen hood never having dated a boy. Why are we treating our children like terrorists?
We are being conditioned to allow the TSA to treat us as cattle. She was not only humiliated by the ordeal and scared but now has a real fear of flying. All ny children and my wife now have a fear of flying.
We the voters can vote back our rights or vote away our rights of freedom. This grab for freedoms needs to be stopped. George Washington would have hung many of these progressive advocates from the highest flag pole on the Capital lawn. When will “We the People” wake up and vote back our freedoms?
I am enraged by the excuse TSA employees make claiming “it’s just my job.” This is the same claim German soldiers made as they removed Jews from their homes, placed Jews in concentration camps, and shot or gas them at the command of Hitler. When will TSA employees stop excusing their SS Hitler style marxist acts as “I am just doing my job”? TSA employees that really care about US citizens need to find a freedom loving job. One that embraces constitutional freedoms and stop making excuses.
Yip…my daughter is for now a possible terrorist.
Bruce Minnick Tampa, FL
Hey, I have a solution. NEVER GIVE ANOTHER DOLLAR TO THE AIRLINES, TSA, OR FEDERAL GOVERNMENT. DON’T FLY!!!!! DRIVE. OPT OUT AND TELL THEM TO GO TO HELL.
I seem to remember dear ole FDr putting thousands of American citizens in concentration camps for the safety of America, including political dissidents. Yet the liberals teach our children what a great President and American FDr is. It took a “true” great man, Ronald Regan to make amends for this travesty Goebbels would be proud of the Liberal Progressives. Beware of the FCC’s “Net Neutrality” Plan.
Gee…really wished someone intruded on the constitutional rights of those f…krs that hijacked those airlines and flew them into the Twin Towers, killing my family and friends.
Stop your whining. We live in a new world. Don’t like it, don’t fly. Cute little blonde haired girls can be muslim terrorists too. Ever hear of Bosnia?
Mix, If you believe the Gestapo tactics at the airports are making us safer, I kindly ask you to rethink it. The Germans, Italians, Russians, Ugandans, etc all traded liberty for something else. Do you not remember how well that worked out?
We need profiling and human intelligence. Every tenth person in line is not a terrorist. Do you not see te absurdity in all this. Are you naïve enough to believe that the current TSA process is really making America safer? This is a power grab. And while there are most likely a few blond terrorist, most are young Moeslim males; not the 65 year old Catholic nun or the 15 year old blond girl that the some deviant TSA agent want a nude scan of.
Hell, if you are really concerned about terrorism, let put all the Moeslims in internment camps.
In all seriousness, the only way to resolve this issue is to wipe out radical Islam AND all of its practitioners. You cannot reason with fanatics.
And as far as waking up, maybe you should try it. Or cut back on the drugs.
I am so sorry this got sprung on your daughter. It looks awfully suspiciously to me like she was pulled out for being a trim, attractive blonde girl and not for being a terrorist. I have heard that thousands of those “scans” have been saved and posted online, contrary to the claims of the government that they cannot be saved.
There is huge potential for pornographic abuse of this technology, and perhaps this potential is already being realized. These scans are a hideously insulting, immoral, and degrading practice against innocent and law-abiding American citizens. I refuse to fly again until this garbage is removed, and am looking into the train for my next trip to see my folks.
I disagree that this is “progressives” at work– the politicians who institute this stuff are mere sock-puppets of fascism, pretending to be “liberals”. Remember, this technology was developed under the blessings of the Bush administration. The blue sock-puppet runs against the red sock-puppet but no matter which one we elect, we get the same thing– a continuing strangulation of our constitutional rights. Meanwhile the real “progressives” at the grass-roots, and their “conservative” neighbors, scream in helpless outrage at the destruction of our free country. We all agree on more things than we realize. If we would only stop lapping up the sock-puppet show on the Mange Stream Media, we would realize it.
