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The New York Times Company Message Board

sage2123 265 posts  |  Last Activity: 10 hours ago Member since: Mar 1, 2009
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  • I warned repeatedly about consequences when this bubble popped.


    Recently we showed that in order to goose its fading all-important housing market (to China housing is like the stock market to the US: both mission-critical bubbles designed to give a sense of comfort nd boost the "wealth effect"), China has first resorted to zero money down mortgages across various markets, and secondly to such gimmicks as "buy one floor, get one free." However, that's only part of the story. Even worse is what is not being disclosed to the general public: such as the true state of the housing market in China. Because according to a recent report on Sina, quoted on Investing In Chinese Stocks, when it comes to revealing just how bad things are domestically, Chinese developers are simply pulling a page out of biotech ETF playbooks, and simply not reporting price drops greater than 15%!

    Sentiment: Sell

  • As the U.S. Greater Depression progresses, depicted most vividly in the collapse in the “civilian participation rate” (the number of people working in the economy) and the “velocity of money” (the heartbeat of the economy) - indicating an economy which is not merely in decline, but rather is being sucked downward in a terminal (and accelerating) death-spiral. There is another even more concerning statistic: U.S. “gasoline consumption” – as measured by the U.S. EIA itself – has plummeted by nearly 75%, from its all-time peak in July of 1998. A near-75% collapse in U.S. gasoline consumption has occurred in little more than 15 years... "recovery"

    Sentiment: Sell

  • Looks to me like the entire global economy is battening down the hatches.

    Siemens AG (SIE)’s chief executive officer said Europe’s largest engineering company will eliminate at least 11,600 positions as it cuts about 1 billion euros ($1.34 billion) in costs.

    Sentiment: Sell

  • Reply to

    anyone seen the bearerofbraggedness?

    by primemeridian May 30, 2014 7:18 PM
    sage2123 sage2123 May 30, 2014 8:17 PM Flag

    I think his Mom got mad at him and sent him to his room in the basement.....lol.

    Sentiment: Sell

  • How can this possibly be....I mean the population is growing and everything?

    In fact, according to Census Bureau data, in Q1 the number of households formed each month was 189,000, down from 1,563,000 in 2013.

    The recent run-up in housing prices is a factor of three things....all of which I've commented on this board on.

    i) offshore oligarchs parking laundered "all-cash" money in luxury US real estate: a process that is slowly ending, ii) Wall Street firms using cheap REO-to-Rent credit to bid up distressed properties and flip them as rentals: a process that is virtually over and iii) banks hoarding foreclosed properties on their balance sheet to avoid an avalanche of supply which would crush prices.

    Sentiment: Sell

  • sage2123 by sage2123 May 30, 2014 8:53 AM Flag

    Toll's best year was 2006. Revenues came in just over $6B.

    Currently, annual revenues are less than half of that, while the share price is 35% less than the all time high of $55.

    Toll has done a reasonably good job of navigating through the housing bust, but even after branching out into distressed real estate, multi-family, and acquisitions, they have not been able to put up the numbers they once did.

    Sentiment: Sell

  • sage2123 sage2123 May 30, 2014 8:18 AM Flag

    We will never see those numbers again, and for good reason.

    Sentiment: Sell

  • Reply to

    The Calm After the Storm?

    by cd_iso May 27, 2014 8:15 PM
    sage2123 sage2123 May 30, 2014 7:21 AM Flag

    Five replies to your one post?

    You need some time off brother.

    Sentiment: Buy

  • Columbus, Ohio -- Express Inc. said on Thursday that its fiscal first-quarter profit fell to $5.08 million, from $32.4 million a year earlier. The company also announced it will close approximately 50 stores during the next 36 months, primarily at the end of their leases, even as it ramps up expansion of its of its new outlet-store concept. Express debuted its outlet format this past April.

    “I am also delighted to note that the 17 Express Factory Outlet Stores now in operation are exceeding our plans and being met with great enthusiasm. We expect them to contribute to a stronger second half. In light of this performance, we are accelerating future outlet store openings,” said Michael Weiss, chairman and CEO, Express.

    Express sales fell to $460.7 million, from $509.4 million. Same-store sales plunged 11%.

    "We had anticipated a very challenging first quarter, but our actual results were weaker than planned,” Weiss said. “Our business strengthened in April, but not to the degree that we anticipated when we formulated our first quarter guidance. While external challenges contributed to the decline in our first quarter performance, we also did not execute as well as we could have."

    Express said its 50 store closures are expected to result in profit improvement of $5 to $8 million once all locations are closed. The closings are expected to start at the end of its current fiscal year or the beginning of the next fiscal year.

