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Everything posted by mattyfc

  1. HUTH and other property porn programs like it should be forced to be impartial or banned. In each episode they should have to show the price / income graphs for the last decade and explain how debt and the housing bubble brought down NR, RBS, HBOS etc. Until these programs like this are removed the bricks and mortar will still be seen as some kind of magical no lose investment. I would suggest a series on those struggling to pay the mortgage, reposed and now living with family or on the streets or unable to sell, trapped with a debt noose around the neck. This would provide some much needed balance.
  2. Seems rather strange that the number of people working is up 10K according to the ILO unemployment rate is down to 7.7% yet the claimant count has risen 10K. Pretty good figures really, average pay also up more than expected. Confirms the huge rise in employment from Q4 to Q1 (+170k~) which makes a mockery of the ONS output figures. I think you will find the claimant count answer is that the Government have moved the benefits system around specifically the eligibility for single-parent benefits. This group is now showing up in the claimant count figures when before they did not. Edit info from the WSJ http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703421204576330661923469094.html
  3. Yes very slowly, asking prices are still on the rise; vendors are clearly suffering mass delusion. Falls are glacial (3-5% y/y). There is nothing giving vendors the push necessary to make real progress. Most people still believe house prices will rise come hell or high water. Property porn still floods our TV sets, BTL is a rampant plague gnawing at the economy. Until IR rise and put the squeeze on mortgage holder’s, reality will be a very slow awakening. Most people have not moved on from 97-07 and they will not until IR rise.
  4. Yawn, least surprising data release ever. Now oil and other commodities have peaked I would expect inflation to ease over the next 6 months. CPI will still be around 4% most of the year though. There are clearly massive UK VI’s who will stop at nothing to prevent IR increases. Expect massive resistance once IR start to rise. Only way HPI is going down in a sustained way is with IR going back to 5%+ over the next 5-10 years.
  5. I would be interested to hear the debate in Germany on this. More bailouts without trying to solve the real issues makes no sense. Greece is going to have to generate tax revenue and jobs to pay back its debt and the current plan clearly prevents that from happening. There is a year of evidence, Greek unemployment has doubled and tax receipts are lower than in 2010. More austerity will just push them further underwater and make the amount finally repaid lower. Gutless politics decisions like this will likely lead to the EZ to a massive financial catastrophe sometime 2012-14. When it becomes clear the bailed out countries are not generating enough tax revenue to make the plans work. The real situation in Spain will likely become known at some point in the next 2-3 years as well. A real solution would have to involve dealing with the Banks holding, Greek, Portuguese, Irish and Spanish debt and ensuring these countries are able to generate enough tax / create jobs and revenue to service their debt over the long term and pay some of it back. This will almost certainly involve restructuring these countries debts, banks, financial reporting and also the EZ itself. The EZ simply does not work for some countries and continuing to ignore the real problems will store up big trouble down the road.
  6. I suppose the problem the IMF have is that any money lent to Greece is clearly not a "bailout". The Greeks have absolutely no chance of paying back the current debt load, let alone another "bailout". Any money given to Greece is simply a transfer that will never be seen again. With a non European head of the IMF perhaps the IMF will let the EZ in on what everyone else knows already and they will actually try and solve the problems rather than pour more petrol on to the fire.
  7. Will be interesting to hear the forensic results. There seems to be some questioning of the timeline of events from the French media. Specifically that he Lunch with his daughter before going to the airport and being arrested on the plane. Of course the NYPD are not as fast as in the movies. Once the 911 came in I could imagine it taking them a while to figure out it was DSK who the maid was accusing, then to find out which plane he was on could have taken several hours easily.
  8. How does this fit with the Halifax and Nationwide figures? How can asking prices be ever increasing when selling price and falling 5% nominal y/y. This makes no sense at all. Could right move be being deliberately flooded with overpriced stock to keep the pretence of rising prices and prevent damage to sentiment?
  9. This story is so crazy it either true or a setup. Can't believe someone in such high office, probably running for the French presidency could get caught up in something like this. Read on business insider that there have been other incidents in France / IMF that the French press to do not report on. Very strange. It may change IMF policy, the markets won't like the uncertainty especially as the deputy head of the IMF was meant to be leaving in August. Probably the worst timing DSK could have had with the bailouts at a crucial stage.
