Who Has Been Wrong On Housing, Credit, Economy, Dollar?

I really don’t like to single out any one firm or strategist for excessive criticism — hey, we’re all wrong on quite a regular basis. But, goddamn, if Bear Stearn’s David Malpass hasn’t been on the wrong side of more than a few major issues facing the economy over the past few years.

We first noted his wrong way cheerleading from a NYT  piece in 2005, where Malpass was complaining that "the way the Bureau of Economic Analysis
calculates savings, the changing asset values haven’t affected the
national savings rate."
  The problem with his analysis was that these variable assets (Stocks, Houses, etc.) fluctuate in price, while the other side of the ledger — debt to acquire these assets — did not. More recently, Malpass downplayed the credit crisis — just as Bear Stearns was blowing up from the, uh, credit crisis. And he’s been wrong on the dollar also.

~~~

But surely, he’s not the only one who was compromised by his shop, or who refused to see what was happening in real time. Anyone else on Wall Street worth mentioning?

What shills and montebanks, liars and hypocrites (strategists, pundits & fund managers) have been on the wrong side of the dollar, oil, equities, bonds, agriculture, consumer spending, precious metals, employment, homebuilders, financials, or technology ?  I want names, dates, and URLs.

Not just the people who were merely wrong — but those who knew, or should have known, better — but spread the hackery anyway.

What say ye?

\>


>

Previously:
What’s the U.S. Savings Rate Really?    http://bigpicture.typepad.com/comments/2005/05/whats_the_us_sa.html

Sources:
‘Don’t Panic About the Credit Market
DAVID MALPASS
WSJ, August 7, 2007
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB118645120890190059.html

Is It a Savings Crisis or a Math Error?   
DANIEL GROSS
NYT, May 22, 2005
http://www.nytimes.com/2005/05/22/business/yourmoney/22view.html

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What's been said:

Discussions found on the web:
  1. blackvegetable commented on Mar 6

    I have long held that Malpass should be prosecuted for malfeasance…..he is a “supply side” hack of the first stripe….

  2. rw commented on Mar 6

    Ken Fisher was one, calling the bottom on housing january ’07

  3. AGG commented on Mar 6

    Between March 10, 2000 and January 31, 2008, the average annual return from the S&P 500 is 1.52%, according the Financial Times . That’s nearly eight years of earning practically nothing on stocks. After factoring in inflation, the returns are negative.
    Now then who wanted us to invest in the stock market during this period ?
    1) Jubak and Markman at MSN Money
    2) Your pal Larry K.
    3) Everybody else on wall strreet.
    How about who’s been right most of the time ? Bill Bonner of the “Daily Reckoning” free news letter.

  4. Jon commented on Mar 6

    Who cares? All the bears were wrong from 2003 to 2006. S&P is back to late 2006 levels, big deal.

    Let’s point out all the Ritholtz quotes from that time that were early and wrong.

    ~~~

    BR: How do you figure? Over the past 10 years, the S&P has underperformed Bonds.

    If you bought in March 2003 (a great call by Cramer, BTW), you killed it.

    As to me, I have plenty of stinkers and own up to them — but they were legitimate (and I’ve had enough winners, and enough reality recognition that it more than makes up for the losers).

    But again, the issue is not who was merely wrong — who was shilling, full of crap, and losing people money spreading around stuff they knew was manure ?

  5. Paul Jones commented on Mar 6

    All who were paid to say whatever they said.

    He who pays the piper calls the tune and when the neo-con MIC owns the printing presses, they own the press as well.

  6. VennData commented on Mar 6

    ..was grabbing a bite this evening, sitting up at the bar and started chatting with a woman and we got to talking about the housing market. She told me home prices in Phoenix are still rising.

    So I guess, mea culpa, I was wrong about that.

  7. Barry Ritholtz commented on Mar 6

    Note: I am not saying who got a forecast of the future wrong — I am asking, who got the PRESENT wrong — who was in denial about reality as it happened ?

  8. Winston Munn commented on Mar 6

    Henry Paulson
    U.S.Treasury.gov
    July, 2007

    “BEIJING (Reuters) – Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson said on Wednesday the repricing of credit risk was hitting financial markets, but U.S. subprime mortgage fallout remained largely contained due to the strongest global economy in decades.”

  9. BDG123 commented on Mar 6

    Ritholtz was early on his prediction for Dow 6800. But, at least he recognized there were problems in an industry rife with group think. And, where people lose their jobs for being bearish. We’re still going to Dow 6800. And, there is a chance we’ll go lower than that.

    How about a prediction for Malpass? BS is going belly up.

    Btw, the dollar is going up. I’ve been early on this one but the macro factors that are going to drive it are still building. And, you don’t have to be bullish on the U.S. for the dollar to rise.

  10. Todd commented on Mar 6

    well the obvious – the national association of realtors, although I suppose one could argue they were not really wrong as they weren’t really trying to prognosticate but rather spew propaganda

  11. St. Pauli Girl commented on Mar 6

    VennData,

    I have bought a house in Southern California in 2004. I have just sold it and made 80% profits (it took me 4 months to sell and I lowered the price).
    Now, I am waiting for the stock market bottom to load up the truck with dirt-cheap stocks.

    I love this country!

    ________________________________________________

    Wrong Prediction
    Doug Kass being one of the “famed traders”. His favorite long is UltraShort Oil & Gas ProShares (DUG). It was his favorite when oil was trading at $85.

  12. vhehn commented on Mar 6

    don hayes. i like don hays but his call for a 27% gain in 2007 was way off.

  13. Marcus Aurelius commented on Mar 6

    George Bush and the Neocon Cabal on everything they ever said, reported, promised, or managed.

  14. GerryL commented on Mar 6

    Larry Kudlow’s record on subprime and all of the credit problems deserves mention.

    – in 2004 on the old Kudlow and Cramer show he stated that housing wasn’t a bubble.

    – he constantly denied that subprime was a problem

    – he finally admitted that subprime was a problem but that it was contained. one week before Bear Stearns CDO problems blew up he said that subprime was well contained and didn’t see any sign of the subprime problem contaminating anything else.

    – he still believes there will not be a recession and that Goldilocks is alive and well

    His record on the credit problems has been impeccable. He hasn’t been right yet.

  15. vhehn commented on Mar 6

    Cramer 1/24/08– “The most direct play off this huge change for Fannie Mae that hasn’t moved is Thornburg Mortgage… It should be a windfall for them. They move jumbo loans… I like the preferred, Thornburg Mortgage Preferred F (TMA-PF)… Try to buy it under $25… a pure win”.

