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The Smart And Patient Buyers See What’s Happening

A weekend topic starting with Danielle DiMartino Booth at Bloomberg. “The Covid-19 pandemic arrested the plans of millions of Americans to purchase a home. But what if you lock someone down in a home they had already mentally moved out of? Might they pour their energy into touring homes online to produce a short list of targets? And might they get preapproved for a mortgage so it’s a simple matter of income verification once the economy reopened and they’d submitted an offer on a home?”

“Of course they would, which helps explain the huge surge in the Mortgage Bankers Association of America’s index tracking applications for loans to buy homes. That gauge has risen for nine straight weeks to reach its highest level since the start of 2009, which defies logic when you consider that more than 44 million Americans have filed for unemployment benefits since mid-March. No doubt that some of this is tied to the minor exodus from densely populated cities. After all, long commutes are less of an issue now that we’ve seen the efficacy of working from home play out in real time.”

“But don’t let mortgage applications fool you. Entering into a deal to buy a home now could prove unwise. Much of the real estate market remains in a deep freeze, with listings down nationwide and borrowers struggling to meet debt payments. Black Knight Inc. reports that 4.73 million mortgages, or 8.9 per cent nationwide, are in forbearance. ‘During the Great Recession, it took more than two years for the national delinquency rate to increase by the 3.1 per cent seen in April 2020 alone,’ Black Knight noted in a report.”

“Fresh data from the Federal Reserve showed that Americans’ net worth fell by a record $6.55 trillion in the first quarter to $100.8 trillion, the largest drop in records back to 1952. Lenders know all this. Which explains why the MBA’s Mortgage Credit Availability Index has tumbled to a six-year low. Tighter lending standards applied at both ends of the spectrum, from first-time buyers to conforming and non-conforming jumbo loans.”

“The smart and patient buyers see what’s happening. They know to wait until forbearance expires and increasingly tight mortgage lending standards wash out the eager but unqualified. They know that the pent-up demand will be satisfied and that the artificial dearth of supply will become robust, which will pressure prices lower.”

From The M Report. “According to a survey by Lending Tree, nearly 70% of home sellers responded that they would be willing to accept a lower offer than the original asking price for their properties. Although there has been a recent revival in the housing market, with bidding wars among hopeful buyers heating up, the survey results show that sellers are feeling the financial pressure from COVID-19.”

“Sellers seem to have been shaken by the pandemic, making them unwilling to risk not selling their homes amid such uncertain times, and therefore, willing to take what they can get in order to move their properties and pocket some cash. In fact, an overwhelming majority of nearly 90% of 1,000 total survey respondents admitted that they were often consumed with fear that their homes wouldn’t sell.”

“The demographics of the survey respondents most worried about selling was also telling. According to Lending Tree, those more apt to accept lower bids belonged to the millennial set (78%), followed closely by Gen Xers (67%), and then baby boomers (55%). On the opposite side of the spectrum, one-third of the respondents divulged that their biggest worry was more that they would be forced to accept lesser bids than what their properties were worth.”

“LendingTree’s Chief Economist Tendayi Kapfidze offered insights on home seller anxiety, pointing to the fact that their concern—and their exercising caution—may be wise: ‘Although it may seem like the housing market has shrugged off COVID-19, as home sales show signs of recovering, it may prove a false dawn. The detrimental impact on jobs and, by extension, wages, will be significant and long-lasting. Demand will soften in the housing market, and sellers will likely need to make some concessions to reach the signing table.'”

From WPTV in Florida. “A new study suggests that the coronavirus pandemic could lead to a foreclosure spike in South Florida. Lynda Charles, Vice President of Housing Services, Community Partners, and the rest of their team at the nonprofit Community Partners of South Florida are working overtime to help people stay in their homes. A new report by real estate data analytics firm Black Knight shows in May, Florida was the 5 highest state where homeowners either could not or did not make their mortgage payments.”

“Mike Pike, who specializes in business litigation said having your paperwork in order is key if you end up having to fight to keep your home. ‘I believe that there is going to be some sort of bubble burst in the real estate market,’ Pike said. ‘Your most current tax returns, an updated financial affidavit, we need to know where you were employed, if you’re still employed, if your job has reduced your hours. Things of that sort.'”

“‘It was a tight market, to begin with, COVID-19 exposed the difficulties of residents in Palm Beach County to access affordable homes,’ said Charles.”

The Los Angeles Times in California. “If you’re feeling cramped in L.A., here are homes with more than 4,000 square feet on the market for roughly $750,000 in Lake Arrowhead, Oak Hills and Fontana in San Bernardino County. Lake Arrowhead: Amenities in this price-reduced retreat include a vintage movie theater, sauna, wine cellar and a garden with a stream and koi pond.In the 92352 ZIP Code, based on 29 sales, the median price for single-family homes in May was $390,000, down 8.6% year over year, according to CoreLogic.”

“In the 92344 ZIP Code, based on 24 sales, the median price for single-family homes in May was $318,000, down 3.8% year over year, according to CoreLogic. In the 92336 ZIP Code, based on 52 sales, the median price for single-family homes in May was $483,000, up 2.7% year over year.”

This Post Has 126 Comments
  1. The hotel I’m staying at has terrible internet, so I’ll be changing this afternoon. I may update this post if possible.

    1. “forced to accept lesser bids than what their properties were worth”

      This seems to be a trend these days. Can we have more of this?

      1. “forced to accept lesser bids than what their properties were worth”

        I love statements such as this. If price equals value then what a place is worth if clearly defined by its price. If you do not agree with this statement then consider what criteria Zillow uses to determine a home value; It it is not price then what is it?

        Interestingly these values are determined not by the house in question but instead are determined by the going prices of neighboring houses – the comps. And the prices of these comps, their values, are decided by the collective opinions of strangers, some who have lost their minds.

        IMO all of this, the entire concept, is totally nuts.

          1. No, I believe “who” is correct. “Who” is the subject of the phrase “have lost their minds,” and being the subject of a phrase overrides the phrase being the object of the preposition “by.” But the most common and least confusing phrasing is “some of whom have lost their minds.”

        1. “Interestingly these values are determined not by the house in question but instead are determined by the going prices of neighboring houses – the comps.”

          – Agreed.

          “Price is what you pay. Value is what you get.” – Warren Buffett

          – A home (a house, actually; now a commoditized living space in the 21st century) is “worth’ what the market will pay. Price is set at the margins. Neighborhood comparable sales, or “comps”, determine the going rate. Realtors love this relationship in the bubble inflating phase, but are loathe to accept it as the bubble (inevitably) deflates. Lower prices drag the comps lower. Lower prices beget lower prices.

          – The current pandemic didn’t cause, but rather only accelerated the bubble deflating trend that was already in place due to massive Fed stimulus over the last 10+ years; the pandemic was the “pin” that popped the (everything) bubble.