“Those who would give up their liberties for security, deserve neither.” — Ben Franklin
Couple pieces of data I puled from the Non-seasonally adjusted. I am a silly grandpa given the fact I maintain the core of our economy stems from non-seasoannly adjusted as they represent REAL Figures.
353,000 Nov. existing home sales (4.236 mil annualized), 444,000 less than their seasonally adjusted headline number
Since Nov. 2009, there has only been 2 months with lesser non-seasonally adjusted home sales than Nov. 2010
The non-seasonally adjusted figure for Nov. 2010 is actually 1.7% below the non-seasonally adjusted figure for Oct. 2010 versus the +5.6% headline number
Single family Nov. 2010 non-seasonally adjusted came it at 316,000 or 3.792 million annualized versus the 4.150 million seasonally adjusted figure (differential of 358,000 units)
NAR Single Family Only Sales
Single family non-seasonally adjusted figure for Nov. 2010 was dead flat with Oct. 2010 versus the +6.7% seasonally adjusted headline number
Next up, hogh school students to request seasonally adjusted exam scores. Good article and appreciated!
The whole banking system is a fraud the paper is backed by nothing so is the mortgages.If they do not have the original item of indebtness they have NOTHING. This is the same for credit cards.
Of course the MS media is trotting out nonsense. It is all about who butters your bread. The NAS needs home buyers. The MSM needs advertisers. Real investigative reporting costs money, while canned and carefully phrased press releases are dirt cheap. I mean these folks will email it to the media already formated for printing.
We are all familiar with the standard disclaimer of “past performance does not,…, blah, blah.” It is true for investing, but horribly false when it comes to insider talking heads. Past predictive failure is a sure sign of probable future failure. The maximum effective range of an excuse is zero meters.
In a modern society, anything and everything now is under the influence or control of one organization or another. Organizations cannot exist without squads of ” EXPLANATION EXPERTs “.
Fortunately, it’s individuals like you who have dedicated yourselves to challenging the unconscionable deceits, frauds and misrepresntations being perpetrated against honest, hard working citizens everywhere. Keep it up. Thank you.
Apparently these people are smoking the right stuff.
Where were they when the constant drumbeat in late 2007, 2008 was don’t buy a house your’e a moron if you do. I am a builder and had 5 homes on the market at that time and I can tell you that it was not possible to gaet anyone to look at your home(s).
My wife informed me of the great news on the real estate sales last week so I could not wait to look the data up myself. New home sales the lowest since 1963 (when data began being tracked).
I can also tell you that in the Seattle area prices are trending down and component prices of homes are trending up. I have concluded that it is not possible to build a home(if you can obtain a construction loan) market, it and make a profit. Permit fees,workers-comp and unemployment insurance rates continue to climb and the revenue numbers go down.
What a Deal!
Jack, I feel your pain but don’t dispair. I might have a partial answer for you? I am a Workers Compensation fraud investigator. One of the largest unreported frauds is Premium fraud. You sound like a typical honest hard working general contractor who is getting ground up by the system. I have found that many of the large home builders “forget” to tell their Workers comp carrier about the other employees that are working at a construction site. I noticed that roofers which have the highest W/C premiums usualy work in “threes”! Say what? Here is how the scam works: As long as you have three people in one trade, laborers, electricians, framers, plumbers you can almost always be assured that thre4e people will not get injured at the same time. What does that mean, that out of lets say twenty carpenters on the job site, the bulder calims only three to the Work comp carrier. If you are an honest builder…you can not compete with these costs because you are honest. When the accountants figure in costs to submit to the banks they include insurance premiums not paid to the W/C carriers. You will see a huge slush fund of cash that the bank thinks is for actual costs but is divied up among the insiders.
When I complain about it…even the carriers don’t want to hear about it! They don’t intend to pay legitimate claims anyway! But want all the paying customers they can get…even if they are cheated. Ask around your will hear similar stories in the construction business, but don’t try it yourself. You will be the one they will go after.
