Wednesday, September 13, 2006

They are taking notice on the Hill...

Reuters is running a story about the Housing Market and Innovative Mortgage Products:
U.S. lawmakers will question some leading government and industry economists about the perils of a possible 'housing bubble' in a Wednesday hearing.
It goes on to say:
Next week, the same committee will hold a hearing on the growth of innovative mortgage products that have mushroomed along with the housing sector.
I'll be watching this fairly closely. It's interesting to see politicians starting to set expectations in their talking points. Jack Reed (D-RI) used the phrase "Bumpy Landing". I'm not an expert on etymology, but it will be interesting to see if that "Bumpy Landing" morphs into "Crash Landing" soon, and then is simply truncated to "Crash."

The list of people slated to speak is fairly interesting. Among the Housing Experts are:

  • Mr. Richard Brown, Chief Economist, Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation
  • Mr. Patrick Lawler, Chief Economist, Office of Federal Housing Enterprise Oversight
  • Mr. Dave Seiders, Chief Economist, National Association of Homebuilders
  • Mr. Tom Stevens, President, National Association of Realtors
If you've been following this blog, you'll recognize some of those names. Dave Seiders made a few contributions to our Great Depression vs. Housing Bubble article. And Patrick Lawler's office is responsible for the OFHEO index that we discussed in our Housing Heating Up Overseas + Flawed Index article. Not that the index itself is bad... it's just that it is a lagging indicator, and so for predictive purposes, it's completely useless.

At any rate, if you missed Dancing With the Stars yesterday, tune in to CSPAN... there will probably be a lot of dancing going on during these hearings.