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  • r3ady4you r3ady4you Oct 3, 2008 4:56 PM Flag

    You buy into fear.

    Joe --

    Weren't you the one just 1 week ago that thought that REITS could simply slash the dividend in the way that the Wal-mart smiley face could slash prices?

    mREITS getting killed by the shorts today, retailers tomorrow.

    The fact that the only way to make money in this market is to 'pile on' is downright scary.

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    • Cash is in short supply. If you run a hedge fund and your customers are threatening to take all their money out, leaving you unemployed, you will try to make money. They will short what they can.

      Anyone who is paying attention to the credit markets understands there is very little cash being invested anywhere outside the treasuries and GSEs.

      As I've tried to point out before, the money supply is shrinking. Anyone who owes money or did not raise cash earlier, has more difficulty as time passes. We have moved from a 100% credit (lines of credit used instead of cash for payroll, paying bills etc.) environment, to a "cash and carry" environment in about 6 months. Many businesses did not realize what was going on, and have been caught short of cash.

      It is not the end of the world, but it will cause the weaker players to go bankrupt. That is why RAS is not declaring dividends, because you do not pay out cash in that type of environment-- there is no assurance as to how much cash will be received.

      Until people get a "feel" for who will survive and who will have problems, no one will part with their cash unless they must.

      RAS is required to pay 90% out by year end. It is not required to pay it equally through out the year.

      These are extraordinary conditions, the last time I saw them was in early 1980s, so don't expect "business as usual", because literally survival is on the line for many companies. Most will make it, but cash will be tight for a while.

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