There’s nothing quite like a grotesquely lopsided “economic recovery” in which a handful of cities boom, while the rest of the nation stagnates. Even worse, millennials living in such chosen cities face one of two options. Either live in mom and dad’s basement, or face a standard of living far more similar to 19th tenement standards than the late 1990’s tech boom. With that out of the way, I want to introduce you to what a $1,000 per month rental in the San Francisco Bay area looks like. Shipping containers...
We are delighted to report that about 7 years after it was glaringly obvious to everyone except the Fed of course, now - with the usual half decade delay - even the NY Fed has finally figured out what even 5 year olds get. "A new study from the New York Federal Reserve faults these policies for enabling college institutions to aggressively raise tuitions. The implication is the federal government is fueling a vicious cycle of higher prices and government aid that ultimately could cost taxpayers and price some Americans out of higher education, similar to what some economists contend happened with the housing bubble."
Just the tip of the iceberg?
- Second-quarter GDP seen rebounding on consumer spending, housing (Reuters)
- China Stocks Fall as Traders Puzzle Over Sudden Late-Day Swings (BBG)
- European 'alliance of national liberation fronts' emerges to avenge Greek defeat (Telegraph)
- Thomas Cook warns on earnings over Greece (MW)
- Largest Greek toy seller Jumbo warns of hit from capital controls (Kathimerini)
- Chevron and Exxon Get the Plaudits, but Some Smaller Drillers Faring Well (WSJ)
- Schäuble outlines plan to limit European Commission powers (FT)
- UBS Deal Shows Clinton’s Complicated Ties (WSJ)
"It Depends On What The Meaning Of The Word "Some" Is": Goldman Says Don'tt Read Too Much Into Fed StatementSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 07/29/2015 15:17 -0400
When even Jon Hilsenrath is clueless what the Fed is trying to say, we go with old faithful, the company that runs the NY Fed, Goldman Sachs. Here is Jan Hatzius' take. "The statement following today's FOMC meeting made relatively few changes compared to June, and did not affect our view that the first rate hike is most likely to occur in December. The most notable change was the addition of the word "some" in the committee's description of desired progress in the labor market."
US Middle Class Stays Dead: Homeownership Drops To 48 Year Low; Median Asking Rent Soars To All Time HighSubmitted by Tyler Durden on 07/28/2015 11:17 -0400
Earlier today, the US Census released its latest homeownership data, which confirmed that for what is left of America's middle class, owning a home has become virtually impossible, with the homeownership rate plunging from the lowest level since 1986, or 63.7%, to just 63.4% the lowest reading since the first quarter of 1967. And the punchline, which should come as no surprise to anyone: with housing no longer affordable to most, the median monthly asking rent just rose to a record $803 across the US.
The 0.18% month-over-month decline in Case Shiller home price index is the biggest since July 2014 which confirms the David Blitzer's view that "over the next two years or so, the rate of home price increases is more likely to slow than to accelerate." His biggest fear is that "first time homebuyers are the weak spot in the market," adding that prices are increasing about twice as fast as inflation or wages. Moreover, other housing measures are less robust - housing starts are only at about 1.2 million units annually, and only about half of total starts are single family homes. Sales of new homes are low compared to sales of existing homes.
"By stepping back and looking at the big picture, we can see that real estate should be correcting and trending down. The reasons why our grandparents bought their homes have changed. Government intervention cannot last forever. It will change from accommodation to devastation, when they finally run out of ideas. As for buying a house, I would consider it more of a luxury as opposed to an investment, and one has to be prepared for the possibility of it being a depreciating asset, especially if one decides to move."
Despite exuberant existing home sales, new home sales crosses back below the 500k Maginot Line to 482k SAAR - the lowest since Nov 2014. Previous data was revised notably lower as June data missed expectations by the most in a year. The West region saw new home sales collapse 17%. Perhaps the slide in single-family home starts means something after all?
Speculative bubbles that burst are often followed by an echo bubble, as many participants continue to believe that the crash was only a temporary setback. But, echo bubbles aren't followed by a third bubble.
While we know now that Greece is irrelevant, and China is irrelevant (fdrom what we are told by talking heads), it appears the commodity carnage of the last few months is relevant for at least one nation. Having already warned about Australia, it appears New Zealand has got nervous:
*NEW ZEALAND CUTS KEY INTEREST RATE TO 3.00% FROM 3.25%, FURTHER EASING LIKELY AT SOME POINT
The Central bank blames softening economic outlook driven by commodity price pressures. Kiwi interestingly popped on the news to 0.66 before fading back a little, despite RBNZ noting a further NZD drop is necessary.
This seemingly inexhaustible credit line is now drying up, with severely negative consequences for oil producers with debt that's coming due. The row of dominoes swaying unsteadily in these stiff winds won't take much to topple.
Two sides separated by the money line.
Due to significant retail participation and the fact that the equity mania in China has served as a distraction for a nation coping with decelerating economic growth and a bursting property bubble, some (and we were among the first) began to suggest that the broader economy and indeed, social stability, may be at risk in China if stocks continued to fall. The extent to which this suggestion represented a real concern (as opposed to the ravings of a tin foil hat fringe blog) was underscored by the extraordinary measures China adopted in a desperate attempt to stop the bleeding and, later by several sellside strategists who began to warn about possible spillovers into the real economy. Now, with Beijing still struggling to restore the stock bubble, the first signs of knock-on effects are beginning to emerge.