From Bwtm

Hitting Bottom

The stock markets have definitely not “hit bottom” yet. Strike that — the markets have hit bottom. No, wait. If only enough people believe the markets have reached their lowest point, they will soon rise. But seriously: No one really knows. That’s the short version of the most recent Business Pulse Survey, in which 41 percent said the markets have yet to see their lowest point, versus 36 percent who believe they’ve already been there. Another 22 percent said we just don’t know. The poll was conducted between March 24 and 31.

"My personal feeling is that we've hit bottom, and we're going to be at the bottom for a while," said Wesley Sturges, president of the Bank of Commerce in Charlotte. "We may be able to see positive things late fourth quarter, early part of next year."

An increase in international trade would be another early indicator that consumer spending here and abroad has hit the floor and begun to rebound. After growing at an average of 7 percent a year for most of this decade, global trade was little changed from March to September last year, according to the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development. Many large economies including the United States, Japan and China have reported a sharp drop in exports and imports in recent months. There was more bad news on Friday, when the Commerce Department reported that exports from and imports to the United States fell by about 12 percent in January. “Seeing global trade pick up would be a very positive sign,” said Kenneth Rogoff, a former chief economist at the International Monetary Fund and now a professor at Harvard.

Home Ownership

I started this website in mid-2004 to chronicle San Diego’s spectacular housing bubble. The purpose of the site remains, as ever, to provide objective and evidence-based analysis of the San Diego housing market.

Should you buy a home now? The drop in prices may mean it's time to jump in. Or is it too soon? Experts offer pros and cons.,0,268891.story

SoCal home sales, prices and foreclosures. June home sales and prices, and second-quarter foreclosures, by ZIP Code. Updated July 22, 2008.,0,3773889.htmlstory?RecordID=&PageID=2&PrevPageID=2&cpipage=1&CPIsortType=asc&CPIorderby=percent_change