Weekend Must ReadsPosted by on June 09, 2013
Wall Street Journal: The Hidden Jobless Disaster
At the present slow pace of job growth, it will require more than a decade to get back to full employment defined by pre-recession standards.
Bloomberg: Can the Fed Make Up Its Mind on QE?
When the Federal Reserve first introduced its either/or stance on quantitative easing, I wasn’t sure if it was a PR ploy or a serious plan.
The FHA has deviated from its mission of providing support to low- and moderate income and first-time homebuyers with sound underwriting standards. The FHA should eliminate its current practice of supporting homeownership among high-income individuals and setting lending standards that undermine sustainable homeownership for creditworthy low- and moderate-income and first-time homebuyers.
Automotive News: Auto lending: Regulator must be reined in
Congress must rein in the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, which has overstepped its mandate by squeezing banks and finance companies to limit dealership profits, apparently based on questionable assumptions of widespread discrimination in auto lending.
Birmingham News: Savers have nowhere to run, nowhere to hide
For four-and-a-half years now, the Federal Reserve, under Ben Bernanke’s guidance, has embraced a “near zero” interest rate policy and they intend to keep interest rates near zero through the end of 2014 and maybe longer. Fed officials have embarked on three “quantitative easing” programs, the third of which – QE3 – pours $85 billion per month into the economy to prop up the mortgage market.
New York Times: Behind the Rise of House Prices, Wall Street Buyers
The last time the housing market was this hot in Phoenix and Las Vegas, the buyers pushing up prices were mostly small time. Nowawdays, they are big time – Wall Street big. Large investment firms have spent billions of dollars over the last year buying homes in some of the nation’s most depressed markets. The influx has been so great, and the resulting price gains so big, that ordinary buyers are feeling squeezed out.
It is a basic fact of economics that price inflation is caused by excess monetary expansion. It is a fact in the same sense that the idea that the earth revolves around the sun is a fact, in that it is simply the only way to explain the data without reverting to massive distortions in order to save appearances.
Los Angeles Times: UCLA Anderson Forecast paints dismal picture of economic recovery
The country’s tepid growth in its gross domestic product isn’t creating enough good jobs to build a strong middle class, according to a UCLA report released. “It’s not a recovery. It’s not even normal growth. It’s bad,” UCLA economist Edward Leamer says.