Posts filed under “Legal”

California Foreclosures Driving Sales

You need only two things to fix the housing crisis: Readily available consumer credit, and lower real estate prices.

The second part of that equation is being helped along by Foreclosures:

Southern California home sales rose 51 percent in December as a surge in foreclosures pushed prices of single-family houses and condominiums down from a year earlier, MDA DataQuick said.

A total of 19,926 new and existing houses and condos sold last month in Los Angeles, Riverside, San Diego, Ventura, San Bernardino and Orange counties, up from 13,240 a year earlier, the San Diego-based research company said today in a statement. The median home price in the region fell 35 percent to $278,000…

Foreclosures, which often sell at steep discounts, lured buyers as President-Elect Barack Obama worked on plans to revive the housing market using the second half of the $700 billion Troubled-Asset Relief Program. Lenders including Bank of America Corp., and financial institutions such as Goldman Sachs Group Inc. benefited from the government’s initial distribution of bailout money as their mortgage-related assets plunged in value.

Foreclosed homes accounted for 56 percent of Southern California’s December sales, more than double the amount a year earlier, MDA DataQuick said. Such transactions made up almost 70 percent of sales in Riverside County, where the median price plummeted 41 percent to $209,000. Sales jumped 77 percent to 4,435, MDA DataQuick said.

The median price for all of Southern California plunged as a smaller proportion of properties changed hands near the coast and more were sold inland in areas including Riverside and San Bernardino, where mortgage defaults have surged.

The bottom in Housing won’t be in until prices come closer to historical means. One of the factors driving pricing is the ongoing foreclosures.

I don’t have any problem with the government engaging in assistance to those people who 1) did not engage in reckless behavior; 2) can reasonably afford their homes with a modest modification.

It is unfortunate, but for most of the homes foreclosed upon, there aren’t many other options.

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Source:
Southern California Foreclosures Push Sales Higher
Daniel Taub
Bloomberg, Jan. 19 2009

http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601087&sid=a9tuBSHCY5JM&

See also:
Banks Foreclose on Builders With Perfect Record
JOHN COLLINS RUDOLF
NYT, January 19, 2009

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/01/20/business/economy/20builders.html

Category: Credit, Legal, Markets, Real Estate

How copyright extension in recording actually works

How copyright extension in sound recordings actually works

Category: Legal, Music, Video

More Cablevision Redirect Nonsense

In September, I mentioned that my internet provider, Optimum OnLine by Cable Vision, was hijacking my typos and searches via their DNS Redirect. The company line is that this is a form of search assistance — but that’s transparent bullshit. I didn’t ask for search, and I know how to use Google. Besides, this defeats…Read More

Category: Legal, Regulation, Web/Tech

U.S. Foreclosure Market Data by State – 2008

via Realty Trac http://www.realtytrac.com/ContentManagement/pressrelease.aspx?ChannelID=9&ItemID=5681&accnt=64847

Category: Digital Media, Legal, Real Estate

2008 U.S. Foreclosure Heat Map

> RealtyTrac reported this week that in 2008, the U.S. had a total of 3,157,806 foreclosure filings — default notices, auction sale notices and bank repossessions — on 2,330,483 U.S. properties. This was an 81% increase over 2007, and a 225% percent increase from 2006. The report also shows that 1.84 percent of all U.S….Read More

Category: Credit, Legal, Markets, Real Estate

Circuit City = $0

Full blown liquidation, no value remains for shareholders. I was going to write “Wow,” but its a tough business, with brutal competition and razor thin margins. CC had too many missteps over the years — and too much debt — to reorg/recover from. WSJ:  Circuit City Stores said it has reached an agreement with liquidators…Read More

Category: Consumer Spending, Legal, Retail

10 Most Unethical People in Business

Via Marketwatch: Bernard Madoff. David Colby, former CFO of Wellpoint Rod Blagojevich, governor of Illinois Heinz-Joachim Neubürger, Karl-Hermann Baumann and Johannes Feldmayer. The two former CFOs and former chairman of Siemens Ted Stevens, former senator from Alaska Bruno A Kaelin, former senior vice president and head of corporate compliance at Alstom Adam Vitale, sentenced to…Read More

Category: Digital Media, Legal

Madoff Never Traded?

Alternative title: The End of Self-Regulation A Boston Globe article today reveals that Madoff’s firms may never have traded — despite NASD/FINRA audits every 2 years since 1960. “As investigators try to untangle the scheme that Bernard L. Madoff hid from investors and regulators for a decade or more, one basic fact is emerging: He…Read More

Category: Legal, Markets, Regulation

No, Madoff Never Turned Down Money

Part of the story about the Madoff Ponzi scheme was that Madoff created this elusive, difficult-to-become-a-member club. The exclusivity and rejections made membership all the more desirable to greedy investors. That actually is turning out to be somewhat of a myth. There is much more to his canny trick of rejecting investors than initially meets…Read More

Category: Hedge Funds, Investing, Legal, Really, really bad calls, Regulation

Why Might a Madoff Plea Deal Take Place?

Fascinating conversation today over lunch today.  It was held under Chatham House Rules, so I cannot reveal the identity of any of the parties or their firms. However, the conversation steered towards the Madoff affair, and one fellow proffered the thinking behind why Madoff remains out on bail, and could be working towards a plea…Read More

Category: Legal, Markets, Trading