September 17, 2008

Foreclosures Rise: But Behind the Numbers

The national numbers are clouding the fact the the number of foreclosures is actually declining in many parts of the country. "Jay Brinkmann, MBA's chief economist and senior vice president for research and economics. Increases in foreclosures seen in California and Florida overshadow improvements seen in states including Texas, Massachusetts and Maryland, he said." (via

Amazingly, California and Florida account for almost 40% of all foreclosures nationwide. If you remove those states you find states where improvement in the declines are starting to show. Maryland showed improvements as well as Michigan and other states.

Heres the Catch

According to the Mortgage Banking Association, its seems that these foreclosure rates are being driven by housing related issues. High prices and unqualified buyers without enough at the margins to withstand a downturn without losing their homes.

Now the mortgage problem is working its way through the entire financial services industry. First the banks, then the investement banks and now the insurers. The loss of jobs from these mergers and break ups will be staggering. We could we see another wave of foreclosures due to economic rather than housing related issues. I would think the hardest hit areas would be the large financial centers of the Northeast. I wonder if this will significantly harm Fabled San Francisco. As the financial center of the west, we could expect to see some loss there too. Any thoughts?

Thanks for Reading
Howard Bell
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