May 2006 Archive

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Owning a house is not a substitute for having a pension

Money Extra: Your home is not your pension

Many homeowners believe their property will generate enough money to provide for their retirement. This is far from the case.

Posted by webmaster @ 05:19 PM 0 Comments

FTSE crashes again

Reuters: European stocks end sharply lower on rate worries

European shares took a beating on Tuesday as concerns about the outlook for interest rates weighed on markets, with financial issues taking a hit, and U.S. stocks also falling.

Posted by webmaster @ 05:15 PM 3 Comments

Job cuts and property sale at Land Registry

Firstrung: Land Registry announce job cuts and property disposal

Civil servants potentially losing their jobs generally figures more prominently on the news radar. This weak press release, issued by the Land Registrar, does nothing to hide the fact that L.R. expect a dramatic fall in the number of property transactions over the next four years..

Posted by Converted Lurker @ 10:16 AM 10 Comments

House Prices

BBC News: 'Worrisome' rise in house prices

Houses in Wales have become some of the least affordable in Britain, new research for BBC Wales' current affairs programme Week In Week Out has found.

Posted by jason @ 10:04 AM 1 Comments

Which way for Interest Rates?

MoneyWeek: Why UK interest rates will rise

Five months into 2006, and three compelling investment trends stand out. These trends are accelerating at a rate we never imagined. On the one hand, we see the spectacular emergence of an ber-rich class in London and the South East. Compare that with the soaring number of people declaring themselves bankrupt and the rise in company liquidations outside the financial sector. Then set them both against the backdrop of runaway commodity prices.

Posted by jason @ 09:49 AM 0 Comments

Monday, May 29, 2006

Boom then Bust in Northern Ireland

Belfast Telegraph: Ulster's house prices boom - but there could be bust ahead

Northern Ireland's property price boom could be followed by bust, resulting in negative equity for many householders, it was claimed today.

Posted by jason @ 10:54 PM 0 Comments

Syndey homebuyers who have bought at the peak in 2003 have lost 10%

Sydney Morning Herald: 10% fall in house prices as demand heads west

SYDNEY homebuyers who bought at the top of the market have lost 10 per cent of their capital, new Bureau of Statistics figures show. Those buyers would, on average, have earned a 51 per cent gain if they had bought in Perth instead.

Posted by Willchum @ 08:17 PM 0 Comments

Central Banks

Telegraph: Ignore the world's biggest central banks at your peril

Round one to the Bank of Japan, ultimate cause of the violent sell-off in stocks, commodities, and riskier bonds across the world over the past three weeks writes Ambrose Evans-Pritchard

Posted by jason @ 04:31 PM 5 Comments

250,000 default on Mortgages

DailyRecord: 250,000 HOMES AT RISK

A QUARTER of a million homeowners are behind with mortgage payments and 1.5million more owe on credit cards and loans.

Posted by jason @ 02:57 PM 2 Comments

First time buyers, the week in focus

Firstrung: The week in focus

Not the busiest of weeks for the housing industry in all its facets, however, here's a selection of the weeks highlights in relation to the plight of the first time buyer.

Posted by Converted Lurker @ 10:54 AM 0 Comments

Sell to renters sleeping soundly in the US

Firstrung: Its a renters marekt

In Riviera Beach, for instance, three-bedroom townhomes are renting for as low as $1,150 a month. Owning one would cost about $1,800 to $3,000 a month, after a 20 percent down payment. In West Palm Beach, $400,000 townhomes are renting in the $1,500 range. Owning one would cost nearly twice that per month. In Lantana, a $450,000 three-bedroom condo with an Intracoastal view is available for $1,850 per month. In Port St. Lucie, three-bedroom, $450,000 houses are renting for about $2,200, a third less than they would cost to own

Posted by Converted Lurker @ 10:45 AM 0 Comments

House price growth is slowing

In2Perspective: Hometrack: House price growth 'limited'

"The prospects for the second half of the year are not so good." - Richard Donnell, director of research at Hometrack.

Posted by Dr Doom @ 08:51 AM 0 Comments

Sunday, May 28, 2006

Inflation

Telegraph: So is inflation still dead?

In response to last weeks column about the short-term outlook for inflation, various people have asked me whether I, once dubbed the High Priest of Low Inflation, am getting worried about inflation after all. Moreover, it is now almost exactly 10 years since my book, The Death of Inflation, was published. Accordingly, it is appropriate to take last weeks analysis to a deeper level. In short, is inflation still dead?

Posted by jason @ 04:49 PM 2 Comments

Unemployment in Scotland

Scotland on Sunday: Revealed: grim truth of Scots unemployment

THE true figure for unemployment in Scotland is 250,000 - almost three times the official number - according to a groundbreaking report. esearch conducted by one of Britain's leading authorities on the welfare state claims there are 160,000 "hidden unemployed" in Scotland, many of them forced on to sickness benefits through lack of work.

Posted by jason @ 02:36 PM 3 Comments

MPC Nominations

Telegraph: Probe into Brown's MPC nominations

The Treasury Select Committee is to launch an inquiry into the way Gordon Brown, the chancellor, selects members of the Bank of England's Monetary Policy Committee.

Posted by jason @ 02:34 PM 1 Comments

Interest Rates

The Sunday Times: Too early for a calming rate cut

THERE have been three occasions during its nine years of independence that the Bank of England has reduced interest rates in response to a global financial crisis. How long does the current period of extreme financial-market turbulence have to last before the Bank decides that a calming cut is needed? If a week is a long time in politics, a day can be an eternity when it comes to reading financial markets. We ended the week stronger but the fragility remains. The stock markets performance this month gives a fair impression of the old caricature of red-bracered City traders, shouting buy, buy, buy in the phone jammed to one ear, and sell, sell, sell in the other. One day its party time, the next Armageddon.

Posted by jason @ 02:24 PM 2 Comments

How to add value to your home

BBC News: Loft overhaul boosts house price

A loft conversion or having an extension built are two of the most effective ways to boost the value of a property, a survey has suggested. On average, an extension adds 12% and a loft conversion 10.9% to a property's value, the Nationwide Building Society survey found.

Posted by jason @ 02:22 PM 2 Comments

Fancy a Gamble?

The Observer: Place your bets on the boom and bust UK housing market

Anxious British homeowners could soon have the opportunity to hedge their bets by laying money on a house price crash as a firm set up by Yale economics professor Robert Shiller opens a new market in housing futures. Shiller, author of Irrational Exuberance, which predicted the dotcom crash, is co-founder of MacroMarkets, which began offering investors the opportunity to bet on US housing markets last week.

Posted by jason @ 02:21 PM 0 Comments

Pensions

BBC News: Property 'no alternative pension'

Homeowners believing their property will generate enough money to provide for their retirement could be in for a shock, economic experts have warned. One out of every five retired people living in poverty owns a property worth more than 100,000, the Institute for Public Policy Research says.

Posted by jason @ 01:40 PM 0 Comments

First time buyer news, the week in focus

Firstrung: Firstrung - first time buyers, the week in focus

A popular feature Firstrung highlights the weekly news in relation to the first time buyer.

Posted by Converted Lurker @ 12:11 PM 0 Comments

Saturday, May 27, 2006

Buy to let, fly to let, what is it that they don`t get?

Firstrung: Fly2let, you couldn`t make it up

Perhaps it`s just the Firstrung team having a bad day, here`s another piece of journalism we`ve struggled to get our heads round...why on earth would investors chase properties and areas globally that had already experienced recent and intense house price inflation? You pay more, your mortgage payment is consequently more, and your rental figure?...well that stays the same, or infact gets lower due to increased competition....doh!

Posted by Converted Lurker @ 09:19 PM 0 Comments

Cheap fixed rate mortgages disappear

Times Online: Switch hitch as the cheap fix disappears

Fixed rate mortgages, as used by 70% of mortgage borrowers, are becoming more expensive, even though the Bank of England has not changed rates for 9 months. You would be lucky to get less than 4.8% now, up from 4.2% in July of last year.

Posted by paulm @ 08:31 PM 1 Comments

RICS spokesman blowing smoke up his own?

Firstrung: RICS spokesman blowing in the wind

What awaits the first time buyer, cardboard city? Presumably, if we are to take Mr. Leaf`s logic to its finality, rents will rise there also, as buy to let investors target the new "self assembly build" emering market.

Posted by Converted Lurker @ 11:20 AM 0 Comments

Global Rates Can't Stay Low Permanently

Bloomberg: RBA's Stevens Says Global Rates Can't Stay Low Permanently

Interest rates around the world can't stay low and steady "permanently" and central banks will continue to control inflation, Reserve Bank of Australia Deputy Governor Glenn Stevens said.

Posted by Charlie @ 09:29 AM 0 Comments

Friday, May 26, 2006

US: Fastest increase in inflation in 12 months exceeds Fed comfort zone

BusinessWeek Online: Inflation rises above Fed comfort zone

Consumer spending increased at April at the fastest pace for three months but much of the increased was absorbed by higher fuel prices. Inflation increased at the fastest pace in twelve months adding to speculation that the Fed will continue to keep rising rates to control mounting inflationary pressures.

Posted by denzil @ 08:04 PM 0 Comments

I am sad. I'm angry. I'm confused.

NBC: As rates rise, home foreclosures surge

More worrying news from the US...

Posted by harold @ 04:26 PM 4 Comments

Hips debate rages on....

Firstrung: HIPS, just what is the objection to their introduction?

Does Michael Gove's early day motion on Home Information Packs highlight just how ill-founded his party's stance is? See the link to the EDM, then read the comments below from two advocates of HIPS:

Posted by Converted Lurker @ 03:10 PM 0 Comments

More on Mortgage level dip

Timesonline: House prices calmer as mortgage levels dip

Mortgage slowdown as part of general trend to lower borrowing. Comment on housing market from Global Insight.

Posted by tinecu @ 01:32 PM 2 Comments

HPI goes crazy in Ireland

Belfast Telegraph: Word of warning for all first-time buyers

Soaring property price rises in Northern Ireland in recent weeks have sparked concern that the market could be overheating. First-time buyers are taking out loans of up to four-and-a-half times their income in a frantic bid to get onto the property ladder.