Greg, I just don’t know what to say anymore. I feel like I make the same comment week after week. It is so sad to watch our country decline while our criminal government lines the pockets of the criminal bankers with our tax money. Meanwhile, hardworking Americans are watching the American Dream go up in smoke. Hardworking Americans are losing their God given rights.
“If this mischievous financial policy, which has its origin in North America, shall become endurated down to a fixture, then that Government will furnish its own money without cost. It will pay off debts and be without debt. It will have all the money necessary to carry on its commerce. It will become prosperous without precedent in the history of the world. The brains, and wealth of all countries will go to North America. That country must be destroyed or it will destroy every monarchy on the globe.” – Hazard Circular – London Times 1865
“I have never seen more senators express discontent with their jobs. … I think the major cause is that, deep down in our hearts, we have been accomplices to doing something terrible and unforgivable to this wonderful country. Deep down in our hearts, we know that we have bankrupted America and that we have given our children a legacy of bankruptcy. .. We have defrauded our country to get ourselves elected.” -John Danforth, Republican senator from Missouri, reported in the Arizona Republic of April 21, 1992
I think the quote from Hazard Circular was written to protest government printed fiat with no interest paid to a central privately owned bank. It was feared by the European oligarths that American freedom and industry would over power them, rightly so. This was before the Fed was established and the bankers took over North America. The financial policy they speak of in North America at that time was Lincolns use of green backs to fund the Union troops with no interest and a public central bank for the US government. European bankers did not want a wealthy country like the USA to eliminate them from their interest money. They wanted their interest from loans for the US Civil War. If that system could be used honestly with out improper inflation we would truly owe our own debts to ourselves and interest paid to private banks would be of no concern. Unfortunately there is no one in government honest enough to run such a system. They inflated the greenback into worthlessness. Competing currencies or commodity based money are the safest bet for the general population. Centralized privately controlled currency of the Fed certainly is not.
I’m in the homebuilding industry and although our market is better than most, we are down 87% off peak sales in ’07. I consider myself one of the fortunate ones, I am not over leveraged and am still building houses. I have a plan to ‘survive’ up to 2014 when I hope we can return to the sanity that was before the bubble.
Another great piece, thanks Greg.
BTW, I caught your link over at Harvey Organ’s blog this time.
Greg, I just proposed what I think is a great idea on Max Keiser’s blog. Someone needs to compile a list of the top 52 finacial terrorist, criminal bankers (Bernanke, Dimon, Paulson, Geithner, Blankfein, etc) and we need to make a deck of cards like GWB had for the Iraqi leadership when we invaded Iraq. The deck of cards that the PEOPLE demand be brought to justice. Unfortunately, I don’t have the skills to design and post this, but I think it is a great idea. How can we get this done and posted somewhere? Hilarious!!!!ROTFLMAO Spread the word!!!!!
Well Greg, I should have known it already exists.
I love it!
Wow, Greg, where is everybody ? Must be blowing those gift cards at the almost-empty malls, eh ?
Anyway, there’s another whole spread of torpedoes heading for the housing market next year that nobody seems to be talking about, so what the heck, I’ll do it. After 3,108,297 arrows in my back, what’s one more?
Never mind the steady parade of mortgage-rate resets that’s going to go on all the way into 2012.
This spread of torpedoes could do even more damage; and the torpedoes I’m talking about are the municipal bankruptcies that are going to start popping up like mushrooms after a rain. The estimable Ms. Whitney is getting her introduction to Schopenhauer* after her little “City Emperors Have No Clothes” interview on 60 Minutes the other night where she predicted the Next Wave of The U.S. Economic Implosion Tsunami will be municipality defaults ( shhhhh! let’s not use that horrible “b” word, ok, let’s just call them “defaults” ? Ok? It’ll be Our Little Secret! ) by the scores, if not the hundreds.
Whom, I ask you, wants to buy a house in a bankrupt ( oooops, I said it, sorry ) city ? And what’s that house in that b_n_r_p_ city going to be worth ? Probably a whole lot less than it is right now, I’d wager.
