Stages

jump1

The crisis we are in began as a financial one – stock markets, real estate, commodities. Then it became a money crisis – banks, credit, rates and bailouts. Next it turned into an economic crisis – bankruptcies, job cuts, deflation, losses.

And next, worst of all, a social crisis. Unemployment, lost homes, frustration, despair, violence.

That’s the nightmare scenario for politicians, and it’s being made more real by a dangerous and growing sentiment among the population that the worst is behind us. As detailed here, this is a message being pounded daily by the self-serving media looking for revenue, by the real estate industry seeking survival, by presidents, prime ministers and central bankers searching for time and by the ill-informed who want the clock to turn back a year or two, without consequences.

Ironically, the more people who believe we have bounced off the bottom and are on the road to a solid and stress-free recovery, the more difficult will be the months ahead. The greater the disappointment. The sharper the reaction to the losses yet to come. Yes we will get out of this mess, but not next year or the year after. And, no, the world will not be the same. The only cure for what afflicts our society is the destruction of debt. So those who live by borrowed money may well die by it.

Example. Bill is a commercial realtor in Toronto. The ICI market, he says, is utterly dormant. But he passes this along:

“I’ve got a modest, recently renovated and well-located home in West Toronto that I was going to list for sale this spring, but decided against it because I wanted to see how the spring market reacted (I didn’t want to be fielding low-ball offers left and right by scavengers). But a similar house across the street from me sold in a bidding war for $40K over asking in 2 days to some affluent first time buyers. How much longer do I have to sell this thing and get out? These young professional buyers obviously don’t read your blog and are basing these purchases on pure emotion which is great for a seller. Will the Fall market be too late even if rates remain unchanged? I don’t have a huge mortgage, or any consumer debt so we can stay put quite easily, I’d just like to get the equity out!”

So why are people back into bidding wars for houses just six months after the world was ending? After all, the economy is far worse today than it was last November. The car business is dead. Hundreds of thousands more jobs have been lost. The government has sunk into unfathomable new debt. Dozens of major companies teeter on the lip of bankruptcy. What gives?

Simply that interest rates have crashed, house prices have dipped a little, and real estate affordability has jumped. So, if you take your news from Royal LePage, Re/Max, CKNW, CTV, the Toronto Star or Jim Flaherty, you actually think this is a generational buying opportunity. Of course, there are no sage or responsible realtors, mortgage loan officers or media commentators to tell you otherwise. So why not offer $40,000 more than the asking price? It’s a bargain!

It’s telling, by the way, that almost all of the frenetic house-buying now going on is being driven by first-timers. Kids are always useful when old generals need soldiers or broken-down realtors seek the gullible.

So, stage four of this process is hastened by the actions we’re seeing today. This will not end well for those now diving into new debt.  The sense of betrayal will be overwhelming.

So, Bill, list now. Set two days for viewings, then take offers at 7 pm only on the next day. Ask agents to have their buyers in cars idling at the curb outside. They will all be given 15 minutes more to enhance their bids before you unseal them. Then sign the top one back, with a half-hour irrevocable.

And never, ever, go back to that neighbourhood.

97 comments ↓

#1 JO on 05.14.09 at 7:21 am

Most of these first time / low downpayment buyers will be the same people who come begging the government, oops – fellow taxpayers, for a bailout in 2-4 years. The home going down in price is only the start of their worries. Come renewal time, rates are very likely to be much higher (7-8 %) thanks to an emerging bond bear market (fall 09 onward appears likely) and rising default premiums that banks will need to add to help account for exploding unemployment anf falling prices…in many neighbourhoods, those underwater or on the verge of being so will be asked to add in 4 or 5 figure cash deposits. Imagine, evaporated equity, much higher mtg payment at renewal time, and being asked to cough up serious dough to bring down the outstanding mortgage balance. Not to mention the difficulty of selling if you need to move to get a new job. Any “equity” will have evaporated almost the second they walked in after buying for most of these first timers..who are really just paying high priced rent to the banks. Sadly, they could have rented for much cheaper and had no risk to their savings…and been able to move anywhere for work.

Our government is doing eveything it can to put more marginal first timers into the market through tax credits and measures that so far have been lucky to produce the lowest fixed mtg rates ever. It is one hell of a generational trap.

I do not wish anything but success to all, but it appears we should all brace for these property virgins to come begging for taxpayer help and blame everyone but themselves for their stupidity. I will be in touch with my MP and the Finance Minister to express how I feel when the bailout days come.
JO

#2 dd on 05.14.09 at 7:46 am

.. Bill is a commercial realtor in Toronto .. is more plugged into the market than most. Can’t he see the writing on the wall or is he that blind?

#3 OttawaMike on 05.14.09 at 7:50 am

It’s the same spring market rally here in the capital. After a fall/winter of poor sales real estate is entering a new twilight zone.
My house being sold with multiple offers causing the conditional buyer to exercise his first refusal. I am looking at POS’s. I have a friend /agent who deals in POS for the banks. She showed me an unremarkable, east end 1960’s raised bungalow on the weekend listed at 299k$ on a street where renovated ones go for 350k$. Needed floors,windows ,doors, old oil furnace, 70’s pool with rotten deck(minimum 80k$-100k$ work.). I was told there were 8 showings the first day and it would be sold Monday. I scolded her for wasting my time. She called me Tues. and said it sold for 311k$!!
I’m still persuing a couple of other POS that I may be able to get for land value only but I’ll be renting before I get into any bidding wars. Patience is the key.