Posted by jason @ 01:22 PM 2 Comments

Mortgage Approvals

Sky: Mortgage Borrowings Fall

The number of mortgage approvals for home purchases fell in April. That is the first annual fall in nine months, the British Bankers' Association data revealed.

Posted by jason @ 01:18 PM 0 Comments

Bursting Bubbles?

50 Connect: Is the new house price bubble set to burst?

The housing market in the UK has taken everyone by surprise with its renewed growth, but are we set for a gentle landing? Growth in the UK housing market and the rise in house prices were forecast by all of those involved in the sector to slow this year. The question very simply was by how much?

Posted by jason @ 01:16 PM 3 Comments

Risky Property Lending rises

TimesOnline: Bank lending to riskier property projects soars

During last year when residential property sales hit a 30 year low bank lending to high risk commercial projects grew by 40% according to research by De Montfort University.

Posted by denzil @ 09:19 AM 0 Comments

Japan's Recovery

BBC News: Japanese prices continue to rise

Japanese consumer prices were higher in April than a year ago, the sixth month in a row they have risen, lifting hopes that deflation has been shaken off. Government figures showed core consumer prices, which do not include fresh food costs, rising 0.5% from a year earlier.

Posted by jason @ 09:11 AM 1 Comments

A 10,000 pay cut to avoid David Brent

In2Perspective: Britain wants to work from home

A look at how changing attitudes to working from home, improved house values from having an office and mass wi-fi coverage are affecting demand in the housing market.

Posted by Gareth Keenan @ 06:59 AM 0 Comments

Thursday, May 25, 2006

A small rise in interest rates could cause havoc

Firstrung: Weak UK economic recovery could be derailed by small rise in interest rates - Experian

"The key uncertainty for the outlook is interest rates. At the start of 2006, indicators were still so weak that few expected anything except a further loosening in policy. But there has been a rapid turnaround in sentiment.

Posted by Converted Lurker @ 09:31 PM 0 Comments

Sydney shows official falls in house prices

Australian Bureau of Statistics: House Price Indexes: Eight Capital Cities, Mar 2006

House prices fell in Sydney by 1.2% in the first quarter of this year and they fell by 3.1% year on year.

Posted by webmaster @ 03:46 PM 2 Comments

Belts are beginning to tighten

SKY News: Household Spending Down

Economic growth was on a level for the first quarter of the year. But household spending grew at its slowest rate in nearly a year. Gross Domestic Product rose by 0.6% in the first quarter, as expected, and the same rate as for the fourth quarter.

Posted by webmaster @ 12:42 PM 0 Comments

Consumer spending hits 12 month low

BBC: Consumer lull undermines growth

Hopes of a rate cut to help the consumer vanish as GDP Grows 0.6% over the first three months of the year.

Posted by denzil @ 12:31 PM 2 Comments

No competition in home energy sector

Guardian: Now energy firms don't care if they lose customers

Consumers struggling to pay gas and electricity bills that have almost doubled since 2001 are likely to despair at yet another huge increase in profits at a power company - and yet another warning that prices will rise this year.

Posted by webmaster @ 11:44 AM 3 Comments

Barclays bad debt

Timesonline: Barclaycard hit by bad debts jump

Lax lending lands many more in trouble.

Posted by tinecu @ 11:36 AM 2 Comments

Problems ahead for Brown or not?

Times: With one bound, Brown could be free from Blair's unpopularity. Here's how

Are crime, education and health really the main reasons for the unpopularity of Tony Blair? That seems to be the message of recent opinion polls, such as the one in yesterdays Guardian, which showed Labour trailing the Tories on these issues for the first time.

Posted by webmaster @ 11:11 AM 8 Comments

Too little housebuilding, too late, too expensive

Firstrung: The affordable housing crisis is worsening by 165 homes per day

Although the number of homes being built is increasing, with a 17% rise in new homes completions in the first quarter of this year compared to the same period in 2005, 70% of all homes built are now priced at more than 150,000. The increase in housebuilding also masks a sharp fall in the number of affordable homes being built by housing associations.

Posted by Converted Lurker @ 10:31 AM 3 Comments

All change for state pensions

BBC News: Pensions shake-up to be unveiled

People will have to wait longer, possibly until they are 68, to collect a state pension, the government's Pensions White Paper is to propose.

Posted by webmaster @ 09:23 AM 2 Comments

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Fannie Mae fined

Firstrung: Fannie Mae - the US government sponsored mortgage company - receives $400mil civil penalty

The U.S. Office of Federal Housing Enterprise Oversight (OFHEO) and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced on Tuesday a 400-million- dollar civil penalty against Fannie Mae -- the government- sponsored mortgage company -- in a settlement over alleged accounting manipulation.

Posted by Converted Lurker @ 11:20 PM 0 Comments

New man on the MPC - Hawk or Dove?

BBC News: Bank appointee quizzed on rates

Prof David Blanchflower, due to take up his post on 1 June, told the Parliamentary Treasury Select Committee he had no preconceived ideas on the future of interest rates.

Posted by webmaster @ 04:36 PM 4 Comments

Bank of Canada carries on with rate increases

Canada.com: Bank of Canada raises key interest rate

The Bank of Canada raised its trend-setting interest rate by a quarter-point to 4.25 per cent on Wednesday.

Posted by webmaster @ 04:32 PM 0 Comments

CAB see the tip of the debt 'iceberg'

BBC News: Britons face 'lifetime of debts'

It could take 77 years on average for people asking Citizens Advice for help with debt to get back into the black, a report from the charity has said.

Posted by webmaster @ 02:17 PM 1 Comments

UK Consumers Stretched

Sky: Weekly spending Drops

A brief article which indicates how little cash UK consumers have to spend. Sadly the quality of journalism is poor and there is no mention of how the figures were calculated. If the UK consumer has little cash, it increases the risks faced by a consumer-driven economy.

Posted by talking rot @ 12:55 PM 0 Comments

(C)rumblings in the Interior

Money Week: Is the US housing market crumbling?

This article indicates that the US economy has peaked and is tipping into an unstoppable bust. The property market is crumbling - "the real US hard landing starts now".

Posted by harold @ 10:00 AM 3 Comments

DIY crash before the House Price Crash?

SKY News: B&Q Earnings Crash

The owner of the B&Q home improvement chain has seen its earnings plummet in Britain. Kingfisher made less than 22m in UK retail profits over the last three months, down more than 70% on the same time last year.

Posted by webmaster @ 09:46 AM 0 Comments

Hometrack research specifies a need for 100bn spend

Firstrung: 100bn investment needed to meet future demand for private rented housing

New research by Hometrack, the housing information business, projects that demand for private rented housing is set to rise by 600,000 households by 2021. In order to meet this demand, new investment of over 100bn will be required. "Demographic changes are the primary driver of future demand for rented housing," comments the report author Richard Donnell, Director of Research at Hometrack.

Posted by Converted Lurker @ 01:46 AM 8 Comments

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Where's the justice in second home ownership?

Guardian: Second home owners are the most selfish people in britain

Second homeowners are just plain selfish and need to be taxed to hell and back. Plus comments from readers.

Posted by inbreda @ 04:02 PM 7 Comments

Buy to Let

Times: Buy-to-let market 'slowly recovering'

Conditions for landlords have picked up in the first half of the year according to a report out today from UCB Home Loans, the buy-to-let mortgage arm of Nationwide building society.

Posted by jason @ 01:50 PM 10 Comments

Venezuala considers ditching dollar for euro on oil sales

Venezuelanalysis: Venezuala considers selling oil in Euros

Another one for those of us following petro-dollar developments - Hugo Chavez may be considering following Iran, and selling Venezuelan oil in Euros. What implications might this have for the $US?

Posted by TickTock @ 01:36 PM 1 Comments

Hurricane predictions push up oil price again

Terra Daily (US): Hurricane forecast drives oil prices back up

Oil prices staged a sharp rebound Monday after US experts predicted a packed summer season of Atlantic hurricanes, traders said.

Posted by webmaster @ 10:53 AM 0 Comments

More retailers going to the wall

Retail Bulletin: Retailing business failures up 19% in quarter one 2006

Despite Gordon Browns insistence that the UK economy is thriving, the latest analysis from Equifax, reveals that business failure rates are up in Quarter One 2006 by 13%.

Posted by webmaster @ 10:49 AM 3 Comments

Housing boom coming to an end in US

FT.com: Door closes on boom times for DIY stores

Lowe's, the do-it-yourself retailer, added to signs of a slowdown in the US housing market yesterday by lowering its sales and earnings guidance for the rest of the year, amid a softening of consumer spending on home improvement products.

Posted by webmaster @ 10:47 AM 0 Comments

High earners struggle to meet debt

BBC: High earners in debt firing line

Consumer Credit Counselling Service (CCCS) said that the number of people earning 30,000+ who are seeking help with them has risen 257% in last three years.

Posted by denzil @ 09:05 AM 3 Comments

FTSE 100: Gains made in 2006 wiped out

FT: Stock slump wipes out FTSE 100s gain for year

The FTSE 100 suffered another bleak day yesterday with yet another 2.2% wiped off its value but was not as bad as the FTSE 250 which was down 4.0% on the day.

Posted by denzil @ 08:55 AM 0 Comments

Monday, May 22, 2006

Everything not OK in Pleasantville

Firstrung: Smartnewhomes see prices of new homes fall by 3.1% in April

Smartnewhomes see prices fall by 3.1% in a month. Whisper it quietly, and despite all the froth that accompanies the press release, could it be that new homes are struggling to sell?

Posted by Converted Lurker @ 04:27 PM 4 Comments

Bad news from the US

BusinessWeek Online: The Growl of a Housing Bear

John Talbott warned that home prices were ready to fall back in 2003, when he wrote the best-seller The Coming Crash in the Housing Market. BusinessWeek Online reporter Sonja Ryst recently spoke with Talbott about his bearish outlook for housing.