    Cramer 1/25/08– On Fannie Mae (FNM) and Freddie Mac (FRE)…
    “I just think that they’re not investable… I didn’t like them on this news yesterday… Anything that makes them stick their necks out more than they have is not a great thing for them… I think this is better for Thornburg Mortgage (TMA)… not for FNM and FRE… I just think this is great for Thornburg… I like the Thornburg Mortgage Preferred F (TMA-PF).”

    Cramer 2/28/08– On Thornburg Mortgage Preferred F (TMA-PF)…
    “I’m sitting there reading (Treasury Secretary) Paulson, saying that the market will take care of itself… Thornburg is the market! Well, the preferred (TMA-PF) I still like…

    THORNBURG MTG PFD F (NYSE:TMA-PF)

    Last Trade: 10.80
    Change: -11.06 (50.59%)

  16. David commented on Mar 6

    There’s Don Luskin (www.poorandstupid.com) who was too bullish on stocks for too long. However, he does deserve credit for being an early bull on gold, oil, and other commodities.

    There’s Joe Larvorgna (Deutsche Bank), who seems like a pretty smart guy, but too unwilling to admit that stocks can go down as well as up.

    Then of course there’s Cramer. The Dow would have to go to 6,000 before he would be willing to admit that a bear market is possible.

    On the other side, credit should go to Joe Battipaglia (who is no “perma-bear”), and Gary Schilling who has been right on real estate, stocks, and until recently, treasury bonds.

  17. David commented on Mar 6

    Barry great blog,
    Obviously, one cannot be right all the time, but everyone ought to try, at least.
    You been right most of the time, better the most, keep up the good work. Someone at work recently pointed out that you tell the truth and they are right.
    “Truth is truth to the end of reckoning.”
    William Shakespeare

  18. Dee Leverage commented on Mar 6

    After the first rate cut last September, Mr. Kudlow said the dollar would rally due to renewed economic growth. Good call Larry. In the words of your pal Cramer “YOU KNOW NOTHING!!!!”

  19. steve commented on Mar 6

    Mike Darda on cnbc yesterday:
    http://www.cnbc.com/id/15840232?video=673992120

    this guy has been one of the most confident sounding guys who’s apparently NEVER wrong IF you ask him … NOW all of a sudden he’s at least realizing the credit mkt situation (?) as possible reason for going into recession … ? Thanks for nothing.

    What I dont get is why HE gets SO much air time and, well, guys like you get some, but not enough? Perhaps he sells stocks to the general public?

    What ever … it was a toss up, though between Darda and Brian Wesbury. Perhaps I’ll dig recent clip up from cnbc.com for you …

    Happy NFP day.

  20. Barry Ritholtz commented on Mar 6

    All I ask of anyone who speaks to the public or the media is to have an intellectually defendable thesis, do your homework, and tell the truth.

    I try to live up to that standard myself, and hold others to it also. It doesn’t mean you won’t be wrong on occasion, and anyone should all be forgiven honest errors.

    But I am specifically referring to those liars who were spewing bullshit — and knew it.

  21. Bob Newhart commented on Mar 6

    Let’s see:

    1. It takes Cramer about a day and a half to completely change his perspective on the markets. Give him until noonish on Monday to become bearish.

    2. The Fast Money guys. They change their mind just as often as Cramer except they take hours, not days, to change their minds.

    3. Everyone else on CNBC. Seriously, the network is a crock of s**t. Whenever the market rallies, they have the permabulls on to cheer it. Whenever there are huge drops, they bring out the bears. The only exception to this is that a**hole Gasparino who likes to pull a God and single-handedly move the market.

    4. Check out this special a**hole. http://www.resourceinvestor.com/pebble.asp?relid=41039.

  22. Chief Tomahawk commented on Mar 6

    Funny you should ask this BR. Steve Leisman, on tonight’s Kudlow show, got on Larry for previously lobbying for “shock and awe” interest rate cuts & now being in a state of panic over the dollar’s decline.

    Larry’s retort: he was for getting the rate down fast to 3% and then holding firm. I think Larry was the only one who remembers the second part of that. Not to mention, taking the rate down to 3% quickly did have a material effect on the dollar’s decline.

    So, what’s next? A term auction from the Fed to restore order to bond markets?

  23. Stuart commented on Mar 6

    #1

    Bob Pisani. Recall the famous Pisani quote about gold a couple of years ago “Believe me folks, gold is going nowhere.”
    Right Bob, good call. LOL Well, he recently re-hashed a more up to date version, “Believe me folks, Citibank will never go bankrupt!”

    Christ for that matter, there are so many that never had a clue what they were gabbing about re: Au, one could fill up a toilet paper roll. It’s a small handful that actually gets it.

    #2 Larry Kudlow, pick any date: “Goldilock is alive and well”

    #3 Anything spoken by Lawrence Yun or David Lareah at anytime.

    #4 Last but not least, Dick Cheney “Deficits don’t matter”

    badabing!

  24. Dee Leverage commented on Mar 6

    Two of the ABX Indicies have broken 10 cents on the dollar…two more will shortly. My work is progressing nicely.

    ABX Smoldering Crater

  25. Winston Munn commented on Mar 6

    Who is currently lying and knows it?

    Fitch, Moodys, S&P

  26. Chief Tomahawk commented on Mar 6

    By the way, how about that Tom Adkins vs. Peter Schiff debate about home prices in 2007? I know it’s on You Tube someplace, but I don’t have the time to look for it (sorry).

    But in the clip, Adkins said of 2007, home prices would appreciate nationwide by 10%. Schiff said no way. I don’t know whether Adkins has come clean yet or not.

  27. Julia commented on Mar 6

    Michael Panzner has been bullish on USD and “sitting in cash” while this “cash” has depreciated by 15% in value.

    ~~~

    BR: Was he shilling, or merely wrong?

  28. Grant commented on Mar 6

    It appears like the report on New Home Sales my be very optimistic, based on a review posted at housingnumbers.com. They indicate that January new home sales may have been overstated by 15%.

  29. Stuart commented on Mar 6

    Here’s a worthy #5 come to think about it.

    2/23/2004
    Greenspan says ARMs might be better deal

    By Sue Kirchhoff and Barbara Hagenbaugh, USA TODAY
    WASHINGTON — Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan said Monday that Americans’ preference for long-term, fixed-rate mortgages means many are paying more than necessary for their homes and suggested consumers would benefit if lenders offered more alternatives.
    In a standing-room-only speech to the Credit Union National Association meeting here, Greenspan also said U.S. household finances appeared generally sound, despite rising debt levels and bankruptcy filings. Low interest rates and surging home prices have given consumers flexibility to manage debt, he said.

    “Overall, the household sector seems to be in good shape,” Greenspan said.

