Category Archives: Real Estate and Mortgages

The Future Will Be Like The Past, Only More So

Yesterday there was an article where Buffett was quoted on getting mortgages to buy houses. Let me quote the most relevant portion: “You would think that people would be lining up now to get mortgages to buy a home,” Buffett said today at a conference hosted by Fortune magazine in Laguna Niguel,California. “It’s a good […]

Inevitable Ineffective Banking Regulation

I am mystified at why people might be outraged or surprised that the Federal Reserve does a poor job of overseeing banks.  The Fed is an overstaffed bureaucracy.  Overstaffed bureaucracies always tend toward consensus and non-confrontation. I know this from my days of working as an actuary inside an overstaffed life insurance company, and applying […]

AIG Was Broke

There’s a significant problem when you are a supremely big and connected financial institution: your failure will have an impact on the financial system as a whole.  Further, there is no one big enough to rescue you unless we drag out the public credit via the US Treasury, or its dedicated commercial paper financing facility, the […]

Time to Chase Bill Gross?

Jason Zweig at the Wall Street Journal had a very good piece on whether to follow Bill Gross as he goes from Pimco to Janus.  Let me quote one paragraph: Morningstar estimates that over the past five years, the average investor fell behind Pimco Total Return’s 5.6% annual gain by 1.6 points a year—largely as […]

Volatility Can Be Risk, At Rare Times

There is a saying in the markets that volatility is not risk. In general this is true, and helps to explain why measures like beta and standard deviation of returns do not measure risk, and are not priced by the market. After all, risk is the probability of losing money, and the severity thereof. It’s […]

Redacted Version of the September 2014 FOMC Statement

July 2014 September 2014 Comments Information received since the Federal Open Market Committee met in June indicates that growth in economic activity rebounded in the second quarter. Information received since the Federal Open Market Committee met in July suggests that economic activity is expanding at a moderate pace. This is another overestimate by the FOMC. […]

The Shadows of the Bond Market’s Past, Part II

This is the continuation of The Shadows of the Bond Market’s Past, Part I.  If you haven’t read part I, you will need to read it.  Before I start, there is one more thing I want to add regarding 1994-5: the FOMC used signals from the bond markets to give themselves estimates of expected inflation.  Because of […]

The Shadows of the Bond Market’s Past, Part I

  Source: FRED Above is the chart, and here is the data for tonight’s piece: Date T1 T3 T5 T7 T10 T20 T30 AAA BAA Spd Note 3/1/71 3.69 4.50 5.00 5.42 5.70 5.94 6.01* 7.21 8.46 1.25 High 4/1/77 5.44 6.31 6.79 7.11 7.37 7.67 7.73 8.04 9.07 1.03 Med 12/1/91 4.38 5.39 6.19 […]

Redacted Version of the July 2014 FOMC Statement

June 2014 July 2014 Comments Information received since the Federal Open Market Committee met in April indicates that growth in economic activity has rebounded in recent months. Information received since the Federal Open Market Committee met in June indicates that growth in economic activity rebounded in the second quarter. This is another overestimate by the […]