Posted by harold @ 04:19 PM 0 Comments

Bad news from Down Under

Moneyweek: Bad news from Down Under for the UK housing market

Down under comparison of housing markets

Posted by Rimmer @ 03:40 PM 0 Comments

VAT likely to raise 3% for Germany

BBC News: Germany braces for sharp VAT hike

The rate of value-added tax (VAT) in Germany looks set to rise to 19% from the beginning of 2007.

Posted by Webmaster @ 03:15 PM 0 Comments

Another high street bank set for foreign ownership?

BBC News: Agricole confirms interest in A&L

Shares in Alliance & Leicester have risen 6% after French bank Credit Agricole confirmed it is considering making a takeover bid. Abbey National owner Santander is also seen as a potential bidder for A&L.

Posted by webmaster @ 11:47 AM 1 Comments

Shelter comment on government failure to tackle housing shortage

Firstrung: Shelter - 20,000 more social rented homes needed each year

"That's why Ruth Kelly's personal commitment to tackle the housing shortage is welcome - the upcoming Comprehensive Spending review is the clear opportunity not only to put that commitment into practice but also to lance a painful boil in the process."

Posted by Converted Lurker @ 10:26 AM 1 Comments

European stock exchanges down 1%

FT.com: Europe and UK stocks follow Asia sharply lower

UK and European bourses slid sharply on Monday, confounding expectations of a higher open as commodities sold off, while Asian equities gave up early gains.

Posted by paulm @ 09:42 AM 0 Comments

1 million Britons struggling to pay debts

Guardian: Debt problem soars as 1m face threat of bankruptcy

A million people in Britain could be on the verge of bankruptcy, while one in five adults - or eight million - have unsecured debt of more than 10,000, according to a report out today.

Posted by paulm @ 09:21 AM 26 Comments

You want to move? You can't afford to move!

this is money: Second time-buyers stay put

A study into second-time buyers, released today, has shown that it is not just first-timers who are struggling but also those who have already bought their first home and now want to move.

Posted by cupidstunt @ 08:40 AM 6 Comments

Property activist in China

Telegraph: China gags property boycott protester

China has silenced a businessman who called for a boycott of property purchases in protest at rising house prices.

Posted by TyrellCorporation @ 08:30 AM 0 Comments

Sunday, May 21, 2006

Inflation fears may be overdone

Telegraph Online: Is the only way up for inflation?

Telegraph piece taking a balanced view of US & UK inflationary pressures

Posted by nimmmm @ 07:32 PM 5 Comments

Hips, open and shut case?

Firstrung: 'HIPs could elevate property industry' Case closed

Having run a pilot Home Information Pack scheme since August, Kevin Hollinrake of the Hunters Property Group North writes that HIPs will not be as bad for the property market as many in the industry are expecting them to be. Below, we reproduce an article published this week in Estate Agency News on his views of how HIPs will affect the buying process:

Posted by Converted Lurker @ 12:28 PM 1 Comments

Savills report, puff and air?

Firstrung: House prices and the property market, something for the weekend

We`ve broken this Savills report into several bite size sections, not that it makes it any more palatable for first time buyers. However, it does make for interesting reading, although we question just how far North of Watford the compilers wander given they can describe Northern towns "undergoing a renaissance".

Posted by Converted Lurker @ 12:13 PM 0 Comments

Saturday, May 20, 2006

Share prices crash in Wall Street and London, but may have further to fall

Guardian Online: Did the Bubble burst this week?

A summary of what happened this week and where it might lead

Posted by nimmmm @ 10:48 AM 0 Comments

In defence of HIPS

Firstrung: First time buyers cannot fail to benefit from the introduction of HIPS

With the introduction of compulsory Home information Packs only about 12 months away, all sectors of the residential property industry are working hard to make the necessary changes required. For example, even now there are over 4,000 prospective home inspectors in training to re-qualify as government licenced inspectors.

Posted by Converted Lurker @ 09:49 AM 2 Comments

Cornish HPI

Telegraph: Small cities lead the property price boom

How locals have been priced out by outsiders.

Posted by bufferbear @ 09:35 AM 0 Comments

Swansea: Cost of home per square metre

icWales.co.uk: Price of a 1946 house would buy 1sq m today

House price increases calculated by square metres

Posted by Buffer Bear @ 09:30 AM 1 Comments

Tessa Jowell selling up

Firstrung: Jowell To Cash In Before Crash? Tessa house on sale for 950K

Culture secretary Tessa Jowell is selling her London home for 950,000. Described by the agent as being; "Located in an elevated positon in Kentish Town, just off the crest of Lady Margaret Road enjoying high quality natural light and some wonderful views this late Victorian house is offered in marvellous condition."

Posted by Converted Lurker @ 09:27 AM 1 Comments

Friday, May 19, 2006

Community land trusts to create more affordable housing?

BBC Action Network: Building dreams in property

Could CLTs be a way of providing more sustainable affordable housing. The basic concept is that the community owns the land in trust for the benefit of the community and that private individuals who buy property on this land do not profit from appreciation in the land value, only from the value of their buildings.

Posted by paulm @ 10:58 PM 0 Comments

Summary of the latest property news

In2Perspective: Essential Summary May (part 2)

House prices, unemployment, possessions, predictions...once a fortnight we give a summary of the latest UK property news. Hope you find it interesting.

Posted by In2Perspective @ 03:49 PM 0 Comments

Spectrum offering 90% mortgages to bankrupt clients

Firstrung: Spectrum launches mortgage range for those subject to bankruptcy orders

Cue jokes of Captain Scarlet and the Mysterons as surely lending practice has now reached fantasy land? The products, which cover from light to heavy adverse, include a choice of two- and three-year fixed rates starting from 5.89 per cent. All pricing is based on Bank Base Rate and mortgages are available up to 90 per cent loan-to-value (LTV) on both a full status and self-cert basis.

Posted by Converted Lurker @ 11:44 AM 10 Comments

Mortgage lending falls 12% in April

BBC: Mortgage lending falls in April

Mortgage lending fell 12% in April and is now lower than the average over the last 6 months

Posted by denzil @ 11:05 AM 4 Comments

Higher rates dissident sets out his stall

TimesOnline: MPC's rates dissident explains his reasoning

David Walton, the lone voice on the MPC who voted for a rate explains his reasoning

Posted by denzil @ 10:07 AM 0 Comments

The UK share sell off is overdone

Telegraph Online: The UK share sell off is overdone

The Telegraph predicts a rapid rebound in UK share prices

Posted by nimmmm @ 07:59 AM 0 Comments

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Indian shares suffer biggest drop in history

BBC News: Indian shares suffer record drop

Bombay Stock Exchange suffers its biggest one day drop ever, down 6.8%.

Posted by MrB @ 09:27 PM 0 Comments

Nationwide, lending down 42%

Firstrung: Nationwide sees profits rise but lending fall sharply

Surprised this hasn`t caused more of a reaction in the media, or on the HPC forum. This decision, to scale back lending, was taken some time ago, what do they know that the rest of us are guessing at?? Nationwide, the country's biggest customer-owned lender and the fourth biggest mortgage provider, said its net mortgage lending in its last financial year fell to 6.3 billion pounds, down 42 percent from 10.9 billion a year earlier.

Posted by Converted Lurker @ 08:24 PM 0 Comments

Last year's spate of buyer inaction is spurring demand

BusinessWeek Online: London's Real Estate Boomlet

Big bonuses in the CIty coupled by a rate cut in August have helped to allay the fears of those expecting a house price crash and led to double digit growth in some areas of London during the first quarter. Reading between the lines of this is quite interesting. If you take away the ephemeral factors that business week mention there seems little to prop up the market.

Posted by denzil @ 05:21 PM 9 Comments

Mortgages get heavier / Brace yourselves, credit-card junkies

Finance Yahoo.com: Battered Stocks, and Hot Burgers

Delinquency rates are rising on mortgages issued last year, according to Wall Street firms. People who bought homes in 2005 faced a double whammy -- rising mortgage rates and sky-high prices. OK, "binge" borrowers, says Janet Whitman in the New York Post. Pay up. You've been "racking up credit-card debt and taking out" risky mortgages while interest rates were low. Now the "whiff of inflation" is in the air, and the Federal Reserve will have to keep jacking up interest rates "to keep inflationary pressures at bay."

Posted by foobar @ 02:32 PM 1 Comments

Nationwide BS doing well

Times: Nationwide boosted by strong housing market

A recovering housing market helped Nationwide Building Society to post record pre-tax profits of 559.2 million for the year to April, despite its share of mortgage lending sliding against last year. Britain's fourth-largest mortgage lender said it had an "outstandingly successful" 12-month period, as fears of a housing market crash tailed off in the latter part of 2005 and momentum in the property market began to return in the new year.

Posted by jason @ 01:05 PM 8 Comments

Retail sales recovered in April alleviating pressure for a near-term hike in interest rates

BBC: Retail sales data shows recovery

Howard Archer, chief European economist at research firm Global Insight stated that after consumers has taken a breather earlier in the year had returned to a limited extent. Sales in the three months to the end of April were up by 0.1%.

Posted by denzil @ 12:28 PM 6 Comments

Death to the estate agent!

In2Perspective.com: Will internet kill off estate agents?

Enjoyed reading this! Surely the estate agents days are numbered now... after BBC's Whistleblower there are calls for regulation and in surveys everyone seems to want to see the back of them. They charge too much for just lying and doing nothing. Surely we will all sell our houses on the internet soon anyway?

Posted by The Exterminihater @ 11:26 AM 6 Comments

B&B pull in their horns

Firstrung: Bradford & Bingley announce the end of the line for brokers

Bradford and Bingley are to cut ties with their intermediaries/brokers/introducers. For such a pioneering and pro-active industry player this is quite a U turn and has taken the market by surprise.

Posted by Converted Lurker @ 10:34 AM 0 Comments

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Surprise acceleration in US core inflation sends FTSE tumbling

FT: New bout of inflation jitters hits markets

FTSE down 2.9 on the day. Sharpest falls in European equities in three years.

