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Lots of economic reports important to housing coming today


A heavy load of economic statistics that affect housing markets is due out Tuesday morning, part of a week heavy on housing stats.

The Standard & Poor’s/Case-Shiller Home Price Index for December comes out at 9 a.m. This has been a steady bearer of bad news, last month reporting that prices in the Washington metro area fell 2.4 percent from October to November, and 19.4 percent for the year.

Then the Federal Housing Finance Agency will release its house price index for the fourth quarter at 10 a.m. The agency’s previous report, issued in late November and covering the July-September quarter, showed that single-family sales prices had fallen 1.8 percent from the second quarter, the largest decrease in the 17-year history of the index. The agency also reported that prices fell 6 percent in the third quarter compared with a year earlier.

The Conference Board also will report on consumer confidence Tuesday morning. While not strictly a housing-market statistic, there are few actions a consumer can take that require greater confidence than buying a home, and this index can hint at which direction home sales may take. The Conference Board’s last report, in January, showed the index was 37.7, which they called a “historic low.”
We’ll report on the numbers shortly after they’re released.
--Elizabeth Razzi

By Elizabeth Razzi  |  February 24, 2009; 6:00 AM ET
Categories:  Statistics  
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Next: Washington among the few areas where price drops slowed

Comments

home prices fell only 18%? that's not even a "correction" to prices that have been bloated over the years by the criminal actions of the federal reserve and the greed of speculators. Please, cut out the dramatics, and wake us up when they fall 80% or 90%. Then we'll vote ourselves largesse from the public treasury and start laughing again!! (No wait we are already doing that, the voting I mean, so why aren't we laughing???).

Posted by: yard80197 | February 24, 2009 9:41 AM | Report abuse

With all of the complaints about the housing stimulus bill, it's time to look at what a conservative solution might be. Now, I do think there are flaws in what is currently being proposed. I also think there is no easy fix, or easy solution. But something must be done, and it's obvious that not everyone is going to be happy with whatever is proposed.

I have been hearing very specific complaints, by conservatives, about the current bill. For example:

--- It uses taxpayer money, and is too expensive.

--- It rewards homeowners who exercised bad judgement, and gives nothing to those who used sound
judgement.

--- It will nationalize banks, and eliminate shareholder value.

--- It does not penalize banks who participated in getting us into this mess.

The following proposal addresses ALL of the above complaints, and should be something that conservatives can give full support. It is a true bailout plan for those that need help.

We should allow homeowners, those who are actually living in their house, to walk away from the house AND the mortgage. They WILL lose whatever downpayment they made, and any equity they may have, in the house. There should also be NO entry (by law) in their credit record concerning this mortgage, and the fact that they walked away. If they already have bad credit, it will still be bad. If they happen to have good credit, it will still be good.

Now, this will allow those with decent credit a chance to later buy a "cheaper" house (especially since ALL housing values will fall drastically). In fact, if they rent for a few years and save money, they might even be able to buy a house comparable to what they had, for cash. It will certainly penalize banks who put us in this mess. And it will let the "free" market do it's job on shareholder value, as well as on the careers of bank managers. NO TAXPAYER MONEY WILL BE USED.

The only downside is that those who complained about the current bill may discover that it does, in fact, give them something afterall.

If you circulate this, or discuss it, please make sure that you present it as an example of conservative thinking. I want to make sure that the credit goes to the "right" place.

Posted by: Major448 | February 24, 2009 10:44 AM | Report abuse

Strange.

On the articles related to nationalization of banks, you can't put up comments.

The people who control our news really want to limit that to dictate the news to you. No discussion on that subject.

Very Strange. The banks are being taken over by a small group and no one is questioning this?

Nationalize a bank that needs $100 billion (or even $200 billion)? A bank with $2 trillion dollar in assets? A bank that was paying $11 billion in annual dividends to shareholders two years ago ($8 billion last year)? When the economy turns they could pay off a loan in no time at all. So why nationalization?

Because doing so will lead to complete control of that industry by a very few mega rich people who would reap billions on their "private equity investment."

A massive rip off, the biggest in US history. All of a sudden republicans and the right have jump on and are promoting the nationalization action.

GEE, what is up with this? We are being absolutely raped again.
Our economy continues to be place in the hands of corrupt people with evil interests and plans. This is outrageous.

Why aren't any of these people who passed the laws over the last 27 years that allowed this mess to develop being arrested? What about the Wall St. executives, the mortgage bankers and others? No one is being brought in on the larges scam of all time? A scam that has bankrupted the whole world wide system of finance, and completed discredited the US.

No one is going to jail? Instead, they will place the whole finance system in their hands.

Get mad, folks.

Posted by: morenews1 | February 24, 2009 11:25 AM | Report abuse

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