#4 Herb on 05.14.09 at 7:57 am

“There has been detachment between equity markets and the fundamentals. We were in a period of suspended disbelief,” said Kirby Daley, senior strategist at Newedge Group in Hong Kong. “The hype has passed and as reality sets in, there’s only one direction that market can take and that’s down.”

http://www.cbc.ca/money/story/2009/05/14/world-markets284.html

#5 Jim on 05.14.09 at 8:43 am

It’s in the vested interests of the banks, realtors and government to try and pull the wool over our eyes. They want to make us think things are on the upswing so we will start spending again.

#6 TS on 05.14.09 at 8:46 am

Uncertain times call for caution. On a personal basis, we are still sitting on cash in our retirement funds since we began to liquidate back in the summer of 2007. We ignored all of the hype in the MSM that has been rampant the past 3-4 months. All of the layoffs and the corresponding rise in unemployment rates has not been fully felt in the economy yet…and that is going to pop the bubble in the current ‘dead cat bounce’ stock market rise…..as well as deflate real estate as Garth has indicated.

Depending on the emotions that come into play we could see a rapid stock sell off over the next 7 to 10 days as pension plans, fund companies, etc. scramble to get their last shreds of profit out of the current mini stock market rally.

The fundamentals for most companies certainly do not call for the TSX to be close to 10,000 or the Dow to be over 8,000. As we continue in 2009 we can expect more companies to announce losses bringing their share prices down further. Some great, ‘blue chip’ companies are also suffering right now – so we can expect a broad stock market retreat.

I watched an interesting interview this morning the indicated that the world price of oil, based on real demand, should be in the $45 range…not $58. When the speculators get out of the oil market and stop propping up the price the TSX could take a 10% to 12% hit just on a significant downward movement in oil.

I’m certainly no economist, but I still feel that the Dow will bottom out this year in the 4,500 to 5,000 range and the TSX will drop another 30% to 35% from where it closed yesterday. Maybe I’m an optimist…some folks are predicting much worse.

Keep up the great work Garth!

#7 RS on 05.14.09 at 8:51 am

Wow I am amazed how many people think the crash is over! I have been waiting to buy a house for a long time. But now I realize I will have to wait a lot longer for prices to come down. I’m no fool. The current situation will end bading.

Last night I made a deal with my landlord – Get a dishwasher and I’ll stay another year or two… Her reply… “I’ll send my plumber by on Saturday” (She works for a bank)

Rs

#8 Comfortable in a coma on 05.14.09 at 8:51 am

The bulls, the bears, and the pigs. Maybe if Bill holds out until fall, the Price will have gone up a lot and he will get ALL of that equity he deserves.
He wouldn’t want to let someone else make that last few dollars right? Does that make him a bull or a pig?
What could possibly make the market better than right now?
If the thought is to get out, there is no better time than the present. The future holds many surprises for the ones with there snout still in for the last bite.

#9 Comfortable in a coma on 05.14.09 at 8:57 am

“The hype has passed and as reality sets in, there’s only one direction that market can take and that’s down.”(CBC)
Actually there is a better time to sell I guess. That was last week.

#10 The Dog on 05.14.09 at 9:00 am

I look forward to, and read this blog daily.

“And never, ever, go back to that neighbourhood”.

I know the topic we’re all discussing is a serious one, but hats off to you Garth for keeping an element of humour in it. You crack me up!

#11 Kurt on 05.14.09 at 9:15 am

You missed one thing, Garth: Don’t wait. Do it *today*.

#12 905er & Spouse on 05.14.09 at 9:38 am

Okay check this our…new polling from Nanos Research.

Looks like the recession is over and house prices are on their way up again…lol

Here’s the summary:

“53% of Canadians thought the value of real estate in their neighbourhood will stay the same in the next six months (up 9 points from February 2009) and 26% thought the value would increase (up 14 points from February 2009).”

So 79% of Canadians think housing will stay the same or go up I just don’t get it.

…and…

“66% of Canadians described their job as secure or somewhat secure (down 1 point since February 2009), while 19% described their jobs as somewhat not secure or not at all secure (NC)”

All I can say is that a lot of people are going to be really disappointed come December.

#13 lgre on 05.14.09 at 9:46 am

why anyone would pay over asking is beyond me..its just idiocy in my opinion. The quality of houses in the downtown core are poor at best. A lot of them are falling apart and need a lot of structural work.

As for Bill, put in on the market and see if you can grab a $100k more then anticipated..I’m sure you’ll get close.

#14 young & foolish on 05.14.09 at 9:59 am

“what gives?”

Ha! People have not really come to believe that things will be different in the future. They don’t believe the age of McMansions and Big Box Malls is over. They are placated by the soothing oration of Mr Obama and await the eventual continuation of the only culture they have taken seriously – the borrow and spend one.

#15 Bill-Muskoka (NAM) on 05.14.09 at 10:07 am

When things get tough people and governments have to give up certain non-essential things, but never do because they are the same people.

Those who speculate in RE at the cost to the rest are a plague on our society. Housing is a NECESSITY for everyone, not just the elite and gamblers.

Please refer to the sign Garth has posted and you will find my sentiments.

#16 Da HK Kid on 05.14.09 at 10:25 am

What a gift this market is providing for having a second chance at freedom from home ownership. See it for what it is, make hay and stuff your pockets with cash.