Posted by denzil @ 10:09 PM 11 Comments

An omen of things to come?

CNN: Housing slowdown to be widely felt

A view from the other side of the pond on the bleak prospects for the housing market. CNN - not usually know for its bearish outlook.

Posted by harold @ 04:41 PM 1 Comments

Jobs in manufacturing hits 28 year low

BBC: Unemployment at four-year record

Manufacturing jobs at lowest level since records began in 1978. Number of people out of work hits 4 year high.

Posted by denzil @ 02:25 PM 2 Comments

"An economy held aloft by credit will surely come crashing back to earth"

Guardian: Comment is Free Blog: Caveat debtor

On the eighth anniversary of the 70,000 strong human chain in Birmingham, Anne Pettifor of Jubillee 2000 draws a parallel between today's consumers in the UK and US and the heavily indebted developing countries in the 1990s. She blames financial deregulation and liberalisation and predicts it will all end in a mess. Also features some interesting comments from readers.

Posted by Gravity's Rainbow @ 12:22 PM 5 Comments

Protests over the price of housing in Spain

euroresidentes: Protests over the price of housing in Spain

Thousands of young people took to the streets yesterday in 60 towns and cities to protest at the price of housing in Spain and to ask the Spanish government to do something to protect the right of young people to buy a decent house.

Posted by jimmy @ 12:17 PM 2 Comments

Official figures contrast property boom surveys

In2Perspective.com: Official house price figures less rosy

The latest government figures contrast the claim of most leading house price surveys that Britain's property market is booming.

Posted by Karuna @ 12:08 PM 2 Comments

Longer term mortgages, is there a market for them?

Firstrung: First time buyers should beware of long term solutions - moneysupermarket.com

Anyone else of the opinion that these longer term mortgages will simply not fly? Moneysupermarket.com crunch the numbers and come to that conclusion.

Posted by Converted Lurker @ 11:35 AM 0 Comments

An Alternative View to Doomster Predictions

Times Online: Greenback will fall, Armageddon will not follow

This article provides an alternative scenario to the financial melt-down that some doomsters are predicting for the US economy. It uses historical examples to forecast long-term gains will outweigh a short-term dip. It touches upon the power of diplomacy within global markets. For doomsters who believe nothing is different this time around, you must also believe history examples are of use to forecast the future. Perhaps not all is gloom within the US economy afterall.

Posted by talking rot @ 11:20 AM 1 Comments

Tax on 2nd Homes - Debate Continues

Decide which house you call your home: FT.com

This article supports second-home ownership and explores how paying a tax on your second (and subsequent) homes can be avoided. Originally I was not going to post this article but it does act as a balance to one of yesterday's posts, "2nd Homes to be Taxed". Just goes to show if a new tax is introduced, clever people will find new ways of avoiding it.

Posted by talking rot @ 11:05 AM 0 Comments

Scotland Booms While English Prices Fall

home.co.uk: Scottish And English Housing Markets Poles Apart

Home.co.uk gives some interesting information which seems at odds with all the other recent reports of a booming market! Prices are falling in England!

Posted by european-bear @ 10:33 AM 0 Comments

British car industry kicked in the teeth again

BBC: Vauxhall confirms 900 job losses

Vauxhall has confirmed 900 jobs to go at its Ellesmere Port factory in Cheshire.

Posted by denzil @ 10:30 AM 3 Comments

House Prices Falling In Scotland

Inside Property: Scottish House Prices Slip For Second Consecutive Quarter

Scotland's property market is talked up more than any other region of the UK, but beneath the spin comes the news that for two quarters in a row average prices have actually fallen.

Posted by El Gordo @ 10:18 AM 1 Comments

BoE minutes show divided MPC

Reuters: Bank split three ways in May

The Bank of England's Monetary Policy Committee was split three ways on this month's decision to keep interest rates at 4.5 percent with one member wanting a hike while another voted for a cut.

Posted by webmaster @ 09:53 AM 4 Comments

Beware of 35 year mortgages

Firstrung: First time buyers should beware of long term solutions - moneysupermarket.com

Moneysupermarket crunch the numbers and suggest that 35 year + mortgages do not add up...

Posted by Converted Lurker @ 09:33 AM 0 Comments

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Doom'n'gloom talk hits the tabloids

Thisismoney.co.uk (Daily Mail): So how worried should we be?

This article is a little like the Jeff Randall piece in the Torygraph last week, with it's '10 reasons' why we're heading for a fall: 'When one also considers that UK households have built up a 1trillion debt mountain, which is highly sensitive to an interest rate hike of the kind likely to be seen later this year, and the outlook becomes even more worrying.'

Posted by crashedoutandburned @ 10:16 PM 6 Comments

Why is the dollar under pressure

BBC: Why the dollar is falling so fast

What are the implications if the dollar continues to fall?

Posted by denzil @ 04:51 PM 5 Comments

House prices rise again with larger properties causing the swell

Firstrung: House prices rise again with larger properties causing the swell

Have RICS finally shed light on the fact that price rises are only due to the vast amount of unsold expensive properties on agents books? "House prices have risen for the sixth consecutive month and larger properties are out performing flats, according to the RICS UK housing market survey published today, (15 May). House prices rose as demand has further stabilised on the back of the strengthening economy. For the three months to April, 15% more Chartered Surveyors reported a rise in house prices than a fall, up from 12% in March. Confidence in the industry remains high and is still above the historical average for the survey. Larger and mid range property types are showing disproportionate price gains compared to under performing flats, the largest variation of performance since 2001."

Posted by Converted Lurker @ 12:27 PM 2 Comments

Second Homes Tax Recommended

Western Morning News: Tax on second homes looming

Second home owners in the west country should pay a new "impact tax" to reflect the damage they cause to rural communities, a Government-sponsored report will say this week. In a finding that will stoke the controversy about the growing number of second homes in parts of Devon and Cornwall, the Affordable Rural Housing Commission will warn that excessive numbers of holiday homes can "undermine the viability" of some rural communities.

Posted by vwphil @ 12:26 PM 3 Comments

April Inflation Data

National Statistics: April: CPI rises to 2.0%, RPI up to 2.6%

Inflation up marginally in UK, driven by higher transport and energy costs.

Posted by Jamie Campbell @ 11:01 AM 6 Comments

Immigration policies key to house prices

In2perspective: Immigration key to low inflation and interest rates

The deflationary pressure on the economy generated by the willingness of migrant workers to work for minimum wage or less translates into low interest rates. This allows us to borrow money, whether in the form of credit cards, mortgages, loans or otherwise, at new low rates....

Posted by Jack Hughes @ 10:51 AM 17 Comments

RICS: Inquiries from new buyers slows

TimesOnline: Property prices rise faster, but calls from buyers slow

Calls from new buyers slows but property prices grew slightly faster in April according to RICS.

Posted by denzil @ 10:34 AM 0 Comments

Swansea to be one of the top 3 buy to let hotspots

Firstrung: You lied Edward, there is a Swansea" - presumably the new road takes you there

Ho Hum...Another day, another survey, this came the way of UCB who specialise in buy to let mortgages. Their intelligence (no sniggering at the back of the class) suggests that Swansea is to be the next big thing in the world of the buy to let investor. Well it has a beach and a university..what more do you need? "Swansea will soon be one of Britain's "top three" buy-to-let hot spots outside London. That is the view of UCB home loans, the specialist buy-to-let arm of Nationwide. UCB said yesterday it anticipated a large number of the 2,000 new homes with sea or riverside views being built in Swansea's fast developing SA1 development would be used as buy-to-let properties."

Posted by Converted Lurker @ 08:42 AM 1 Comments

Predictions for the dollar today

Telegraph Online: US grabs its cash...

An article explaining what happened to the Dollar & world stock markets yesterday, and predicting that the Dollar slide will continue today at a pace

Posted by nimmmm @ 08:03 AM 1 Comments

RICS: Inquiries From New Buyers Rise

Guardian: House prices continue to rise

House prices rose for the sixth month in a row in April and are expected to carry on climbing over the coming months, according to a study by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors. The Rics findings coincided with government figures showing the value of the average home rose almost 3,600 during March. Rics said the number of inquiries from new buyers rose in April for the 11th consecutive month. Its assessment also agreed with other recent surveys from organisations such as website Rightmove.

Posted by jason @ 07:57 AM 2 Comments

Monday, May 15, 2006

80 billion for a house!

IHT: Zimbabweans ask, who can afford houses?

You think we have it bad - The asking price on one advertisement is 80 billion Zimbabwe dollars, or about $800,000 on the official market and $372,000 at black market rates. Analysts say housing prices are another sign of Zimbabwe's upside-down economy and a currency that is losing its value faster than any other on earth.

Posted by GiveMetheData @ 10:43 PM 0 Comments

Stateside: Help for FTB through counselling and psychoanalysis

BuilderOnline: First-Time Buyers Getting Help

"Angela a data processing supervisor from South San Francisco attended the seminar to finally break the cycle of renting." This is freakish! Poor Angela thinks she is suffering from an incurable desease just because she rents.

Posted by denzil @ 08:54 PM 0 Comments

McDonaldisation of US jobs market

Counterpunch.org: Life in the Bush Economy: Fat, Drunk and Broke

Paul Craig Roberts, ex-Reagan administration, has been writing regularly on the declining job quality in the USA. Much of what is happening stateside is happening in the UK. Job growth during the current debt binge has been highly concentrated in the low-paying sectors like retail, leisure and call centres.

Posted by crashedoutandburned @ 07:42 PM 0 Comments

BBC mistake cabbie for IT Expert

Mail on Sunday: The BBC's latest star - a baffled cabbie

A little off topic, but I think you will all appreciate it none-the-less. The BBC have interviewed a cabbie live on air for his comments on the outcome of the Apple Corps versus Apple Computer case, after mistaking him for a Technology Expert.

Posted by paulm @ 05:50 PM 3 Comments

Why the UK housing market did not crash

in2perspective: Why the UK housing market did not crash

Roger Bootle of Capital Economics had predicted a correction in the UK housing market by as much as 20%. In an article published yesterday in The Telegraph, and reproduced below, he explains why he turned out to be wrong and discusses what lies ahead for house prices.

