• Hooray!  Our money woes are a thing of the past!  President Obama had a rousing show of support at the recent G-20 economic summit, where the leaders of the 20 most economically influential countries in the world convene to fix our shattered economy, so that’s why it takes a whole day.

    Give them a week and I’m sure we’ll have global warming, poverty, and epidemic diseases all elimi­nated. 

    No, I am a fan of tradition and all, but this summit amounted to little more than international lip-service and lots of sign-wielding protesters.  High level schmoozing does not a solution make.  Many countries have volunteered to “do what they can” to help drag everyone out of this global recession, but I doubt that means more than giving doe-eyed stares as America yet again works out a way to re­solve a fundamentally broken international economy.

    Stack on top of that the latest unemployment statistics, which show our fine nation at an 8.5% rate of unemployment.  To provide some contrast, two years ago we were at 4.4%.  Yessir.  About doubled.  However, some economists and market analysts seem to think that between the series of stimuli that the government has injected into our money markets and the ‘tighten our belts’ nature of American business and consumers, that we may be approaching a bottom for job losses.  It’s the “every piece of bad news is getting us closer to some good news” mentality.  The glass is half full type of thing.

    And one indicator that most are pointing to is the signs of life coming out of the housing market.  Fore­closure rates are slowing as most of the loans that will go bad have already gone bad.  1st time home­buyers are trying to take advantage of low mortgage interest rates.  Home sellers have become more realistic about prices, offering exceptional deals.  It’s not the golden days of 2005-2006 all over again, but it is a welcomed change from what we’ve seen for the past 24 months.

    Once the housing market turns decisively, it’s a domino effect of incredible goodness from then on.  Bank balance sheets improve along with rising home prices.  Loans start getting made to spur new business growth, leading to more jobs created, increased wealth and spending, and a boat-load of re­sulting economic improvement.  A proverbial virtuous circle.

    So, despite bad numbers from the stock market and the overall economy, it is this author’s opinion that there is much room for optimism.  The correction process will be long and challenging, but I do be­lieve that it has in some fashion already begun, and that’s reason to wear a smile on your face.

    And to buy a house.  Or two.  And to finance them through Greg.

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