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Two Ways: Wave of Foreclosures Goes Tsunami?

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Strengthen your portfolio in good times and bad.

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Mortgage foreclosures continued in the first quarter, led by the usual suspects: California and Florida. Increasing unemployment and declining home prices are exacerbating the ongoing recession.

Data provided by RealtyTrac showed California leading all states in foreclosures, with 13 of its cities making the top 25 with the highest foreclosure rates. Florida was up next, with 8; Nevada and Arizona tied for third, with 2.

Las Vegas was at the top of the list of troubled cities with the rate of foreclosure filings coming in at 4.5% of every household receiving an auction or default notice.

In a statement, RealtyTrac CEO James Saccacio said he expects many of the areas to continue to experience high levels of foreclosure activity through 2009; other markets should rise up the ranks as unemployment increases around the country.

See Professor Fil Zucchi's Ten Reasons Commercial Real Estate Won't Rebound for more.

From the Bull Pen: Bulls can look to Wal-Mart (WMT) for a play. The stock is headed toward the bottom of its range, at $47. A sell stop can be set below that level.

From the Bear Cave: A wise man once told me "economics trump technicals." Housing bears can consider playing the downside in the real estate ETF (IYR); a sell stop can be set near $32.

Hope it was a great day, Minyans. Have a great night!
No positions in stocks mentioned.

The information on this website solely reflects the analysis of or opinion about the performance of securities and financial markets by the writers whose articles appear on the site. The views expressed by the writers are not necessarily the views of Minyanville Media, Inc. or members of its management. Nothing contained on the website is intended to constitute a recommendation or advice addressed to an individual investor or category of investors to purchase, sell or hold any security, or to take any action with respect to the prospective movement of the securities markets or to solicit the purchase or sale of any security. Any investment decisions must be made by the reader either individually or in consultation with his or her investment professional. Minyanville writers and staff may trade or hold positions in securities that are discussed in articles appearing on the website. Writers of articles are required to disclose whether they have a position in any stock or fund discussed in an article, but are not permitted to disclose the size or direction of the position. Nothing on this website is intended to solicit business of any kind for a writer's business or fund. Minyanville management and staff as well as contributing writers will not respond to emails or other communications requesting investment advice.

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