Posted by Geraint Lewis @ 04:55 PM 1 Comments

The importance of sentiment and the problems of managing an economy by examination of expectations

Times Online: Prepare for a sudden swing to pessimism

This article explores the relationship between financial institutions, business and sentiment/expectations. Reality will eventually prevail over expectations but there will be an overshoot into pessimism before equilibrium is achieved. Naturally house prices are immune to the economic laws of sentiment and expectations.

Posted by talking rot @ 01:06 PM 0 Comments

Who is fearing a crash?

Independent Online: Housing bubble fears grow as prices hit record high

Despite the title, the article doesn't say who is fearing a crash. It reports house prices are rising fast, currently at 5.9% with the potential to reach 8% this year. This is either a sign of the UK house price bubble's last gasp or that the general population has hit House-Price-Crash fatigue - too many warnings yet still no crash. Sales are up 40% since last March (Land Registry) and demand is up 25% (YourMove). Could the "House-Price-Crash fatigue" group be right?

Posted by talking rot @ 12:43 PM 10 Comments

Number claiming unemployment benefit up 10% yoy

The Observer - UK: Markets booming, but jobs disappear

100,000 more people are out of work and claiming benefits than this time last year. Some commentators are suggesting that native low skilled workers may have been displaced by migrant workers from the new EU member states.

Posted by paulm @ 10:51 AM 1 Comments

Black Monday revisited as FTSE drops 2.6%

TimesOnline: Stock crash gathers pace on dollar, inflation fears

Inflation fears and a weaker dollar sent world equity markets tumbling for a second day. The FTSE 100 index crashed as much as 156.7 to 5755.4 in the opening hour of business.

Posted by denzil @ 09:39 AM 2 Comments

Asking Prices rise again...according to Rightmove!

TimesOnline: Mini-boom sees house prices surge

According to rightmove asking prices for properties rose 2% over the last month. Rightmove stated that the figures "exceeded all expectations" Is this the start of a new boom or speculative sellers "chancing their luck". Will this add weight to next months MPC meeting and force a pre-emptive rate rise.

Posted by denzil @ 09:32 AM 8 Comments

Markets braced for the worst

Telegraph Business: News Item

Global markets are bracing for turmoil today after an ominous slide in the US dollar and a slump in equity and bond prices late last week sent tremors through the global financial system, evoking memories of the 1987 crash. Emerging economies have led the sell-off as investors recoil from risky assets, pummelling stocks and bonds in Turkey, Hungary, Iceland and much of Latin America.

Posted by TyrellCorporation @ 08:30 AM 0 Comments

The end is nigh for the US....

Guardian online: Original News Atricle

Larry Elliott, Economics Editor for Guardian online puts the boot in to the US economy

Posted by Nimmmm @ 07:03 AM 1 Comments

Rightmove increases 2006 forecast

Guardian: Rate of house price inflation doubles in one month

House prices have risen by 2% in the past month as the property revival gains momentum, according to a survey published today. It helped push annual house price growth up to 5.9% for the year to May 6, up from 4.1% the previous month. The average house price is now 209,829. Rightmove said that as a result of the strong growth seen during the past few months, it was increasing its house price forecast for 2006 from 5% to 8%.

Posted by jason @ 06:45 AM 0 Comments

Blackburn tops league for early mortgage repayment

Firstrung: Want to pay off your mortgage early? Then move to Blackburn and relax

RBS Offset Mortgage research identifies Blackburn, in Lancashire, as the UK town where the average homeowner is closest to paying off their mortgage completely. The RBS Fastest Mortgage League highlights the UK's mortgage payment hotspots, where average-earning homeowners can pay off the remainder of their mortgages the soonest. Areas of Scotland and the north of England are revealed as the best in the UK for obtaining outright home ownership most quickly.

Posted by Converted Lurker @ 01:58 AM 0 Comments

Sunday, May 14, 2006

Customers not happy in Which? Estate agents report

Firstrung: Which? Estate agents report

Interesting press release from the consumer magazine Which? It covers mainly the service aspect the general public receive from estate agents and forms part of the Which campaign "moving on"...."Consumers entering the home-buying or selling process are substantially disadvantaged by the way estate agents currently operate. Less than half were always happy with the service they received from estate agents:"

Posted by Converted Lurker @ 02:24 PM 1 Comments

What's happening with the Economy?

Observer: Markets booming, but jobs disappear

Recent rises in the number of people out of work have got economists worried - and some blame the UK's woes on the influx of east European workers, writes Heather Stewart. In the sunny Square Mile last week, as Mervyn King delivered his latest thoughts on the state of the economy, there seemed to be plenty of reasons for optimism. Retailers had a happy Easter; the house price crash hasn't (yet) come to pass; and even manufacturers are feeling more cheerful than usual.

Posted by jason @ 02:08 PM 0 Comments

BoE debt warning

Observer: Would you credit it? King has just woken up to debt

So Mervyn King, governor of the Bank of England, believes spiralling levels of personal debt are becoming a 'potentially large social problem'. Suddenly the number of people going bankrupt and approaching debt charities for help seems to be sinking in. He has also warned homeowners that house prices seem 'remarkably high'.

Posted by jason @ 02:01 PM 0 Comments

Serene Economy will sail Brown into his very own Labour election victory

TimesOnline: Is it springtime for Gordon?

Last years property worries are rapidly fading as the housing market has been gaining strength as house prices, mortgage loans and approvals move higher.

Posted by denzil @ 10:16 AM 7 Comments

Weekly summary of news for FTB's

Firstrung: First time buyer weekly news in focus

A brief summary of the major news concerning first time buyers. A familiar theme for first time buyers with this week news reaching the Firstrung team that first time buyers had finally reached an historic all time low in Scotland. With the average age now 37, buyers paying 30-40% over asking price and deposits at 20% - 23K with purchases at 5.5 times salary, these figures now represent the worst in the UK and Ireland.

Posted by Converted Lurker @ 10:01 AM 0 Comments

Roger Bootle - an apology

Telegraph Online: Housing market on a knife-edge

Roger Bootle's explanation as to why his predicitons for the housing market were wrong, and how he sees the current state of the market

Posted by Nimmmm @ 09:41 AM 3 Comments

Fixed rate mortgages becoming more expensive

TimesOnline: Cost of fixing your mortgage set to jump

Fixed rate mortgages are set to jump as money markets scent rate rises. Abbey, Bank of Scotland and GMAC banks, and Yorkshire, Cheshire and Stroud & Swindon building societies all withdrew their fixed rates last week whilst Abbey National have already raised their fix rate and Nationwide and Halifax are withdrawing theirs early this coming week.

Posted by denzil @ 09:31 AM 0 Comments

Avoid greedy banks useless or inappropriate products

Sunday Times: Avoid greedy banks money-making ploys

The big five Barclays, NatWest/Royal Bank of Scotland, HSBC, HBOS/Bank of Scotland and Lloyds TSB made a total of 33.4 billion this year. Fat Prophets, a consultant, predicts this will soar by 50% over the next nine years. The banks make a large chunk of their profits from costly insurance policies and premium accounts. The best way to avoid adding to their coffers is to shun these products.

Posted by green_bear @ 09:24 AM 0 Comments

SIPP Loophole uncovered for holiday properties

Sunday Times: Wealthy cash in on holiday flat loophole

Lawyers for some of Britains wealthiest residents have uncovered a loophole in the pension rules that allows people to buy holiday properties with their retirement funds.\r\nScores of investors, including senior directors at some of the Citys top firms, have been quietly taking advantage of the perk to purchase holiday apartments in French ski resorts, coastal towns and even Paris with their self-invested personal pensions (SIPPS).

Posted by green_bear @ 08:54 AM 0 Comments

Saturday, May 13, 2006

Only two thirds or mortgage payers have life insurance!

Firstrung: Home owners ignore life cover for their mortgage - Friends Provident

Interest only mortgages without the life of the mortgagee being insured? This could be due to the affordability issue being stretched to breaking point. Buy to let mortgages providers rarely ask for proof of life cover.... A recent survey from Friends Provident has revealed that just most home owners insure the contents of their property and ignore the mortgage they borrowed to buy it, putting their families' future at risk in the event of their death Only two-thirds (69 per cent) of home owners have life cover to meet mortgage repayments, compared to the nine out of ten (92 per cent) who have contents insurance, the survey found.

Posted by Converted Lurker @ 07:03 PM 6 Comments

Couples say "I do" to buying a house

SKY News: Houses Top Priority List

A survey by the Yorkshire Building society suggests that young people consider purchasing a house more important than getting married.

Posted by Webmaster @ 04:58 PM 3 Comments

Impending hurricane season may push oil prices higher

Interactive Investor: Hurricane season to expose oil prices

Whilst damage from hurricane Katrina is still being repaired, there are 9 hurricanes forecast for the US this year, which could increase the price of a barrel even further. 'Crude oil prices are within $10 to $15 of the $80 to $90 price range executives think would likely trigger a recession.'

Posted by libitina @ 01:51 PM 0 Comments

Public Confidence in US economy drops

Bloomberg: U.S. Economy: Confidence Drops as Gasoline Surges

Fueled by gasoline prices and rising costs of living.

Posted by libitina @ 01:45 PM 0 Comments

Another 430 NHS jobs to be cut

Sky News: Hospital Jobs Axe Falls

Leeds Hospital Trust Spokesperson hopes the jobs can be cut without resorting to redundancies. NHS job cuts total nearly 5,000 so far this year.

Posted by libitina @ 01:08 PM 0 Comments

Does buy-to-let still make sense?

Guardian: Does buy-to-let still make sense?

Good to see this on the Guardian site, are the "Buy to Fret" investors beginning to struggle? "In the TV world inhabited by Britain's favourite property duo, Kirstie Allsopp and Phil Spencer, making money from buy-to-let property is a doddle. Follow a few basic rules, buy a place in a carefully selected city, and just sit back and wait for the money to roll in."