    AND

    “American consumers might benefit if lenders provided greater mortgage product alternatives to the traditional fixed-rate mortgage,” Greenspan said.

    Way to go Mr. Bubbles… good call. He should have known better, on both statements.

  30. Dee Leverage commented on Mar 6

    BTW, Dow is sitting right on neckline of a massive head and shoulder. A poor job report tomorrow would be catastrophic…a breakaway gapdown below support. 10,000 would come very quickly.

    How Now Dow?

  31. Rodrigo commented on Mar 6

    Bill Miller on the dollar and on Countrywide from the 3Q 2007 Value Trust Commentary–Nov 2nd:

    “Our current account deficit has already begun to decline, and with the dollar deeply undervalued against the euro and the pound, and trading at 40-year lows on a trade-weighted basis, that trend should continue.”

    “The price action on both sides was driven by emotion — first fear, then relief — and was hardly the result of a careful analysis of Countrywide’s long term business value. That, by the way, we think is in the $40’s compared to its current price of about $14-15.”

    Countrywide closed today at $5.20

    Disclaimer: These were merely bad calls but I think it’s safe to say he wasn’t spreading around stuff he knew was manure

  32. Andy Tabbo commented on Mar 6

    Dennis Kneale on any day of the week is always wrong. He’s been wrong for many, many weeks in a row now. He’s been poudin the table on stocks and Google for at least two months now. BTW: 1297 is the key closing basis must hold for S&P 500. If it closes below this level, the market will fall to 1217-1225 in the short run. If the market can hold this level, then you will see a very sharp bear market correction targeting a 1400 handle…. If I’m wrong on this, then you can count me as a shill.

  33. Lost in Space commented on Mar 6

    Ken Fisher brayed that all was fine June07 in the FT. A week later BSC announced their first fund implosions, kicking off the crisis. Fisher was back in the FT a couple of weeks ago, still talking about the rally to come. Guess he’s got something to sell.

  34. Will T commented on Mar 6

    Tom ‘home-prices-will-go-up-ten-percent-in-2007’ Adkins made a comment on 12/31/06 on Fox News Business that home prices will increase ten percent in 2007.

    Mike ‘tiny-default-rate-contained-to-subprime’ Norman made a comment on the same show that housing prices will also go up ten percent in 2007.

  35. Stuart commented on Mar 6

    One more, having a bit of fun with this one…as you can tell,.

    Marcy Kaptur: Winner for this little gem a few weeks ago….LOL

    “Marcy Kaptur (D-Ohio): Seeing how you were the former CEO of Goldman Sachs…
    Mr. Bernanke: No…no..no..You are confusing me with the Treasury Secretary.
    Ms. Kaptur: Where were you sir?
    Mr. Bernanke: I was the CEO of the Princeton economics department.
    Ms. Kaptur: Sorry, I got you confused with the other one”

  36. The Dirty Mac commented on Mar 6

    “All I ask of anyone who speaks to the public or the media is to have an intellectually defendable thesis, do your homework, and tell the truth.”

    Like most news programming, the financial media is entertainment first and foremost.

  37. Eric commented on Mar 6

    Don Luskin-In November he touted the bottom on financial stocks in an article on trendmacro.com, I believe it is still up. He held up his fists on Kudlow and like a complete fool put his hand over his fist and said this is how he is buying financials.

    Jerry Bowyer-This moron did not see anything wrong with the economy for the last few months..unbelievable someone would pay for this guys advice.

    Dennis Kneale-see Jerry Bowyer.

    Cramer-not only has he been dead wrong..the bad part is he lies and finally Rick Santelli called him out. gs-350-goog-1000, lost the bet to bolling at the beginning of 07 when he claimed financials would outperform metals.

    Kudlow-he is in la la land.

    Bernie Schaeffer-his 08 outlook called for stocks to climb the wall of pessimism and break out, now 1500 points lower he is worried about the downside.

    Najarian on fast money-at $200 apple was his favorite stock for 2008 and the brokers were his favorite sector.

    Finneran on fast money-has bagheld crox down for about 60% since she got in.

    Adami-keeps saying for the last couple hundred on gold how he used to trade at goldman and it is going down..nice call guy.

    Adami pt 2/Macke- intel above 26 is a must buy.

    Kass-his only problem was he was a month early back in september on alot of his calls and had to have taken a good bath. I give him credit though his long term views have been spot on..he just has had some timing issues. He did call PMI and the other insurers back in July/Aug.

    Guys who have nailed it in my opinion
    -Peter Schiff-got clients out of the dollar and into foreign dividends and gold for the past few years.

    Panzner-reading Fin Armaggedon was the best $20 I have spent.

    Carter Worth-this guy has been spot on with calls on the miners, market calls, this guy is absolute money. He recently recommended wft, which is looking strong.

    Gartman-nice calls on pot, short the market, commodities.

    Jim Rogers-nailed the commodities and called the fed on all the bs in 2007.

    Gary Shilling-nailed his call on T-bills, put luskin in his place on kudlow with luskin was whining about how low the yield was and Shilling said yeah but I am sitting on a 50% gain on them.

    Ron Paul-only congressman who grilled Bernanke on the dollar crisis BEFORE it happened.

  38. Eric commented on Mar 6

    Follow up:

    Why is David Malpass giving any financial/economic advice? That is the equivalent of asking Mozillo of Countrywide how to run a mortgage shop.

  39. E commented on Mar 6

    Larry Kudlow, on December 5th, 2007, almost nailed the date that US GDP growth went negative with this blog post:

    The Recession Debate Is Over [Larry Kudlow]

    There ain’t no recession.

    Today’s ADP private jobs survey of 189,000 could produce a 200,000 non-farm payroll job gain for November. I don’t know — these wacky BLS numbers are subject to huge revisions. But the ADP was a huge number. In fact, jobs seem to be picking up major steam from their August low, rising in September and October. And now I’m expecting a good increase in November to be reported by the BLS this Friday.

    Plus, profits are stronger than people seem to understand. The ISMs are fine. Productivity, reported out today, soared to over 6 percent annually in the third quarter. That’s the best number in four months for output per person.

    On top of that, business inflation is zero. Flat. Nada.

    The recession debate is over. It’s not gonna happen. Time to move on.

    At a bare minimum, we are looking at Goldilocks 2.0. (And that’s a minimum). The Bush boom is alive and well. It’s finishing up its sixth splendid year with many more years to come.

    12/05 04:04 PM

  40. JasRas commented on Mar 6

    I am not naming names, but it seems that what typifies “the worst” are two sorts: Those who are “perma”-whatever, and those who oscillate so fast that they’re not catching the trend, but the emotion…

    Fleckenstein is rarely of value because even in the darkest hours of late 2002-early 2003 he still couldn’t see opportunity. He finds only despair-save for a couple specific equity picks, but macro has never changed in the eight plus years I’ve seen his articles.

    Changing too fast—well Cramer is the prototypical example of this, but I don’t think he means to be. He is a trader at heart and has attempted in the past years to change a couple decades of behavior. He would prove more valuable to all to recognize his strength and run with it, because he waffles to quickly to pick any “investment”. He’s a speed dater trying to marry. Won’t work and affects the quality of his body of work.

    Great strategists: Saut, Bittles, Hays, dare I say Todd-o Harrison?

    Great technicians: Meisler

    Worst thing that could have ever happened to financial markets?
    CNBC

    Worst fiction? Ben Stein

    Biggest lie of 2008:

    Weak first half, better second half, finish positive mid-to-high single digits…

    Least important topic so far in 2008:

    Are we or aren’t in a recession? Irrelevant it is, as Yoda would say.

  41. Chief Tomahawk commented on Mar 6

    Does anyone else remember Bob Pisani saying on camera the day Worldcom imploded, he was buying shares for himself? When the anchor asked why he was buying into a meltdown, Bob stated he was playing “the dead cat bounce”. Sure enough the orders got filled that from like 8 to 16 cents, and because of optimism Worldcom, though a fraud, had some type of cash flow, rebounded to 80 cents or so. That’s when I learned about the dead cat bounce.

  42. VJ commented on Mar 6

    Jon,

    S&P is back to late 2006 levels, big deal.

    Sorry, but the S&P 500 isn’t even anywhere near back to where it was in 2000, in inflation-adjusted dollars.
    .

  43. badhaikuguy commented on Mar 6

    I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: There are only two market metrics that don’t lie – price and volume. Everything else is fog. That’s why I don’t read WSJ, IBD, etc etc, don’t watch CNBC and could care less about quarterly or annual reports. BR’s comment about Cramer’s March 2003 long call sparked my interest long enough to reference my notes for the first few weeks of March 2003. Here’s a tidbit from 3/12/03:

    Before the open, a rumor that Osama had been captured sent the futures on a huge spike. The rumor was discredited and the spike evaporated to a down open. Markets trended down all morning. The 12:30pm 30 minute bar for SPY printed close to 2,950,000 shares or roughly double the highest 30 minute bar volume for the last few weeks as SPY tested major support.

    I remember that bar and it’s volume well – in fact, it actually made me rub my eyes and go “whoa!” out loud. In retrospect, this was the turning point that kicked off the last bull (although the actual bear low for the S&P happened on 10/10/02 @ 768.63 – the middle low of the triple bottom) the March 12, 2003 12:30pm 30 minute bar @ 788.90. Everybody wants to be Nostradamus. I’m just a leaf in the stream.

  44. Pat G. commented on Mar 6

    Just about everything that has come from the White House, the FED, the NAR, Fitch, Moody’s, CNBC, the monolines, the banks, and the mortgage lenders has been a crock of manure for some time now. Check out their archived press releases at their sites.

  45. kk commented on Mar 7

    Between March 10, 2000 and January 31, 2008, the average annual return from the S&P 500 is 1.52%, according the Financial Times . That’s nearly eight years of earning practically nothing on stocks. After factoring in inflation, the returns are negative.
    Now then who wanted us to invest in the stock market during this period ?

    AGG, I was in the market, and I am happy with the returns.

    I have five middle of the road equity mutual funds (non momentum) that have compounded annually at 11.6%, 7.31, 12.44, 10.47, & 9.79 from the time period 3/10/00-1/31/08, the same time frame of the S&P 1.52%. All of these funds are currently down 10%+ for the year, and down 15%+ since 11/07, and in all probability they will each finish the year solidly in the red. Each of these funds lost over 15% (and one was down 23%) in 2002. The urge to “just do something” (sell) during times like the present are huge mistakes over the long term.

    FWIW, several of these funds have had to raise cash for expected redemptions.

    Ken Fisher’s PURIX fund compounded at 4.6% from 3/10/00 – 1/31/08.

  46. Ed Miller commented on Mar 7

    Worst Energy Analyst = Tim Evans (the one who is wrong on oil all the time)

    http://www.google.com/search?as_q=tim+evans&hl=en&client=firefox-a&rls=org.mozilla%3Aen-US%3Aofficial&hs=8fU&num=10&btnG=Google+Search&as_epq=&as_oq=oil+stock+analyst&as_eq=&lr=&cr=&as_ft=i&as_filetype=&as_qdr=all&as_nlo=&as_nhi=&as_occt=any&as_dt=i&as_sitesearch=&as_rights=&safe=images

    Worst (most biased) CNBC commentator = Larry Kudlow, but I have no links

    Worst PermaBulls = Don Hays and Donald Luskin

    Worst Economist = Arthur Laffer, who created the Laffer Curve, which I call the Laugher Curve

  47. vhehn commented on Mar 7

    Jim Cramer’s ‘Stop Trading!’: Fed Forgiven01/30/08 – 03:31

    The Federal Reserve finally got it right by cutting its target rate 50 basis points, Jim Cramer said on CNBC’s “Stop Trading!” segment Wednesday.

    “There’s no interpretation, this was just positive,” Cramer said. “We have money flush from the sidelines.” He believes that the financials will mount a recovery based on the Fed’s move.

  48. kahunabear commented on Mar 7

    I just wish guys like Pisani, Jim Goldman and Dennis Kneale would stop spewing all their rose colored, mother GE, perma bull bs. Aren’t they supposed to be journalist?

  49. Rich Shinnick commented on Mar 7

    Russ Winter at The Wall Street Examiner and Ben Jones at The Housing Bubble Blog were dead on right about the credit housing blow up long before the word subprime was ever uttered on CNBC. These guys are bloggers and get a lot of great input and discussion on their blogs from people in the trenches. You can learn more on a day from their blogs than from 6 months of CNBC..there are others.

    So, who screwed up big time? The main stream media in TOTALITY because they never interviewed anyone who had been flipping burgers one day and bying $5 million in property the next. If they had, at least a few people might have said “WTF, this can’t end well” long before a rock fell on them.

    Instead, who got the airtime? Guys like Malpass who are so far removed from Main Street that they probably don’t even know anyone who shops at Wal Mart because the HAVE TO SHOP there, and still couldn’t find places like Riverside or Bakersfield (subprime ground zero) on a map!

    So, who F’d Up? They all did, and you know what, most of them still don’t get it. You have to wonder how they will rewrite history to explain it when it is over.

    Great Blog Barry.

  50. hal commented on Mar 7

    Ben Stein vs Peter Shiff-sometime early last fall on Fox:

    Peter was saying banks and brokerages in deep trouble and singled out Merrill.

    Ben Stein (BS for short) chided and dressed down Peter saying Merrill was a strong buy and is one of the best investments around.

    Peter probably has that clip still on his site.

    Also second the Tom Atkins vs Peter and Mike Norman vs Peter.

    If these issues were not so serious they would hilarious.

    At least Fox keeps having Peter back: CNBS kicked him off. Too negative:

    Peter probably suffering with his gold and foreign currency positions. Not nearly as good as holding the US banks and Brokerages or housing related stocks.

  51. drey commented on Mar 7

    I nominate Bob Brinker for insisting as recently as last fall that “inflation is dead”.

    F%*king guy should stick to explaining the intricacies of no-load mutual funds to elderly widows and leave the heavy lifting to someone else…

  52. Eren commented on Mar 7

    i remember Bernanke said it is contained.

    Stock Trader’s Almanac Dow is going to 16K by year end (Dec ’07)

    Cramer said it is contained, it is like 1990s, buyyyyy

    Kudlow

    Kudlow’s guests except Joe Battipaglia and BR.
    (even though i remember you said, BR, Joe became bear, i should be a bull, maybe a joke?)

    Joe Larvorgna, Paulson, Bernie Schaeffer, Art Laffer, Jason Trennert, Ken Fisher, Tobin Smith
    all fox channel and guests :)

    recently:
    Pickens (shorted oil at 98)
    Gartman (sold half of his gold positions,
    short on oil)
    Doug Kaas(bullish on financials)

    it is easier to say who got right:
    Jim Rogers, big time,
    BR, also very good calls like mosaic
    Gary Shilling
    Peter Schiff,
    Rick Santelli, Polar Bear, Grizzly bear

    i am bullish as of today though :)))

  53. Jessica commented on Mar 7

    Let’s stop nickel and diming:
    Greenspan telling Congress we needed to cut taxes to prevent excess surpluses.
    Greenspan advising people to use adjustable-rate mortgages when interest rates were rising.

  54. B.B. commented on Mar 7

    Ben Stein, I have nothing against the guy, but he mentioned on the Fox’s Sat shows many times last year, Subprime was “miniscule” and contained. Now faced with reality he blames the shorts and negative media for driving down the index’s.

    Gary Kaultbalm, in approx Oct on Fox Sat morning shows, said Dow at 18,000 in 18 months(sorry i dont have that one recorded, so its approx).

    Karen Finerman of Fast money. Bought Home Depot last year. As mentioned prior, Croxs at approx $36. Last week bought fannie mae on that 1 day bounce up. Held BIIB, at its highs and took the hit. Shes terrible.

    Cramer, pick a day. But he did call GOOG to $750, it went to $747.50ish. thats not a bad call.

    I watch most of these shows everday(for laughs), but its interesting to see former perma-bulls now changing their minds, when the Dow is -2000 pts off its highs. I am going to get bullish if this keeps up.

    Our very own CINEFOZ, although since his posts last month of dow and housing moonshots are still to early to brand him dead ass wrong yet.

  55. Human Observer commented on Mar 7

    ANybody that still promotes tax cuts (and spending increases as in starting wars) will solve every economic problem. Then these same people ignore the resulting debt. Takes special kinds of people. The DEBTS DON’T MATTER CROWD. True supply siders.

    Anybody that still believes deregulation works in all cases, such as utilities (natural monopolies) banks, etc etc. Markets will fix everything in all cases. In the end that maybe true, but after companies take bankruptcy, debt explodes and
    credit markets freeze. In the end the economy will implode.

  56. Human Observer commented on Mar 7

    ANybody that still promotes tax cuts (and spending increases as in starting wars) will solve every economic problem. Then these same people ignore the resulting debt. Takes special kinds of people. The DEBTS DON’T MATTER CROWD. True supply siders.

    Anybody that still believes deregulation works in all cases, such as utilities (natural monopolies) banks, etc etc. Markets will fix everything in all cases. In the end that maybe true, but after companies take bankruptcy, debt explodes and
    credit markets freeze. In the end the economy will implode.

  57. mlnberger commented on Mar 7

    I wonder how all these wrong-headed bulls will act when a Democrat is in the White House and that party is firmly in control of the Congress. My guess is that they will not only recognize the dismal reality but also have a convenient scapegoat. “bush boom” indeed.

  58. BG commented on Mar 7

    There were plenty of good liars in 2000, 2001 & 2002. I bought the QQQs after they dropped from 100 to 75 and still lost my ass. They eventually went to 19! Ouch!! I haven’t had any confidence in what I have heard since. I got religion and now put all of my money in my mattress. I now sleep a hell of a lot better.

  59. nmewn commented on Mar 7

    Barry,
    Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. analyst Roger Freeman…gave the all clear to short Bear Stearns…at the end of June 07…LOL.

    The money quote;
    “Shares of Bear Stearns are “attractively valued,” trading at 1.5 times book value, said Freeman, who has an “overweight” rating. The stock may be “under pressure while the market gains comfort that the new financing doesn’t pose a material risk to the company’s equity capital base,” he said.”

    Link;
    http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601087&sid=aD8cmFlECBE8&refer=home

    Bear has lost 50% of it’s share price since then…my addition to the Hall of Shame…if it was “attractively valued” then…it must be a screaming buy now…LOL.

  60. CL commented on Mar 7

    August 5th of 2007

    The Facts, the consequences, the fallout, and the potential solution:…all eyes on a FN & Freddie bailout

    Lets face it, its pretty hard to be positive in this market, and amongst everyone I speak with, I think im probably the most negative on a macro level. I think the economists I see on CNBC who call this “good for the economy” and this is “contained to the subprime sector” have it completely wrong. I thought it was best that I write my thoughts down because the more I have this conversation, the more Im convinced that if nothing fundamentally changes in this market, we are doomed for an unwind of massive proportions. Worst than 1998, 2003, and any other dislocation otherwise caused by credit or leverage….and its only the beginning.

    Ignoring all structured and synthetic products, for starters, lets look at the foundation ….Mortgage lending.
    Ive received many questions asking about the current state of the Alt-A and Prime markets given the lack of liquidity of Subprime WL sales/origination, New Issue Securitizations and Secondary markets. At this point, 1 out of every 4 Subprime wholeloan package trades between 93-00 and 95-00 (the rest are portfolioed), and the actual cost to originate hovering around 101-16 (5-7pt loss at current levels), the current state of the subprime wholeloan market is not sustainable. So lets look at who is left; Since Sept 2006, over 109 (2 more in the last 5hrs) Mortgage Lenders up and down the credit curve have gone bankrupt or otherwise closed their doors. The current size of the US sector is said to be 12.1 trillion, with roughly 13.4% of these loans being
    Subprime. If 109 of the of Originators and countless homebuilders are now non existent, where do these borrowers go? Maybe Alt-A or Prime?

    Think again.

    Over the last couple of weeks, fearing a massive supply surge from Subprime to Alt-A or B originations, most Originators have not only jacked rates (Current Jumbo Prime Rates alone are 8%…and rising), but have tightened guidelines where Alt-A is looking more like Prime. Over the last few weeks, multiple top tier lenders have pulled Alt-A financing lines or tightened guides effectively pricing themselves out of the market. So where is all of this production going? To answer that question you should look at the only lenders who are still in business (either owned by Wall St or independent) and their ability to balance sheet loans. But this in my opinion is not sustainable either, and something has to give as this liquidity dries up (refer to CFC liquidity – 5yr CDS 375). Which is why I think August is going to be one of the worst months given Brokers/Dealers are running up against Quarter End balance sheet limits and most investors on the sidelines looking to see when an otherwise irrational market shows signs of resolve.

  61. A.S. commented on Mar 7

    Quite frankly, though an admirable effort, it is beating a dead horse. What is so much more important is pointing out the next disaster waiting in the wings, with socio-economic implications for hundreds of millions (low estimate!!) of people the world over who already have to do a hard day’s labor to fill their rice bowl.

    The speculative money flowing into agricultural commodities is UNCONSCIONABLE. It is one thing to hedge your crop, or your processed food production. It is quite another when hedge funds and futures speculators
    enter a narrow market and drive human food products to prices unheard of in many decades. Shame on the politicians and the ethanol lobby for exacerbating the problem.

    Who in the financial press is pointing out the quite real possibility that politicians may well have to get involved and put a stop to this speculation? I only see David Fuller of http://www.fullermoney address the subject in those terms. Everyone else is just on the siren call of “invest in ag”….A quick buck at the expense of the masses? Wall Street screwing everyone’s happiness this time for necessities like food? Without doubt we are going from bad to worse, if that is possible.

    Everyone knows by now who was right and who was wrong. You want to be ahead of the curve, talk about what’s coming …! Bring this up next time you are on CNBC or discuss things with Mr. Kudlow!

    My five cents worth.

  62. rickrude commented on Mar 7

    Kudlow is probably the most idiotic
    person out there, just continues to make
    wrong calls since the tech bubble top.
    No one takes him up on it.
    He is a capitalist when it comes to the avg joe and a socialist when it comes to big
    american corporations.

  63. rickrude commented on Mar 7

    someone mentioned Don Luskin, he made a great call on gold at the bottom, I mean really at the bottom of the charts back , he was not even a commodity bull , but he was the only guy besides Rogers that nailed the bottom of the re-flation theme. Another mention to Bill Meehan for making a call on Oil just before he passed away from the sept 11 tragedy. He also called the bottom on oil and called a long term secular bull on oil before he was killed.

    So we do have some bright guys out there that are not running a CNBC show.

  64. Jack commented on Mar 7

    you could start with the graph of CERA’s constantly wrong call on oil prices over the past 6 years. The chart at the top summarizes it nicely.
    http://www.theoildrum.com/node/3627

  65. john commented on Mar 7

    The list is endless let’s face it. Basically anyone with a vested interest in the market going up was peddling happy talk. Kudlow, Stein and Cramer have got a lot of mentions and justifiably because while anyone with an ounce of financial savvy knows these guys are for the birds there are a lot of little old ladies and guys out there, not to mention financially illiterate get rich quick kids, who believe this nonsense. Kudlow and Stein are basically shills for the GOP, they really have no other agenda, it’s what they get paid for. What Cramers agenda is god knows other than wanting to be a chair smashing celeb. The mystery is why these guys are continually featured on TV shows when they are to financial reality what the SS was to Jewish child care. I’ve virtually stopped watching CNBC because it’s cred as a serious source of financial comment is nada. A pity. If Rupert has any sense he’ll try to make his new station serious but it will probably just turn into financial version of Survivor or Dancing with the Stars.

  66. Tom D commented on Mar 7

    Dennis Kneale. Hands down the most egregious of the abovementioned shills. Can anyone tell me why Kneale can speak with any authority on markets and equity valuations? Seems to me that his expertise is in technology and not the valuation of technology firms. I appreciate the input!

  67. Tom F. commented on Mar 7

    Put that loud-mouth bastard Cramer at the top of your list.

  68. FormerlyknownasJS commented on Mar 7

    Bernanke surely deserves mention here, especially his claim, at the peak of the housing bubble, that home price appreciation was supported by economic fundamentals. Riiiiiight. I think it’s safe to say he should have known better, and he was just dead wrong. Anyone want to bet he’s wrong on growth, recession and inflation as well?

  69. The Soft commented on Mar 7

    With No doubt, the leading shill
    is Dennis Kneale who is willing to opinionate on any topic regardless of his complete lack of knowledge on said topic, and does so with great rudeness. Kudlow is #2.
    #3 goes to all the morons who believe tax cuts pay for themselves, just like you can lose weight by eating more.

  70. slouch commented on Mar 7

    “Fitch, Moodys, S&P”

    Nailed it.

    Kudlow’s a Republican shill, Ben and Harry ARE wearing underpants on their heads.

  71. m3 commented on Mar 7

    Lakshman Achuthan, manager of the ECRI has been really irritating. He’s been saying “NO RECESSION IN SIGHT” for ages, which is sad b/c his shop was pretty reputable.

    Achuthan of ECRI Sees No Recession Risk, No `Runaway’ Inflation (July, 2007)

    ^ right when the BSC hedge funds went under

    then he changes his mind:

    Achuthan of ECRI Sees US Slowdown But No Recession (November, 2007)

    ^ He says that J6P is wrong in thinking a recession is coming

    Achuthan, Economist, Says U.S. Recession Is `Not Likely’ (January, 2008)

    ^ says inflation is not a problem, no recession

  72. seamus commented on Mar 7

    National

    Association of

    Realtors

  73. John F. commented on Mar 7

    Many great nominations, but without breaking it down into specialized categories, it’s too hard to choose….almost: I’m with Stuart and Jessica in saying you have to start with Greenspan.

    OT: A couple of months ago, I was about to cover some large short index positions, when my mother–who I’m not sure knows HOW to buy a stock–excitedly told me about a couple names she wanted to buy after seeing Cramer’s show. That single piece of information decided a very profitable non-trade. Let it not be said that TV financial journalism is worthless!

  74. rickrude commented on Mar 7

    i would say if we took a poll here,
    Kudlow takes the #1 position by a big margin over Cramer’s #2.

    Kudlow is on another level.