          The long-term price to income relationship is approx. 3:1. This is pre-Fed insanity and pre-housing bubble 1.0, 2.0. One could argue that they’re one in the same, since 2.0 is merely a continuation of 1.0 via the same Fed and Gov’t Agc’y. interventions. Once price gets well above or below this long-term relationship, there’s a mean reversion. Couple this behavior with the fact that bubbles always pop (i.e. put two and two together), and it would seem prudent to the future home buyer to be patient here. My vote is to wait at least until after the Nov. 3rd elections, and probably 2-3 years after that before dipping a toe into the housing market. Just an opinion; not investment advice.

          1. “The long-term price to income relationship is approx. 3:1.”

            There’s nothing further from the truth.

            The long term historic price trend is 2x annual income for a resale house, 2.5x for a new house.

            Another beaut is “land appreciates”.

            The reality is this…. There is a globe full of land where 95% of it goes undeveloped. Land is essentially worthless dirt. If you paid more than $500-$1000 and acre, you got ripped off.

          2. MB –

            “The long-term price to income relationship is approx. 3:1.”

            There’s nothing further from the truth.

            The long term historic price trend is 2x annual income for a resale house, 2.5x for a new house.

            ———————–|

            – I dunno, three isn’t a bad number for median values. Data here.

            https://www.longtermtrends.net/home-price-median-annual-income-ratio/
            Home Price to Income Ratio

            “Historically a house in the US cost around 3 to 4 times the median annual income.”

            – The chart shows the ratio bouncing around between 3.0 and 3.5 from about 1960 until 2000 and the start of housing bubble 1.0.

            https://www.jchs.harvard.edu/blog/price-to-income-ratios-are-nearing-historic-highs/
            Price-to-Income Ratios are Nearing Historic Highs
            Thursday, September 13, 2018 | Alexander Hermann

            “In fact, price-to-income ratios nationally were remarkably stable between 1980 and 1999, when they fluctuated between 3.1 and 3.4.”

            – It used to be that the recommendation for buying a house was no more than 33% of income. As I recall, the inverse of one third is three.

            – And, of course, Monty Python is on my side. 🙂

            Monty Python and the Holy Grail (1975)

            [Holding the Holy Hand Grenade of Antioch]

            King Arthur : How does it… um… how does it work?

            Sir Lancelot : I know not, my liege.

            King Arthur : Consult the Book of Armaments.

            Brother Maynard : Armaments, chapter two, verses nine through twenty-one.

            Cleric : [reading] And Saint Attila raised the hand grenade up on high, saying, “O Lord, bless this thy hand grenade, that with it thou mayst blow thine enemies to tiny bits, in thy mercy.” And the Lord did grin. And the people did feast upon the lambs, and sloths, and carp, and anchovies, and orangutans, and breakfast cereals, and fruit bats, and large chu…

            Brother Maynard : Skip a bit, Brother…

            Cleric : And the Lord spake, saying, “First shalt thou take out the Holy Pin. Then shalt thou count to three, no more, no less. Three shall be the number thou shalt count, and the number of the counting shall be three. Four shalt thou not count, neither count thou two, excepting that thou then proceed to three. Five is right out. Once the number three, being the third number, be reached, then lobbest thou thy Holy Hand Grenade of Antioch towards thy foe, who, being naughty in My sight, shall snuff it.

            Brother Maynard : Amen.

            All : Amen.

            King Arthur : Right. One… two… five!

            Galahad : Three, sir.

            King Arthur : Three!

        2. values are determined not by the house in question but instead are determined by the going prices of neighboring houses – the comps.

          “Houses do not appreciate; only land appreciates.”
          “Location location location.”

          People didn’t just buy a house. They bought a school and a commute. That is, until COVID showed up. Now all you need is Dad and/or Mom in the home office, kids doing distance learning, and a Wal-Mart supercenter 10 miles away. And location location location becomes sticks sticks sticks.

          1. “Now all you need is Dad and/or Mom in the home office, kids doing distance learning”

            This might work for a small portion of population. However, most people will still had to go to work and most kids still need a good school district. Distance working and learning aren’t the panaceas there being presented as.

            My kids hate online classes and they’ve got the Cadillac version from a very well funded school district.

  2. ‘In the 92352 ZIP Code, based on 29 sales, the median price for single-family homes in May was $390,000, down 8.6% year over year’

    Good thing everybody is putting 20% down.

    1. When you factor in the 6% commission and associated costs of selling, most recent buyers are down at least 15%, perhaps 20% in the zero down cases.

      1. Considering 90%+ of all mortgages made since 2009 are subprime, it’s safe to say they’re all underwater….. and sinking.

        Ooooph.

        Boulder, CO Housing Prices Crater 11% YOY As Colorado Housing Market Turns Toxic

        https://www.zillow.com/boulder-co-80301/home-values/

        *Select price from dropdown menu on first chart

        As a leading economist said, “Sell whatever it takes to get out of debt and hold onto every dollar you’ve got. You’ll thank me later.”

      2. 6% = price fixing, which is prohibited by the Sherman Antitrust Act.

        At what point will free markets catch up with the used home sales industry?

  3. And this is how your property tax and sales tax revenue evaporates as all of your businesses leave:

    “It’s been a month since five hours of upheaval descended on downtown Portland and the collective shock generated by the looting and arson of the May 30 riot has faded. The plight of these business owners, many of them successful and relatively prosperous, has been overshadowed by the global pandemic, a deep national recession, record unemployment and the most vibrant civil rights movement in generations.

    But the merchants remember. And they are furious, not only at the people who broke into their stores but also at the police for failing to intervene.”

    https://www.oregonlive.com/business/2020/06/downtown-retailers-wonder-about-police-reaction-to-rioting-thieves-where-was-the-mayor.html

    #ClownWorld is beyond saving at this point, let it burn itself to the ground. And nothing of value was lost…

    1. Portland civil rights leaders, including city Commissioner Jo Ann Hardesty, were furious that criminals were using the racial justice movement as cover.

      “I believe there was a small group of people who came out last night with every intention of tearing stuff up and they were going to tear it up no matter how many of them there were,” she said at a press conference the next day. “But I want to be crystal clear: What happened last night had nothing to do with Black America. It was not about standing up for Black people’s rights. It was not about acknowledging the death and harm that has taken place.”

      If you’ve ever wanted to see the worst example of a head irreversibly embedded up one’s ass, look no further.

      1. From The Hill dot com, published an hour ago:

        “The Chicago Police Department is asking the public to come forward with any details regarding recent shootings that have killed at least three children in the city.

        Shootings across Chicago over the weekend killed three children, including a 10-year-old girl who was struck in the head by a stray bullet, according to the AP.

        Earlier on Saturday, a 1-year-old boy was killed and his mother was injured when a gunman opened fire on their vehicle, and a 17-year-old died at a hospital after he got into an altercation and someone fired shots”

      2. Portland civil rights leaders, including city Commissioner Jo Ann Hardesty, were furious that criminals were using the racial justice movement as cover.

        These housebroken “civil rights leaders” have been coopted by the Democrats, but have zero credibility with the Gimme Dats on the streets. If the corporate Democrats had counted on these charlatans to placate “their community,” they are probably realizing their payola was wasted.