We are all going to suffer for a decade due to this irresponsible behavior of our society pushers! We wont have to save by choice, we will have to save out of necessity. Country GDP is toast!

To the point where we will over rotate to hating any goods news as we will not trust the messengers again.

My liquidity is now 100% and I feel better than ever.

Once your hooked on being debt free, its one hell of a high.

#17 Mirror on 05.14.09 at 10:44 am

It is nice to toe the line with Garth. But what if Garth is wrong and we all (on this site) are sheeple instead. Get real guys. Nothing portrais the truth better than the market and listen to it going up. May be those buying have a secure job and have seen the prices fall enough already. Same goes for the market. One who didnot venture earlier has watched others rakeup huge!! gains over the last two months.
(BTW i am no realtor, just a mirror)
Cheers

#18 Tinfoil Fund on 05.14.09 at 11:25 am

Here in California Schwarzeneggar is gearing up for the great yard sale. San Quentin 1 billion etc. 500,000 people in LA county are on welfare and the State is broke so I’ve been considering expatting to Canada until reading this blog for the past year. Why would anyone want to piss 50% of their income against a wall for the amount of problems that have been brought to my attention through this particular discussion board? And have I mentioned the rain in Van and the chill in TO?

#19 Ms Loquacious on 05.14.09 at 11:42 am

It continues to baffle me to hear my peers (all newlyweds in late 20’s and early 30’s) discuss purchasing homes in the next few months. These are not uneducated people; all are working professionals with university degrees. Surely they must have at least one critical, discerning bone in their bodies! Alas, this is not the case; the majority seems to be overcome by some blind optimism that the markets have reached bottom and will only go up. When I ask them the hard “what if” questions concerning higher interest rates a few years down the road, they simply say that they will cross those bridges when they come to them. Say what?!?

My hubby and I bring in a decent income (6-figures), have not yet been affected by the receding economy, and are relatively debt-free (save for our one vehicle that we’re still paying off). On paper, we would probably be ideal candidates (or prey) for the greedy brokers and lenders out there. However, we’re not so naive as your typical first-time home-buyer. We understand that RE doesn’t always go up, and debt is a bad bad thing in this economy. If the collapsing corporations and rising unemployment rates around us aren’t evidence enough that we should hold off buying indefinitely, I don’t know what is.

#20 rory on 05.14.09 at 12:14 pm

25 People to Blame for the Financial Crisis

http://www.time.com/time/specials/packages/article/0,28804,1877351_1877350,00.html

Now we need 25 people that have ‘the balls’ and the knowledge to fix this thing…which pretty much nullifies all that are now in power positions – everywhere it seems.

Logic would say that ALL cannot be wrong or incapable so what is the common denominator:
1) a few are dictating to the many
2) just plain greed
3) just a huge case of CYA
4) no one really has a clue
5) not fixable by intervention but we are putting on a good show
6) combo of all or any of the above.

#21 dontcallmeshirley on 05.14.09 at 12:22 pm

Got a question:

Do lenders really require mortgagees to pay in additional money to cover a property value decrease at the time of a future renewal?

I understand the math behind it, but does it actually happen? I would have thought banks automatically renew a mortgage – they don’t commission an appraisal on a renewal do they?

Can happen, but rarely does. The lender cares more about borrower income than property value. — Garth

#22 Bill-Muskoka (NAM) on 05.14.09 at 12:34 pm

#20 rory

The problem, is simple, the solution is too, but something people have a natural adversion to…CHANGE!

Look at what GM and Chrysler are doing right now! they are cleaning out the closets. Old plants being shut down, legacy and unprofitable dealerships being discarded. Business, if you really look at most of them, accumulate stuff and never purge it. That includes out of date equipment, practices, facilities, contracts, the entire gamet of ‘stuff.’

People do the same. Only those who occassionally move do the necessary purging. People like stability, but in their quest for it they burden themselves down with ‘stuff.’

George Carlin explained it all very well.

#23 Bill-Muskoka (NAM) on 05.14.09 at 12:41 pm

More TRUTH about how we really operate:
George Carlin on Our Similarities

#24 Bill-Muskoka (NAM) on 05.14.09 at 12:51 pm

For those who think Conswervatives are against government!
George Carlin – American double standard

#25 Munch on 05.14.09 at 1:06 pm

“Never go back to the neighbourhood”!

Good advice!

Here’s some better advice – treat yourself to a complete make-over: hair, skin, teeth, hips, the works!

And take a class in karate!

Munch

#26 smw on 05.14.09 at 1:09 pm

Quick read…

Canada, green shoots or yellow weeds?

With its fortunes tied to the U.S., which absorbs about 75% of its exports, Canada would seem a strange candidate for early green shoots, but there are some signs of improved sentiment.

Canada actually added jobs in April 2009–albeit all in self-employment–but a breather from the sharp declines experienced from November 2008 to March 2009. Moreover, the descent of the Canadian housing market also seems to have slowed, at least temporarily due to seasonal factors.

Canada’s shift back from trade deficit to surplus in February and March, though, reflects a weak loonie’s dampening effect on imports, rather than any revival of demand in Canada’s exports.

