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Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Great Recession Roundup — June 23, 2009

Item of Interest:

Realtor.org:
May Existing-Home Sales Continue Rising Trend -- Sales of existing homes showed another gain in May, benefiting from favorable affordability conditions and a first-time buyer tax credit, according to the National Association of Realtors. May’s increase was the first back-to-back monthly gain since September 2005...

related:
USA Today Money:
Existing home sales rise 2.4% in May — Sales of previously owned homes in the United States rose at a slower-than-expected pace in May, an industry survey showed Tuesday, ...

existing home sales, on a Seasonally Adjusted Annual Rate (SAAR) basis since 1993Calculated Risk:
Existing Home Sales Graphs -- The first graph shows existing home sales, on a Seasonally Adjusted Annual Rate (SAAR) basis since 1993.

Sales in May 2009 (4.77 million SAAR) were 2.4% higher than last month, and were 3.6% lower than May 2008 (4.95 million SAAR)...
----
Diana Oleck / CNBC Realty Check:
New Rules on Home Appraisals End Up Thwarting Many Sales -- I hate to say I told you so, but on May 1st and again on June 1st, I told you about the potential negative ramifications of the Home Valuation Code of Conduct. Today the Realtors confirmed what I had been hearing all across the mortgage industry.

“In the past month, we have suddenly been bombarded with many stories of, at the last moment, transactions falling apart because appraisals are coming in unrealistically low,” said National Association of Realtors Chief Economist Lawrence Yun. “As a result it opens up a new round of negotiations between a buyer and a seller or in many cases the buyer just steps away.” ...
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Housing v. Stocks

J. Weisenthal / Clusterstock:
Which Market Means More--Housing or Stock? -- Here's another fun chart from that state of the housing market 2009 report. It shows -- using data from 2007 -- just how much more significant home equity is to household wealth than stock holdings... So it's great that the stock market has rebounded from their March lows (whoo-hoo!) but until the orange bar starts to grow again, households won't be feeling wealthy for a long, long time...

Home Equity is much more important to Household Wealth than stocks----
Green 4 Green

Energy.gov:
Obama Administration Awards First Three Auto Loans for Advanced Technologies to Ford Motor Company, Nissan Motors and Tesla Motors — Obama Administration Awards First Three Auto Loans for Advanced Technologies to Ford Motor Company, Nissan Motors and Tesla Motors

Today, the Obama Administration announced $8 billion in conditional loan commitments for the development of innovative, advanced vehicle technologies that will create thousands of green jobs while ...
related:
Freep.com:
Ford to get $5.9 billion in loans for fuel efficient vehicles — Employees of Ford Motor Co. gave U.S. Department of Energy Secretary Steven Chu a standing ovation today when he announced that the Dearborn automaker would receive $5.9 billion in loans for the development of fuel efficient cars...

Money.aol.com:
Ford, Nissan, Tesla Said to Get US Loans — The Energy Department is lending money to the Ford Motor Co. and two other automakers from a $25 billion fund to develop fuel-efficient vehicles, congressional officials say...

Chuck Squatriglia / Wired: Feds Lend Tesla $465 Million to Build Model S
----
Financial Times:
Pessimistic executives cash out of shares — Growing pessimism about the prospects for a global economic recovery sent stock and commodity prices tumbling on Monday while new data showed that leading US corporate executives were cashing out of their share holdings at a rapid pace...
John Cole / Balloon Juice: We'll Just File This Under Green Shoots
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Guardian.co.uk / The Observer:
Goldman to make record bonus payout -- Staff at Goldman Sachs staff can look forward to the biggest bonus payouts in the firm's 140-year history after a spectacular first half of the year, sparking concern that the big investment banks which survived the credit crunch will derail financial regulation reforms.

A lack of competition and a surge in revenues from trading foreign currency, bonds and fixed-income products has sent profits at Goldman Sachs soaring, according to insiders at the firm.

Staff in London were briefed last week on the banking and securities company's prospects and told they could look forward to bumper bonuses...
discussion:
Heather / Crooks and Liars:
Cafferty File: Goldman Sachs may make its largest bonus payouts ever -- Goldman Sachs is on track to make the biggest bonus payouts in the company’s 140-year history

Derek Thompson / Atlantic: Are Goldman Sachs' New Record Bonuses Good?
Paul Farrell / MarketWatch: 'Pretty Boy' Paulson and the Goldman Gang
Ann Woolner / Bloomberg: At Banks on the Dole, Bonus Lust Isn't Dead
----
Wall Street Journal:
Three Banks Suspend Their TARP Dividends — At least three small, cash-strapped banks have stopped paying the U.S. government dividends that they owe because they got $315.4 million in capital infusions under the Troubled Asset Relief Program...
discussion:
Calculated Risk: “A number of banks” Suspend TARP Dividends
----
Michael Mandel / Economics Unbound:
Shock or Not? A Lost Decade for Jobs -- Private sector job growth was almost non-existent over the past ten years. Take a look at this horrifying chart:

10 year job growth - only 1.1%----
Greg Gutfeld / Fox News:
Making Sense of ‘Cash for Clunkers
discussion:
Ashley Rindsberg / The Huffington Post: Cash For Clunkers Redux
----

Calculated Risk

MishTalk - Mike Shedlock

Paul Krugman - NY Times

The Big Picture - Barry Ritholtz

naked capitalism - Yves Smith

Pragmatic Capitalism

Washington's Blog

Safe Haven

Paper Economy

The Daily Reckoning - Australia