Landmark Links August 25th: Wild Ride


Lead Story……Global equity markets have been chaotic to say the least as they cope with China’s unraveling, leading to possibly the best headline in the history from The Onion, and causing some to contemplate further quantitative easing rather than a rate hike.


Is the Window Open or Shut? Former PIMCO CEO Mohamed El-Erian says that the Fed has now missed it’s window to hike rates.  These charts tend to point to the same conclusion. See Also: Much of what the Fed is doing is based on theory that has very few real-world examples.  Contra: Here is why the Fed should stick to its plan and hike rates in September: the transitory nature of energy inflation (or, in this case deflation).

Let This Sink In: 17% of all student borrowers (about 7 million people) have gone a year or more without making a payment, up 6% from last year despite reductions in unemployment.

Tease: Oil is now below $40 per barrel so it stands to reason the gas should be cheap. Unless, of course you live in California where refinery issues have kept prices ridiculously high.  I can personally vouch for this having spent the last couple of weeks on the east coast where prices were typically a whopping $2 below what we pay in Orange County.


Slowdown? Are big price drops in the stocks of publicly held commercial real estate brokers signalling the beginning of a slowdown or are they just getting pulled down with the rest of the market?


Prescient Predictions: Most predictions are utter bullshit and should be treated as such. However, every now and then someone makes a brilliant call. It’s even rarer that they follow it up with another one. Bill McBride of Calculated Risk accomplished this by calling the housing top in 2006 and then the bottom in 2012. If you are not reading his blog regularly, you are missing out.

What Happens Next? Now that the Chinese stock market is well within crash territory, there is a ton of uncertainty as to how it will affect the U.S. housing market. John Burns presents three big questions about Chinese buyers that need to be answered to assess the impact on the US housing market.

Money Doesn’t Buy Taste: A doctor is constructing an 85,000 sf (yes, you read that right) mansion on an algae-filled, alligator-infested swamp in Florida where you would probably never want to live.

Down on the Farm: Some new developments are now putting in a farm as an amenity rather than a golf course.

Let the Sun Shine In: Google is working on a new app that will utilize Google Earth data to determine if your home is a good fit for solar panels.


The Power of Poo: Forget solar and wind. The future will be powered by dog shit (at least in dog parks in NY).

Paging Mr. Cage: This story about a mythical hidden train in Poland filled with Nazi riches and the men who claim to know it’s whereabouts sounds like the plot of an awful Nicolas Cage movie.

What a Waste: The body scanners that the TSA is now using are a joke.  A very, very expensive joke.

Pump and Dump: Penny stock scammers now have a new tool at their disposal: instant messaging apps.

Chart of the Day

Can a tree grow to the sky?


Chris Carter on Friendship: The NFL Hall of Famer had some advice for young players at the league-sanctioned Rookie Symposium: make sure there is a “fall guy” in your crew to take the blame if you do something stupid and/or illegal.  Nice.

Architectural Statement: Leave it to the Germans to design a building that resembles two people having sex.

Auto-Correct FAIL of the Day: How a “little blind girl” ended up on top of a little blond girl’s birthday cake.

Tree Hugger: A woman is marrying a poplar tree that she named “Tim,” after claiming that sex with the tree was the “best ever.”  See Also: Woman arrested for “engaging in intimate acts with lawn chairs.”  In summary, people are really, really f&%ked up.

Landmark Links – A candid look at the economy, real estate, and other things sometimes related.

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Landmark Links August 25th: Wild Ride

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