The relative soundness of Canada’s banks, which are still extending credit to households and businesses, does protect Canada from some of the woes facing other G7 economies, but a recovery could be far off.

http://www.forbes.com/2009/05/13/recession-global-economy-china-green-shoots-opinions-columnists-nouriel-roubini.html

#27 VAN RE Bear on 05.14.09 at 1:16 pm

B.C. MLS sales price to slump in ‘09, climb ‘10: CREA forecast

http://www.vancouversun.com/sales+price+slump+climb+CREA+forecast/1596054/story.html

#28 smw on 05.14.09 at 1:30 pm

#19 Ms Loquacious

Its tough having to go against the grain when all the forces are trying to prevent you from doing just that but…

…skate to where the puck is going, not where its been, and your doing just that, you’ll be alright.

Your spidey senses aren’t letting you down, too bad common sense was a little more common.

#29 ca on 05.14.09 at 1:40 pm

More on the potential for a short term real estate rally

http://www.minyanville.com/articles/markets-rally-mortgage-housing-rates-countertrend/index/a/22671

#30 SSS on 05.14.09 at 1:41 pm

What a pathatic situation. Why are we acting like morons and playing with the future of our kids… One the contrary its a good news for renters like me, as I got a very good deal on my next rental place..

#31 miketheengineer on 05.14.09 at 1:44 pm

Garth et al:

Well just as I suspected back in Xmas of 2008. A huge decline in automotive. I didn’t think Chrysler would go under. I didn’t think GM would go under.

I worked at a parts supplier that supplied these guys. I worked hard and long hours and tried my best.

In the end, I got canned, with the bare minimum of serverance package. I have been soo beaten up and pushed about during the last 15 years of working like this, that I am just about mentally and physically finished. I have “zero” savings. My spouse does not want to sell the house.

I am royally screwed……

Option 1:

Leave for Texas or Sask.

Option 2:

Jump off the Skyway bridge.

Option 3:

Try to find a job or EI or Welfare. I think they all pay about the same now….nothing.

I really wish that I choose to be something else. Why did I choose to be an engineer…..why was I soooo stupid to choose this for a living.

I have just about had it. If anything else happens, I don’t know what I am going to do…

I will never work in Automotive again. The employment will never again be in Ontario. It is now gone forever.

Thanks Mr. George Bush for pushing the cost of oil sooo high it destroyed my purchasing power.

Thanks Mr. Harper, for allowing China to dump products into this country below the Raw material price.

Thanks to Joe the Canadian for letting it all happen.

Mike

#32 dd on 05.14.09 at 1:59 pm

Too funny …

“Globe and mail top stories …

1) Home sales jump in April the worst of the correction in the Canadian housing market may be behind us

2) U.S. auto layoffs drive up jobless claims Analysts surprised as 637,000 file for unemployment assistance; continuing claims hit 6.56 million people”

One is reality and one isn’t. You choose.

#33 My_View on 05.14.09 at 2:05 pm

#17 Mirror,

My thoughts exactly, the market should have dove by now. Yes the rates have something to do with it; however when rates were at 5-7% a couple of years ago, the market was still on fire. I know there is a nasty recession going on, not the first and wont be the last. But thank God for more optimists than pessimists because this world would suck. Better to have faith than nothing, especially for these first time buyers that are starting off in life. Like I said before, a correction to 2005 levels is not a bad thing and it will most definitely hold at those levels. Canada’s banks are solid. By the way powers of sales are not great deals, they are priced at current market evaluations and most of the time needs a lot of TLC. Out of the ashes, rises the PHONIX.

#34 PTDBD on 05.14.09 at 2:06 pm

@miketheengineer – The only solace that I can offer is that during trying times we often become our own worst enemy, thus shutting ourselves off from opportunity. Stay kind to yourself & family.

#35 Jan on 05.14.09 at 2:07 pm

As a “vulture in waiting” I am spending my time & holidays; searching out neighbourhoods I feel I would be happy to purchase into.
This should give me an advantage when the market finally does hit my price point, sinceI will be very familiar with postives and negatives of the area.
Garth you always talk about the McMansions. However what about the lower priced homes currently at $300,000- do you really think they will also falll another 20% these next 12 months?

RE: the stock market ( I have followed it closely these past 20 years) and I disagree completely with your optimistic beliefs .
Hang onto your hat – the bond market is next big thing to blow up. Might happen at the same time at the credit card crisis in the USA surfaces this year. The rest of the stock market will continue to flop around like a dead fish unitl maybe the spring of 2010.
In my opinion there is no where to hide – 2009 is a wasted year.

#36 Grumpydawgs on 05.14.09 at 2:09 pm

It seems that ‘green shoots’ grow best in thick piles of bullshit. The jobless numbers are the worst they have ever been. It is speculated that 25 million people in the US are now underutilized. At a recent auction they ran out of suckers.

http://globaleconomicanalysis.blogspot.com/2009/05/condo-auction-ends-abruptly-due-to-low.html

I seem to live in an antipodal world wherein I see small businesses closing and many people losing jobs and where restaurants are sparsly populated where once was abundance.

A line from the movie ‘Gladiator’ comes to mind,

” If you find yourself walking in a sundrenched green field, you’re probably already dead’.

#37 Got A Watch on 05.14.09 at 2:24 pm

#31 Miketheengineer – Take some time, go fishing or boating or whatever, breathe.

You will survive. There will be an opportunity. Start your own business, or make a career change. Take up mountain biking or hiking or running or …

You sound like you have too much emotion invested in your job. You are more than your job title. I know this sounds like some sort of pep talk, but it is what I have come to realize after entering and leaving several careers.

