Peter Schiff of Euro Pacific Capital Predicts Crashing and Burning During the unprecedented run up in housing prices over the last decade, most economists and real estate professionals firmly declared that the market would always move higher. When the recent cooling dashed those hopes, many reluctantly fell back to the “soft landing” hypothesis, which predicts that price appreciation will return to historically average rates. However the latest housing data, particularly this week’s figures on new and existing home sales, have made these overly rosy assumptions untenable. The “hard landing” scenario, which envisions real estate prices moving sideways, or actually posting moderate declines, is finally gaining broader credence. But, even this forecast will prove overly optimistic. The real estate market will not land soft or hard, it will crash and burn. Those who did not have the foresight to bail out may be faced with a distinct shortage of parachutes.
"We are going to go through one of the most trying financial times in U.S. history, including the Great Depression," Schiff says.
Nouriel Roubini and Builders agree The Biggest Slump in US Housing in the Last 40 Years: These are not my views but those of the Toll Brothers, the famous luxury McMansions homebuilders, as CNN reported last week. Also, as reported by the WSJ today: In his 40 years as a home builder, Mr. Toll says, he has never seen a slump unfold like the current one. "I've never seen a downturn in housing without a downturn in employment or... some macroeconomic nasty condition that took housing down along with other elements of the economy".What about the global economy? From the GlobeandMail.com
Stock markets are still expensive, and investors could be in for an unpleasant surprise once corporate profits begin to weaken, says the Yale University economist who predicted the crash of 2000-2002.
"The equity bust of 2000 produced a mild recession, and was rather short-lived. It's very hard to predict . . . [but] if the real estate market does tank, it will cause a worldwide recession." Falling real estate values "will probably be spread over many countries."Menawhile Bush/Castle Prefer Fantasyland (Big Surprise!!) WASHINGTON (MarketWatch)
-- President Bush had a simple message to deliver Friday after two days spent behind closed doors with his economic team: confidence about the U.S. economic outlook.
"The economy grew at a 4% annual rate in the first half of 2006. This means our economy is maintaining solid growth and performing in line with expectations," Bush told reporters at a brief press conference in Camp David after the meeting.
"All of us here are confident about the future of this country," he said.
All good wingnuts know that there is a magic bullet that can kill this recession befor it starts. For you non-wingnuts, I've placed the simple answer to a difficult situation in the comments.