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Posts posted by strbear

  1. Four major U.S. banks said they have each borrowed $500 million from the Federal Reserve's discount window, becoming the first to say they have taken advantage of the central bank's latest attempt to add liquidity to the credit markets.

    Citigroup Inc. said it borrowed "on behalf of clients." Minutes later, J.P. Morgan Chase & Co., Bank of America Corp. and Wachovia Corp. issued a joint press release saying they also borrowed $500 million each.



  2. Dear TLB

    I think these guys are bulls who have not yet realised that if the market turns sour they will be left holding property. One of my clients has been doing this for 2 years taking advantage of the debt / IVA / bankruptcy issues - they buy at -20%, rent back or sell the property and have been making good margins for the last two years. There are more of them about as "property experts" look to get their hands on cheap property.

    But as the saying goes, when you see a bandwagon its too late to get on it, so I think we're seeing dumb money following good and thats a sure sign of the end



  3. People slating golf management as a mickey mouse degree.

    How many on here meet ALL of these entry requirements for the gdegree in golf management at our place?

    Come on own up.

    I would suggest that the BSc(hons) in Applied Golf management offered at our university is anything but mickey mouse.

    Sorry to say this but;

    1) You're suggesting a high barrier to entry means a course involves academic rigour - not true, there are too many applicants hence the high barrier. Everyone knows Medicine is a 3 Cs course but you have to have 3 As - its to guarantee your doctor has no interpersonal skills and a high degree of arrogance

    2) Applied golf management is a vocational course (note the word applied) - it should be a vocational qualification.

    The issue here is one of snobbery by the government between academic and vocational qualifications - its time for common sense.


    SB BEng(Hons), MSc, MBA - doesn't make me clever though!

  4. More detail of the claim

    Last week, Sentinel sent a letter to clients saying it was halting redemptions due to the ``liquidity crisis'' in the credit markets. ``We are concerned that we cannot meet redemption requests without selling securities at deep discounts to their fair value and therefore causing unnecessary losses to our clients,`` the letter said. Sentinel filed for bankruptcy court protection Friday. That caused tremors throughout the commodity and futures markets.

    Now, the SEC says the firm's explanation was false, and for several months leading up to Sentinel's Aug. 13 letter, the firm suffered losses due to its ''undisclosed use of leverage, commingling and misappropriation of clients' securities.''

    Umm - it gets more interesting as it unwinds


  5. Chicago money manager Sentinel Management Group Inc., which sought bankruptcy protection Friday after halting redemptions from its $1.5 billion fund, is facing fraud charges from the Securities and Exchange Commission.

    The agency is seeking to freeze proceeds that Sentinel gained from selling investment assets to Citadel Investment Group. Further detail on the SEC's action wasn't immediately available.

    Sentinel Management filed for Chapter 11 protection Friday after clients began suing the company for selling their assets too cheaply. According to a Wall Street Journal report, Citadel bought the assets for about 80 cents to 90 cents on the dollar.

    Its all starting to come apart at the edges



  6. At Countrywide Bank offices, in a scene rare since the U.S. savings-and-loan crisis ended in the early '90s, so many people showed up to take out some or all of their money that in some cases they had to leave their names.
    Bill Ashmore drove his Porsche Cayenne to Countrywide's Laguna Niguel office and waited half an hour to cash out $500,000, which he then wired to an account at Bank of America.

    "It's because of the fear of the bankruptcy," said Ashmore, president of Irvine's Impac Mortgage Holdings, which escaped bankruptcy itself recently by shutting down virtually all its lending and laying off hundreds of employees.

    "It's got my wife totally freaked out," he said. "I just don't want to deal with it. I don't care about losing 90 days' interest, I don't care if it's FDIC-insured -- I just want it out."

    Anxious customers jammed the phone lines and website of Countrywide Bank and crowded its branch offices to pull out their savings because of concerns about the financial problems of the mortgage lender that owns the bank.

    Countrywide Financial Corp., the biggest home-loan company in the nation, sought Thursday to assure depositors and the financial industry that both it and its bank were fiscally stable. And federal regulators said they weren't alarmed by the volume of withdrawals from the bank.


