Morning Report – Housing remains affordable 10/25/13

Vital Statistics:

Last Change Percent
S&P Futures 1747.3 -1.2 -0.07%
Eurostoxx Index 3037.2 -1.8 -0.06%
Oil (WTI) 97.48 0.4 0.38%
LIBOR 0.237 -0.001 -0.52%
US Dollar Index (DXY) 79.25 0.066 0.08%
10 Year Govt Bond Yield 2.51% -0.01%
Current Coupon Ginnie Mae TBA 103.6 0.0
Current Coupon Fannie Mae TBA 102.6 0.1
RPX Composite Real Estate Index 200.7 -0.2
BankRate 30 Year Fixed Rate Mortgage 4.28
Markets are flattish on no real news. UPS, which tends to be a broad economic indicator, beat numbers. Durable Goods came in better than expected. Bonds and MBS are flat
The latest CoreLogic Market Pulse is out. They discuss mortgage fraud, negative equity, foreclosures, and home prices. The key metric of affordability – the price to income ratio – has been creeping up, but is still around historical averages, meaning housing in no longer dirt cheap, but is still reasonably priced compared to historical standards, not just the bubble years.

It is looking like some sort of grand bargain isn’t going to happen as we approach the budget negotiations. Democrats want to get rid of the sequester. Republicans are willing to replace the sequestration cuts with other cuts, particularly in Medicare and and other long-term expenses like Federal retirement. Tax hikes are a non-starter. Republicans are probably not anxious to re-live the shutdown either, so we probably get some sort of extension of the CR and the debt ceiling without much in the way of attacking spending.

The Morning Report will be on hiatus early next week as I will be in DC for the Mortgage Bankers Conference. Hope to see some of you there.

Finally, what if Facebook was around from WWI to WWII?

35 Responses

  1. I took their damn mission, what the hell else was I gonna do? When it was over, I’d never want another.



  2. This will go down as the greatest political lie of the modern era. It will easily eclipse Peace in our time.


    • McWing:

      I haven’t even clicked on the link and I know what it is.


    • Although it does raise an interesting philosophical point. Anyone who has ever watched Seinfeld knows the Costanza rule…it isn’t a lie if you believe it. But is it a lie if it is so obviously false that no one should have believed it?


  3. Well, it certainly shows a demand for no cost medical care. I’d like that too. Who wouldn’t.

    “Supporters say this shows there’s demand but industry sources say if we don’t see real turnaround soon, there could be big problems for the entire system,” Crawford concluded.


  4. Obama believes that he is here to deliver his idea of Justice and anything said or promised in the furtherance of that is acceptable and even necessary. A unfulfilled promise then becomes a failure of outside forces working against Justice.


  5. He’s a community organizer to the bone. By any means necessary,


  6. Worth a read:

    “It’s been said that: “The right seeks converts and the left seeks traitors.” This moral superiority that is peculiar to the left is a great impediment to momentum. It is also a right drag when you’re trying to enjoy a riot.”


  7. NYT accidentally commits journalism.

    Just devastating how political the hype was and how disengaged the Executive is.

    Some Democrats said that, given the Republican assault on the measure, the White House was right to deliver upbeat presentations promoting it.

    “To downplay expectations would have fed into the Republican narrative,” said Jim Manley, a former top aide to Senator Harry Reid of Nevada, the Democratic leader, who attended a session in the Roosevelt Room of the White House with other allies of the administration.

    The article attempts to establish that the WH had no knowledge of the problems.

    Doesn’t that make them look worse? What kind of philosophy do you have to have to believe the WH’s willful ignorance is acceptable?


  8. “But the fundamental reason I can’t personally vote for Sarvis is his position on abortion”

    That’s not a libertarian argument against him.


  9. Was on a flight with Sibelius yesterday. But she was in first class. I wanted to ask her to “exchange” contact info.

    And I don’t get a pro choice objection to sarvis.

    Back in dc on Wednesday. Catch you all then.


    • I just saw this tweet from Ezra Klein:

      On some level, I don’t have a big q for Kathleen Sebelius. Not sure what she knows. I have lots of Qs for head of CMS IT.



  10. Questions I believe.


    • Jnc:

      Yes, I know he meant questions. But at this point wouldn’t asking Sebilius “what do you know” be a pretty big, and obbvious, question? What kind of journalist is he if he can’t even think of a question to ask the person in charge of this utter debacle?


  11. Russell Brand is actually quite a good writer.

    “Without these fellowships I would take drugs. Because even now the condition persists. Drugs and alcohol are not my problem — reality is my problem. Drugs and alcohol are my solution.”

    “She [Margret Thatcher] is an icon of individualism, not of feminism.”


    • jnc:

      Russell Brand: She is an icon of individualism, not feminism.

      That is probably true, which says a lot more about feminism than it does about either Thatcher or individualism.


  12. On some level, I don’t have a big q for Kathleen Sebelius. Not sure what she knows. I have lots of Qs for head of CMS IT.

    What could she say to make the administration look good? Pretty much nothing, so of course he doesn’t want to talk to her..


  13. Brent, haven’t you heard the new meme? Ezra is a total traitor. Just parrots Republican talking points, etc. Oh and is the new poster boy for white male privilege.

    It’s awesome to see the left turn in on itself. Russell Brand was correct on this:

    “The right seeks converts and the left seeks traitors.”