  10. http://www.building.co.uk/news/breaking-news/ons-revises-controversial-output-figures/5018157.article The ONS construction output figures are clearly nonsense and this data has had a profound effect on UK IR policy and also last year's election result. This combined with the "maintenance" effect on industrial production from mining and quarrying had a huge effect on GDP for Q4 & Q1. The construction data seems to delay 6-8 weeks. Had the Q2 2010 construction figure been part of the 2010 Q1 GDP we would have got a near 1% q/q GDP figure just before the general election instead of the 0.2% figure released. This could have had a significant impact on the result. Had a more positive construction figures / IP figures been part of Q4 & Q1 it is likely IR would already have risen. The pressure on the BOE would have been unbearable. It is quite possible that the "maintenance" on oil rigs, gas fields will now have finished, and construction will bounce back strongly leading to an artificially stronger Q2. Of course the BOE always planned to raise in Q3, coincidence?
  11. Nice and contradictory information here as well released today: http://online.wsj.com/article/BT-CO-20110513-708510.html Also the Spanish figure of 0.3% was apparently based on "Exports". This would seem to ignore the fact the Spanish trade balance has deteriorated v Q4 due to oil imports / high oil price. Makes me wonder if the whole GDP charade will collapse soon.
  12. Right so Greece grows 0.8%? Yet Greek tax revenue across q1 is significantly lower than q1 2010 http://www.nasdaq.com/aspx/stock-market-news-story.aspx?storyid=201105101128dowjonesdjonline000229&title=greek-jan-april-budget-deficit-widens-but-within-target Unemployment is also up 1%+ from Q4 (To feb) http://www.ana-mpa.gr/anaweb/user/showplain?maindoc=9919272&maindocimg=9070272&service=102 Amazing how the Greek economy can grow whilst there are less people employed and tax revenue is falling. Some kind of magic miracle economy? Prehaps they should call Gordon Brown? Similar situation to Spain, unemployment rises from 7% to 21% yet output barely drops, Tax revenue % of GDP goes from 41% to 35%, we are expected to believe that tax revenue fell off a cliff but output did not. How were 14% of the workforce not adding to output, what were they doing all day? Magic economy part 2? This figures are clearly fixed to prevent the meltdown that would take place if the real GDP figures were released.
  13. Because banks don’t have enough dodgy Greek assets on their Books already? I would love to see a bank justify spending several billion on an “investment” in a country that is nearing economic collapse and civil war. They may as well buy some of Greeks bond issuances the chances of a return or their money back are both zero.
  14. Who would buy these Assets whilst Greece is experiencing these kinds of problems? If you buy a Marina / Olympic venue you need a population with money to pay to see events etc. Not to mention the political stability issues. No chance of them selling for a good price with the current Greek economic situation. Greece faces perpetual recession to bail out German, French Banks. Getting Greece back to growth is in the interest of everybody. Structural reforms are needed, there also needs to be a plan to get rapid growth, this would have to involve Greece leaving the € in an orderly fashion. Until this is realised Greece will be pushed further towards the edge of the precipice. If the EU act to late Greece could collapse leading to a messy / bloody end to the € and another financial crisis.
  15. Reasonable figure, not quite as strong as February but still a large improvement over last year. Over Q1 the trade deficit was the lowest since Q4 2009. A massive improvement over Q4 also, not sure of the exact effect on Q1 GDP though?
  16. I find it fairly amusing that the “markets” rally on another Greek bailout. Nothing is solved Greece’s debt get’s €60bn larger to nearer €400bn. On top of that there will be more austerity to reduce the ability of the Greeks to pay the money back. The debt spiral will be made far worse. Could you make this up? There is no plan to pay back the debt; there is no plan for the Greek economy to grow. When the end comes it will no doubt be explosive and everyone will claim they did not see it coming, genius.
  17. Considering the BOE forecasts for the last 3-4 years have been completely wrong not sure why anyone thinks this one will be different. My view would be future growth will now be potentially higher than it was in 2007. The boom was always unsustainable, a crash was inevitable. Now we have to focus on other industries to drive growth which will likely lead to a much more sustainable future economy and higher long term growth.