    2. Mr. Banker says: People are smart.

      Some HBB humor:

      “Downtown merchants have complained for years about lawlessness, open drug use and homeless camps.”

      This is the joke’s set up. Next up is the joke’s punch line:

      “Those issues haven’t stopped a construction spree that has brought more apartments, offices and several new hotels to Portland’s urban core.”

      Bahahahahahahahahahahahahaha.

        1. “The good people drive out the bad, yes? No?”

          – Looking at any major blue/socialist/communist city currently, and factoring in the plethora of social and economic ills, and taken together with a sudden exodus of those residents capable of leaving, I would say that the bad are driving out the good.

          – The response of any socialist country has been to build a wall to keep the good people in. In a capitalist country, they build a wall to keep the bad people out. All one needs to know…

          https://www.investopedia.com/terms/g/greshams-law.asp
          Economics Macroeconomics
          Gresham’s Law
          By Jim Chappelow | Updated Oct 2, 2019

          What Is Gresham’s Law?

          “Gresham’s law is a monetary principle stating that “bad money drives out good.” It is primarily used for consideration and application in currency markets. Gresham’s law was originally based on the composition of minted coins and the value of the precious metals used in them. However, since the abandonment of metallic currency standards, the theory has been applied to the relative stability of different currencies’ value in global markets.”

          How Gresham’s Law Works

          Throughout history, mints have made coins from gold, silver, and other precious metals, which originally give the coins their value. Over time, issuers of coins sometimes reduced the amount of precious metals used to make coins and tried to pass them off as full value coins. Ordinarily, new coins with less precious metal content would have less market value and trade at a discount, or not at all, and the old coins would retain greater value. However, with government involvement such as legal tender laws, the new coins would typically be mandated to have the same face value as older coins. This means that the new coins would be legally overvalued, and the old coins legally undervalued. Governments, rulers, and other coin issuers would engage in this in order to obtain revenue in the form of seigniorage and pay their old debts (which they borrowed in old coins) back in the new coins (which have less intrinsic value) at par value.

          “Because the value of the metal in old coins (good money) is higher than the new coins (bad money) at face value, people have a clear incentive to prefer the old coins with higher intrinsic precious metal content. As long as they are legally compelled to treat both types of coins as the same monetary unit, buyers will want to pass along their less precious coins as quickly as possible and hold on to the old coins. They can either melt the old coins down and sell the metal, or they may simply hoard the coins as a greater stored value. The bad money circulates through the economy, and the good money gets removed from circulation, to be stashed away or melted down for sale as raw metal.”

          “The end result of this process, known as debasing the currency, is a fall in the purchasing power of the currency units, or a rise in general prices: in other words, inflation. In order to fight Gresham’s law, governments often blame speculators and resort to tactics like currency controls, prohibitions on removing coins from circulation, or confiscation of privately owned precious metal supplies held for monetary use.”

          – bad money = fiat currency; good money = precious metals. Got gold?

          1. “any major blue/socialist/communist city”

            = every city worth living in

            LMAO!!

    3. #ClownWorld is beyond saving at this point, let it burn itself to the ground.

      Antifa activist could become Portland’s next mayor:

      https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2020/jun/2/sarah-iannarone-antifa-mayor-eyes-portland-oregon-/

      Voters in Portland, Oregon, will decide in November whether to elect an Antifa mayor, even after President Trump vowed to declare Antifa a domestic terrorism organization.

      Longtime Portland community organizer Sarah Iannarone has made no secret of her political sympathies. She declared last year that “I am Antifa” and wryly embraced the “Antifa mayor” label. She and her campaign manager, Gregory McKelvey, were featured in a December article in Playboy with the headline “Antifa in Focus.”

      “I am antifa,” she tweeted in September. “I stand proudly beside the good people of this city organizing in countless ways every day to oppose hate in its myriad forms.”

      Talk about Orwellian. If she wins, anyone who stays there deserves to get it good and hard.

      1. “Talk about Orwellian. If she wins, anyone who stays there deserves to get it good and hard.”

        “When the righteous thrive, the people rejoice;
 when the wicked rule, the people groan.” – Proverbs 29:2

        “Toute nation a le gouvernement qu’elle mérite.” (Every country has the government it deserves.) Lettres et Opuscules Inédits (1851) (letter of August 15, 1811). – Joseph de Maistre

        “You can ignore reality, but you can’t ignore the consequences of reality.”  – Ayn Rand

        “Sooner or later everyone sits down to a banquet of consequences.” – Robert Louis Stevenson

        “There are no rewards or punishments — only consequences.” – W. R. [William Ralph] Inge

        “It is easy to dodge our responsibilities, but we cannot dodge the consequences of dodging our responsibilities.” – Sir Josiah Stamp

      2. Amtifa just mean anti-fascist — its not an organization is a point of view. One that at its core is hard to fault.

        1. One that at its core is hard to fault.

          Sure, if they were actually defined by being opposed to fascism. It’s just words though, they seem totally unable to recognize it in themselves. What they really are is anti-capitalist…which is a tougher sell.

      3. This one will be like the choice phrase ‘ Against abortion? Don’t have one.’ “Just don’t visit Portland, OR” I guess is the phrase?

    4. But the merchants remember. And they are furious, not only at the people who broke into their stores but also at the police for failing to intervene.”

      Fury is impotent. They need to start actively supporting those who are fighting back against the globalists and their progressive quislings. And no, that’s NOT the worthless Establishment GOP or Conservative, Inc.

      1. The temptation for politically liberal scientists to lie about COVID-19 transmission risk at mass protests must be immense.

        Jun 10, 2020 – Science
        Scientists caught between pandemic and protests
        Axios
        Bryan Walsh, Alison Snyder
        Physicians march with people protesting George Floyd’s death in Denver, Colorado, June 6.
        Photo: Michael Ciaglo/Getty Images

        When protests broke out against the coronavirus lockdown, many public health experts were quick to warn about spreading the virus. When protests broke out after George Floyd’s death, some of the same experts embraced the protests. That’s led to charges of double standards among scientists.

        Why it matters: Scientists who are seen as changing recommendations based on political and social priorities, however important, risk losing public trust. That could cause people to disregard their advice should the pandemic require stricter lockdown policies.

        What’s happening: Many public health experts came out against public gatherings of almost any sort this spring — including protests over lockdown policies and large religious gatherings.

        – But some of the same experts are supporting the Black Lives Matter protests, arguing that addressing racial inequality is key to tackling the coronavirus epidemic.
        – The systemic racism that protesters are decrying contributes to massive health disparities that can be seen in this pandemic — black Americans comprise 13% of the U.S. population, but make up around a quarter of deaths from COVID-19. Floyd himself survived COVID-19 before he was killed by a now former police officer in Minneapolis.
        – “While everyone is concerned about the risk of COVID, there are risks with just being black in this country that almost outweigh that sometimes,” Abby Hussein, an infectious disease fellow at the University of Washington, told CNN last week.

