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Gentle Ben

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About Gentle Ben

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  1. Ever increasing debt (for consumption, not investment) secured against ever increasing house prices does not an 'economic success story' make.
  2. From that BBC article (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/business/7784939.stm): Surely devaluing the currency (as they are doing) of a net importer nation like the UK will cause price inflation. Couple that to no wage inflation (or possibly even wage deflation) and you have fewer people who have any spare cash, worsening any economic downturn. There's no such thing as a free lunch.
  3. A bloke I work with ( I work abroad during the week) does this because his wife really hates driving and it's cheaper than owning a car and paying for taxis to and from the the airport every week. Interestingly lots of people who live in the centre of Amsterdam also rent cars when required because there is a huge waiting list for residents' parking spaces.
  4. According to this graph, taking inflation into account we're back to before April 2004!!
  5. I think he's trying to say that homeowners aren't individuals. Maybe he's been reading the 'sheeple' references on HPC!
  6. Maybe the forex markets are pricing the BoE dropping interest rates this week, based on the halifax publishing -2.5% MoM this morning!! I'm not sure how much the figures actually influence the BoE, but they always seem to affect the exchange rates!
  7. The Lib-Dem woman suggested that the government needs to do something to keep the number of repos down. She mentioned the government paying the mortgages of overstretched people. So the government has bailed out the lenders who were in the sh!t, and now that they are finally coming to their senses making their lending practices more sensible thus putting more pressure on borrowers, she suggests that they bail out borrowers too!!! All done using money from tax payers, many if whom cannot afford a roof over their heads because of the complete stupidity of the rest of the sheep-like population.
  8. Me too (only Cardiff, not E London)! I started work out of Uni in 1996. My work colleagues at the time recommended that I steer well clear of buying a house because I'd just end up in negative equity quickly. Being a little naive and not particularly caring if I rented or bought I took their advice. Of course, as everyone was telling me not to buy, I should have done the exact opposite. You live and learn...
  9. Thinking about it, IO mortgages are in reality repayment mortgages where the whole repayment is loaded onto the last day of the mortgage term. I agree with you Red Kharma - selling this type of loan without requiring some kind of strategy to pay back the capital is ludicrous. It should be banned in my opinion.
  10. The interest-only brigade have only themselves to blame. They were told by the banks that they would have to pay off the balance at the end of the mortgage term. People mis-sold endowment mortgages were told that their balance would be paid off for them, but it turned out to be lie. I still think that's tough-sh!t - they read the small-print and signed on the dotted line. To go bleating about the deal having not gone in their favour afterwards is almost child-like behaviour. Would they have said anything if the endowment had more than covered the final mortgage repayment? I doubt it. That's wh
  11. The BOE's remit is to keep CPI between 1% and 3%, and as close to 2% as possible. The BOE's isn't the only public body that can control 'inflation'. National Statistics (i.e. the government) can fiddle CPI to whatever level is required to allow rate cuts. Rate cuts aren't going to help if real inflation (not wage inflation though) is roaring away making everyone poorer - they still won't be able to afford that ever larger mortgage required for HPI.
  12. Isn't all this just the money markets pricing in the BoE cutting interest rates this month? IMO if the BoE don't cut, recent sterling falls will be reversed - at least partially. If they do cut, then not much will happen to Sterling (this month at least) because it's exactly what the market's expecting. All just my opinions and musings of course...
  13. Gordon should have spent more effort on preventing the spine-crushing credit boom that put the economy into this precarious position in the first place.
  14. Watch the house price indexes repeat this performance from 2005: House prices are part of the rate-setting deicision when they are going down only. When they are sky-rocketting, they aren't considered at all. Un-f**king-believable!
  15. It's good to see these figures coming from the Halifax, but I'm still very cautiously optimistic. We've been here before, as the attached graph from 2005 shows. I have no faith in the BOE at all. I am convinced that only house price falls are considered during interest rate setting decisions. House price rises are ignored. I know the financial markets are pricing debt a lot differently now, so hopefully my caution isn't justified. Only time will tell.
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