Good luck, and try to stay positive. Everything turns around in time.

#38 Dunno on 05.14.09 at 2:38 pm

And never, ever, go back to that neighbourhood.

LOL Great line, I was on the floor!

Tks, it made my day.

#39 Vancouver_Renter on 05.14.09 at 3:01 pm

A friend called my wife yesterday to say, “Hey, there’s a DOUBLE LOT on our street that was listed for $1.2M and has been reduced to ONLY $1M. This is an amazing deal. You guys really need to think about buying it.”

My wife replied with, “Actually, you know that we believe prices are heading down and that there will be better opportunities in the future.”

The response of her friend was silence followed by a condescending and drawn out, “O… kay. I don’t kno..wwww about that. I think you are going to mi… sssss ou…..t.” She assumes that, because we’ve had a couple manic months here again in Vancouver, that the recession is over and real estate will resume its long-term bull.

I really sense that the real-estate perma-bulls are running on pure emotion. The fear of missing out is powerful. Don’t even try describing the case for falling real estate prices to them because they don’t want to hear it.

In the meantime, a large group of my friends at Kodak in Vancouver just lost their jobs in the mass layoff of 200 employees. That’s 200 high-income professionals who no longer have an income.

#40 unbalanced on 05.14.09 at 3:03 pm

I know this is completely off topic, but can anyone answer this. My wife and I just paid off our house. Mortgage free. We owe 3600.00 in a line of credit. I was paying prime plus 1 percent. Just talking to the credit union, they said they are reviewing and now I will be paying prime plus 2 percent. Can they do this ? Thanks in advance, and everyone keep contributing. There are alot people here, me included learning tons .

#41 Too Old Bob$ on 05.14.09 at 3:17 pm

Drinking coffee and reading the paper today. Opened a “Homes” supplement from a paper I read. Something caught my eye, a ad from Shane Homes. “trade-ins welcome!”
” Shane Homes will give you cash value for your car, boat, motorhome, ski-doo, sea-doo and other items to use as a downpayment towards a new Shane or Creations by Shane home!” Wow! what’s next, trade in your wife, kids, dog?

hmm! j/k ;)

#42 . . . fried eggs and spam . . . on 05.14.09 at 3:20 pm

#92 Bill-Muskoka (NAM) at 11:31 am — “. . . (Actually I think it’s that SPAM you eat every day!)”

Morning Bill and all. Captain Morgan’s recipe, consisting of enormous distilleries full of dark and light rum, Salmon SPAM and Sushi Croquettes make a delightfully crunchy garden salad (SPAM bones), which is intravenously very nutritious and potentially fatal.

Due to the highly combustible mixture of these ingredients, it is better to lie down in the middle of a road and avoid it altogether, so let’s have a ‘Knees-Up Mother Pole Shift’ instead!
——
“. . . is the destruction of debt. . . . may well die by it. . . . people back into bidding wars . . . The sense of betrayal will be overwhelming.”

Last sentence is quite telling, especially when the first link is read, yet the sense of betrayal belongs strictly to those who, even now, continue to see life from a Pollyanna-esque, rose-colored glasses view.

There is an enormous gulf between ‘KNOWING’ and ‘BELIEVING’.

Knowing, one trust’s one’s own gut feelings, or inner hunches and follows them.

Believing, one follows what others say — i.e., ‘Do as I say, not as I do.’ Typical sheeple, as they will not do their own research themselves.

When people know — from a detached point of view — what is really taking place but on a much quicker pace than ever before, only then will they realize that the karmic pattern of time is moving ahead at blinding speed, yet most are still reacting to events which are beyond their control and therefore, are of no concern to them.

All of us live through life’s good and bad times, trials and tribulations; it’s what we do, the circumstances we chose to put ourselves into that we have to live with.

No one forced any of this stuff on us — these are the lessons each must learn.
——
Yesterday, I mentioned that the US Social Security system was one part that was going south, as something / someone has to pay for all these criminal bank bailouts and the taxpayers are the most convenient to steal from.

The Cdn. one (CPP / OAS / GIS) may follow. Nothing like a follow-up! — http://tinyurl.com/oc5fz6
——
Talk about dragging your feet! S&P says this bank bailout nonsense could go until 2013, which is when a ton of boomers retire — see preceding link where SSec. is headed. — http://tinyurl.com/q6qd54
——
Geithner To Take Orders From Global Elite At Bilderberg

“According to a London Times report, U.S. Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner will probably be in attendance at this week’s Bilderberg Group meeting, as top globalists meet to plot the financial future of the planet behind closed doors.”

Everything will be just fine! Trust us!!! Honest!!!!
——
All anyone needs to know about Pipeline-Istan. See heading and you will know! — http://tinyurl.com/ooj337

AAA Credit Rating for Zimbabwe or the US? — http://tinyurl.com/qpdh4r

Now ‘security’ begins between Canada and the US. Why? — http://tinyurl.com/op8kmt

Everything here is temporary, so what’s new? — http://tinyurl.com/pmdpsv

#43 David Bakody on 05.14.09 at 3:25 pm

“There’s sucker born every minute”

#44 David on 05.14.09 at 3:27 pm

That crude cardboard sign sums up a great deal of the populist resentment toward the financial industry these days. If they refuse to jump, can they be nudged off the precipice?
Bill the commercial realtor asking for financial advice on residential real estate. Yikes! Commercial real estate has to be cash flow positive from day one to pass the smell test. Vacant buildings with brown paper over the windows and not collecting rents represent idle capital.
Bill should sell NOW..apres moi le deluge. Cash out those housing real estate chips before the party gets really rough and the supply of dumb and desperate first time mullet housing investor’s dries up.
Party on Bill, it won’t be your problem a few years from now when home prices are in a state of permanent decline.