    Sentiment: Sell

  • sage2123 by sage2123 May 29, 2014 10:16 AM Flag

    Handed Toll a decent quarter.

    Pending home sales, on the other hand, paint another picture.

    "Pent-Up" Pending Home Sales Demand Missing; Down 9.4% YoY

    This is the 7th month in a row of declining YoY sales. The 0.4% rise MoM missed expectations of 1.0% as the pent-up demand from a cold winter appears to be missing in action. Of Course NAR is optimistic (but even they are cautious), "an uptrend in closed sales is expected, although some months will encounter a modest setback."

    Sentiment: Sell

  • Reply to

    News of fresh disasters

    by bearofbleecker May 28, 2014 11:56 PM
    sage2123 sage2123 May 29, 2014 9:04 AM Flag

    That's a good one prime.

    My old boss used to gauge the health of the economy by the line at Olive Garden.

    Sentiment: Sell

  • Reply to

    News of fresh disasters

    by bearofbleecker May 28, 2014 11:56 PM
    sage2123 sage2123 May 29, 2014 6:29 AM Flag

    If it looks like a bubble, sounds like a bubble, and acts like a bubble.

    Sentiment: Sell

  • sage2123 by sage2123 May 28, 2014 5:59 PM Flag

    •Jay McCanless and Annie Worthman at Sterne Agee say without the benefit of a lower tax rate other non-operating boosts, Toll Brothers (TOL +2.1%) would have missed the team's EPS estimate of $0.31 per share. They continue to rate the stock an Underperform with $28 price target.
    •The bullish team at MKM Partners note Toll "essentially raised" guidance by boosting the low end of its average expected sale price this year to $690K from $675K. "Given the company’s long build cycle, we suspect that the higher guidance is likely more of a statement on the anticipated mix of closings rather than a signal that prices are being raised more aggressively."

    Sentiment: Sell

  • Reply to

    US mortgage applications drop

    by primemeridian May 28, 2014 1:26 PM
    sage2123 sage2123 May 28, 2014 2:00 PM Flag

    Real estate is (can be) a much better investment than gold.

    Gold can be a much better investment than real estate.

    Depends on timing.

    Sentiment: Sell

  • sage2123 sage2123 May 28, 2014 1:56 PM Flag

    Hopefully he's using his time wisely trying to figure the BDI out.

    Sentiment: Sell

  • Reply to

    forest/trees and all that

    by primemeridian May 28, 2014 1:10 PM
    sage2123 sage2123 May 28, 2014 1:44 PM Flag

    Very few people back then owned stocks. Today almost everyone's retirement is tied up in the market.

    A crash like 1929's would have far graver implications imho.

    Sentiment: Sell

  • sage2123 sage2123 May 28, 2014 1:41 PM Flag

    Queue the layoffs and branch closings....or as Jeff likes to call it "veteran hiring".

    Sentiment: Sell

  • Reply to

    Interesting to Note

    by sage2123 May 28, 2014 9:54 AM
    sage2123 sage2123 May 28, 2014 1:29 PM Flag

    I expect this to close at 36.50,and as we start getting upgrades, to move toward 40 over the next months.

    Toll went over $40 a total of one time in its history, and that was during the largest housing boom in history.

    Good Luck.

    Sentiment: Sell

  • Cash on hand 10/31/13 = $805 million
    Cash on hand 5/28/14 = $365 million

    Toll increased net income $80 million during the last 6 months, but burned through $440 million in cash to do it.

    Sentiment: Sell

  • ....but what does GS and the Federal Reserve know anyway?

    The hesitant housing recovery has surprised and concerned Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen and her colleagues at the central bank. It's not clear how much they can do about it.

    While the industry is rebounding from a weather-ravaged first quarter, the pickup will probably fall short of previous projections, according to economists at Goldman Sachs Group Inc. of New York and Macroeconomic Advisers LLC in St. Louis. As a result, they trimmed their forecasts for economic growth in the second half of 2014 to about 3.25 percent from 3.5 percent.

    "Housing is a growing worry," said Macroeconomic Advisers' senior economist Ben Herzon.

    Yellen and many of her colleagues agree. The Fed chair flagged the industry as a risk to the outlook in testimony to Congress on May 7, while Federal Reserve Bank of New York President William C. Dudley said last week he had been surprised by how weak it had been recently. He added that he still expects gross domestic product to "get back on a roughly 3 percent growth trajectory" after stalling in the first quarter.

    Sentiment: Sell

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