Friday, January 2, 2009

TOO Early To Celebrate? Real Estate Morass in Brentwood

It may be too soon for a return of the animal spirits.  The news will continue to be bad for months to come.  I am constantly reading predictions by well-known economists that the downturn may last into next year, with Martin Feldstein just being the latest party   The Institute for supply management said its manufacturing index fell to 32.4 in December, the lowest reading since 1980 and the new orders component fell to its lowest level with the records going back to 1948.  Yahoo! Finance   I can not predict how investors will react to a continuous flow of negative news in the upcoming weeks. I am not now as pessimistic as Marty Feldstein, but I do not yet see the ray of light at the end of the tunnel either.  

Nonetheless, I am grateful for today since I am now very close to break even for 2008 by just giving me one day in 2009.

I was interested in this story from today's Tennessean about a high end subdivision near HQ and the difficulty builders are having to attracting buyers to million dollar homes.  For those who are not familiar with what a million could buy in this area, this article has a picture. | Nashville Real Estate | The Tennessean I am seeing difficulties still in a normally healthy local economy so it is not hard to imagine what is happening in hard hit areas of the country.  That new subdivision near HQ still does not have a stake in the ground after the builder completed underground utilities, road, sewers, beautiful street lamps and entrance. 

I did buy a security today but I think that it is too complicated to explain.  It was a busted convertible, where the convertible part may come into play in a few years, but it was selling at a lower price than similar securities from the same issuer without the potential gain of a conversion into common shares.  

For those who do not subscribe to the WSJ and can not access my links, the links in the last post to articles in the WSJ that contain rebuttable information on the claims being made by "conservative" ideologues discuss studies being conducted by the staff economists at the Federal Reserve, hardly a bastion of liberal group think.   

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