real estate bubble

Late-Payment Rate on U.S. Mortgages Hits 4-Year Low

Homeowners who took on mortgages well after the housing bubble burst are doing a better job in keeping up with payments, a trend that has helped push the national rate of late payments on home loans to the lowest level in four years.

Even God Can't Get a Loan: Church Foreclosures Soar

During the heady days of the real estate bubble, many congregations took out 5-year loans to refurbish and enlarge their churches. Now, with balloon payments due, real estate values down, and refinancing not an option, church foreclosures have hit record highs.

The 10 States With the Most Trouble Paying Their Bills

Balancing the budget isn't just a federal problem -- it's a state one, too. The Great Recession resulted in some of the lowest state revenues in years, and some of the biggest budget shortfalls ever -- in some cases, into the billions of dollars.

Oh, the Irony! Bank of America Plaza Faces Foreclosure

Atlanta%u2019s Bank of America Plaza is one of the 10 tallest structures in the U.S. And thanks to troubles at its namesake bank and other one-time tenants, the skyscraper could be one of the tallest foreclosure tales of the financial crisis.

Is Home Ownership Overrated?

For generations of Americans, home ownership has been extolled as a sound investment and source of moral virtue, stability and community. Renting was seen as anathema, a distinct second choice. But in the wake of the real estate collapse, those long-held assumptions have been called into question.

Don't Ask, Just Cram: Let Judges Modify Mortgages Again

Regulators want the nation's big banks to reduce what borrowers owe on underwater mortgages, but they're still focused on solutions that rely on banks to voluntarily do the right thing. But we've already seen that won't work, and history shows what will -- giving bankruptcy judges back the right to cram down mortgages.

Prospective Homebuyers: Time Is on Your Side

The latest reports on home sales and prices offer a complicated and conflicted picture. But when the data are taken together, one thing is clear: Weighing risk and reward, it's worth waiting a few months to see which way the real estate winds are really blowing.

The New 65 Is 70: Retirement Age Shifts Upward

Almost a quarter of Americans and Canadians say they expect to work past the age of 70, and 6% say they'll likely retire after their 80th birthday -- two years longer than the nations' life expectancy, a recent Nielsen survey found. And it's not just a North American trend.

Tiger Woods-Branded Luxury Development in Dubai Halted

Construction of Tiger Woods Dubai, a high-end residential complex that was to be built around a championship-caliber golf course, has been halted because of poor market conditions in the Middle Eastern emirate, Bloomberg News reported, citing developer Dubai Properties.

Foreclosure Mess Drives Notaries to Take the Fifth

Yet another problem has begun surfacing in the documents banks have been using to foreclose on homes: false notarizations. Notaries have been attesting legally to signatures they didn't witness, sometimes by people who didn't actually sign, and it's adding to the tangled mess of ownership confusion.

Bank of America Sued for Countrywide's Mortgage Sins, Again

On Monday, a group of institutional investors sued Countrywide and Bank of America over Countrywide's mortgages practices. The bank is accused of issuing vast numbers of loans using methods that went beyond lax standards and into fraud, with the sole goal of repackaging them into securities to resell with inflated ratings.

Sweden's Central Bank Is Fighting the Next Bubble

While most of the world's central banks are still fighting the last war, Sweden's Riksbank has moved on to the next one. Rather than looking at conventional inflation gauges, the world's oldest central bank is basing its actions on asset-price growth in an effort to prevent the next bubble.

Housing Starts: Another Small Gain in November

The U.S. housing sector took another modest step forward in November as housing starts rose a better-than-predicted 3.9% to a 530,000-unit annual rate. Still, at the current rate of recovery, the nation remains about 18 months to 2 years away from seeing normal levels of home building.

A Florida Housing Development Stalls, and the Cows Move In

Jerilee Wei never expected to be living next to a cow pasture when she bought her home in Lakeland, Fla., in 2007. In her upscale community, newly constructed houses were selling for between $300,000 and $425,000. Then one morning she woke up and found some cattle had moved in.

Ireland's Austerity Budget:
Not Likely to Avoid Default

Despite its planned austerity budget, the long-term solvency of Ireland is still in doubt. Simply put, the losses which Irish taxpayers must cover are larger than the nation's economy can support, making sovereign debt default likely even with a promised bailout from the EU and IMF.

The Housing Mess Hits One New York Town Hard

In some parts of the U.S., the real estate market remains deep in recession. But even with housing prices sitting at multi-year lows, millions of houses remain empty, unable to attract buyers haunted by unemployment and a weak economy. As part of a new series, Ghost Towns of the Great Recession, DailyFinance takes a look at one town near New York City that is still struggling with the effects of the great real estate bust.

Can Hong Kong Gently Deflate Its Real Estate Bubble?

Hong Kong took a new step this week to let some air out of its real estate bubble, levying a heavy tax on property flippers -- a move that has already sent asking prices there downward. But Hong Kong's real estate risks are dwarfed by those in Mainland China.

Jury Rejects Bank's 'Meltdown Defense' in Fraud Case

In a case with wider implications for the financial industry, jurors in a class-action securities fraud suit found that BankAtlantic Bankcorp was liable to shareholders for about $42 million for making false statements about the bank's real estate portfolio and net income.

Home Prices Rose Better than Forecast 0.6%

Home prices in 20 major U.S. cities rose a better than expected 0.6% in July compared to June, according to the S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price survey. However, year-over-year gains slowed to a 3.2% increase in July, from 4.2% in June, which suggests a slowdown in the nation's economic recovery.

Why China's Housing Bubble Will End Badly

China's local governments are dependent on fees and taxes from developers. Builders gorge on no-cost credit from state-controlled banks to churn out high-end homes most Chinese can't afford. Sounds like a familiar recipe for disaster.

Do Fannie and Freddie Have a Future?

The future of the government-backed mortgage finance giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, which critics have accused of exacerbating the meltdown in the U.S. housing market, will be discussed next month at a conference sponsored by the U.S. Department of Treasury.

Home Prices Better Than Expected in May

Home prices in 20 major U.S. cities rose a better-than-expected 0.5% in May, Case-Shiller said Tuesday. However, the report cautioned that the home buyers tax credit likely boosted sales, and analysts are waiting to see if organic market demand holds up now that the credit program is over.

China's Currency Move Means Hard Decisions Ahead

If you think China's decision to unpeg its currency from the U.S. dollar was a good move for both countries, Gary Shilling says don't believe it. The economist who saw the subprime crisis coming warms that the move isn't what it appears to be, and says it will have a number of unintended consequences.

What to Watch in China: Will the Yuan Appreciate?

If you want to know what Beijing really believes about China's red-hot economy, its real estate market or the state of the global recovery, forget the numbers that the government can manipulate. Look at whether it allows China's currency to rise against the dollar.