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February 22, 2024 | Commercial Real Estate Stress is Spreading

In 2023, the national office space vacancy rate reached 19.6%, above the 19.3% historic peak in 1991. The overcapacity, over-valuation and debt write-downs needed in commercial real estate are themes that will persist for some time. No quick fix. Federal regulators in recent weeks have signaled concerns about commercial real estate, a financial sector that […]

February 21, 2024 | Inflation Retreating But Shelter Remains The Problem

Canada’s January Consumer Price Index (CPI) report came in softer than expected at an annualized rate of 2.9%, down from 3.4% in December and 8.1% from the cycle peak in June 2022. This brings the CPI within the Bank of Canada’s 1% to 3% target range for the first time since June 2023. The share […]

February 20, 2024 | Rosenberg: The Economy is Weaker Than The Narrative Suggests

Economist David Rosenberg, founder and president of Rosenberg Research, shares his macroeconomic view of the economy and explains why he’s not throwing in the towel on his recession call. Here is a direct video link. 

February 19, 2024 | Grantham: Pollution, Population & Purpose

Thought-provoking, far-reaching discussion about things that matter in this segment. Worth a listen. On this episode, Nate is joined by co-founder of GMO Financial Holdings, Jeremy Grantham, to discuss how finance, human population, ecology, and pollution interact to shape current trends and what they could tell us about the future. Mr. Grantham unpacks why the […]

February 18, 2024 | Harder To Get Insurance is a Game Changer

In the US inflation estimate for January, auto insurance premiums rose 20.6% year over year, while tenant and household insurance rose 6% annualized over just the last three months. Across the developed world, insurers are exiting some areas and demanding higher premiums and deductibles in others; affordable insurance — often a condition of mortgage and vehicle debt […]

February 17, 2024 | Too Many Payments, Too Little Income

In the fourth quarter of 2023, 7.7% of US auto loans transitioned to delinquency on an annualized basis (New York Fed data)—the highest rate in 13 years. The total annual cost of owning a new car, including expenses such as gas and insurance, climbed to $12,182 in 2023, up from $10,728 in 2022 (latest estimates […]

February 17, 2024 | High Home Insurance Rates Driving Away Would-Be Buyers

A wave of new multifamily residential projects are coming online as migration slows and high mortgage rates weigh on housing demand. Add to the mix an insurance crisis, and a seller’s market is becoming a buyer’s one. See, In Southwest Florida, high home insurance rates are driving away would-be buyers: Florida’s southwestern coast — long one […]

February 16, 2024 | Bad Loans Mount in ‘Greatest Real Estate Crisis Since The Financial Crisis’

The credit cycle is alive and well. But credit cycles typically move with multi-quarter time lags, and that’s longer than the attention span of most. Moreover, massive government subsidies slowed the monetary impacts more than average this time. Nevertheless, twenty-three months since this epic tightening cycle began, wheels are coming off all around for those […]

February 15, 2024 | New Tax Filing Requirements For Jointly Held Assets in Canada

New bare trust reporting requirements for the 2023 tax year include accounts where adults have been added to the bank and investment accounts of another relative. For Bare Trusts ending December 31, 2023, you have to file a T3 tax return, says Ali Spinner, tax partner at Crowe Soberman LLP. Here is a direct video link. 

February 14, 2024 | What It Means To Restore Home Affordability in Canada

To restore Canadian home affordability to historically sustainable levels, prices need to halve, incomes double or some combination of both. All options are painful in the short to medium term for asset prices, the leveraged and Canada’s real estate-concentrated economy. Charles St. Arnaud, Chief Economist at Alberta Central and former economist at the Bank of […]

February 13, 2024 | Sam Cooper Details Mortgage Fraud and Canadian Banks

So-called “liar loans” helped fuel the US property bubble and bust, leading to the 2008 recession. Unfortunately, Canada has followed suit since. Sam Cooper BREAKS NEWS on Mortgage Fraud and Canadian Banks. Here is a direct video link. Read more at “Fake Chinese income” mortgages fuel Toronto Real Estate Bubble: HSBC Bank Leaks.

February 12, 2024 | China Exporting Deflation To The World

Since China entered the World Trade Organization in December 2001, US producer prices (black line below since 2000) have tracked up and down with China’s Consumer Price Index (CPI in green). Awash in excess capacity today, China is exporting deflationary pressures to the rest of the world.   In several key manufacturing sectors, goods are […]

February 10, 2024 | Sri-Kumar: Commercial Real Estate ‘Tsunami’ Coming

Komal Sri-Kumar, president of Sri-Kumar Global Strategies, joins ‘Squawk Box’ to discuss the latest market trends, the looming commercial real estate crisis, impact on the Fed’s rate path outlook, and more. Here is a direct video link. 