*Schopenhauer: “All truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident”
Feel free to use it yourself in any suitable situation. My holiday gift to you.
That is a good one. I like to visualize it as a kid hitting the moles in the head every time one pops up in that arcade game. Eventually they pop up so fast not even a ninja can get them all. Bernake says damn the torpedoes, full steam ahead! Eventually one is gonna hit and we should not expect to see any life boats. All the banksters and politicians will be riding in them.
Before all of the municipalities go belly up, they are going to make a huge property tax run in a feeble attempt to hold off default. Here in Cook County, IL, we have seen 10 to 20% increases in property taxes this year. All this at a time when property values have declined by the same amount (or more). I have yet to find a decent news story about the tax increases and the overall effect on housing prices and the potential municiple default as more and more homes go into foreclosure and sit empty.
The market rates may have gone down, or remained the same. For the homeowner to get qualified for lower rates, there are certain prerequisites but I would recommend you search online for “123 Mortgage Refinance” before you decide because they can find the 3% refinance rates.
Bruce Minnick, you are the typical Floriduh idiot. What does the TSA security and “war on terror” have to do with liberals, progressives, or Marxism? Wasn’t it Bush and his NEOCON comrades who started 2 wars and flushed the economy down the toilet? You have teenage daughters, yet your head is still firmly planted in your a55…I pity you, but your story dud make me chuckle.
George Orwell had this stuff nailed years ago lol. Bad is the new good and lies are the new truth. Just remember that whatever your told by the MSM is probably the exact linear opposite of what they say and you will be OK. Get your news from the internet and sites like this until they are shut down by the floundering fish called the state. Whenever the government says they are going to help then expect things to get worse proportionately to how much help they provide to fix the mess that was probably the result of there intervention in the first place. There is no better example of this than the US housing market. Barney Frank just got re-elected so do not expect anything to get better any time soon foolish thinkers. There are actually people running around thinking the Republicans are going to save us next year. Lmao all the way to APMEX!
I’m looking at losing my job as a gift of sorts. Buying a home in this part of the country, where property taxes are 10K+ a year, was not exactly something I was excited about, but something we were doing for retirement security, and we were quite tired of dealing with landlords. However, I’ll deal with the landlords and hopefully ride this tsunami out and see what happens in a few years.
The banks stopped or at least slowed down foreclosures after the robo-signing exposure. If Congress gives them a Hail Mary pass, they will begin again in ernest. Even more homes will be dumped on the market depressing resale prices even more. Mortgage rates are going up and there is the threat of taking away the home mortgage interest deduction. Housing will be depressed for eons.
Greg, Posted comment on Dec 29th article. Comment waiting moderation for for over 24 hours. What causes this?
This sort of journalism is the consequence of the contemptuous and paternalistic attitude that many in the mainstream media have toward the “average citizen.” It is an attitude that is inculcated in college and nurtured in newsrooms across America.
According to their conceit, we are all just ignorant boobs who couldn’t tell up from down and black from white without their help.
That’s why they never give us the news straight. They think it’s their duty to spin the news in order to “shape public opinion.”
After all, if you tell people the truth about foreclosures for example, the great booby herd might run screaming down the street and civilization would fall.
The problem (amongst many) with this sort of paternalism is that it short circuits human action and precludes the possibility of people doing what is best for themselves, by acting on valid information, and thus improving the lot of everyone.
This “Wisdom of the Crowds” (James Surowiecki) is crucial to a properly functioning society, but it depends of reliable information.
This is where the arrogant and paternalistic media falls down on the job. They don’t think that anyone but themselves, and their partners in government, have any wisdom. As a result, they are loathe to actually give us information that would allow us to accurately judge risk and rewards, costs and benefits, for ourselves.
Fortunately, more and more people are figuring out that the Official Media in this country are little more than government lackeys (yes that include Fox News).
That’s why so many people are getting their news from the ‘net nowadays. It may well be humanity’s salvation.
Laser Guided Loogie