  14. Scott – He probably assumes that all he will get is spin and talking points. Besides, she probably has no actual knowledge of the specific problems or policy implications.

    I don’t necessarily dispute his being dismissive of Sebelius.


    • jnc:

      he probably assumes that all he will get is spin and talking points.

      Given his unique access as a White House favorite, he is in an excellent position to challenge any such spin. Why doesn’t he?

      Besides, she probably has no actual knowledge of the specific problems or policy implications.

      Then that is a pretty big story in itself. If that is true, then the one “big q” Klein ought to be asking her is “WTF are taxpayers paying you for?”


  15. Hi all, just thought I’d check in and let you know that Sue just announced at the PL that she has colo/rectal cancer (stage 3) and is beginning radiation/chemo. If you can stop by and wish her well that would be so awesome. Or shoot her an email.

    Hope you’re all doing well. I’ve been super busy but will still try to check in occasionally. Off to the beach and our favorite sea food market this morning.


  16. Hi Lms, horrible news about Sue. Hope all is well with you.


  17. Scott, juicer’s incuriosity about Sebelius is fascinating. One could think of a dozn questions to ask her, starting with Why didn’t you know?


    • McWing:

      One could think of a dozn questions to ask her

      Exactly. I can imagine that, from a system geek’s point of view one would have no use for asking Sebelius anything. She obviously knows nothing about the nuts and bolts technical side of the problems. But Klein is not an IT reporter writing for Computer Weekly. He’s a political commentator for the Washington Post. For him to claim to be unable to come up with a single important question to ask the top political appointee in charge of this highly political debacle shows a rather staggering degree of incuriosity for someone in his rather privileged position.


  18. Seriously, who the fuck did she think was gonna pay? Please tell me this idiot does not vote!

    “She said, ‘I was all for Obamacare until I found out I was paying for it,'” Kehaly said.

    Jesus, this kind of paternalism is horrifying.

    Peter Lee, executive director of Covered California, said the state and insurers agreed that clearing the decks by Jan. 1 was best for consumers in the long run despite the initial disruption. Lee has heard the complaints — even from his sister-in-law, who recently groused about her 50% rate increase.

    “People could have kept their cheaper, bad coverage, and those people wouldn’t have been part of the common risk pool,” Lee said. “We are better off all being in this together. We are transforming the individual market and making it better.”

    The sexism stinks to high heaven!

    It is literally not possible for a rational person to have believed it. I hope her fury is due to the blatant lie and not absolute gullibility.

    “All we’ve been hearing the last three years is if you like your policy you can keep it,” said Deborah Cavallaro, a real estate agent in Westchester. “I’m infuriated because I was lied to.”

    Yes, I remember the caveat!

    Supporters of the healthcare law say Obama was referring to people who are insured through their employers or through government programs such as Medicare. Still, they acknowledge the confusion and anger from individual policyholders who are being forced to change.

    So, the poorest subsidize the richest. Smart.

    “It has the effect of benefiting people in their 50s and 60s and shifting costs to people in their 20s and 30s,” said Patrick Johnston, president of the California Assn. of Health Plans. “Benefits are being increased for all, but it’s not government subsidies for all. Some will pay more.”


  19. McWing:

    Please tell me this idiot does not vote!

    How do you suppose Obama got elected? Twice?


  20. I have to say that I have absolutely zero sympathy for anyone who voted for Obama or his co-conspirators in congress and now finds themselves with cancelled insurance and/or hiked premiums. All of this was not only predictable, it was inevitable. As we have heard so many times, elections have consequences, and those who put these people in office deserve more than anyone to have those consequences effect them personally.


    • Interesting article from Ponnuru and Lowry.

      So it is entirely reasonable to search for new ways to tame the welfare state rather than keep doing what has been done before. The Republican consultant class has often seemed to suffer from an almost clinical deficit of imagination. And the Republican party’s leadership could certainly use the occasional poke with a cattle prod. If the conservatives behind the defunding crusade now turn back to fighting the Senate’s immigration bill with the same passion and commitment, they will again be denounced by Democrats, the press, and some Republicans as a mindless wrecking crew. It shouldn’t stop them.

      The key premise that has been guiding these conservatives, however, is mistaken. That premise is that the main reason conservatives have won so few elections and policy victories, especially recently, is a lack of ideological commitment and will among Republican politicians. A bigger problem than the insufficient conservatism of our leaders is the insufficient number of our followers. There aren’t enough conservative voters to elect enough officials to enact a conservative agenda in Washington, D.C. — or to sustain them in that project even if they were elected. The challenge, fundamentally, isn’t a redoubling of ideological commitment, but more success at persuasion and at winning elections.


  21. I admit to being a very small minority politically. Considering how many politically disengaged citizens there are, should I care if what I want is only accepted by a minority if, to the majority, it doesnt really matter?


    • McWing:

      Considering how many politically disengaged citizens there are, should I care if what I want is only accepted by a minority if, to the majority, it doesnt really matter?

      It seems to me that, in a democratic system, by definition one must care about whether what one wants is accepted by a minority or a majority. In a political context, what does it mean to “want” something if not to desire that it be politically implemented, which requires that it be embraced by a majority?

      I care about the fact that what I want is only accepted by a minority, even as I am resigned to it forever being so.


  22. I worded that poorly. If the majority passively accepts whatever minority (left or right) passes, should a minority (again, left or right) really care what the majority thinks?


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