Posted by Converted Lurker @ 12:16 PM 5 Comments

Mortgage Lenders should fix their exit fees

Firstrung: Mortgage Lenders should fix their exit fees

Lenders charge exit fees when customers redeem their mortgage in full, for example, by switching their mortgage to a rival lender. Exit fees can also be termed administration charges, sealing fees or deeds-release fees and are raised to cover the cost of taking property deeds out of storage, sending them to a solicitor and producing a final account statement. Borrowers are warned when they sign up that if they switch lenders, they'll have to pay a fee - but the size of that fee is not guaranteed to stay the same.

Posted by Converted Lurker @ 11:47 AM 0 Comments

Council of mortgage lenders plea for help

Independent Online Edition: Plea to help stricken first-time buyers

CML state that at least 50% of new buyers pay stamp duty. Michael Coogan of the CML stated that "If this threshold had been uprated in line with house-price inflation since 1997, it would now stand at 145,000, helping many more first-time buyers into their homes." This week two building the societies Yorkshire and Newcastle upped the amount they will lend to of salary to 4.0 and 4.75 times salary respectively.

Posted by denzil @ 10:13 AM 3 Comments

Waves of Fear cross the Atlantic

TimesOnline: FTSE reels as wave of economic fear crosses the Atlantic

Traders focusing on threat of correction to greenback in response to vast current account deficit. US Consumer Sentiment falling.

Posted by denzil @ 09:37 AM 2 Comments

Friday, May 12, 2006

US stocks fall in wake of weakening dollar

Bloomberg: U.S. Stocks Fall on Inflation Concern; S&P 500 Drops for Week

Biggest weekly losses since October on the back of inflation worries.

Posted by libitina @ 08:56 PM 0 Comments

A Final Step Toward US Dollar Collapse & Preemptive Nuclear Strike

Jones Report: Iranian Oil Bourse Opens for Business

Over the past four days, the Western media has finally ended their blackout and acknowledged the possibility of an imminent dollar collapse, as gold reaches nearly $700 an ounce. On Friday, May 5, the Associated Press covered the oil bourse with their article Iran wants oil market in Euros. The article warns of a rapid decline in the dollar while feebly attempting to minimize the importance of the oil bourse. Nevertheless, the AP quotes a top Wall Street analyst who gives a far more realistic assessment: But if one day the world's largest oil producers allowed, or worse demanded, euros for their barrels, it would be the financial equivalent of a nuclear strike, said A.G. Edwards commodities analyst Bill O'Grady. It appears the bottom may already be falling out from under the financial house of cards. The fiat currency ponzi scheme, bloated by hundreds of trillions in leveraged derivatives, hedge fund manipulations, and unregulated currency speculation, appears doomed.

Posted by cgnao @ 08:12 PM 4 Comments

Party over for London property boom

FT.com: London property boom peters out as regions catch up

Londons turn-of-the-year surge in house prices has stalled, according to the Financial Times house price index, allowing the property market in other regions to catch up with the capital.

Posted by webmaster @ 05:38 PM 1 Comments

FTSE: Worst Day in 2 Years

FT: FTSE 100 suffers its worst day for two years

Sharp sell-off of energy and resource stocks sends FTSE tumbling

Posted by denzil @ 05:37 PM 2 Comments

FTSE crashes over 2%

SKY News: FTSE Dives Under 6,000

More than 20bn has been wiped off the value of the UK's leading shares after the FTSE 100 Index took a dive.

Posted by Webmaster @ 04:11 PM 0 Comments

Inflation Threat Not Killed by Globalisation

Independent Online: Globalisation: how the new shift of power is affecting inflation

This article reports on an IMF Paper. As the Chinese, Russian and Indian economies are integrating into the world economy, economic power is shifting because of (1) the impact of high oil prices on global imbalances and (2) the relationship between globalisation and inflation. The upshort is a sharp fall in the Dollar; divergence between goods inflation and services inflation; and further commodity price inflation.

Posted by talking rot @ 12:13 PM 0 Comments

Soft Landing a myth

Home.co.uk: New Index Blows The Lid On House Prices

Today, the Internet looks set to change our lives yet again and this time in the way house price movements are monitored, thanks to a ground-breaking new Asking Price Index from Home.co.uk. The new figures are derived from the largest collection of asking prices yet amassed, from across the web, and calculated by the leading house price economists, Calnea Analytics, with unparalleled precision. UK Index (PDF) Scotland Index (PDF)

Posted by Jason @ 12:13 PM 1 Comments

End of the London led mini-boom?

FT.com: London property boom peters out

Londons turn-of-the-year surge in house prices has stalled, according to the Financial Times house price index, allowing the property market in other regions to catch up with the capital.

Posted by Uncle Chris @ 10:02 AM 3 Comments

House prices have fallen in all of Englands regions - Home.co.uk, delivers some home truths

Firstrung: House prices have fallen in all of Englands regions - Home.co.uk, delivers some home truths

Adding some balance to the debate, Home.co.uk continue to offer a revised calculation and opinion on where property values are headed. "According to Home.co.uk, since February prices fell in England in ALL 8 regions, the largest falls being registered in the Home Counties (-2.2%) and in the North West (-2.1%)."

Posted by Converted Lurker @ 09:34 AM 1 Comments

Inflation fears send US stocks falling

TimesOnline: US stocks fall on gold and oil fears

US STOCKS yesterday recorded their biggest fall since January, on concern that the rising prices of gold and oil would translate into higher inflation and trigger a further rise in interest rates.

Posted by denzil @ 08:51 AM 0 Comments

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Interesting comment from the US

Telegraph: Comment

The US economy peaked in January and is tipping into an unstoppable "bust" whether or not the Federal Reserve halts its cycle of interest rate rises, Lombard Street Research has warned. The economic research group said the US property market was crumbling, taking away the key prop of the consumer boom.

Posted by TyrellCorporation @ 10:55 PM 6 Comments

BoE May Be Disappointed by Inflation

Money Week: Why the Bank of England is still too optimistic about inflation

Article reports the BoE inflation expectations might not be met. It cites reasons why, notably oil and gold prices and reports that householders have noticed a squeeze on their earnings. It intimates second-round inflation effects are likely to occur as a result.

Posted by Talking_Rot @ 10:00 PM 1 Comments

New House Prices in USA Tumble

Telegraph Online: Homes glut pressures US economy

This article reports that a hard landing for US Property is starting now. It gives brief details why but does not predict the end of the tumble.

Posted by Talking_Rot @ 09:51 PM 1 Comments

Bernanke is rapidly losing control

MarketWatch: On watch for the next LTCM

All eyes are on the Fed, and one respected institutional service (Bridgewater) thinks there are reasons to dislike what they're seeing. And then there's the REALLY bad news: Bridgewater also expects a major international system crunch exactly like the collapse of the fixed exchange rate Bretton Woods system, which lead directly to the inflationary crisis of 1974. Wednesday morning, Bridgewater's Daily Letter was headlined, "The Tremors Before the Big One" and concluded: "We believe the odds of a dollar/ U.S. debt crisis in the next twelve months are elevated (say 50 percent)."

Posted by cgnao @ 08:42 PM 0 Comments

Buy v Rent

TMF: Another View On Buy vs Rent

I don't own my own home. As many of you have pointed out on the discussion boards recently, it's just not cost-effective to buy right now. But is this true for all of us? When should we buy? And why must we buy? Why is it that we feel we have to own our own homes? They're not obsessed like this on the continent, are they?

Posted by cupidstunt @ 04:07 PM 7 Comments

Damning statement from hpc.co.uk regular about government housing policy

Telegraph: "Local people know best over housing expansion"

A scathing report from a hpc.co.uk regular about the government's housing policy. Labour cabinet takes another hammer blow.

Posted by RichM @ 03:17 PM 1 Comments

Mervyn King: spectre of housing collapse could plunge families into negative equity

Daily Mail: Bank chief's debt warning

The Bank of England governor Mervyn King highlighted a sharp rise in the number of calls for help to the National Debt Line. The governor also warned that in in his judgment that current prices 'seem remarkably high' and statement that raises the spectre of families falling into negative equity.

Posted by denzil @ 01:32 PM 0 Comments

Gold, inflation, and paper money devaluation?

Minyanville: $700 Gold will look cheap in a few years

An obvious 'gold bug plug' this, but one that again draws attention to the possible links between the on-going bull market in precious metals, and the deep (& growing) public scepticism regarding 'official' inflation statistics. Is gold going up, or is paper money coming down?

Posted by TickTock @ 01:28 PM 0 Comments

Estate agents banned by office of fair trading

firstrung: Estate agents banned by office of fair trading

The OFT has decided to make prohibition orders against two West London estate agents, Christopher Taylor and Harunur Rashid, banning them from engaging in estate agency work. The decision will not come into effect until the end of any appeal process.

Posted by converted lurker @ 11:28 AM 2 Comments

Main credit agency warns on bankruptcy

Money Extra: Experian warns of bankruptcy perils

Experian, the credit agency, is reminding consumers of the serious implications of choosing bankruptcy as a way of dealing with debt.

Posted by Webmaster @ 11:19 AM 0 Comments

Pensioners still face mortgage burden

BBC News: Pensioners 'face mortgage burden'

The BBC reports on a Scottish Widows survey which suggest that 1 in 6 pensioners still have a mortgage in retirement. It'll be a lot more than this in a few years if the thousands of people who are only paying the interest on their mortage don't start finding a way to start repaying the debt.

Posted by Webmaster @ 11:16 AM 0 Comments

Surprised Estate Agents!?

Telegraph: Housing market boom stuns estate agents

The strength of the housing market this year has come as such a surprise to Britain's largest estate agent group, Countrywide, that its "financial results have exceeded our own internal expectations".

Posted by cupidstunt @ 10:15 AM 13 Comments

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Bank of England signals Next move expected to be up

FT: Bank of England signals interest rates rise

The Bank of England on Wednesday signalled the next move in interest rates was likely to be up as the US Federal Reserve raised its main interest rate to 5 per cent.

