Landmark Links June 21st – Take Aim


Must Read: Google is attempting to aim a bazooka at the Bay Area’s housing crisis by committing $1 billion to develop 20,000 homes, much of it on company owned land.  I’ve always thought that it would be interesting to see what would happen if a developer/land owner had unlimited capital and was determined to use it regardless of NIMBY road blocks.  I guess that we are about to find out.


Long Grind: US expansions have been getting longer but slower since the 1950s.

Last In, First Out: Workers at the bottom are the last to gain from a recovery and the first to lose in a recession, yet another reason why long periods of expansion are a good thing.

Falling Like a Rock: Bond yields all over Europe are now in negative territory after some extremely dovish testimony about further stimulus by ECB president Mario Draghi.


Slow Patch Ahead? Slowing economic growth, trade wars and a pipeline that is delivering new supply to the market may force investors to adjust return expectations for industrial properties, but it doesn’t appear to be putting much of a dent in buyer demand.

Shocking, If True: In news that absolutely no one could have ever seen coming, WeWork’s $34 billion (and quickly growing) long term lease obligations are drawing heavy scrutiny as the co-working giant pursues an IPO.  Landlords are also growing concerned and are asking the company for longer term guarantees and letters of credit as additional collateral before entering into a lease.

Sharing is Caring: An AirBNB backed developer has announced that it is building projects in Austin and Miami that are designed specifically for home sharing.  The buildings will have hotel licenses and are a way to get around city regulations against short term rentals.

Big Draw: Expensive boutique fitness studios are booming and breathing life into retail projects.


Signs of Improvement: US housing starts dropped in May but upward revisions for March and April suggest that the market may be a bit stronger than previously thought.

Its All Relative: American homes are a lot bigger than they used to be but new research finds that owners are still only happy with their house if its among the biggest in their neighborhood.

Zero Down: An increasing number of home buyers are reliant upon government down-payment assistance.

Failing Upward: Nothing unities economists on the left and right like the fact that rent control doesn’t work.  However, states and cities keep on trying it and getting the same results again, and again, and again under the misguided belief that things will work out different this time around.


Catch 22: CalPERS has a critical choice to make – it can either use its investment capital make money for its beneficiaries or to make social statements but probably cannot accomplish both.

Annnnd, Its Gone: Inside the short, unhappy and highly dysfunctional life of the Alliance of American Football.

New Paradigm? Facebook’s new cryptocurrency called Libra could do for crypto what AOL did for internet adoption by exposing it to a whole new audience.  But See: Why Facebook’s Libra makes no sense and serves a purpose that is already better accomplished by other mediums of exchange.

Chart of the Day

Single Family Starts are soft but being offset by a bounce in multi-family starts

Source: The Daily Shot

Something has to give

Source: Pantheon Macro


Squirrelly: Police captured a methed-up “attack squirrel” that was being used as “protection” during a raid on a drug house because Alabama.  In related news, I’ve started a petition to have the meth squirrel replace the black bear as the official animal of Alabama and would appreciate it if you signed on and joined this worthy cause.

Rock Bottom? Former MLB All Star (and convicted scam artist) Lenny Dykstra was found dumpster diving behind a Jersey Mike’s sub shop last weekend because apparently rock bottom is even more difficult to find than advertised.

Kinky: Police arrested a man who stole 75 pool floats from neighborhood homes to have sex with because Florida. (h/t Stone James)

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

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Landmark Links June 21st – Take Aim

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