Foreclosure filings drop to five-year low in U.S. recovery

May 16, 2012 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Real Estate News 

Bloomberg - Foreclosure filings in the U.S. fell to a five-year low last month as lenders sought to avoid seizing property and a housing recovery showed signs of taking hold.

The number of default, auction and seizure notices sent to homeowners in April totaled 188,780, down 14 percent from a year earlier and 5 percent from the previous month, according to RealtyTrac Inc. It was the lowest tally since July 2007, before the onset of the biggest housing crash in seven decades, the Irvine, California-based data seller said today in a report.

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Response to Goldman CEO Lloyd Blankfein’s Bloomberg TV interview

April 26, 2012 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Opinion 

This is not pointed at Goldman Sachs per say or Lloyd directly.   I do feel that we treat grey areas in business endeavors as morally okay just because we may not have adapted with rules to prevent overt exploitation.   This comment is not about that.

I do have to say that Mr. Blankfein should not of done that interview yesterday on Bloomberg TV, and with no surprise, is really hard to find at the moment.     It applaud him at least trying to explain some of the firms culture, objectives and mis-steps.

BUT, BUT, dear sir.

Lloyd through out the duration of this interview, gave THE MOST convincing argument for the FULL re-reinstatement of the Glass-Steagall Act we have had to date in my humble but serious opinion.

In effect he said that “when you invest for a customer (client) and LEND to them, “Ah-Ha”, you now have an INTEREST in the outcome of any given transaction.  You are absolutely correct in your analysis of the nature of these types of transactions.

But this is also one of the major reason for Glass-Steagall.  It separated the deposit taking commercial banking side that lends money from the investment banking side that invests it and give advice.  The most he gave us on if this what a good idea what that he said “he felt” that the world needed companies like this to be competitive today.

I would respond with, that type of competition sounds pretty ruinous if we are at a point where our advice givers have to play both sides AND lend to be competitive.  Yes we are in a world of constant competition but that does mean that we need to throw objectivity and real integrity over-board to compete.

What really has happened is that Goldman Sachs is now a public company that has a long and vaulted history with major expectations from not only stock-holders but also historians to continue to live up to this past.  To do this they have needed every advantage and inside connection to continue this miracle (they can be good and bad).

I believe when we are at a point where we need to compromise our integrity of our business to meet the “challenges of our current global landscape” we really need to reevaluate what our priorities are.

Money is not an end in itself, just a very useful tool to give you opportunities in life.   I agree with have a some what fair market system with the most important purpose to provide opportunity and general betterment to all people.  If we miss this important point then we are missing the whole point.   If you think this system is instead for the chance of being one of the few people who get to live lifestyles that are written and talked about then you have been captured and fully mis-guided.

I am not advocating any sort of full equality because we are all given different talents and traits but YES SIR, there is too poor and to ignore that means you have lost some of your own humanity.  I just want a fair game that provides basic opportunity to all who participates and from there we will see where the chips will fall.   Instead of attacking capital and wealth I would rather come up with creative ways of providing incentives for wealth to help provide more opportunity.   It is a truly win-win.

Here is the best I could find so you could watch the interview.  I think it will be increasingly hard to find it in full length.

Link (Bloomberg Videos)

Providence RH bankruptcy seen as unavoidable on budget gap

March 29, 2012 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Credit News 

This is unfortunate events but in the end, these functions are beneficial.  By taking the pain now and restructuring programs to meet the available funds for ongoing operations.  We will and need to see much more of this so we can not have states running unsustainable budgets that they will not impose taxes and fees to cover.

Bloomberg - Providence Mayor Angel Taveras has put pressure on Brown University and other nonprofit organizations to help close a budget gap of at least $20 million, while Governor Lincoln Chafee is pressing lawmakers for action on measures to curb municipal pension costs. Unsustainable retiree expenses helped push Central Falls (1058MF) into insolvency. Moody’s Investors Service cut Providence debt a step to Baa1, third-lowest investment grade, this week citing its “strained” finances.

“Bankruptcy is not the preferred option for restoring Providence’s fiscal health; it is the last option, and I will do everything in my power to prevent it from happening,” Taveras said in a statement in response to a request for comment on Flanders’ remark. “I respectfully disagree with Judge Flanders that bankruptcy is unavoidable.”

Source

Greece CDS sellers payout $2.89 billion to settle contracts

March 29, 2012 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Credit News 

Hopefully this will work out in the end and this nation among others will get their budget and entitlements in order.  At the end of the day, you need to have services that match what you can tax from your people so that you are not incurring debt that can have disastrous effects in the long run.

This is a major issue America will tackle over the next 50 years and hopefully we will learn a lesson that will stick with our citizenry and be taught to future generations.   We need to break this horrible habit of believing there is such a thing as a “free lunch”.   There always is a cost at some point that needs to be addressed and or offset.

Bloomberg  – Banks, hedge funds and other investors that sold credit-default swaps protecting against losses on Greece bonds paid a net $2.89 billion to settle the contracts, according to the Depository Trust & Clearing Corp.

The payouts were completed yesterday after the nation took steps to force investors this month to participate in the biggest sovereign-debt restructuring in history, New York-based DTCC, which runs a central repository for the market, said in an e-mailed statement today.

Source

Breaking News: CEO Jon Corzine of MF Global allegedly orders customer funds to be used for covering overdraft

March 23, 2012 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Stock Market News 

This could be very damning evidence if this turns out to be true.  To be fair, this email just surfaced and we need to let the authorities to do their job and determine the validity and authenticity of this email.  What is interesting is that the transfer is to a JP Morgan Banking unit in London.

I would have to believe this may be tried to the bets MF Global made on Europe that would force credit lines and positions to be covered.  It doesn’t look good and we will need to stay on top of this to see what happens.   Customers are largely still without over $1 billion in deposits and this needs to be gotten to the bottom of so that confidence can be fully restore that deposit taking institutions can not take client funds and use them to cover their own bets.

Bloomberg:

Jon S. Corzine, MF Global Holding Ltd., chief executive officer, gave “direct instructions” to transfer $200 million from a customer fund account to meet an overdraft in one of the brokerage’s JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM) accounts in London, according to an e-mail sent by a firm executive.

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