Landmark Links January 12th – Hot Mess


Lead Story…. BS growth assumptions, crashing commodities, crappy demographics and way too much leverage  have left emerging markets resembling a Kardashian without makeup. Bond king Jeff Gundlach is sounding the alarm again that disaster could be looming if the Fed isn’t careful.


Stealth: In a world where commodities are plunging, tepid wage growth looks a lot better when it’s adjusted for inflation.

Back to the Future: The last time oil was this cheap it was actually considered expensive and Morgan Stanley now says that it could fall to $20/barrel. See Also: 15 ways for oil to bottom.   In related news: Gas could soon hit $1 dollar per gallon.  Fear not, fellow citizens of California, our gas will continue to cost +/- $3 per gallon (just as it was when oil was $80/barrel) because screwing over the middle class has become a sport for politicians in the Golden State.


Big Year: 2015 was the best year for commercial real estate since the Great Recession.

German for a Whale’s… San Diego’s downtown is booming and new high rise development is making it look more and more like a big city.

Caught in the Net: How will Carl Icahn’s acquisition of Pep Boys impact the net lease market?


Size Matters: So, what’s the optimal size for a home anyway?

Risky Business: Here are the eight states that are the most at risk for a housing crisis.  Spoiler: if your state has an economy based on oil or other natural resources and isn’t diversified, you could be in trouble. 

Don’t Get High on Your Own Supply: Seller traffic is still incredibly weak across the US (except in North Dakota where sellers apparently want to GTFO).  In other words, the supply-driven price boom continues, unabated.

Lost Opportunity: The International Builder Show in Vegas just announced that their Presidential Candidates Forum has been cancelled because all of the major candidates pulled out of the event to spend more time in Iowa and New Hampshire as well as focus more on national security and foreign policy.  This is a shame since the home building sector is still a mess in the US.  We aren’t building nearly enough units in and around our most productive cities which is leading to all sorts of bad economic outcomes as has been written about here and in far more detail elsewhere.  This was going to be an opportunity for the home building industry to get an audience with candidates to have their issues heard.  Sadly, it won’t happen.


The Oracle of Subprime: Warren Buffett’s Clayton Homes is the dominant mobile home company in the US. Its also increasingly coming under fire for sketchy and possibly discriminatory lending practices.

Juggernaut: No one likes email but it’s managed to become the dominant form of modern business communication in spite of itself.

Powerball: There is a point when it actually becomes mathematically advantageous to play Powerball.  Spoiler: it’s almost double the current jackpot.  See Also: If I don’t win on Wednesday, I really hope that this guy does.

Super Size Me: How America got so fat in charts.

Charts of the Day

Leveraging up and getting old


Bigger Idiot Theory: Someone with more money than common sense paid nearly $2MM for a dime.  Seriously.

Factory of Sadness: A Cleveland Browns fan created the most honest season ticket promo ever.  His honest Cleveland tourism videos are pretty great too.

Darwin Award Nominee: A German man died while trying to to blow up a condom vending machine in order to steal the money inside.  An exploding condom machine, what a way to go.

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

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Landmark Links January 12th – Hot Mess

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