    I know Barry can’t mouth off too much here, but I can.

  75. Darkness commented on Mar 7

    Stuart,
    Not to defend Mr. Bubbles, but I don’t think when he made that speech he was saying, “please offer consumers a mortgage with a teaser rate they can barely afford such that when the rate adjusts they will have to be foreclosed on. Oh, and while you’re at it, please fraudulently elevate housing valuations and look the other way while the loan brokers screw you blind.”

    BUT, I will say, that ever since Greenspan’s testimony at the very very beginning of the Bush administration, where congress wanted to “avoid paying down the national debt too fast” and out of thousands of words Greenspan said that day, they latched onto one line about reducing the tax burden being good for the economy… that it was clear Bubbles did not have a good grasp of how the context of his words and the greed of those around him affected what he said. Which is odd, because he understood how to set up the preliminaries for rate changes. Unlike Bernanke, who shows his panicky hand the first chance he gets.

  76. Aurora Borealis commented on Mar 7

    The USA is about to nationalise a great deal of its financial sector. Watch out the process (FHLB, the GSEs).

    Thus everybody who doesn’t believe in state capitalism will be a liar and hypocrite.

    I believe that historians will designate Bush as the first Socialist President of the USA.

  77. I remember commented on Mar 8

    Jim Rogers deserves an honorable shilling mention for all of the years in the 1990s he told people to load up on commodities (and short Japanese bonds, which have rallied ever since). He’s like a broken clock who happens to be right at the present moment, and he will no doubt still be telling people to buy commodities right before they crash.

    But the top place (as someone already mentioned) has to go to the rating agencies. If they had done THEIR job, we wouldn’t be in the mess we are in now – despite what Greenspan or anybody else did.

  78. InvestorinPA commented on Mar 8

    Peter Schiff got it right, as did Jim Rogers, Ron Paul, and many other libertarian leaning individuals. The Republicans and Dems got it wrong!

  79. InvestorinPA commented on Mar 8

    Peter Schiff got it right, as did Jim Rogers, Ron Paul, and many other libertarian leaning individuals. The Republicans and Dems got it wrong!

  80. Lance commented on Mar 8

    Some are mere shillers, most however just look at things wrong, the most obvious case being those who use variations of the Fed Model to proclaim stocks cheap. Nor was being bearish the last few years wrong, as some people imply, because they were early. That is timing, of more interest to me is those who can or cannot spot when taking risk in the market is likely to pay off over time. Precise timing being nice, but hard to rely on.

    Many great money managers trail for years but when the market turns, end up finishing well ahead of those who point out how long they were “wrong.” Jeremy Grantham comes to mind, John Hussman in the past, and likely this time around as well, Rob Arnott. I could go on.

    I should also point out that some people say nonsense quite often, or at least are way too bullish when talking about valuation, the economy, etc., but can be good money managers because their views on such things are not what drives their success, even though they may think it does. This is especially true of traders. The danger is that readers may not realize that and acting on it themselves court disaster.

    So my list includes some of all these types. Certainly this means a long list, here are a few:

    Ken Fisher-

    Fed model guy, way too bullish as a rule. He does seem to do a reasonable job managing money (though that can be hard to be sure of with his private clients) it just hasn’t been because he understands valuation or economics. I expect those flaws will be a killer for his clients this time, and has caused PURIX, which did a reasonably good job in the last downturn, to trail World benchmarks over the last five years primarily because he thought the US was a good buy. I found that baffling relative to the rest of the world and the likely decline of the dollar, and think his stance now is near madness.

    Larry Kudlow-

    Nice man who seems incapable of separating his politics from his view of the markets and the economy. Also, while less free market oriented than my self, like many who are biased toward market based economics, he seems to think that means capitalism is somehow always positive, rising asset values are always to be cheered, and anything that goes wrong is due to government policy. Uh, free markets are wonderful, in my opinion better than the alternative, attempts to fix them likely worse than not, but they are human institutions. They crash, they go to excess, they are imperfect.

    Jeff Miller

    Bright guy, unfortunately believes in the Fed Model, thinks the Fed has far more power than they do, has unjustified faith in policy makers, way too impressed with people who have gaudy credentials, ignores those who do who disagree with him and acts as if it is the experts versus the unqualified bears. I deeply enjoy reading him, think he makes some very trenchant points, but frankly find his complaints about expertise ridiculous. I’ll stack up the credentials of many bears any day against those he gives more credence. Given that, less credentialed analysts mining the same territory should be given a hearing.

    Every Economist and analyst at the NAR-

    Shillers all. ‘Nuff said.

    Don Hays-

    Fed model guy. Pretty good at picking relative winners, but his valuation model worked once on accident (it took the tech bubble to signal sell) and since then it has kept him saying buy, buy, buy.

    Bill Miller-

    Great relative stock picker who has little of value to say on overall valuation. Some of his success due to right place at right time for his style of value investing. A couple of years ago he banged the table about the lack of value in hard assets when you could own great companies like Citigroup. The US was a screaming buy. All three assertions showed a stunning lack of appreciation for value, or the economics driving the world.

    Abby Joseph Cohen-

    Yeah, Barton Biggs didn’t “get it” in the winter of 2000. Warren Buffet didn’t either. She hasn’t recovered since and shouldn’t.

    Most fund family, wirehouse, investment bank strategists-

    Mostly shillers.

    Most economists-

    General equilibrium models oddly enough continue to show things trending toward equilibrium. Imagine that.

    Thus, the economy is almost always going to move in a narrow positive range according to such models, and yet it seems to defy that every few years with declines or massive spurts they recognize after the fact.

  81. ef commented on Mar 8

    When you say “wrong” and it applies to money and Wall Street, I don’t think the person doesn’t know their stuff, I think “what’s in it for them“. Follow the money. Blame that on folks like Jack Grubman, among many, who colored his analyst reports for then CEO of Citigroup, Sandy Weill. But I’m glad you are trying to hold the folks today accountable, because the media/journalists hardly do.

  82. Donald E. L. Johnson commented on Mar 9

    I discount what is said by:

    Politicians and bureaucrats.
    Portfolio managers trying attract investors, which is easier in bull than in bear markets.

    Sell side analysts who know commissions go up on buy recommendations and in bull markets, not bear markets.

    Corporate executives who are trying to sell stock.

    Traders touting their trades.

    CNBC shills who know ratings and ad revenues rise in bull markets.

    Anyone selling books, consulting services, etc.

    Bank and Wall Street economists who know their clients kill messengers bringing bad news.

    Who do I listen to?

    The markets.