#45 Investor on 05.14.09 at 3:37 pm

What’s in store possibly in Canada.

http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601087&sid=aKkPN8keugMw&refer=home

#46 U.S.$fromA$iaComming home= inflation on 05.14.09 at 3:40 pm

Vancouvers Real Estate has really heated up lately.

Bear market rally?

Theres still cheap money guys!

#47 Stuff on 05.14.09 at 3:46 pm

in response to #32..

I always found it funny to read the headlines in newspapers.. Here is the business section top headlines on torontostar.ca front page..

-Oshawa truck plant closes

-CAE to cut 10 per cent of workforce

-Canadian Tire Q1 profit down as gas prices fall

-TSX lifts more than 200 points

I wonder which one looks out of place…

#48 Barb the proof reader on 05.14.09 at 3:49 pm

Hey Jon C. Coates

Former prime minister Brian Mulroney mentioned your first cousin, the former MP Robert C. Coates in testimony today!

#49 lgre on 05.14.09 at 3:53 pm

“I was paying prime plus 1 percent. Just talking to the credit union, they said they are reviewing and now I will be paying prime plus 2 percent. Can they do this ?”

They can do anything, unless you have a contract specifying a rate till a certain date, you have no recourse.

#50 Bill-Muskoka (NAM) on 05.14.09 at 3:54 pm

#42 . . . fried eggs and spam . . .

I think I will just stay with the rum! LOL

#51 Bill-Muskoka (NAM) on 05.14.09 at 3:58 pm

#40 unbalanced

I believe TD Canada Trust did the very same thing recently?

#52 Bill-Muskoka (NAM) on 05.14.09 at 4:01 pm

#37 Got A Watch

Please do not promote more Citiots climbing mountains and destroying the delicate ecosystems. Sheesh. They love concrete, let them walk on that.

#53 Bill-Muskoka (NAM) on 05.14.09 at 4:09 pm

#31 miketheengineer

Mike,

Been there and gone through it. Take your engineering skills, develop some well honed people skills (most engineers are terrible people people) and go apply them at whatever you find.

Try parts desk CSR, Sales Engineer, Consultant (unless you don’t get paid then you become an Insultant ). Remember knowledge is a marketable commodity. go markey YOU! If nothing else, you can apply at one of the Big Box stores and use your skills there such as Canadian Tire Automotive, Home Depot, WalMart.

Sit down and list out what you know and do not limit it to engineering. Good luck.

#54 Bill-Muskoka (NAM) on 05.14.09 at 4:17 pm

There is an enormous gulf between ‘KNOWING’ and ‘BELIEVING’.

#42 . . . fried eggs and spam . . .

WOW! That sounds like a quote from the ‘Credibility Manual’ by Donald Rumsfeld!

and further confirmed by our own former PM JC!

#55 Techie on 05.14.09 at 4:31 pm

Vancouver_Renter – are you able to confirm the Kodak layoff story? I can’t find a link anywhere…

#56 SSS on 05.14.09 at 4:34 pm

@#31 Miketheengineer
I hear you… I am an engineer as well and tasted two layoffs since Oct. 08. I think there are opportunities for you in Alberta. How about moving to Alberta! I know its not as good as it used to be but I have heard that some projects may be opening up soon in the Suncor Oil sands. I would recommend you to do a PMP and enter project management. There is a lot of potential for good professional engineers in Project management.

#57 Bill-Muskoka (NAM) on 05.14.09 at 4:37 pm

The REAL Brian Mulroney

#58 MBS-Economy on 05.14.09 at 4:38 pm

everyone is just fueling and propping up the bubble ….. a stock and real estate bubble. The govt’s intevention in this whole thing is doing more harm than good. You know what eventually happens to bubbles???.

#59 jess on 05.14.09 at 4:41 pm

stages or pecking orders…..

Doesn’t the lawyer stage comes before the vulture stage…

“I haven’t pleaded in court this frequently in a very long time, I basically live at the court,” Kremer, who turns 46 today and is a specialist in white-collar crime, said in an interview at his office at Arendt & Medernach. “We’re handling about 80 cases for UBS and some 12 involving HSBC.”

With hundreds more cases expected to be filed, the country’s 1,600 lawyers realize the spotlight is on them. Madoff’s Ponzi scheme, which forced the closure of as many as 17 mutual funds, has the potential to deal a black eye to the legal system as investors struggle to hire the remaining financial specialists that don’t already have conflicts of interest.

http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601109&sid=aq6OEn4IkxM4&refer=home shakedown in luxembourg

#60 Dave on 05.14.09 at 4:44 pm

anyone notice a lot of free stuff or special offers from food chains? Pizza nova had 3.99 medium pizza two days ago, Harvey’s is having free hamurger day next week, Tim Hortons is having free ice cap day next week, Mcdonald’s has free coffee in the morning, baskin robbins has cheap ice cream scoops on tuesdays……wow

things must be slowing down

#61 Bill-Muskoka (NAM) on 05.14.09 at 4:46 pm

#47 Stuff

You may well have the makings of a IQ test for journalists and politicans! LOL

#62 Dave on 05.14.09 at 4:53 pm

-Oshawa truck plant closes

-CAE to cut 10 per cent of workforce

-Canadian Tire Q1 profit down as gas prices fall

-TSX lifts more than 200 points

I wonder which one looks out of place…
————————————————

I know what’s out of place….your eyes. Oshawa is a speck of nothing in the global economy, and Canadian Tire is the same as Oshawa.