Posted by David Goldfinch @ 10:58 PM 4 Comments

More Talk Of Property Bubbles In Spain

Place In The Sun: Price Of Property Tops 6,000 Per Square Metre In Nine Spanish Cities

With property prices topping 6,000 Euros a square metre in nine Spanish cities - localised bubbles fueled by heavy borrowing and low interest rates. But for how much longer?

Posted by El Gordo @ 10:32 PM 0 Comments

As predicted - US rates rise to 5%

BBC News: US rates raised to five-year peak

The US Central Bank has raised interest rates for the 16th time in a row, to five-year highs of 5%.

Posted by Webmaster @ 08:52 PM 0 Comments

UK trade gap narrows

BBC News: UK trade deficit narrows sharply

The UK's trade gap narrowed sharply in March after goods exports outstripped goods imports, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

Posted by Webmaster @ 08:51 PM 0 Comments

Another 1,000 job losses

BBC News: GM considers 1,000 job cuts in UK

General Motors (GM) has confirmed that it is considering axing 1,000 jobs in the UK this year.

Posted by Webmaster @ 08:50 PM 3 Comments

Spanish Property Bubble

Nubricks.com Property Blog: Spanish Property Bubble

State of the Spanish Property Market, is there a bubble that exists in Spain?

Posted by Nubricks @ 05:12 PM 1 Comments

Mr Kings opinion will go a long way in bringing HPI down

Telegragh.co.uk: King sounds warning over economy

House prices are overvalued and consumer bankruptcies risk becoming a large social problem, the Bank of England Governor Mervyn King has warned.

Posted by crash 2005 @ 04:22 PM 8 Comments

Inflation spike forecast

TimesOnline: Inflation spike forecast dashes rate-cut hopes

The City now expects a rise in the benchmark rate from the current 4.5 per cent.

Posted by Denzil @ 01:07 PM 2 Comments

Bank of England - Inflation Report May 2006

Bank of England: Bank of England

The Inflation Report is produced quarterly by Bank staff under the guidance of the members of the Monetary Policy Committee. It serves two purposes. First, its preparation provides a comprehensive and forward-looking framework for discussion among MPC members as an aid to our decision making. Second, its publication allows us to share our thinking and explain the reasons for our decisions to those whom they affect.

Posted by Jason @ 11:30 AM 1 Comments

A Think-Piece on Gold, Inflation and a new Bear market in Property

Financial Sense University: UK property is already in a severe bear market

Article examines how gold prices may be an indicator of future inflation trends. It seems to have some intellectual rigour but the style does 'rant' in places.

Posted by Talking_Rot @ 09:19 AM 3 Comments

House price growth in London won't last

Independent: London house prices: the current state of affairs

An in-depth article that goes beyond the tabloid headlines of rising London house prices and looks at what is propping them up.

Posted by Webmaster @ 07:59 AM 0 Comments

Chinese growth predicted to slow in 2nd quarter

BBC News: 'Slower second quarter' for China

A top Chinese think-tank has said the country's GDP growth will slow in the second quarter to 9.8% which is down nearly half a percent down from the first quarter growth of 10.2%.

Posted by Webmaster @ 07:54 AM 0 Comments

Meltdown warnings as Britain loses 7,300 jobs in 24 hours

Times: Meltdown warnings as Britain loses 7,300 jobs in 24 hours

The Government was today urged to take action to rescue British industry after three companies today announced closures and outsourcing leading to the loss of 7,300 jobs. A series of grim announcements stunned workers and led to warnings of a jobs meltdown, especially in manufacturing.

Posted by Jason @ 07:01 AM 8 Comments

Crude rebounds on US reaction to Iran letter

FT.com: Crude rebounds on US reaction to Iran letter

Crude oil futures rose more than $1 yesterday after the US government appeared to reject Iran's latest diplomatic move to resolve questions over Iran's nuclear programme.

Posted by Jason @ 06:59 AM 1 Comments

Gold rises above $700 to hit 25-year high

Reuters: Gold rises above $700 to hit 25-year high

Gold rose to a 25-year high above $700 an ounce on Wednesday, prompting some investors to take profits on bullion's sharp rally this year, while platinum surged to a record high on speculative buying. Gold has risen around 35 percent this year as investors diversified into precious metals as a hedge against global tensions, including over Iran's nuclear ambitions, rising energy costs and uncertainty about the dollar's outlook.

Posted by Jason @ 06:58 AM 0 Comments

Tuesday, May 9, 2006

Office yields in the South East to fall

IFA Online: Commercial property yield warning from Knight Frank

Some bearish news from Frank Knight the commerical and residential property company. They are warning of falling yields especially within the M25 area as the margin between yields and debt servicing is being squeezed.

Posted by Webmaster @ 04:57 PM 0 Comments

Heinz out 'sauce' jobs to Holland

SKY News: Heinz Jobs Go To Holland

Heinz has unveiled plans to close the HP Foods factory at Aston Cross in Birmingham and transfer production of HP Sauces to its European centre in Holland.

Posted by Webmaster @ 02:12 PM 2 Comments

Dollar falls 1% against the yen

BBC News: Dollar falls 1% against the yen

The US dollar fell 1% against Japan's yen on Monday, after a US official said Tokyo should continue to refrain from talking down the Japanese currency.

Posted by Webmaster @ 02:08 PM 1 Comments

NTL post Q1 loss and announce 6,000 job cuts.

Bloomberg: NTL Plans 6,000 Job Cuts to Lower Costs, Reports Loss

NTL have bought Telewest Global Inc. and plan to cut 6,000 jobs in an effort to reduce costs. They announced the job losses as they posted a net loss of 119.9m in the first quarter.

Posted by brendan @ 11:09 AM 0 Comments

Brussels showers Brown with praise for his stewardship of economy

Guardian: Brussels showers Brown with praise for his stewardship of economy

Gordon Brown's stewardship of the British economy yesterday won glowing tributes from the European commission, which forecast that the UK would again outperform the eurozone. Brussels also indicated it would abandon proceedings against Britain for breaching its budget deficit limits. Pointing to more balanced growth after last year's dip to 1.8%, the commission's spring forecast said UK growth this year would be 2.5%, rising to 2.75% in 2007 - in line with the chancellor's own March budget estimates of 2.25 and 3%.

Posted by Jason @ 10:21 AM 1 Comments

Sunny high street adds fuel to interest rate rise

TimesOnline: Sunny high street enjoys best sales for three years

The High street witnessed the best sales in three years which has caused speculation that the next move in interest rates may well be up.

Posted by Denzil @ 09:05 AM 2 Comments

Central bankers renew alert of Inflation

TimesOnline: Central bankers repeat concerns over inflation

THE worlds top central bankers sounded a renewed alert over inflationary dangers yesterday, expressing concern that booming global growth could spark an outbreak of cost and price pressures.

Posted by Denzil @ 08:56 AM 1 Comments

Voume of sales increases 37%

Guardian: Number of homes sold increases 37%

The latest quarterly Land Registry report indicates that the average house price has risen 5% year on year and that volumes are up by 37%.

Posted by Webmaster @ 07:26 AM 7 Comments

6,000 affordable rural homes to be built

Daily Express: 230m boost to build rural homes

The Express reports on this expected announcement that 230 million is to be ploughed into new affordable rural homes with the National Affordable Housing Programme

Posted by Webmaster @ 07:23 AM 0 Comments

Monday, May 8, 2006

'Debt advice' companies grow rich on debt mountain

The Guardian: Debt advisers to cash in on high borrowing

First the poor debtor is sacrifices themselves to the banks who enjoy vast profits loading them up with credit. Then when they are enslaved a new breed of 'debt advice' services come and pick them off. Lovely.

Posted by crashedoutandburned @ 08:55 PM 0 Comments

Interest rates likely to go up

Times Online: Interest rates likely to go up

Article suggests the BoE's quarterly inflation report, out on Weds, will present new forecasts for growth and inflation. Inflation is on track to meet the 2% target and growth is strengthening even though market expectations of a gradual rise in interest rates are assumed.

Posted by Talking_Rot @ 04:22 PM 4 Comments

Oil Prices 45% Higher Year-On-Year

Times Online: High materials costs fuel rate rise talk

Reports recent 'highs' in materiel imput costs which, through inflation, are likely to result in higher Interest Rates. Shade more detail than the Sky article, see below.

Posted by Talking_Rot @ 04:17 PM 0 Comments

The Bust Has Started When ...

New statesman: Touch me, feel me, renovate me

Jocular yet insightful article describing how to accurately understand what is happening in the market and why the boom has gone on. Touches upon the long term effects of a property boom. Some would call this a cynical view.

Posted by Talking_Rot @ 03:50 PM 4 Comments

They thinks its all over....it will be soon!

Thisismoney: Party over for Fixed rate fans

ATTRACTIVE fixed-rate mortgages are on the way out. Most major lenders, including Abbey, Halifax, Northern Rock and Portman, have increased their fixed rates by up to 0.1 percentage points in the last few weeks. Nationwide has increased rates twice since the start of the year.

Posted by cupidstunt @ 03:36 PM 1 Comments

Council house sales suspended in Fife

BBC News: Council house purchase ban agreed

The Scottish Executive has agreed to Fife Council's request for a five-year veto to ease pressure on the market. It affects the 560 tenants who have been renting their homes in the area either on or after 30 September 2002.

Posted by Webmaster @ 01:50 PM 0 Comments

China looks likely to increase interest rates again

Independent: China overshoots growth target

Will the UK shortly be importing inlfation?

Posted by Nimmm @ 01:35 PM 3 Comments

Quarterly inflation report will give clues to UK interest rate

icBirmingham: Bank's report will point way to rate direction

The Bank of England releases its quarterly inflation report on Wednesday. At the moment economists views differ on when and in what direction interest rates will move so this should help to focus the issue.

Posted by Webmaster @ 12:21 PM 0 Comments

Increase in raw material costs hits manufacturers

SKY News: Materials Costs See Jump

The cost of raw materials rose by 2.5% in April with the annual increase now standing at 15.7%.

