From today's Wall Street Journal:
More Homeowners Falling Behind on MortgagesJAMES R. HAGERTY
About one in seven American households with mortgages is behind on payments or in foreclosure, according to new data from the Mortgage Bankers Association. That is up from about one in 10 a year ago.
The trade group reported Thursday that 14.4% of first-lien mortgages on one- to four-family homes in the third quarter were 30 days or more overdue or in the foreclosure process. That is the highest since the MBA began reporting such data in 1972 and works out to about 7.5 million households at risk of losing their homes. The percentage is up from 10% a year earlier and 7.3% two years ago.
Loan defaults have been rising swiftly for more than three years. At first, the problem largely reflected loose lending practices during the housing boom that allowed millions of people to buy homes they couldn't afford. Now the problem is compounded by rising unemployment, which hit 10.2% in October, the highest since 1982.Unemployment may start gradually declining in next year's first half, said Jay Brinkmann, the MBA's chief economist. If so, he said, the percentage of loans that are delinquent could start to decline by mid-2010. But he said the number of loans in foreclosure is likely to remain elevated longer as banks struggle to figure out which borrowers might be able to stay in their homes if payments are lowered.
Largely because of efforts to sort through mounds of paperwork and figure out which borrowers qualify for lower payments, there has been a jump in the number of people far behind on payments but not yet in foreclosure. About 4.4% of the loans were 90 days or more past due but not in foreclosure in the latest quarter, up from 2.2% a year earlier. The states with an above-average rate of such "seriously delinquent" loans are Nevada (7.8%), Florida (6.1%), Arizona (6%), Michigan (5.9%), California (5.9%), Mississippi (5.5%), Georgia (5.1%) Indiana (5.1%), Illinois (4.8%) and Rhode Island (4.5%).
The states with the highest rate of home loans in foreclosure are Florida (12.7%), Nevada (9.4%), Arizona (6.2%), California (5.8%), New Jersey (5.5%), Illinois (5.3%) and Ohio (4.6%). North Dakota had the lowest rate at 1.1%.
For the rest of this piece on sorry state of affairs our economy is in, click here
It appears that 62% of likely voters have a far better understanding of how economies prosper than do the pointy headed HAHVAHD grads and Goldman Sachs alumni that Obama has polluted his economics team with.
With a Hat Tip to James Yanke who writes The Reaganite Republican, From today's Rasmussen Report:
As the policy debate has unfolded in Washington this year, voters have consistently believed that tax cuts would do more than increased government spending to stimulate the economy and create jobs. Now that the nation’s unemployment rate has reached 10.2%, voters continue to hold that view.
The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey shows that 62% believe tax cuts are a better way to create jobs and fight unemployment. Only 21% believe that additional stimulus spending is a more effective tool. Earlier this year, as the first stimulus package was being debated in Congress, 62% of voters wanted the plan to have more tax cuts and less spending.
Given a different choice today, 51% believe canceling the rest of the stimulus money would create more jobs while 32% say spending the money would be the better approach to job creation. These findings are consistent with earlier polling. Most Americans say that, generally speaking, increased government spending is bad for the economy. Earlier this year, before the unemployment rate had reached its current highs, 45% wanted to cancel the rest of the stimulus spending while just 36% disagreed.
While voters believe that tax cuts and stopping spending is the path to job creation, the Political Class disagrees. Sixty-nine percent (69%) of those in the Political Class say that spending the stimulus money would create more jobs than canceling the remaining stimulus spending. Fifty-five percent (55%) of the Political Class believes that new spending will create more jobs than tax cuts. Only 13% believe the tax cutting would do more (see more on the Political Class).
On both questions, there is also a substantial partisan divide. Democrats are fairly evenly divided on both questions while Republicans overwhelmingly believe that canceling the rest of the stimulus money and cutting taxes are better job creation tools than additional stimulus spending.
As for those not affiliated with either major party, just over 50% say that stopping spending and cutting taxes is the best way to create jobs.
The survey also found that most voters are skeptical about claims of government job creation. Most (58%) say it’s unlikely that the stimulus plan has saved or created more than 600,000 jobs.
Sixty-two percent (62%) of voters are opposed to a second stimulus package.
Yes Barack, notwithstanding Larry Summer's hallucinations to the contrary, tax cuts ALWAYS trump government spending as a driving force in job creation.