QUESTION: I am new to your services. I purchased the Canadian report on the property markets. I am fascinated by your ability to forecast so many events. I understand it is the computer for sure and no individual has the time to forecast so many markets all the time. It appears your forecast on the real estate in Vancouver was right on target. Am I correct in assuming this was caused by the regulation changes and the trend in the US dollar?
ANSWER: Yes to regulation and the dollar. The Savings & Loan (S&L) Crisis in the 1980s was caused by a change in tax code whereby the US Congress wanted to tax the rich so they changed the tax credits in real estate. They took a bull market and turned it into a one-way sellers’ market with no bid. They had to order S&Ls to lend into the real estate market. So when the real estate market collapsed, they then blamed the S&L and went to even criminally prosecute directors. I provided the warning to members of Congress what would happen if they changed the tax code. Of course, they ignored the warning and the crisis unfolded as any person with common sense would have expected.
Charles Humphrey Keating, Jr. (1923–2014) operated the Lincoln Savings and Loan Association in Irvine California. When Lincoln Savings & Loan failed in 1989, it cost the federal government over $3 billion and about 23,000 customers were left with worthless bonds. The government, which caused the fail, then criminally charged Keating and of course they convicted him. The argument was he KNEW he would fail 7 years in advance so the bonds he sold he KNEW he would default on making it a crime. He served four and a half years in prison before those convictions were overturned in 1996. The theory of that case was absurd. I have never encountered the head of any company that was major where the director knew the company would fail 7 years in advance. The government made Keating the scapegoat for whole S&L Crisis Congress created.
Today, just add to this the Vancouver real estate market the trend in China trying to stop the outflow of cash that has been pouring out of the country. If you change the capital flows, you change the markets.
It’s not hard to put this together as long as you keep a global view and an understanding of history and how it unfolds for government is typically the source of all economic crisis. Politicians are absolutely clueless. The regulation changes in the property market in London set in motion the collapse in values there as well and in Australia they even outlawed foreigners from buying real estate.