Friday Free for All!

It’s the end of the week again, but this week is a little different with a focus on some of the more bullish developments this past week. Here are a few stories:

B.C. businesses slightly more optimistic: CFIB survey
Olympic ticket sales put 2010 Games in ‘positive cash position’
U.S. home sales climb at fastest pace in last 10 months
U.S. bank bailout plan ignites stocks surge on Wall Street
Entertainment software delivers $1.7b boost to Canadian economy
Richmond-based Kin’s Farm Market to expand
Immigration boosts population growth: StatsCan

So what are you seeing out there?  Post your thoughts, anecdotes and economic news here and have an excellent weekend!

-Dave

note: any conversation on Vancouver, real estate or economics is allowed, please keep it civilized. When posting articles please only quote pertinent points and link to the original instead of pasting the entire article here. Pasting a link into your comment will automatically create a clickable hot-link. Linking to more than one external link within a single comment may cause your submission to get held up in the spam filter.

Sort by:   newest | oldest | most voted
Maestro
Guest
Maestro

Thank God It's Friday – for those who still have jobs.

Maestro
Guest
Maestro
Maestro
Guest
Maestro
patriotz
Member
Subprime lenders want to put their hands in your pockets: Lenders seek Ottawa's aid as thousands risk losing their homes "As many as 25,000 Canadian homeowners who consistently met their mortgage payments could lose their homes unless Ottawa or other financial players help supply capital to the struggling subprime lending market. A loose network of about 12 alternative mortgage lenders began lobbying the Prime Minister's Office and the Department of Finance in January about what they say is a looming problem: An estimated $3-billion to $5-billion worth of subprime mortgages are coming up for renewal over the next four years, and the lenders say they can't renew them because capital has dried up for higher-risk borrowers." Well, Mr. "No subprime here" Harper, what do you have to say about that? Did you tell them to just FO and take their… Read more »
MickeyFinn
Member
Good post Patriotz, as usual. There's a TSX listed company called Exceed Mortgage Corp. (TSX: XMC) which is essentially a Canadian sub-prime company. As you'd expect, it has been hammered by this market and their stock price has tanked. They've issued some very frank news releases over the past 1-1/2 years acknowledging that they're essentially screwed. In my opinion, the bigger story in Vancouver real estate is the huge volume of new condo units that will continue to pour onto the local market over the next year or two. The reason why I believe this tsunami of new condo projects is such a huge story is that many of those units have been purchased by speculators. Those speculators are going to have a difficult time closing on their purchases unless they have a large amount of equity to put down… Read more »
Warren
Guest
Warren

Hey wait until the end of the day, layoffs happen on Fridays!

MrBear
Member
MrBear

Dave: You're seriously contending that there will be less condos on the market in Fall 09 than in Fall 08? Or are you relying entirely on that key word 'listings', since newly completed condos don't generally end up in the MLS system?

I'll grant you that lower interest rates and prices are possible, but with the number of new condos completing this year I can't see how we could have less condos on the market by that time.

ella
Guest
ella
From Maestro's article: "By last summer, the steady work Daniel Asboth, 25, had as a drywaller in Toronto was all but gone. But he still had to make payments on his "baby," an Acura automobile, and the rent, and credit-card bills that were piling up. "I was making $1,000 a week," Mr. Asboth said. "When you are used to getting that money, you don't think about saving, because you know you are going to be getting that money at the end of the week. Then, all of a sudden, it stopped." Mr. Asboth admits he was "bad" with managing money, but said he felt blindsided when his work ran out and debt went up. Finally, in October, owing more than $25,000, he decided that declaring bankruptcy was one of his few options." This is a bit off topic, but find… Read more »
ella
Guest
ella

"Mr. Lee noted household debt, as a percentage of household disposable income, had doubled in the past 25 years, from 15.7% in 1981 to 36.2%. At the same time, the savings rate plummeted to 0.5% in 2005, the lowest level recorded by Statistics Canada since the 1920s. In other words, for every $100 Canadians receive in income, they are saving, on average, 50¢."

Loose credit, what loose credit?

cashisking
Guest
cashisking

In response to Patriotz post … EVERYONE and I mean EVERYONE go to our finance minister Flaherty's website and email him that they better not bail out people who spent too much on there house unless he's willing to cut a cheque to all those people who lived within there means.

I wrote him before last election (I've never written an elected official before – I'm not one of those loons) and I've had two responses one of which was signed by him.

ella
Guest
ella

close italics

test

ella
Guest
ella

" (I’ve never written an elected official before – I’m not one of those loons) "

What is loony about writing to an elected official? Isn't that just citizensip?

I know someone who was an advisor to the treasurer of Ontario, and they did pay attention to letters.

james
Guest
james

The government is fighting off a socialist coup at the moment and so you only have to look south as to what's going to be happening over the next year or so. We're going to see socialist deals with companies (bailouts), responsible people will be paying for the mistakes made by the irresponsible (as is always the case with socialism), and continues economic decline. It's patriot's dream.

ella
Guest
ella

I forgot to post this in the subprime thread, but weren't we hearing about people putting downpayments on their credit cards, or CKNW was advising people to do this a couple of years ago. I wonder if many people actually did that?

ella
Guest
ella

"The government is fighting off a socialist coup at the moment and so you only have to look south as to what’s going to be happening over the next year or so. We’re going to see socialist deals with companies (bailouts), responsible people will be paying for the mistakes made by the irresponsible (as is always the case with socialism), and continues economic decline. It’s patriot’s dream."

I don't think that word means what you think it means.

ted
Guest
ted

Maestro: Great articles, but I suggest people put something in their comment to indicate what they're linking to. That way people know if they've already read the article without clicking the link.

Maestro linked to articles about the seventh month in a row local house prices have fallen, and the rising number of bankruptcies.

Anonymous
Guest
Anonymous

MrBear:

At this point in the market, it seems reasonable to me. The slope of the listing curve this year isn't as steep as it was this time last year. If listings follow the typical trend (i.e. steady curve), then I would expect the total amount through the Fall to be somewhere between that of 2007 and 2008.

We know the other two parts will be true (i.e. lower year over year prices and lower interest rates). Even if listings were approximately the same as last year, the other two factors still suggest less bearish conditions.

ted
Guest
ted

When you guys run the numbers on whether or not it makes sense to buy, do you take into consideration future interest rates and whether they are likely to be higher at renewal time?

There's not much room for interest rates to go down further, but with all the bailouts they're likely to be a lot higher in 5 years.

MrBear
Member
MrBear
Anonymous: I can accept as possible the proposition that there may be less MLS listings Fall 09 than in Fall 08. If you don't have to sell your existing home, you are free to take it off the market. What I find more difficult to believe is that there will be less homes, or more specifically less condos, on the market (total, not just MLS) this fall than there were last fall, thanks to the massive number of condos due to complete this year. Or am I incorrect to assume that most of these will not be on the MLS? Whether that means the market will be 'less bearish' is a separate question. A large overhang of unsold new condos and some number of collapsed projects is definitely bearish, but last fall was pretty brutal for buyer confidence. What I… Read more »
james
Guest
james

Large companies love socialism. Look at the record fundraising Obama achieved. Wall street fully approves of Obama.

What's happening with the bailouts is EXACTLY what socialism is all about. The government takes control of the economy, takes money from those that are productive and then gives it to those who aren't. GM, Chrystler, AIG, etc are all very much in favour of a march towards socialism. The guy running the corner store down the street is who opposes it. Turning the world upside down during a recession is a slick move for sure but mark my words this is the last hoorah for the socialists. Keynes is going down in flames in 5-10 years. He'll be as discredited as Stalin and Hitler are.

MrBear
Member
MrBear

Dave: Do you have actual data to suggest that a huge surge of condos are completing at that time relative to now?

Nothing hard, just this, from the wiki. People have dredged up 2900 downtown completions in 2009 vs 2350 in 2008, for instance.

But even if there were an equal number of completions year over year, people weren't so desperate to get out of their contracts last January as they were by December. And I'd be surprised to see a smooth rollout of Woodwards, wouldn't you?

So again, I've got nothing hard here, and I'd be very happy if you were right in general terms. I simply can't convince myself that you are.

wpDiscuz