        Yes, but: Spending time in a large group, even outdoors and wearing masks — as many of the protesters are — does raise the risk of coronavirus transmission, says Michael Osterholm, director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota.

  4. “According to Lending Tree, those more apt to accept lower bids belonged to the millennial set (78%), followed closely by Gen Xers (67%), and then baby boomers (55%).”

    Those who have made everything go their way expect things to continue to go their way. Those who have been screwed at every turn to pay for things expect to continue to be screwed.

    They should not have bought until the price fell so low the sellers cried on their way out. Lower real estate prices is the only way to offset the future of lower wages, diminished public services, and higher taxes arranged by Generation Greed. Once you buy their property at high prices, you have lost your chance to take something back.

    1. “Once you buy their property at high prices”

      I won’t.

      The Western Slope of Colorado has grown alot since the last time I drove on 50/550 a few years ago. Lots of new homes and businesses. No vacancies in the downtown storefronts.

      People are realizing that Denver is an overpriced sh*thole and are taking their money elsewhere.

  5. “Virus? What virus?”

    https://www.zillow.com/homedetails/1378-Fairfax-St-Birmingham-MI-48009/24498280_zpid/

    I don’t ever think I’ve ever seen a more interesting price/tax history, nor a more ridiculous Zestimate.

    Neighborhood: 48009

    Zillow predicts 48009 home values will increase 2.3% next year, compared to a 2.3% rise for Birmingham as a whole.

    https://www.zillow.com/birmingham-mi-48009/home-values/

    48009 home values have gone up 2.3% over the past year and Zillow predicts they will fall -1.9% within the next year.

    1. I’ve been noticing this since April, the projections on listings don’t match the projections on the “Home Values” page for different areas.

  6. “But don’t let mortgage applications fool you. Entering into a deal to buy a home now could prove unwise. Much of the real estate market remains in a deep freeze, with listings down nationwide and borrowers struggling to meet debt payments. Black Knight Inc. reports that 4.73 million mortgages, or 8.9 per cent nationwide, are in forbearance. ‘During the Great Recession, it took more than two years for the national delinquency rate to increase by the 3.1 per cent seen in April 2020 alone,’ Black Knight noted in a report.”

    Don’t forget that it took around five years for the residential real estate market to bottom out after the onset of the Great Recession at year-end 2007. And the crater is forming much more rapidly this time around, with no bottom in view.

    Try not to catch yourself a falling knife.

  7. Like a ton of bricks
    Is investors’ love affair with commercial property ending?
    After covid-19, the investment world will become more discriminating

    Finance & economics
    Jun 25th 2020 edition

    THE SECOND week of March was a heartbreaking one for Will Beckett. The boss of Hawksmoor, a chain of steakhouses that employs 700 workers in Britain, had been days away from opening his first New York outpost. Instead government-imposed lockdowns forced him to close all his restaurants down. The City types that usually queue for its sizzling cuts were forced to go without. So too were Mr Beckett’s landlords, after he told them he could not afford to pay rent for the second quarter. Most of his peers, he says, have also yet to square the bill. Restaurateurs are likely to miss their payments for the third quarter too.

    1. “After covid-19, the investment world will become more discriminating”

      With generous bailouts of bad gambling debt funded by Unlimited Quarantinive Easing, there is no need to ever become more discriminating.

      1. More discriminating, and largely depopulated. Anybody with CRE investments is in deeeeeeep doo doo right now.

        I keep seeing articles about how you’re getting ripped off by your employer when you work at home. I would be willing to bet that these are being placed by CRE and oil interests, to try and make America great again, ‘great’ being ‘shoveling money into their coffers as you risk your life, car, and sanity on crowded roads to go somewhere you don’t need to be every day.’

        I already decided that I’m not going back to that stupid game. We had a survey at work recently, and one of the questions was ‘how soon do you feel comfortable returning to the office’, and were foolish enough to give me a text field instead of a numeric. I wrote ‘Never, and if you require me too, I’ll find a job that doesn’t.’

        It’s important to be firm. The office people had their day, but that day is over.

        1. We had a survey at work recently, and one of the questions was ‘how soon do you feel comfortable returning to the office’, and were foolish enough to give me a text field instead of a numeric.

          The strongest proponents of working from the office are management control freaks and Remora-fish employees and managers who depend upon more capable, hard-working peers and subordinates to carry them. However, with “woke” corporations going all-in on “diversity” over merit, working at the office is going to be mandatory. Why? It’s simple: unqualified managers and incompetent/unproductive employees will rebel at “lack of collaboration” – and their horror at the prospect of having to stand on their own two feet instead of being carried by more capable colleagues.

        2. My job is still saying we will return to the office, someday. They won’t say when or how they will decide. This is unfortunate because my lease is up soon, and if I knew work from home was permanent I could move further outside the city.

          1. Yeah, my boss was asking me the other day how it was going and my thoughts on starting to come back into the office part of the time. I told him I thought it was looking almost doable to work from China now like he knew I wanted a long time ago. He was quick to focus on the “almost” in that sentence.

        3. I would like to return to the office someday. However, I’m going to try to stay home as long as I can. Many offices are allowing workers to unmask while alone in their cubicles. We have NO data on whether or how COVID spreads in an office environment. So I’d like to wait until the first wave or so of workers return to their office buildings. If they do ok, I’ll go to the office. If COVID spreads again, they’ll probably send us back home anyway.

          1. “Many offices are allowing workers to unmask while alone in their cubicles.”

            No one in my office (or at any of the offices we deal with regularly) are wearing masks unless there is a member of the public present.

          2. Spreads the he same way as any of the other crap we catch multiple times a year. Offices are mass inoculation chambers.

    2. So too were Mr Beckett’s landlords, after he told them he could not afford to pay rent for the second quarter. Most of his peers, he says, have also yet to square the bill. Restaurateurs are likely to miss their payments for the third quarter too.

      Th UK lockdown is extreme. You can’t even have guests inside your house.

    1. “Joe Biden could grope a child in the middle of Fifth Avenue and people would still vote for him” — Real Journalists

    1. “After a generation of promoting”

      Boring middle of the road GOP lite policies progressives have finally grown a set and are clearing out the deadwood.

    1. “accused of counter-revolutionary activities”

      I’ve started accumulating books about western history from medieval Europe up through the 20th century. Paper books, in my physical possession. Books that your electronic reading device will be able to summarily ban you from reading, at some point in the near future.

      Globalists gonna globe.

      1. Amazon will be censoring them for our own good.

        I still have my copy of Camp of the Saints. We can soon kiss that one buh bye from Kindle.

      2. It’s scary to think the same folks conducting the campaign to raze historic statues in the U.S. could soon initiate a mass purge of online resources that don’t fit their political correctness agenda. I’m dreading having old Joe Biden in the WH, nodding his head in consent.

  8. That gauge has risen for nine straight weeks to reach its highest level since the start of 2009, which defies logic when you consider that more than 44 million Americans have filed for unemployment benefits since mid-March.

