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Author:
James I. Clark III
Posted:
06.03.2009

Back to the Futures? Not Just Yet. Investors Still Spooked by Derivatives

It’s no surprise that investors are still wary of investing in derivatives, given the financial devastation that these vehicles’ collapse caused last year.  Proof of the fact is that the IPO of a financial instrument designed to be on American home prices failed because its auction did not generate adequate investor interest. According to its […]

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Author:
Kurt Rosene
Posted:
06.01.2009

Las Vegas Underwater

Las Vegas may be in the middle of a desert, but right now it’s underwater.  Fully two-thirds of the once fast-growing city’s housing stock is underwater,  meaning that the owners owe more on their mortgages than the home is worth. According to www.zillow.com, borrowers who are underwater totaled 20.4 million at the end of the […]

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Author:
James I. Clark III
Posted:
05.26.2009

Ginnie Mae Taking the Lead on Backing New Mortgages

At a time when the CMBS market has contracted by 60 percent, a story that hasn’t gotten much attention is that fact that one slice of the securitized real estate market is doing phenomenally well. Ginnie Mae (the Government National Mortgage Association) has provided $124.18 billion of liquidity to the secondary mortgage-backed securities market during […]

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Author:
James I. Clark III
Posted:
05.13.2009

Sovereign Wealth Funds Still Interested in U.S. Real Estate

Sovereign wealth funds (SWFs) have been closely watching the credit crisis evolve, according to a Deloitte LLP report.  The good news is that they haven’t entirely lost their taste for American commercial real estate. Consider that two of 2008’s highest profile transactions were the Abu Dhabi Investment Authority’s $800 million acquisition of the iconic Chrysler […]

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Author:
James I. Clark III
Posted:
05.08.2009

Bernanke Sees Some Light at the End of a Long Tunnel

Encouraging data on home and auto sales, homebuilding and consumer spending is seen by Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke as “tentative signs” that the recession may be moderating.  Still, he cautions that lasting recovery depends on the government’s success in stabilizing the reeling financial markets and unfreezing credit. In remarks to faculty and students at […]

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Author:
Mike Ochs
Posted:
05.07.2009

Some Alt-A Home Loans Go the Way of Subprime

It seems that we just can’t escape the bad financial news.  Now, mortgage loans made to supposedly better-off Americans are also heading south at an alarming rate.  This time around, the loans in question are Alternative-A (Alt-A) mortgages,which are used by borrowers such as the self-employed who have reasonable credit standings but unpredictable incomes. Right […]

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Author:
Ron Clarkson
Posted:
05.01.2009

AFL-CIO May Ride to Chicago Spire’s Rescue

A rather unexpected source may rescue the stalled Chicago Spire  condominium project – and pump significant money into Chicago’s battered economy by creating thousands of construction jobs.  Representatives from the AFL-CIO Housing Investment Trusts are in early discussions with developer Shelbourne Development Group to revive construction of the twisting Santiago Calatrava-designed condominium tower, located on […]

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Author:
Matt Ward
Posted:
04.28.2009

In Vino Veritas

Is wine recession proof? Business obviously is good for one retail sector niche market.  Chicago-based Binny’s Beverage Depot is taking over a shuttered Circuit City store in west suburban Downers Grove and plans to convert it into their 23rd location. Binny’s purchased the 31,000 SF big-box store, located at the intersection of Highland Avenue and […]

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Author:
Pat Gallagher
Posted:
04.22.2009

No Port in the Global Fiscal Storm

Shipping activity has plunged as much as one-third at U.S. ports most heavily invested in the once red-hot but now declining Asia trade. Freight rates from South China to Europe have slid as much as 42 percent from some ports since November, leading shipping industry authority Drewry Container Freight Rate Insight Report to speculate that […]

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Author:
Matt Ward
Posted:
04.14.2009

Chicago Pours a Tall One to Secure MillerCoors Deal

To sweeten the pot after luring brewing giant MillerCoors LLC to the Windy City, the City of Chicago has agreed to create a $6 million tax-increment financing deal for the firm’s new corporate headquarters at 250 South Wacker Drive.  Even with a budget shortfall nudging $500 million, the City is kicking in significant funds to bring […]

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