    Enjoy it - it won't happen here of course



  7. Try this news

    Monday’s revelation by Goldman Sachs that funds had been hit by unpredictable price movements over recent weeks was followed on Tuesday by UBS warning that earnings at its investment bank would be “very weak” in the second half if turbulent trading conditions persisted.

    Also walmart is warning of worse trading conditions

    If we fall through 13000 then . . . . . .


  8. Today I was driving over Crown Point Bridge into Leeds and saw a lovely sign declaring "2 Bed Flats from £85K".

    I vaguely remember someone on here saying that "we will soon see the sub £100K new build flat in Leeds".

    Thought I'd won my Big Ron Style "Spotters Badge". - Did some digging and its only half a badge I'm afraid.

    From our friends at Barratts, I present the East Leeds Gateway Development, go one, jump in, you know you want to really..........


    By the way, 1 question. WTF is a 2 bed studio appartment ?

    Latest Approximate Prices

    2 bedroom apartments from £62,995 to £208,495

    Expected Future Availability

    1 and 2 bedroom studio apartments


    Ah I've seen these - they are a lounge / diner / kitchen with 2 equal sized bedrooms off it each with an en-suite - Ideal is 2 friends buy it and share the living space but each has their own bedroom - great marketing - lousy proposition.



  9. Australian shares suffered after a recently floated mortgage lender, Rams Home Loans Group, warned that profits would be hit by the turmoil in world debt markets. Its shares dropped as much as 32 per cent.
    Spread betting group IG index expects the FTSE 100 index to open about 66.7 points down at 6,152.3. Germany’s DAX is seen off 71 points at 7,403.33, while France’s CAC-40 is seen opening down 55 points at 5,514.28.

    Enjoy it http://www.ft.com/cms/s/bb4affb8-4a0f-11dc...00779fd2ac.html

    Rocky road anyone - no not the ice cream!


  10. Confidence in Britain’s housing market is drying up as would-be purchasers gloomily await the worst from the Bank of England, a leading survey of the sector finds today.
    Kelvin Davidson, property economist for Capital Economics, said: “We expect the repossession rate to rise again this year, in response to, amongst other things, rising capacity pressures and high money supply growth. This will . . . push down housing market activity levels. We expect house price growth to be markedly weaker by the end of the year.”

    Article at http://business.timesonline.co.uk/tol/busi...icle2253663.ece



  11. A group of investors led by Goldman Sachs said on Monday it plans to inject $3bn into the investment bank’s Global Equity Opportunities fund after it suffered heavy losses in last week’s global market turmoil.

    Goldman is leading a group that includes C.V. Starr, the investment group led by Hank Greenberg, the former chairman and chief executive of AIG; Perry Capital, the hedge fund run by a former Goldman Sachs trader; and Eli Broad, the real estate and insurance entrepreneur.

    The cash injection comes after Global Equity Opportunities was particularly hard hit by last week’s sell-off in the global markets. A person familiar with the matter said the fund, which had an equity value of $3.6bn at the end of last week, has lost more than 30 per cent of its value since the beginning of the year.

    Article at http://www.ft.com/cms/s/8dd25ff4-499c-11dc...00779fd2ac.html



  12. Here is one with a bit of discount - an off plan flat at Bridgewater place

    Yorkshire and Humber -

    Leeds & Bradford Area -

    Leeds Bridgewater Place

    Development Name: Bridgewater Place

    Open Market Value (OMV): £450,000

    Sale Price: £385,000

    Reservation Fee: £1,000

    Exchange Amount: £20,000

    Discount Property: 14%

    Completion Date: Sep 3, 2007 £385,000 Apartment

    Buy now and get 14% off - I suspect its only the start of the slide














  13. RB

    Thanks for that. One of the things about the LA (and to a lesser degree the SF markets) demonstrates to me is a London like attitude of "it may be happening in the rest of the US but it won't happen here" approach - so to see the LA Times have a significant piece like this tells me things really are turning. I've had no doubt they (LA,SF and SD) have had real problems but the sentiment in the press seems to be changing from can't happen here to might happen here.


  14. I'm keen for a property in LA but the prices have been sky high (no surprises there then) - I follow the LA times and they have been running pieces on the slowing market for months BUT today is the first real negative piece I've seen - its tales of people suffering a major downturn because they are employed in the housing industry.

