Saturday, 19 January 2008

What a week

Few weeks have been so loaded with bad financial news. Here is just a selection:

Monday, January 14th

As inflation fears increaed, gold prices reached $900. reported a 67% surge in enquiries for individual voluntary arrangements this January compared to December.

UK house prices fell by 0.8 percent in November according to latest government figures

Tuesday, January 15th,

Citibank wrote off $18 billion in subprime losses.

Taylor Wimpey, the U.K.'s largest homebuilder, said its order book was 19 percent lower on Dec. 31 compared with the same date a year earlier.

The Alliance & Leicester and Britannia building society, doubled the minimum deposit demanded from first-time buyers.

Wednesday, January 16th

For the third month in a row, inflation was above the Bank of England's target.

Thursday, January 17th

Over the US, the housing crash accelerated. The latest data showed that California home prices drop nearly 15 percent.

Moodys put Derbyshire Building Society on review for possible downgrade.

Merrill Lynch posts $7.8bn loss on account of subprime.

Barratt order book for new homes fell for the first time in almost four years.

US housing starts fall to 16-Year low

Friday, January 18th

Fitch credit rating agencies downgraded the bond insurer Ambac Financial Group, pushing the company to the verge of bankruptcy.

Over on Wall Street, bonuses fell by 5 percent.

In a frantic effort to save face, the chancellor was preparing to issue billions of pounds of government debt to cover the financing hole in Northern Rock.

Over in Germany, newspapers report that troubled regional bank, WestLB, needs a capital increase of euro 2 billion; not quite yet a Northern Rock, but still big.

Paragon announced that it will cease lending from February, so farewell, buy-to-let.

Scottish Equitable, - one of Britain's biggest property funds - shut its doors to withdrawals form small investors due to the slump in commercial prices triggered panic selling by small investors

Saturday, January 19th

New Star Asset management crashed after it issued a profit warning and cut its dividend. UK retail investors panicked as millions were wiped off the value of commercial property funds.

Bond guarantor, ACA Financial Guaranty, was facing a midnight deadline to restructure its insurance contracts with investment banks or face a bankruptcy filing.

Did I leave anything out? If so, post a comment.


Josh said...

US inflation over 4 percent.

amigauser said...

You missed out that it is an election year in America - which means some sort of bail out of the banks, sorry I meant voters WILL occur.

You forgot that this year is make or break for the Labour party, if they do badly at the polls in May, Gordon Brown will be history, this means the bankers, sorry voters, will be bailed out, by any means necessary.

The time too buy is when their is blood upon the streets, so now is the time too load up on as many bank shares as you can afford - remember they WILL be bailed out, and the property market WILL be made to go up.

Happy domerstering

JR said...

Interesting post.

To me it seems like all the cities that had hyper-appreciation of real estate values from 2000 through 2005 are now really taking some major value declines.

Here in San Diego, I subscribe to: This San Diego real estate publishes a real tell-it-like-it-is blog. His 12-31-07 post Real Estate Market Predictions for San Diego in 2008 is a realistic idea about what this year will hold for not only San Diego, but, all the cities that had hyper-inflation.