I knew this misconception was going to occur. Markets and economies around the world crashed and people like yourself were professing that we’re different and won’t be affected. Now that the Canada’s lagging economy is feeling the affects you assume we’re the center of it all.

Earth to you, Canada is lagging. The TSX is a better global economic indicator than the Oshawa truck plant. Some of you scare me with your thoughts. If you weren’t sarcastic with your answer, I wouldn’t name and shame.

#63 Dave on 05.14.09 at 4:58 pm

It seems that ‘green shoots’ grow best in thick piles of bullshit. The jobless numbers are the worst they have ever been. It is speculated that 25 million people in the US are now underutilized. At a recent auction they ran out of suckers.
————————————-

the scary part is when job losses are increasing. Like 400,000 one month, 450,000 the next, 500,000 the next 650,000 the next. That trend has stopped though. Peak monthly job loss in the U.S was 650,000 a few months ago. The losses are still happening but it is definitely a positive that they aren’t compounding like before.

sorry perma bears. Things are bad, yes, but even the great George Soros (one man who will earn you 30% year in year out) is seeing things as stabilizing.

#64 Dave on 05.14.09 at 5:08 pm

It is nice to toe the line with Garth. But what if Garth is wrong and we all (on this site) are sheeple instead. Get real guys. Nothing portrais the truth better than the market and listen to it going up. May be those buying have a secure job and have seen the prices fall enough already. Same goes for the market. One who didnot venture earlier has watched others rakeup huge!! gains over the last two months.
(BTW i am no realtor, just a mirror)
Cheers
————————————————

go read ‘Extraordinary Popular Delusions And The Madness Of Crowds’. You’ll think he’s talking about financial issues of today instead of issues from the 1800’s. Speculative bubbles always end ugly. Jump into real estate soon and see for yourself

#65 lgre on 05.14.09 at 5:25 pm

Dave you seem to contradict yourself a whole lot, one minute your a bear and next a bull..which is it? ie post 63 and 64

#66 greyhound73 on 05.14.09 at 5:25 pm

#31 MiketheEngineer – stay positive – don’t ever consider Option #2. You are a smart guy – follow some of the advice being given on this blog. Its going to be rough but you’ll get through it.

#36 GrumpyDawgs – ‘green shoots’ grow best in thick piles of bullshit – sooooo true. Made me laugh out loud – thanks for that!

#41 TooOldBob$ – I also heard this on the radio and could not believe my ears – Shane Homes (Calgary) is welcoming tradins for downpayment money (i.e. car, snowmobile, boat, etc.) – unbelieveable!!! Of course this will probably never work as most of this stuff was probably bought on credit anyways…

#67 pbrasseur on 05.14.09 at 5:27 pm

Dave

“go read ‘Extraordinary Popular Delusions And The Madness Of Crowds’. Y”

Maybe you should go read The Wisdom of Crowds by James Surowiecki…

#68 greyhound73 on 05.14.09 at 5:35 pm

#55 Teckie – the Kodak/Creo story is true although I cannot confirm the numbers (I heard 75 of their Engineering/Design staff alone…there could be more from other departments) – but we had some recent business on the table (that has been shelved permanently)

#69 Dave on 05.14.09 at 5:51 pm

Dave you seem to contradict yourself a whole lot, one minute your a bear and next a bull..which is it? ie post 63 and 64
______________________________________________

i’m bullish in some areas and bearish in others. Canada’s real estate market is ugly. Job losses in Canada are coming in droves and they’re going to keep on coming. The TSX isn’t solely based on what’s going on in Canada’s economy, it’s a reflection of what other countries and multi-national corporations are purchasing . Our country is in the fortunate position to be probably the best resource country in the world. I”m seeing asian countries purchase mining companies outright. I’m bullish on energy, although short-term falls will happen. I see these developing countries as recovering sooner and trying to gobble up energy, agriculture, and mining companies from countries like Canada. This is what has been happening the past few months.

hopefully that explains my stance.

#70 Nostradamus jr. on 05.14.09 at 5:58 pm

I predicted 500 years ago that Mike the Engineer would join the Canadian Armed Forces…as they always need engineers.

…You heard it here first…

#71 dd on 05.14.09 at 6:30 pm

#31 miketheengineer o

“I have “zero” savings. My spouse does not want to sell the house”

Option 1: Leave for Texas or Sask.

Mike, you got to go where the work is. If your wife is not pulling down the big bucks tell her to suck it up.

#72 Da HK Kid on 05.14.09 at 6:31 pm

#31 Mike Za Engineer

Once this BS is over the world will be a different place and all the engineers turned financial gurus turned into dumpster lids will be looking for traditional jobs. Engineers will be back in demand, those with traditional Engineering backgrounds and experience will trump them.

To be honest, I’m an engineer on paper.

I have always leveraged my technical skills to assist in my business skills (hey that is why the MBA was created). Hey that was 20 years ago!

You need to simply look at your skill set as many engineers do, and see what transferable skills would be applicable to other markets outside your current focus.