Posted by Webmaster @ 12:16 PM 4 Comments

Bull in Bear's Skin

Financial Sense: Bull in Bear's Skin

This article discusses the question if the global central bank's quietly allowing the devaluation of their currencies against gold by allowing Gold to raise. And it seems to conclude that it is not impossible to do. I still dont understand everything from the article and would like forum members to disset for all of us.

Posted by skannan @ 11:54 AM 1 Comments

Syndey just like London

smh.com.au: Priced out of the boom town

With recent interest rate risis in Australia and record house price inflation, people cannot afford to buy in Sydney. We've got that problem over here but if we had their level of interest rates then I think we'd be in well into a recession.

Posted by Webmaster @ 11:42 AM 0 Comments

Debt advisors booming!

Guardian: Debt advisors to cash in on high borrowing

The massive increase in IVA / bankruptcy is benefiting the debt advice companies.

Posted by Richard Wray @ 10:53 AM 0 Comments

Job cuts

Guardian: Merged cable firm to cut 5,000 jobs

NTL to cut 5,000 jobs

Posted by Richard Wray @ 10:51 AM 0 Comments

Muslims forced to sell homes

Guardian: Muslims may have to sell homes because of trusts clampdown

Change in law re:trusts forces sharia Wills to incur tax, forcing heirs to sell home.

Posted by Miles Brignall @ 10:50 AM 2 Comments

Negative equity for Aussie property investors

SMH.com.au: Property investors hit hard

This article reports on Australian property investors in Sydney who bought at the peak or the property boom. They are now facing negative as prices drop.

Posted by Webmaster @ 09:18 AM 5 Comments

Sunday, May 7, 2006

Bankruptcies Are Up, Up and Away

The Times: The Times - Economics

This piece reports recents statistics about those who have overstretched themselves. "Orders for repossessions rose to 22,997, a 57 per cent rise on the same time last year."

Posted by Talking_Rot @ 09:06 PM 1 Comments

Halifax doing their bit to talk up interest rates

The Times: City fears that house price surge will lead to higher rates

The Halifax says that annual house price inflation has now risen to 8 per cent, its highest level in 13 months. With a rekindling of the house price boom having been a persistent worry among MPC members, the Halifax report was seen as badly denting prospects for further cuts in rates, even though its strength is far in excess of that shown by other housing market data.

Posted by By Gary Duncan, Economics Editor @ 11:27 AM 5 Comments

Personal Insolvencies Jump 73%

The Times: Record numbers go bankrupt as debt mountain builds up

It is now easier for people to declare bancruptcy than to pay down debt -- now this ball is rolling it is going to be hard to stop with "accountants predicted that the number of personal bankruptcies will top 100,000 this year". This is with historically low interest rates, this can only get worse with the global credit squeeze already under way.

Posted by Gary Duncan, Economics Editor @ 11:22 AM 0 Comments

Land speculation concerns

BBC news: Have land investors lost the plot?

Concerns over companies selling plots of land with no planning permission that promise huge potential returns if planning permission is given.

Posted by Libitina @ 11:15 AM 0 Comments

Blair given quit deadline

BBC news: Rebel MPs in bid to topple Blair

Upto 50 Labour MP's have signed a letter demanding that Tony Blair outlines a timetable for his departure.

Posted by Libitina @ 11:11 AM 1 Comments

Britons paper wealth?

Times: Britons are getting wealthier

The average disposable wealth available to households in Britain has topped 40,000 for the first time, according to new estimates published today. This consists mainly of savings, shareholdings and accessible housing equity, net of mortgages and other debt.

Posted by Uncle Chris @ 10:37 AM 4 Comments

The significance of Waitrose

Telegraph: Going down in the world

Gentrification and de-gentrification: What to look out for.

Posted by Buffer Bear @ 12:29 AM 4 Comments

Saturday, May 6, 2006

America's Economy

FT.com: Wall Street rally helped by easing oil prices

Summary of America's economy. Broadly mixed signals but Oil prices have eased. Fears of further monetary tightening eased because of increased productivity and a fall in non-farm payrolls.

Posted by Talking_Rot @ 10:04 PM 0 Comments

Some Streets of London See High Price Gains but Other Regions Do Not

FT.com: Property bonanza in central London

Some of the more exclusive areas of London are seeing high house price inflation caused by City bonuses, "international demand" and subdued growth over the last couple of years. Some minor comment on the 'ripple effect' from London.

Posted by Talking_Rot @ 09:50 PM 0 Comments

Halifax Tries to Boost the Market Is it a sign of a recovering market or a desperate gamble to revive the market?

Daily Mail: This Is Money:Spring house prices up 4,000

On the basis of HALIFIX figures, "experts" and Estate Agents are claiming shortages of homes for sale and increased buyer interest. Some lip-service to a balanced report is included. Remember to check out the comments.

Posted by Talking_Rot @ 08:56 PM 3 Comments

More unease over state of dollar

Christian Science Monitor: The fallout from a falling dollar

'For two weeks, the dollar has been hammered as foreign buyers shun the US currency.'

Posted by crashedoutandburned @ 05:03 PM 12 Comments

Being economical with the truth!

This is Money: Home fibs of the postcode snobs

If you have ever told a lie when asked where you live, you are not alone. Three out of five Britons will lie about where they live, choosing a more upmarket location nearby.

Posted by Buffer Bear @ 02:53 PM 2 Comments

'High risk' home reversion soars

This is Money: 'High risk' home reversion soars

THE number of people signing up to 'high risk' home reversion schemes has increased rapidly despite their unregulated status. Figures released today have shown a 41% increase in the value of the home reversion market in the first three months of 2006 from 13.4m to 18.9m.

Posted by Jason @ 02:53 PM 1 Comments

Rates will rise in euro zone

Nasdaq: ECB Issing - Historically Low Rates Unlikely To Continue

It is widely predicted that the ECB will raise the base rate by 25 basis points to 2.75% in June.

Posted by Webmaster @ 02:45 PM 7 Comments

New car sales plummet

Guardian: Fuel costs push sales of new cars into reverse

New car registrations were down over 9% when compared to the same month last year which is a clear sign of a downturn in consumer confidence.

Posted by Webmaster @ 02:35 PM 0 Comments

I'll have a huge loan that I can't afford please Carol!

BBC News: Loan company lends into negative equity

Concern is growing that celebrity-led advertisements are leading borrowers to put their homes at risk, BBC ONE's Real Story has uncovered. In one featured case loan company FIRSTPLUS, promoted by Carol Vorderman, lent Emma and Kris Galloway more than the equity of their property.

Posted by SSM @ 12:47 PM 1 Comments

Property market review

FindaProperty.com: Market Review

Reassuringly balanced assessment of the market from a property web-site, (for those who worry that all they read on this site is what the HPCers want to read..).

Posted by Bidin'matime @ 08:39 AM 1 Comments

Firefighters can't get on the property ladder.

Shropshire Star: Fire stations closure risk

Rural fire stations at risk of closure as part time firefighters cannot afford to buy ruarl property.

Posted by Libitina @ 02:50 AM 0 Comments

Friday, May 5, 2006

Rate rise coming soon for UK?

Telegraph: Pressure on rates boosts sterling

Telegraph: King will be proved right over rates... but at what cost?

The pound has risen to a 12-month high against the dollar, as the chances of an imminent rise in interest rates increased, amid a fresh flood of strong data on the UK economy.

Posted by Webmaster @ 12:44 PM 3 Comments

Mortgage lending remains strong

MyFinances.co.uk: Mortgage lending at 28-month high

New mortgage lending in March was higher than it has been for 28 months, the Bank of England said today. Not since November 2003 has as much money been leant to home-owners, with the Bank saying today that net mortgage lending rose 9.3 billion in March.

Posted by Webmaster @ 10:49 AM 16 Comments

73% rise in bankruptcies

BBC News: Bankruptcies show dramatic rise

2006 could be a record year for personal insolvency with over 23,000 people becoming insolvent in England and Wales in the first 3 months of this year alone.

Posted by Webmaster @ 10:43 AM 12 Comments

How long for Blair?

BBC News: Labour suffers local poll losses

Labour suffered a heavy defeat in the local elections losing 251 councillors. The conservatives gained 250 councillors. Blair is now expected to announce a cabinet reshuffle today in an attempt to bury the bad news!

Posted by Webmaster @ 09:34 AM 4 Comments

Thursday, May 4, 2006

Are debt charities becoming more vocal?

Daily Mail: Vorderman criticised over TV ads

Debt charities today urged television presenter Carol Vorderman to stop promoting companies that offer debt consolidation loans that put people's homes at risk. Credit Action said Vorderman's profile could cause people to think debt consolidation was suitable for them when it was not.

Posted by Uncle Chris @ 05:39 PM 2 Comments

The future's bright, but not with Orange

Telegraph: Orange axes up to 2,000 UK jobs

Mobile phone giant Orange is to axe between 1,800 and 2,000 jobs in the UK as it takes the knife to costs following the integration of its Wanadoo UK Internet business. The France Telecom-owned company said its cost base needed to be 15pc leaner.

Posted by Uncle Chris @ 05:38 PM 0 Comments

Worrying reading on the UK debt mountain

Credit Action: April debt statistics update

According to the Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML) total household debt has grown sharply as a percentage of disposable income over the past decade and currently stands close to 150%. At the end of 2005, the secured debt to income ratio was 121%, compared to 80% in 1995. And the unsecured debt to income ratio was 24%, almost double that of 10 years ago.

Posted by Uncle Chris @ 04:27 PM 0 Comments

No change for UK interest rates

Guardian: Interest rates remain unchanged

The Bank of England today left interest rates at 4.5% for the ninth month running, amid signs of a recovery in the UK manufacturing sector and suggestions that the next move may be upwards.

Posted by Uncle Chris @ 05:37 AM 0 Comments

Halifax bucks the trend

This is Money: Halifax says spring house prices up ?4,000

FT.com - UK housing market picks up speed Britain\'s biggest mortgage lender Halifax said prices surged by 2% last month, the largest monthly increase for two years, pushing annual inflation up to 8%.

Posted by Uncle Chris @ 05:33 AM 0 Comments

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