Monday, December 29, 2008
From HSH Blog, “Mortgage Rates Little Changed — and Still a Bargain”: “Considering the extraordinarily-low numbers, there’s little place for them to go but up. The combination of the historically-low mortgage rates and “the Fed’s unwavering influence in the market, the odds of that are quite good” that home sales will rise.”
RW: I hope you are right, and I tend to agree. But existing home sales have been at the bottom of the barrel for quite some time, dropping for a couple of years now. We need some serious demand, and rock-bottom pricing is not doing it. I just called about a refi – will see how it goes.
From WSJ Marketbeat, 2008 Lookback: Surprise, Surprise: It is often said that markets hate uncertainty, but in 2008, one of the few certainties was just that — uncertainty.
RW: I think that was well said!
From Money & Co., 2008 memories: Infamous moments from the meltdown: "Nobody could have predicted this," Wall Street pros like to say as they seek to absolve themselves for failing to foresee the financial system meltdown of 2008.
Well, almost nobody at the top of the financial industry saw what was coming, that's for sure. Either that, or they were just flat-out lying to us along the way.
Here, listed chronologically, are my nominees for the most infamous pronouncements as the crisis unfolded this year:".....
RW: ..... And you must click on the link to see the top blips – Trichet (you all know how I love Trichet) is part of number 3.
From Drudge Report, Russian Professor Predicts End of U.S. Former KGB analyst Igor Panarin, dean of the Russian Foreign Ministry's academy for future diplomats, has predicted that the U.S. will fall apart in 2010.
RW: I'm pretty sure that no comment is necessary on this one. Wait a minute, I just commented!
From Across the Curve, Closing Comments December 29 2008: "Prices of Treasury coupon securities surged today as international geopolitical factors combined with market technicals to steepen the Treasury yield curve.The front end of the Treasury market received a boost from money seeking to hide from the ongoing problems in the Mideast. So the latest sad imbroglio there fostered a mini flight to quality."
RW: As if we needed another reason for Treasuries to bounce.
From Macro and Other Market Musings, The Hangover Debate: "My own view is similar to Waldman's--some but not all boom-bust cycles fit the hangover theory. I think this view can be best illustrated by the double-dip recessions of Paul Volker in the early 1980s that are now credited with (1) eliminating double digit inflation and, in turn, (2) laying the foundation for the subsequent 20+ years relative macroeconomic stability."
RW: Volcker gets nominated the Best Federal Reserve Chairman ever! Greenspan is so yesterday. I wonder how Bernanke’s name will ultimately play out in the history books?
From Bloomberg (hat tip, Reader Steve Conlon), Holiday Sales Drop to Force Bankruptcies, Closings (Update4): "Retailers may close 73,000 stores in the first half of 2009, according to the International Council of Shopping Centers. Talbots Inc. and Sears Holdings Corp. are among chains shuttering."
RW: The carnage has only just begun.
And FOX News always keeps us on the edge of our seats with its top-notch reporting:
'Grey's Anatomy' Star Expecting Third Child
And to you cat lovers out there (I have two), WATCH THESE VIDEOS: Ninja Cat and Santa Cat in Boots
And as always, my most talented friend, Kerry Hawkins: