Interesting Housing News Links (March 06, 2009)

* Jobless rate bolts to 8.1 pct., 651,000 jobs lost (Jeannine Aversa-)

The nation’s unemployment rate bolted to 8.1 percent in February, the highest since late 1983, as cost-cutting employers slashed 651,000 jobs amid a deepening recession.Both figures were worse than analysts expected and the Labor Department’s report shows America’s workers being clobbered by a wave of layoffs unlikely to ease in the coming months.”There is no light at the end of t…

* Running on empty (David Broder, Washington Post Writers Group)

WASHINGTON As if the problems in the U.S. and world economies were not enough of a challenge, the young Obama administration is also being called on to figure out simultaneously how to govern in such an emergency.

* Jobless rate bolts to 8.1 percent, 651K jobs lost (Jeannine Aversa-)

The nation’s unemployment rate bolted to 8.1 percent in February, the highest since late 1983, as cost-cutting employers slashed 651,000 jobs amid a deepening recession.Both figures were worse than analysts expected and the Labor Department’s report shows America’s workers being clobbered by a wave of layoffs unlikely to ease in the coming months.”There is no light at the end of t…

* Hawaii construction forecast dim (Nina Wu, Honolulu Star-Bulletin)

The construction outlook for Hawaii is full of gloom, with a significant decline in new projects, and more job losses to come.

* Lower Macungie contractor faces more theft charges (Patrick Lester, Morning Call)

A Lower Macungie Township man is accused of defrauding three homeowners who hired him to do work at their homes between November 2007 and July 2008, state police at Fogelsville said.

* RBS ‘will not pass on rate cut’ (BBC News)

RBS/NatWest will not pass on the latest cut in the Bank rate to its variable rate mortgage customers.

* Mortgage problems break records again in fourth quarter

NEW YORK � A stunning 48 percent of the nation�s homeowners who have a subprime, adjustable-rate mortgage are behind on their payments or in foreclosure, and the rate for homeowners with all mortgage types hit a new record, new data Thursday showed.

* 200 Words: Times are grim (Kurt Chirbas, Sacramento Bee)

It’s a grim economic time. The statistics alone are terrifying. Nearly 8 percent of the American workforce is currently unemployed. More than two million homeowners received a foreclosure notice last year. The Dow Jones plummeted to its lowest value in 10 years. National debt, already at $11 trillion, is growing every second.

* Federal oversight of lenders found lax compared with state (Eric Nalder, Seattle Post-Intelligencer)

The state takes a much tougher stand against mortgage lenders accused of improprieties than the federal government does, a P-I review found.

* Consumer borrowing rose unexpectedly in January (Martin Crutsinger)

Consumer borrowing rose unexpectedly in January after three months of declines.The Federal Reserve said Friday that borrowing increased at an annual rate of $1.76 billion in the first month of the year. Economists expected borrowing to decline at a rate of $5 billion.Still, the small rise in January is unlikely to shake economists’ views that borrowing will remain weak this year a…

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