    It’s all part of Clownworld, Danielle. Brought to you by the same globalists who sign your paycheck.

  9. No doubt that some of this is tied to the minor exodus from densely populated cities.

    Real Journalists and globalist media outlets have to pretend the “minor exodus” has nothing to do with the productive and civilized portion of society seeing the writing on the wall as Democrats encourage and enable mob rule and unchecked criminality.

    1. “the minor exodus”

      Ridgway, CO (Ouray County) is like a parallel universe. Some friends moved there from the Front Range, he is a mechanic and his wife has a work from home work from anywhere job.

      The more time I spend outside of Denver the less I want to live here. I’ve already stopped spending money here on anything besides rent, food, and gas.

  10. Fresh data from the Federal Reserve showed that Americans’ net worth fell by a record $6.55 trillion in the first quarter to $100.8 trillion, the largest drop in records back to 1952.

    By the time the Fed declares “Mission Accomplished,” the oligarchy will own almost every cent of that $100.8 trillion, while the pauperized 99% can look forward to a life of debt servitude and exploitation.

  11. “The smart and patient buyers see what’s happening.

    Indeed. Remember, kids: It’s the second mouse that gets the cheese.

  12. ‘I believe that there is going to be some sort of bubble burst in the real estate market,’ Pike said.

    You’re one Johnny-come-lately prophet, Pike.

  13. “If you’re feeling cramped in L.A., here are homes with more than 4,000 square feet on the market for roughly $750,000 in Lake Arrowhead, Oak Hills and Fontana in San Bernardino County.

    Over the weekend the Gimme Dats mounted their second incursion into Beverly Hills. It won’t be their last. All of these exclusive neighborhoods and their Boomer residents are going to be rich pickings on the next Purge Night.

  14. Hi Ben,
    Great posts. Thank you!

    A weekend topic starting with Danielle DiMartino Booth at Bloomberg.

    Mortgage market sends wrong message: Danielle DiMartino Booth
    By BLOOMBERG – June 18, 2020 @ 1:32am

    “The smart and patient buyers see what’s happening. They know to wait until forbearance expires and increasingly tight mortgage lending standards wash out the eager but unqualified. They know that the pent-up demand will be satisfied and that the artificial dearth of supply will become robust, which will pressure prices lower.”

    From The M Report.

    LendingTree’s Chief Economist Tendayi Kapfidze offered insights on home seller anxiety, pointing to the fact that their concern—and their exercising caution—may be wise: “Although it may seem like the housing market has shrugged off COVID-19, as home sales show signs of recovering, it may prove a false dawn. The detrimental impact on jobs and, by extension, wages, will be significant and long-lasting. Demand will soften in the housing market, and sellers will likely need to make some concessions to reach the signing table.”

  15. I have enjoyed covid in the sense of just staying home most of the time and when I have to go out for something enjoying empty roads and almost empty stores. That seems to be over in the Folsom area. Everything is crowded, including the streets and stores and almost nobody is wearing masks, for whatever that’s worth.

    We wanted to get out of the house and go up into the mountains and there were people everywhere up there, too. Having grown up in Wyoming I’m used to almost nobody being out there if you head out of town but in California it’s wall to wall tattoos and HFCS guts everywhere people might choose to get out of the car. A lot of Nevada plates, too. I thought they had their own nice stuff?

    Anyway, on the way out of town we stopped early right when the doors opened for an open house at a place that had a nicely done kitchen my wife wanted to check out for ideas. Thought we could sneak in and out quickly before other people showed up. Nope…there was a line. Apparently there are many more people looking than there are decent places on the market at the moment. Crazy.

    1. Nope…there was a line.

      One would think there would be a line to leave California. I guess for some people leaving means a new job, meaning less pay and leaving unvested RSU’s from the old job on the table. So they stay and put up with the cr@p.

      1. One would think there would be a line to leave California.

        There may be a line to leave the Bay Area but it looks like a lot of them are thinking this looks about the right distance away.

        1. The level of cr@ppitude is just low enough to be tolerable, until it gets worse. And of course by moving, you lose whatever Prop 13 bennies you had on the old house and will pay full freight property tax on the new one.

      2. “One would think there would be a line to leave California.”

        California isn’t perfect but there’s a lot of opportunity here and the weather ain’t bad.

        Commutes suck pretty much everywhere there’s opportunity. Housing is expensive pretty much everywhere there’s opportunity.

        1. The weather is exaggerated. Sure, it doesn’t snow, but you won’t be going to the beach in the winter.

          Disadvantages:
          Cost of living (non housing)
          Housing and rental prices
          High taxation
          Mello Roos
          Crime
          Racial tensions
          Rampant homelessness
          Unbelievably horrid traffic (pre covid). So bad that my boss would bail out at 3 to beat the traffic, and even then it was almost an hour drive home for him.
          Terrible schools. People move to Poway for its mediocre public schools
          Huge unfunded state liabilities

          An anecdote:
          I had an aunt who used to live in Los Feliz. My mother once visited her. My mom said she heard a blood curdling scream outside and went to a window to see what was happening. My aunt stopped her and told her “Don’t look”

          A few years later that same aunt passed away and I drove up one evening from San Diego to her viewing, also in Los Feliz. The funeral home had multiple grim faced security guards in the parking lot.

          I never looked back after I left.

    2. We don’t know how COVID spreads outdoors with no masks. I guess we’ll find out. (Isn’t Brazil mostly outdoors with no masks?)

    3. “Apparently there are many more people looking than there are decent places on the market at the moment. Crazy.”

      Literally half of all the properties for sale in my northern California coast community have sold (or at least went contingent) in the last two weeks. Prices are holding pretty steady. Thinking its a numbers game. The total number of properties around here is small. The number of people in the Bay Area four hours away is huge. If only a tiny fraction decide to move here they overwhelm the local market.

  16. From another website:

    This happened in Arizona! Copied, pasted, Shared

    “”My brother was recently contacted by a “tracer” because his girlfriend’s brother-in-law, who had NO symptoms, went to a testing site and apparently tested positive. They traced everyone he was near which included my brother. My brother then got a phone call telling him he was exposed, and also told him that they now have to document him as having Covid (though he has no symptoms) because he hasn’t been tested.”
    They apparently did this to around 20 associated friends – so because 1 guy was curious and tested positive, 21 new cases were added to the numbers. Now imagine that extrapolated across the country.
    People need to wake up and realize they’re being played hardcore big-time right now!
    It’s absolutely insane.

      1. If they now decide to go get tested they could be two new cases.

        I know. It’s hard to trust any of the data coming out.

    1. My Encinitas Highlands property goes on the market July 1 with a $1.8M asking price. It doesn’t have ocean views or sketchy alleys.

    1. A large percentage of young people view COVID-19 as an old people killer, and they also detest old people because they’re the ones who ripped them off by stealing their futures. “Ok, Boomer” comes to mind. So, they don’t care about masks or spreading it because they don’t think they’ll get very sick and they don’t care if the olds die. Can’t say I blame them.

