March 12 (Bloomberg) — Hold on to your assets. The deepest housing decline in 16 years is about to get worse.
As many as 1.5 million more Americans may lose their homes, another 100,000 people in housing-related industries could be fired, and an estimated 100 additional subprime mortgage companies that lend money to people with bad or limited credit may go under, according to realtors, economists, analysts and a Federal Reserve governor. Financial stocks also could extend their declines over mortgage default worries.
The spring buying season, when more than half of all U.S. home sales are made, has been so disappointing that the National Association of Home Builders in Washington now expects purchases to fall for the sixth consecutive quarter after it predicted a gain just last month.
Foreclosures May Hit 1.5 Million in U.S. Housing Bust (Update3)
By Bob Ivry
- In 2007, the family poverty rate and the number of families in poverty were 9.8 percent and 7.6 million, respectively, both statistically unchanged from 2006. Furthermore, the poverty rate and the number in poverty showed no statistical change between 2006 and 2007 for the different types of families. Married-couple families had a poverty rate of 4.9 percent (2.8 million), compared with 28.3 percent (4.1 million) for female-householder, no-husband-present families and 13.6 percent (696,000) for those with a male householder and no wife present.
- As defined by the Office of Management and Budget and updated for inflation using the Consumer Price Index, the weighted average poverty threshold for a family of four in 2007 was $21,203; for a family of three, $16,530; for a family of two, $13,540; and for unrelated individuals, $10,590.
Profits from current production (corporate profits with inventory valuation and capital
consumption adjustments) decreased $60.2 billion in the second quarter, compared with a decrease of
$17.6 billion in the first quarter. Current-production cash flow (net cash flow with inventory valuation
and capital consumption adjustments) -- the internal funds available to corporations for investment --
decreased $60.5 billion in the second quarter, in contrast to an increase of $10.1 billion in the first.
But – from the March 2008 Bloomberg article –
New Century Financial Corp., the second-largest subprime lender, said today it ran out of cash to pay back creditors who are demanding their money now. The Irvine, California-based company has lost 90 percent of its market value this year and stopped making new subprime loans, prompting speculation it will seek bankruptcy protection. New Century already has cut 300 jobs and its 7,000 remaining employees are waiting to see if the company will survive.
Fremont General, the Brea, California-based lender that is trying to sell its residential-mortgage unit, was ordered to stop making subprime loans by the U.S. Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. last week. Fremont was marketing and extending loans “in a way that substantially increased the likelihood of borrower default or other loss to the bank,” the FDIC said last week.
Doug Duncan, chief economist of the Washington-based Mortgage Bankers Association, predicted in January that more than 100 home lenders may fail this year.
– Note (my notes) –
What took our US Treasury and Federal Reserve, White House, Congress and Securities and Exchange Commission, Banking Industry Regulators and Industry members so long to do anything?