  83. CeeHeights commented on Mar 10

    From Bloomberg

    Fed Doesn’t See Subprime Mortgages as Threat: John M. Berry
    2007-03-01 00:15 (New York)

    Commentary by John M. Berry
    March 1 (Bloomberg) — Federal Reserve officials don’t
    expect mounting losses on subprime adjustable-rate mortgages to
    lead to a credit crunch that could significantly harm the U.S.
    economy.
    Nor is there concern at the central bank that the losses
    will threaten financial institutions.
    In contrast, worries about both of those possibilities have
    been heard with increasing frequency since last month when about
    20 subprime lenders shut down and others reported large losses.
    Fed Chairman Ben S. Bernanke acknowledged the losses in
    testimony before the Senate Banking Committee on Feb. 14.
    Nevertheless, he said, “I don’t think it has, at this point,
    implications for the aggregate economy in terms of the ongoing
    expansion.”
    He reiterated that view yesterday in an appearance before
    the House Budget Committee.
    In a Feb. 20 talk to students at Duke University’s Fuqua
    School of Business, Fed Governor Susan Schmidt Bies explained
    why the Fed is much less concerned than some investors and
    analysts.
    Bies stressed that subprime ARMs represent only about
    “seven to eight percent of all outstanding mortgages.”
    Furthermore, the delinquencies are concentrated mostly in those
    issued last year, she said.
    “If you look at what’s happening in mortgage markets this
    year, what you see is, in the aggregate, the mortgage markets
    are doing very well in terms of credit quality,” Bies said.
    Subprime mortgages are given to people with poor or limited
    credit records or high debt and at higher interest rates.

    Limited Impact

    Some Wall Street analysts, including economists Torsten
    Slok of Deutsche Bank Securities and Richard Berner of Morgan
    Stanley, also doubt that subprime mortgage delinquencies will be
    a problem for the economy.
    In a note to clients on Feb. 23, Slok said households with
    ARMs, both prime and subprime, whose interest rates will adjust
    upward in 2007 and 2008 “will experience about a $10 billion
    increase in payments.”
    That increase “is small relative to overall consumer
    spending of about $9 trillion in 2006 — about 0.1 percent,”
    Slok said. “Resets will account for a larger share of
    consumption by low-income families, but still” about only 1
    percent of spending by this group.
    “ARM resets should have a very limited impact on consumer
    spending and overall growth,” Slok concluded.
    “In sum, ARM resetting is likely to cause problems for
    some subprime borrowers, but as long as unemployment remains low
    and household balance sheets remain strong, we do not see it as
    a concern for the Fed,” he added.

    `Idiosyncratic Event’

    Berner’s comments on Feb. 26 focused on credit markets.
    “Fears persist that the subprime mortgage meltdown will
    usher in a broader credit crunch, spreading first to prime
    mortgages and ultimately to corporate credit,” Berner said. “I
    think that the subprime crash is an idiosyncratic event, but
    that indicators of credit quality and credit availability bear
    watching.”
    So far they are looking good, he said.
    “There’s scant evidence yet of a broader deterioration in
    credit quality or availability, except in lower-rated mortgages.
    Corporate credit is near-pristine, although earnings growth is
    slowing sharply.”
    “Delinquencies and charge-offs are near record lows, risk
    spreads continue to tighten and commercial lending standards
    remain loose,” Berner said.
    So, unless one focuses narrowly on recently issued subprime
    ARMs, there aren’t warning flags waving in the credit markets.

    More Guidance Coming

    Some observers concerned that the subprime problems may
    affect a broader swath of the credit market point to the Fed’s
    January senior loan officer survey, which showed a sharp swing
    from banks loosening mortgage lending standards to tightening
    them.
    That shouldn’t have come as a surprise since the Fed and
    other federal agencies regulating financial institutions
    directed several months ago that those lending standards be
    tightened.
    In her talk, Bies, who has resigned her seat on the Fed
    Board effective March 31, said more such “guidance” is on the
    way “to again remind people about the basics of good
    underwriting and sound disclosure.”
    She also pointed out that federal guidance can’t reach most
    companies that originate mortgage loans.
    “Three out of four mortgages that are made are made by a
    person who is not employed by a bank or a savings and loan,”
    Bies said. “So these are people who are hired and are employed
    by a mortgage broker, finance company, someone who’s making them
    a loan.” And those loans are routinely packaged and sold into
    the secondary market.

    Absorbing the Hits

    That means that the risk inherent in the mortgages has been
    widely spread “not only throughout the U.S. in terms of
    different kinds of investors, but it’s being held by people now
    who are generally more able to absorb hits,” she said.
    That only one-fourth of mortgages — and a much smaller
    share of subprime ARMs — are issued by financial institutions
    is a reason to doubt that a credit crunch is likely.
    Slok, in his memo, said he sees the tightening reflected in
    the survey “largely as a movement back toward more normal
    lending practices,” and doubted it would hurt the economy. He
    also said that tighter standards for mortgages haven’t spilled
    over to credit cards or other consumer loans.
    None of this is to deny that the plunge in the housing
    market has been a major drag on economic growth, or that it
    won’t continue throughout this year.
    It would be a serious mistake, however, to assume that the
    losses in the subprime market are a portent of things to come in
    the rest of the housing sector, much less the broader economy.

    (John M. Berry is a Bloomberg News columnist. The opinions
    expressed are his own.)

    –Editor: Ahearn (jmg/dfr).

    Story illustration: To see data on delinquencies and
    foreclosures
    on loans in specific mortgage securities, use {DQRP }. For
    rating actions on residential mortgage-backed securities, click
    on { RATC }.

    To write a letter the editor, see {LETT }. To read more
    columns by John M. Berry, see {NI BERRY }.

    To contact the writer of this column:
    John M. Berry in Washington at +1-202-624-1962 or
    jberry5@bloomberg.net.

    To contact the editor responsible for this column:
    James Greiff at +1-212-617-5801 or jgreiff@bloomberg.net.

    [TAGINFO]

    NI COLUMNS
    NI COLUMNIST
    NI BERRY
    NI FED
    NI ECO
    NI POL
    NI FEA
    NI CEN
    NI BON
    NI GOV
    NI HOM
    NI REL
    NI MOR
    NI TRE
    NI SUBPRIME

    #<268372.2379675.1.0.34.28824.25>#
    -0- Mar/01/2007 05:15 GMT
    

  84. ron commented on Mar 16

    easy one. although these comments are a tear drop in a sea of comments… wow.

    anyway. plenty of guilt here:
    NAR – homes will continue to rise
    david lereah – see above. this man is a criminal.
    a mozila – see above.
    rating agencies saying sub and alt a are a rated.
    bob toll. look at the timing of his stock sales. there should be laws.

    start there.

  85. Bear commented on Apr 8

    no one has been more WRONG than Michael Darda from Greenwich. Its amazing that his media career is the inverse.
    Mac

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