    I know most will skirt this but I think its a strong piece of anecdotal evidence things are turning over there,

    Snipe away,



  15. Has David been outwitted by a young staffer? Well we all know the answer to that!

    In retrospect, the crisis was inevitable. American families on low incomes were lent money way beyond their means with interest payments that were ratcheted up after the initial “teaser” rate expired.


    Wow, what insight these people have. Oh, and apparently the UK MAY have a debt issue!

    The cracks are starting to show. Last week the Council of Mortgage Lenders sharply revised up its estimate of home repossessions. The numbers are pretty low compared with the US, and are dwarfed by the experience of the early 1990s. What really got analysts nervous was the number of repossessions as a proportion of mortgage arrears. By the look of the CML’s data, nearly 40 per cent of mortgages in arrears now lead to repossessions, up from 12 per cent just three years ago. The figure is far higher than anything seen in the 1980s or 90s and suggests that sub-prime lending is a larger phenomenon than previously thought.


    SB B)

  16. Si1

    I agree completely re Leeds - I have NO idea why anyone would want to live in the city centre - they've built 8,000 2 bed flats and are building another 8,000 for the "young professional" market but there aren;t 16,000 YPs in Leeds let alond 16,000 YPs who want to live in the city centre. Had they built villages (ie houses with gardens they might have sold them but I think its only going to go one way.



  17. Diversification -- not putting all one's eggs in the same basket -- has long been a mainstay of investing safely. But it works only so long as all the baskets don't tumble at once.

    In recent weeks, assets around the world have fallen in lockstep. Stocks, corporate bonds, emerging-market debt and a host of derivatives backed by mortgages and other types of borrowing have been hit hard. Even commodities such as gold and other metals, which investors turn to precisely because their prices typically don't move in sync with other assets, dropped along with everything else in late July.

    "It is becoming more difficult to find assets that aren't highly correlated. Over short periods of time, property, commodities, equity and bonds are all moving together in similar directions," said Andrew Milligan, head of global strategy at Standard Life Investments in Edinburgh which has about £140 billion, or $285 billion, under management.


    Correlated / systemic - does wording make a difference to your pension?

  18. New builds have both a rental premium AND a cost premium - trouble is within 3 years its lost both.

    I'd always go for new builds falling the most - where I live character older properties demand a premium and always will - shoeboxes don't - look at the Manchester flats scenario - the premium flats of 03 are now the DSS lets . . . .


  19. hi strbear

    bloomin' good question - i read the other night that Harrogate has more millionaires per head than anywhere else in the country - I can imagine it but never really been sure where they all get their cash from!

    having said that, I believe Ilkley is pretty similar in all aspects you describe? - house prices are pretty extortionate there too




    Do you mean the article in the telegraph?


    I'd agree with you about the Ilkley market - on page two of the article it says its the most expensive town in the North with average prices of over £300K. I think the money in Harrogate/Ilkley comes from two areas - those with high incomes (Financial Services in Leeds, Lawyers etc) and those with their own businesses - I wonder how many of the millionaires get there due to the value of their house and how many have the liquid assets to support such a lifestyle? It used to be that southerners moving North could buy in the Duchy and still have £500K left over but those days are long gone - buying in Ilkley isn't far off buying in Chelsea these days.

    Anyway the test of time will tell - is it real money or debt? I think I know the answer but we'll see over the next few quarters,



  20. TEIN

    I think you're right about this - there are a few unique factors to the Harrogate market

    1) Its a self contained market - more people move within Hgate rather than in and out

    2) There is a very limited new build capability

    3) House prices are massively disconnected from "average" salaries

    I think what happens is those who want to trade up get more for their money but at a certain point you need to make a BIG jump to see the difference - I'd say this is around £250 K and 500K - so the sub 250K market moves whilst the 500K market stagnates - afterall how can you afford to add 200K to your mortgage if you eraning an average salary.

    Its also the aspirational nature of the mid value Harrogatians - some of them would rather hold tight than than be seen to have sold their property for less - so my view is when it does go its going to go in a very big way, it might just be some time whilst this stand off holds.



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