Monday, September 18, 2006

National Home Builders Confidence at 15-year Low

I stole this image from Calculated Risk. If you look at the image very closely (you can get a bigger version at the link provided -- and a better analysis, actually), you will see that it won't take much for home builder confidence nationally to go to lows that we have not seen since the Great Depression. Frighteningly, there are a lot of things about the economy we have not seen since the Great Depression (debt levels, for one). These problems are not here in Oklahoma yet. Yet. Oklahoma is always a few years behind the coasts.

Of course, things could always get
worse. Some pundits are predicting a bailout of the banking industry greater than the S&L crisis of some 15+ years ago.

Oklahoma is not unfamiliar with bank failures. Prior to the S&L crisis, we had the
Penn Square Bank failure.

The S&L bailout cost around $300 billion. With all of the other financial problems that we are facing, will the current housing bubble and expected defaults end up being the straw that broke the camel's back?

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