      1. If this were a one-and-done flu that you completely recover from, I’d be tempted to just go out and get it over with. But, there is a small percentage of people who get the 3 months of yucky symptoms, and another portion of people who seem to have semi-permanent organ damage, including youngsters. Plus, this doesn’t look like a one-and-done — antibodies aren’t sticking around like we’d hoped. And I don’t want to spread asymptomatically and give someone else a serious case.

        So for the time being for me, I’m still acting out a lockdown. W@H and going out only to the store with an N-95.

  17. By William Gensert

    The left is going to riot in November no matter who wins the presidency. Leftists have established by precedent the premise that “mostly peaceful” rioting, arson, assault, and rampant property destruction are not only acceptable, but necessary in order to purge our nation of imagined original sin.

    George Floyd was merely a stroke of luck for the left; if it were not for his murder, they would have needed to conjure up another excuse for the studied and deliberate anarchy we are experiencing today.

    Having failed at winning the election and then again with their efforts to depose President Trump through investigation and impeachment, Democrats have concluded that revolution is necessary, and one cannot prosecute a revolution without practice.

    What we are seeing today is Antifa, the paramilitary arm of the Democratic Party, and BLM, the propaganda arm (in conjunction with mainstream media) of the party, practicing for the “big show.” They understand that their coup failed because their nefarious plot against President Trump was strangled in its crib by a constitution that works when followed. And they cannot allow that again.

    Revolution is the way…

    This has been coming for some time, certainly before Trump ever descended that escalator to announce his candidacy. It is what “cancel culture” is about: stealing agency from anyone who does not toe the line.

    The movement to make people apologize to black people for their privilege and for the slavery and bigotry that no country has done more to address and eliminate is a means to create an acceptance culture among people who otherwise might object to the coming revolution.

    Forbidding particular statues, wrong words, cultural appropriation, and borrowed slang, are all about establishing boundaries that shall not be crossed to create limits to potential dissent from their incipient rebellion.

    People think that the Obama administration’s debasing of the constitutional protections afforded to the accused with respect to sexual assault accusations in the nation’s colleges was about pursuing justice for the women who should “always be believed.”

    It was not. It was a means of getting people to understand that going forward, the left will not allow the presumption of innocence. And if they can cancel that, they can cancel anything.

    It was also a starting point.

    It was initially Confederate statues that were overturned, but now it is any statue, because they want us to know that they are in control and we should, as we are doing now, stand down when they try to overthrow the government in November.

    It is all a test to see if America will accept the negation of the values inherent in our constitution. With the slogan “black lives matter,” they mean to force us to accept that the aphorism “all men are created equal” is outdated, because black lives are more equal and matter more than any others.

    Yet it is not that they care one whit for black lives who perish in unimaginable numbers at the hands of other black lives; what they want is to establish a regime where the people of the United States accept that what they say matters.

    Having established the policy, it is a small step to abrogating all of anyone’s rights at any time. All that will be needed to destroy one’s constitutional protections is for the left’s allies in media to sell it to an uninformed populace as righteous and justified.

    After all, who is not anti-rape, anti-racism, and pro-fairness?

    The canceling, forced apologies, the looting, and the arson are all part of getting America ready to accept the rebellion the Democrats are planning for post-election.

    And the destruction will not be “rebellion” or “revolution”; it will be peaceful protest.

    The left acts under the premise that only leftists are right and just. This false assumption gives them both license and good reason to commit whatever despicable deed they must to eradicate opposing ideas. And if we have seen anything these last weeks, it is that Democrats have no aversion to using violence to get what they want, because when you believe that you are riding “the arc of history,” breaking a few bones and burning down a city bend toward justice — as Barry would say.

    The riots, the arson, the defund police movement, assaults of public figures, the canceling of people who drift astray of the left’s orthodoxy — all are designed to inure people to the violence that will befall the nation immediately before and after 11/03/20.

    We can expect the left to show little mercy, for cancel-culture leftists lack grace when the smell of blood inflames their nostrils. After all, they are mere victims striking out against oppressors, which we have allowed ourselves to be categorized as by our silence.

    Knocked off their feet with the destruction of Chairman Hillary Mao in 2016, they reached into the mire within which they were ensconced to grab whatever excrement they could to throw at the president, and it did not work.

    Their “Plan B” is to overthrow the system, and the widespread anarchy and destruction we have seen in recent days is merely prologue as preview.

    Should Trump win, there will be widespread calls for negating the election because…this, that, or the other thing was used by the president to steal the election. That will be the justification for them to unleash the Kraken.

    If Biden wins, they will riot to consolidate their gains and push their agenda. This will include gun confiscation and destruction of the 1st Amendment — just to start.

    Yes, we all know what will happen in November. We have been witness to the arrogant display of slow-motion revolution for weeks now.

    The more frightening question is, how can it be prevented?

    1. “not only acceptable, but necessary in order to purge our nation of imagined original sin.”

      Maybe I missed something but wasn’t America founded violently by a bunch of guys throwing off the yokes of oppression?

      1. wasn’t America founded violently

        If you weren’t trolling, you wouldn’t say “please believe we are peaceful” and at the same time “Violence is a good thing”.

    2. This narrative comes up every couple years. Some revolution somewhere blah blah. Couple years back, it was the free militias. All you extremists on both sides are insane. maybe both sides can team up and “take your country back.”

  18. On top of all the other COVID-19 pandemic worries, you can add an ever worse pension crisis, which has been worsening for decades already.

    1. The Financial Times
      Coronavirus business update 30 days complimentary
      The Big Read Pensions industry
      Raiding the pot: how the pandemic has deepened the pensions crisis
      The pressure on schemes has intensified with rates set to stay low and workers drawing down their funds
      © FT montage
      Josephine Cumbo in London, Robin Wigglesworth in Oslo and Billy Nauman in New York yesterday

      The arrival of coronavirus in Australia in March left Marie Piggo struggling to put food on the table.

      The 32-year-old hairdresser from Sydney quickly saw two-thirds of her income disappear as customers stayed at home. Worse still, her husband lost his job.

      So when the Australian government announced in March it would allow young people like herself to raid their retirement pots to ease financial pressures caused by the coronavirus lockdown, she jumped at the chance.

      “We didn’t take too long to decide to take [the maximum] A$10,000 [$6,900] from my superannuation pot,” she says. “We used this to buy a car which we really needed, as my husband fell ill, and I needed to get to work.”

      Ms Piggo says she has no regrets about withdrawing what amounted to one-third of her total retirement savings. “It was not ideal but right now our debts, and getting back into work, are a priority,” she says. “I will have to make up the savings later.”

      While the measure may have helped ease a cash crunch for Ms Piggo, and millions of others around the world, such short-term emergency measures will deepen the retirement savings crisis that is brewing around the world.

      Even before Covid-19, the challenges facing the global pensions industry were already immense, with longer life expectancy meaning that individuals need to save much more in order to have a comfortable retirement.

      A decade of historically low interest rates since the financial crisis has put even more pressure on pension systems. This is particularly true for corporate and public sector “defined benefit” pension plans — which promise a certain payment to members.