  18. Sorry was being sarcastic. The BRC manipulate their own figures to protect their own interests. The y do not want an IR increase due to the knock on effect on consumption and HPI. They have proved they will do anything to further their view hence when the Easter effected March y/y sales figure was released it was splashed everywhere as evidence to keep IR down. Now the figure has rebounded and some they are still trying to talk down. Their agenda is clear though and it is shared with other parts of the media; Keep IR at 0.5% at any cost.
  19. http://www.stockmarketwire.com/article/4141729/UK+retail+sales+rebound+in+April No doubt the BRC will be calling for higher interest rates now the economy is booming again? Somehow I don't think this will be splashed all over the news like last month's figures...
  20. Moody's and Fitch are set to pile in with the downgrades as well. The structural problems of the EZ are simply enormous and it will be a gigantic challenge to fix them. Every day the potential for an uncontrolled disintegration grows larger. The current solution of pouring petrol on the fire does not seem to be working. Time to try something different?
  21. I hope I am not correct but so far whenever Halifax put out a bearish number there is always a bounce the next month. I think it will be really difficult to get big y/y falls until IR rise. Sellers are sitting tight and refusing to budge, there is nothing pushing them to sell. These kinds of monthly up and downs simply give fodder for the MPC to maintain rates at 0% and string the crash out over a huge period of time.
  22. http://www.lloydsbankinggroup.com/media/word/HPI/2011/HousePriceIndexApril2011.doc Downward trend continues. Quarterly seems to be down 1.2%, relatively slow falls continue. No doubt until the price / earnings ratio comes back in to line. Only problem is this will discourage IR rises. Makes next month's more interesting as these falls have typically been followed by a bounce the next month.
  23. If Labour was in power Salmond could threaten them with independence. With the Tories what leverage does he have? It would be massively beneficial for the Tories to hive off Scotland as an independently run part of the UK. Can't see full legal independence as it would be too complicated. Let them set their own taxes, laws etc negotiate sharing of costs for military, administration, etc. As good as independence but without leaving the UK. Kick all the Scottish MP's out of Westminster and let them do their own thing. Without the Scottish seats the Tories would have a majority of 21 currently, when the voting boundaries are updated this would no doubt increase. Labour in England would be doomed, perpetual Tory government would be near inevitable. Ironic that Blair the arch populist may have unwittingly sown the seeds of destruction of the English Labour party. http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2011/may/06/scottish-election-victory-snp-devolution
  24. The oil price is down 15-20% over the last week which probably means a 4-5% reduction in the pump price once it filters through in a few weeks. Assuming oil does not rise, or more likely fall. I think Brent will go back to $80-90, another 10-20% fall eventually which may mean petrol prices fall a further 5-10% also.
  25. From a Greek perspective leaving the € would seem to be win / win. There would be no need to change bank deposits to the new drachma and they could stay in €. Since 90% of Greek bonds are governed by Greek law they could change the law, restructure and denominate the debt in New Drachmas. The short term cost would be high. However, as long as Greece had enough hard currency $, € etc to get them through a year or two and capital controls it could be managed. The Greece economy is quite small making the probability of success pretty high. (http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/05/06/us-greece-euro-exit-idUSTRE7455SA20110506) After the turmoil of leaving the € which would last 6-12 months you would see a rapid recovery in the Greek economy. With a currency worth 50-90% less tourism would rocket, everyone in Northern Europe would flock to take advantage of the ludicrously cheap holidays on offer. Construction would start booming again. The trade balance would correct as imports became incredibly expensive, exports would boom as they dropped in price. They could even charge a visitor tax like Turkey do if not in the EU. Greece would have gained a massive advantage over Spain, Portugal etc. With Turkey growing 10% y/y a year there is a clear template across the Aegean for Greece to follow. This must be what really terrifies Germany, France etc. If Greece leaves and recovers you can expect Portugal to follow. The contagion potential would be huge. Germany, France etc would be the losers from Greece leaving the €. Managing the losses at Northern European banks would be the real challenge, the ECB could help with that though. For Greece the short term would be difficult, (probably not much more difficult than it is already?) the long term benefits are clearly huge and they have almost nothing to lose.
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