Saturday, December 20, 2008

They Fucked The Whole Thing Up

This NYT article about the mortgage/housing market issues is pretty good for what it is, thought it overemphasizes the role of Fannie and Freddie and completely ignores the finance/securitization side (not necessarily a big flaw, given the focus on White House policy influence).

Anyway, as I've said many times... all you had to do was look at home prices, look at incomes, and realize that not enough people actually made enough money to afford those mortgages. If you wanted some confirmation you could look at rent-to-own ratios, as someone did in the Bush White House (and was ignored), and look at what was happening to Option ARM mortgages (negative amortization). Those things were up front and obvious, even if not everything was.