      The coronavirus crisis has compounded many of these seemingly intractable problems. Australia is not alone in allowing people to spend part of their retirement pots to make ends meet during the crisis — the US is among the other countries that have permitted or made it easier to make withdrawals.

      Central banks have indicated that savers could face another prolonged period of ultra-low interest rates as they try to foster an economic recovery, while a string of blue-chip companies have been forced to cut their dividends as a result of the crisis.

      “This exacerbates the trends that have been in play for a while,” says Mark Wiseman, a prominent industry executive who once led the Canadian Pension Plan Investment Board. “The value of their assets have been hit and their liabilities have gone up with lower rates. It’s a massive double whammy.

      Some of the immediate pain has been alleviated by the huge stock market rally since April triggered by the extraordinarily aggressive intervention by central banks — which JPMorgan Asset Management estimates totals about $17tn globally. But many analysts say that this will serve to fast-forward stock market returns, dimming the future outlook, and many remain sceptical that the strength of the rally can endure. Moreover, the longer-term picture for pensions has been murky for some time.

      In 2017, the World Economic Forum warned the retirement savings gap — or shortfall between what people currently save and what they need for an adequate standard of living when they retire — would balloon from $70tn to $400tn in 2050, in just eight countries. That gap has only got larger as a result of the pandemic.

      “Even before Covid-19 hit, people were not saving enough for retirement in most countries,” says Han Yik, head of the World Economic Forum’s institutional investors group. “So they [early access measures] could be a big hit to the ability of people to save adequately for a pension.”

      Pre-retirees bear the brunt

      Most pension funds and retirement accounts suffered an immediate and brutal hit this year, when the coronavirus outbreak and harsh lockdowns sent financial markets sliding into one of the biggest and swiftest bear markets in history.

      But the impact of the Covid-19 crisis will be most painful for those about to retire, especially those soon-to-be pensioners who have put money away in a private or workplace pension scheme that invests in the stock market.

      In the US and UK, average fund values for “defined contribution” pension plans were down nearly 20 per cent and 15 per cent respectively in the first quarter due to market slump, in theory wiping tens of thousands from the value of retirement accounts, although in many cases, much of losses may have been recovered during the recent rally.

      “For those planning for retirement now and looking for a retirement income immediately, they present unenviable challenges,” says Richard Eagling, head of pensions at Moneyfacts, a UK-based financial information provider.

      Temporary measures taken by governments around the world to soften the economic blow of lockdowns are also threatening to deepen long-term savings challenges.

      In Australia “superannuation” funds were inundated with requests to take advantage of the emergency relaxation of rules, which allowed the early release from pensions plans of up to $20,000 over two tax years for those aged 55 and over. Between April 20 and June 14, Australian pension funds paid out A$15.9bn ($10.9bn) to 2.1m members under the emergency Covid-19 withdrawal scheme, according to the local financial regulator.

      While this outflow will not present an immediate liquidity threat to Australia’s ‘superannuation’ pension system, which has around A$2.7tn in assets, concerns are being voiced about who will pay the most for the emergency measure.

      “Superannuation was never intended to be a national relief fund,” says Kirstin Hunter, who runs Future Super, one of the leading pension funds. “Allowing people to access their retirement savings early seems like an easy solution to the Covid crisis, but it places pressure on people doing it by forcing them to choose between their present and their future.”

      Double whammy for defined benefit schemes

      The crisis is also exacerbating funding challenges for traditional defined benefit retirement plans, which promise to pay a secure, indexed retirement income to hundreds of millions of beneficiaries around the world in the private and public sectors.

      The sponsors of these plans take on the investment risk for payment of the pension, and are required to make contributions to plug funding gaps.

      Both private and public plans were already feeling pain from the protracted low interest rate environment since the 2008 crisis. Pension liabilities are sensitive to movements in interest rates, and typically inflate when interest rates fall.

      In the UK, the overall financial health of the country’s 5,500 defined benefit schemes, with more than 11m members, was estimated to have deteriorated by 5 per cent in the first quarter, largely due to a fall in the value of financial markets.

      In the US, the funded status of the nation’s largest corporate pension plans fell to 79 per cent in March, its lowest since 2012, according to analysis by Willis Towers Watson, a global professional services consultancy, although the rebound in the market will have reduced some of the underfunding.

      Subsequent monetary policy solutions that central bankers applied to ease the brunt of the crisis have helped equity markets and junk bonds to recover in the short term. But they have also had the effect of bringing down bond yields as well, inflating pension liabilities that are calculated using long-term interest rates.

      In the Netherlands, Covid-19 has caused a severe shock to a pensions system that was designed to withstand crises. The country’s three largest pension funds have lost 10-12 percentage points from a key ratio used to measure the schemes’ ability to meet their pension promises.

      “Unfortunately, in January 2020, most big Dutch pension funds still had not recovered from the previous crisis [in 2008],” says Anna Grebenchtchikova, a Dutch pensions expert. “While their assets had more than recovered, their liabilities had massively grown due to falling interest rates and increased life expectancy. Many of them underestimated the risks of falling rates, and did not hedge interest rate risk for many years.”

      Bond investments have historically been the bedrock of most pension funds. But with yields sagging lower for an extended period of time, many fund managers have ventured into riskier corners of financial markets.

      “One trend that has been disturbing is that over time many pension funds have adopted riskier and riskier investment strategies to compensate for the secular decline in interest rates,” says Seth Magaziner, general treasurer for Rhode Island state in the US. “That made them vulnerable to shocks.”

      This became apparent when Alberta Investment Management Corporation — the Canadian province’s $118bn pension management fund — in late April revealed that it was nursing a $2.1bn loss on bets that markets would remain tranquil, which unravelled in dramatic fashion in March.

      “The performance of this investment is wholly unsatisfactory and AIMCo’s board and management shares the frustration and disappointment of our clients, their beneficiaries, and all Albertans,” said Kevin Uebelein, the fund’s chief executive. Mr Wiseman was subsequently hired to chair AIMCo’s board of directors.

      Yet AIMCo was unlikely to be the only pension manager around the world ruing decisions made in the pacific, buoyant bull market that followed the financial crisis of 2008.

      Whether compelled by low bond yields or forced by too low contributions and overly high return expectations, many pension plans have taken on increased risk in recent years.

      One popular avenue to try to ratchet up returns has been to rush into so-called private assets, away from mainstream bond and stock markets, areas like infrastructure, private equity, direct lending and real estate.

      CR8R

      Pension funds have been encouraged to take risky bets because they often set target rates of return that are too high, argues Tom Sgouros, an expert on funding pensions who has advised state governments in the US.

      The accounting rules for funding ratios and target returns are “a bad guide to action — they lead people do to things that are irresponsible and stupid,” he says.

      Christopher Ailman, chief investment officer of Calstrs, the $227bn Californian teachers’ pension plan, says that pension schemes should not rely on generating strong investment returns as a way of compensating for funding shortfalls.

