Barry Ritholtz has another great post about the housing market over at The Big Picture. In addition to his analytical insights, he pointed out two great tools for looking at housing markets across the country.
The first is a Rent vs Buy interactive from Trulia:
Second is the Wall Street Journal’s chart of price-to-income ratios (compared to the 1985-00 average).
A pretty comprehensive explanation of the financial crisis. (via The Big Picture)
Updated chart of the classic Case-Shiller housing price index. On the one hand it looks like the decline may be bottoming out – but on the other, there is still massive intervention supporting the market and we could very likely overshoot fair value.
Ughhh. Type in your zip code and see how close you are to a nuclear plant!! There’s even a red target painted on the reactor!!! I’m primarily posting this so I have an excuse to link to this excellent article, which explains in detail what’s going on in Japan and why you shouldn’t run out to buy potassium pills and start digging a fallout shelter. I might also point out that we conducted 140+ atmospheric atomic tests in Nevada – I’m not saying that was a particularly intelligent or healthy thing to do, but let’s maintain a little perspective about fallout risks, shall we?
Despite media spin, the United States is a long way from getting all of the bailout money back. (via Ritholtz)
I hate traffic. Nothing makes me hate humanity more (except perhaps watching commercials – thank god for DVRs). If you want to know more about why we drive the way we do, read Tom Vanderbilt’s Traffic (which, somewhat strangely, includes no diagrams). (via Ritholtz)
Here’s a life-scale experiment that illustrates the shockwave effect:
I have realized, after numerous conversations about politics and economics, that many people haven’t grasped that the economy doesn’t work the same way it did when they were growing up. As a commenter on The Big Picture said:
The role of a healthy financial sector is to support the “real economy”. But now it’s the opposite, like the tail wagging the dog.
The New York Times has an excellent article and accompanying charts about the scientist who first discovered rising CO2 levels. I came across the article via Barry Ritholtz’s blog, where he delivered this lovely bit of snark:
Floyd Norris presents some interesting data indicating that it was the least expensive homes whose prices went up the most, and are now falling the fastest. Barry Ritholtz sees this as more proof that the bubble was in credit – not housing.
I always like these crisis-rebased comparison charts. (via)
Personally, I don’t know why we’re still subsidizing homebuying. (via Ritholtz, who points out per-capita would probably have been more useful)
A summary of the infamous Troubled Asset Relief Program. (via)
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