February 9, 2024 | Less Insurance Coverage Suggests Less Exposure Appetite

Property insurance premiums are leaping, and coverage is becoming harder to find in many areas of the world. Few note the significance of these trends and the negative impact on asset prices. Less insurance coverage naturally reduces the amount of net worth owners want in real estate overall and in any location. Many homeowners in […]

February 8, 2024 | Canadian Consumer Insolvencies +23% in 2023

Canadian consumer insolvencies rose significantly in 2023, up 26.2% in Ontario and 23.0% across Canada. The latest Hoyes Michalos 2023 Joe Debtor insolvency data is available here. Doug Hoyes explains the findings below. What’s distressing to me is the person filing for insolvency is someone with higher income than in the past, says Doug Hoyes, co-founder […]

February 7, 2024 | Powell Focused on Killing the Fed Put?

Danielle DiMartino Booth believes Fed Chair Powell is sticking to prudent interest rate levels in an effort to crush the Fed put and do the “right thing” in the long term for the economy. Here’s hoping… Powell: We Wouldn’t Wait to Get to 2% Inflation to Cut Rates — DiMartino Booth with Charles Payne of […]

February 6, 2024 | China Stumbles Under Debt and Real Estate Bust

Our September 2021 client letter “Shifting Foundations” examined the default of China’s second-largest property developer, Evergrande, and the implications of a real estate bust leading to a slump in the Chinese and global economy. You can read the entire letter at this link. Here’s a taste: Insolvency problems in China’s real estate sector sent shock […]

February 4, 2024 | Danielle presents at VRIC 2024: Capital Prospects in 2024

Danielle presents at VRIC 2024. Here is a direct video link.    Further to real interest rates (nominal rates minus inflation) being demand-crushingly high for borrowers (but attractive for savers), the chart below shows the US Fed Funds Rate (FFR) minus the 5-year inflation swap rate is the highest today in over 20 years.  

February 2, 2024 | Thoughts From The Front Line of Commercial Real Estate

As Meta and Amazon further fan animal spirits in the tech sector, the melt in commercial real estate is spreading through the economy and financial system. US regional banks are -54% since January 2022, and the contagion is international, see Commercial Property Losses Hammer Banks on Three Continents: Investors have wondered when the pain from the […]

February 1, 2024 | Lacy Hunt on Thoughtful Money

Is the soft landing camp being proven right? Have we been able to side step the Lag Effects so many expected from the Fed’s aggressive campaigns of rates hikes and Quantitative Tightening? Is inflation indeed on its way to being tamed this year? For answers, we have the great fortune to sit down today with […]

January 31, 2024 | Layoffs Leaping in 2024

Companies could be expected to ramp up layoffs come March, according to research by Danielle DiMartino Booth, CEO of QI Research. Here is a direct video link.  

January 30, 2024 | Re-Steepening of the Yield Curve Signals Rising Unemployment and Deepening Bear Markets

The US 10-2-year Treasury yield spread (via YCharts below) has moved from a deep inversion at 108 bps last July to -14 bps today. This process is known as re-steepening.Re-steepening of the yield curve (10 minus 3-year spread in brown below since 1989, courtesy of my partner Cory Venable) has historically coincided with rising unemployment claims (in […]

January 29, 2024 | Danielle on Thoughtful Money

Danielle was a guest with Adam Taggart on Thoughtful Money. Here is a direct video link.  

January 25, 2024 | Hoisington Q4 2023 Review and Outlook

Hoisington Management’s latest Q4 quarterly review and outlook is now available here. With some risk markets still drunk on blind optimism, the list of recessionary indicators grows longer by the day. Real-world facts always matter in the end. Hoisington summarizes some of the most historically prescient data to date: Over the past year, inflation, real GDI, […]

January 24, 2024 | Real Rates Rise After Central Banks Stop Hiking

Well-documented policy lags suggest that central banks have done more than enough to reverse the inflationary impulse over the next 12 to 24 months. As the rate of inflation comes down, real interest rates (overnight rate less CPI) rise (better for savers but worse for borrowers) and crimp the economy even after central banks pause […]

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