      “It’s never been an investment return problem. It’s been a funding problem,” he says. “Those plans need steady consistent funding and they need it again.”

      Long-term focus on hold

      With the developed world damaged by sharp recessions, many employers are facing severe liquidity problems and have postponed contributions to their company pension plans — a move given the blessing by regulators in several countries, as part of emergency Covid-19 measures.

      In the UK, one in 10 employers with a defined benefits scheme, or around 550, have requested a three-month payment holiday on their deficit contributions, with up to £1bn over the next 12 months expected to be deferred.

      While payment holidays are risky for the long-term financial health of schemes, the requests have met little pushback from unions who are also concerned about jobs as well as security for pensioners.

      “While this will further hurt the pension funds, it is difficult to imagine a trustee board not making a deal with the employer,” adds Ms Grebenchtchikova, speaking on the Dutch situation. “While pensions are important, ensuring the survival of companies (and salaries) is higher on everybody’s priority list.”

      David Knox, a senior partner with Mercer, the professional services firm, believes the whole issue of managing investment risks for pension funds will “go up a notch” as a consequence of the Covid-19 crisis.

      “Trustees will have to look at risk management in a much stronger way than they have traditionally done so,” he says.

      With no clear end in sight to the Covid-19 crisis, debate is set to ratchet up on how big a priority should be placed on repairing the finances of pension funds as governments seek to revive their economies.

      Jeremy Cooper, an Australian lawyer who chaired a 2009 review of the country’s superannuation system, says while it is “not ideal” to tap into a long-term retirement savings plan, sometimes a near-term crisis puts the long-term goals on pause. “The trick is to have a plan to get back on track,” says Mr Cooper.

      In spite of his reservations about pensions being prematurely unlocked around the world, the WEF’s Mr Yik says emergency interventions, delivering a short-term hit to pension adequacy, are justifiable to get the economy moving again.

      “You have to prioritise the present and make sure people have an adequate income now, with jobs,” says Mr Yik. “Then we can work on rebuilding what they can have for later life.”

  19. Is it safe to assume that Mr Market will shake off last week’s coronaswoon and resume going up this week?

    1. Associated Press
      Asian markets fall as coronavirus toll hits grim milestones
      Published: June 29, 2020 at 12:04 a.m. ET
      By Associated Press
      Nikkei, Hang Seng sink following Wall Street’s losses Friday

      Shares fell Monday in Asia, tracking losses on Wall Street as rising virus cases cause some U.S. states to backtrack on pandemic reopenings.

      Japan’s Nikkei (225 NIK, -2.29%) sank 1.8% and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index (HSI, -1.01%) fell 1.2%. The Shanghai Composite (SHCOMP, -0.60%) slipped 0.7% while South Korea’s Kospi (180721, -1.92%) declined 1.6%. Benchmark indexes in Taiwan (Y9999, -1.01%), Singapore (STI, -1.16%) and Indonesia (JAKIDX, -0.04%) dropped, and Australia’s (S&P/ASX 200 XJO, -1.50%) tumbled 2%.

      Investors have been banking on businesses continuing to reopen, helping to drive a recovery from the worst global downturn since the 1930s Great Depression.

      But the S&P 500 fell 2.4% Friday as Texas and Florida reversed course and clamped down on bars again in the nation’s biggest retreat yet. The new coronavirus has surged back in many places, especially the American South and West.

      Concern has deepened as the number of confirmed cases topped 10 million, with more than 500,000 reported dead from COVID-19, according to a tally by Johns Hopkins University that is believed to understate the problem due to issues with testing and a large number of asymptomatic cases.

      1. It’s not just American companies. Asian companies must be at least a little wary of the D614G mutation (I believe that’s the “european strain”) of COVID. It’s a more contagious version of the Wuhan strain, and it appears that that European strain is resistant to the Wuhan antibodies. (Either that, or Wuhan antibodies disappear altogether.) All of China could be ripe for reinfection, which of course would rattle the markets.

    2. Only two US states are reporting a decline in new coronavirus cases
      By Christina Maxouris and Eliott C. McLaughlin, CNN
      Updated 7:02 PM ET, Sun June 28, 2020
      A healthcare worker takes a sample from a man at a COVID-19 testing site in Miami Beach, Florida on Wednesday, June 24, 2020. Photo by Chandan Khanna/AFP/Getty Images

      (CNN) Only two US states are reporting a decline in new coronavirus cases compared to last week: Connecticut and Rhode Island.

      A rise was reported in a staggering 36 states, including Florida, which some experts have cautioned could be the next epicenter for infections. Officials there and across the US are also warning of an increase in cases among younger people.

      Florida reported 9,585 new coronavirus cases Saturday, a single-day record since the start of the pandemic. The number rivals those of New York’s peak in early April (New York’s new case tally Saturday was about 6% of Florida’s). On Sunday, Florida’s Department of Health reported another 8,530 new cases.

      Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis said the state’s surge in cases in the past week was the result of a “test dump,” echoing an assertion from the White House that an increase in testing is resulting in the higher numbers.

      The ex-head of the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention contended the increase was actual, not an anomaly related to testing numbers, and warned more spread and deaths were in the country’s future.

      “As a doctor, a scientist, an epidemiologist, I can tell you with 100% certainty that in most states where you’re seeing an increase, it is a real increase. It is not more tests; it is more spread of the virus,” former CDC Director Tom Frieden told Fox News on Sunday.

      In the South, the numbers are rising as a result of hasty reopenings, he said, and it’s “going to continue to get worse for weeks.” Deaths are not yet spiking because deaths lag infections by about a month, he said, estimating the nation will see at least 15,000 more deaths in the next month.

      “This virus still has the upper hand,” Frieden told Fox News.

      Record numbers may underestimate cases

      This all came as the United States broke another record, reporting the highest number of new cases in a single day Friday with at least 40,173 new infections.

      The daunting numbers could be “a tip of the iceberg,” Frieden said. A CDC survey suggests the total number of coronavirus infections across the US could actually be six to 24 times greater than reported.

      1. estimating the nation will see at least 15,000 more deaths in the next month.

        About 7,500 people a day in this country already die under normal circumstances.

        Maybe we’ll come up with the secret to eternal life, and you’ll stop being such a pessimist.

    3. Coronavirus outbreak
      Global report: Covid-19 cases exceed 10m as anxieties rise over US
      Infections up in 29 US states; China imposes lockdown near Beijing; Israel warned it has ‘lost control’ of virus
      Peter Beaumon
      Sun 28 Jun 2020 19.02 EDT
      First published on Sun 28 Jun 2020 08.23 EDT
      Cars wait at a testing site in Florida.

      Global coronavirus cases have passed the 10 million mark as concerns mount over dangerous resurgences of the disease in several countries, most prominent among them the US, where infections are rising in 29 of 50 states.

      The pandemic has claimed 500,000 lives worldwide in seven months.

    4. Dang how did you know this? Yuuuuuge day in market today! And honestly because a company is “ready to test a plane that nobody will buy anyway.”

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