After loosing half a shirt in the high tech 9/11 meltdown (another bubble) when all the VC’s hid under a rock and all my VP buds, the same, and my wife a VP at Nortel (stage 1 corporate demise government assisted bubble) we decided to ask our headhunters to throw us a change-up.

They did, we left the country and never looked back except to visit friends and family still in Vancouver, Toronto and Ottawa. Try keeping around 90% of what you earn and only spending money on what you use!

Didn’t you know Engineering talent in Asia is so sought after that even during these tough times companies are hiring!!!

If Asia is not an option, just moving away from where you are, seemingly Hamilton – Burlington – Oakville area my guess given your liking to the Skyway Bridge is the best thing you will ever do.

It will also force your significant other to get out of that home and conserve cash now and restart your life. Like I said, the RE market ponzi upturn is a gift to those who didn’t sell their homes yet!

Start with no debt and a super positive view regarding the above future for engineers and people who do REAL things to enhance our lives.

If being positive is tough, then may I suggest you think of all the A-holes responsible for this mess we are in and going to be in for some time and not give them the bloody satisfaction of watching you go down in it.

Get wickedly angry and use it to your advantage. Be cooler, be smarter!

Kick them in the teeth “sort of speak” and use all this great advise here to show them they are the SHEEPLE!

NOT YOU!

Good Luck!

#73 Sail1 on 05.14.09 at 6:47 pm

#31 miketheengineer

Hey Mike get a grip, do what you have to do to survive. Get part time jobs, move to where the work is whether the wife wants to or not. Talking nonsense doesn’t accomplish anything grow some balls.

#74 Stuff on 05.14.09 at 7:58 pm

#62 Dave. I take it you must be new to the whole concept of irony. Here this should help:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Irony

And if your brain doesn’t hurt too much after trying to figure the whole “irony” thing out, give this page a glance too:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Common_sense

Something tells me it may be beneficial to you.

#75 OttawaMike on 05.14.09 at 8:49 pm

#31 miketheengineer on 05.14.09 at 1:44 pm

I’m an auto industry refugee as well and feel your pain.
I saw the writing on the wall in the late 80’s and switched to the public sector after my parts plant employer flamed out. It took me almost 10 years to get back to the same annual income and I ended up starting a side biz to make up the short fall. No regrets at all. Trust me you’ll look back at this as a blessing in a time when you are set up in your new field of employment.
Engineering is an honorable profession, you never hear of anybody chasing P.Eng’s with torches & pitchforks.

Banksters and lawyers…off with their heads!

#76 eddy on 05.14.09 at 9:06 pm

“this must be the peak, so people should sell and rent in Toronto” is not advice I would give, today. the 4-500k price range is hot because, as Garth points out, we have lower prices and rates and 1st timers get most of the Land Transfer taxes back. There is a lot of re financing going on which is shrinking inventory. This spring market in Toronto has achieved ‘price support’ from buyers, in some price ranges. Mark Carney has put the economy on a life support machine with no foreseeable end. People always pay more to buy vs rent because it’s worth it, like buying a car beats the TTC. Purchasing a “principal residence” in Toronto today is a better idea than renting IMHO. But buyers should still walk form multiple offers and when in doubt, wait, and of course – try low offers.
“don’t let the sunshine fool ya’, don’t let the Realtors stool ya'”

#77 gold bugger on 05.14.09 at 9:13 pm

Bill the Marxist writes: “Those who speculate in RE at the cost to the rest are a plague on our society. Housing is a NECESSITY for everyone, not just the elite and gamblers.”

Bill, Bill, Bill, Bill. The only reason you don’t live in a cardboard box (you do live in a proper home, right?) is that a developer speculated that he could transform a piece of land by seeking re-zoning, obtaining development permits and installing services. A builder speculated that he could build houses that he could sell to a willing public.

What you call “speculation” among retail home buyers I call “the market establishing a property’s value.|

A guy I work with just bought his first house. Nearly $400K. On top of the $250K in heavy equipment he makes monthly payments on. Who am I to tell him he shouldn’t buy a house if that’s what he wants to do?

Now, if all these first timers flame out and the government steals my money to save them, then I have a legitimate beef. But neither you nor I am in a position to judge whether this guy, or any other, is a “greedy speculator.” Could be he’s just a guy who wants to own his own house.

#78 smwhite on 05.14.09 at 9:19 pm

Dave, after a while, if people keep telling themselves the same thing over and over, its all you’ll believe. It works for bears and bulls.

Even some of the most bearish people of the past 5 years are starting to nibble. Its obvious the direction the USA is going with monetary policy.

This is a good watch, Marc Farber on BNN:

http://watch.bnn.ca/#clip171169

Mike the Engineer

I’m empathetic to your situation, take some time and weigh your options, you have lots. I went through it in May 2000, and just when it looked like things couldn’t get any worse, September 2001 happened. Few jobs before and even fewer after that. I finally landed on my feet after working a few stints in less desirable jobs, but an honest buck is just that.

Maybe you could start a blog, write a book or two?

#79 905er & Spouse on 05.14.09 at 9:23 pm

Mike,
We were so upset to hear of your situation! We have several professional friends who recently lost their jobs too. We know one engineer who works in the US for a steel company and we are keeping our fingers crossed for him and his family.

I think you must be somewhere in the GTA. I know there is a new nuclear plant proposed for the east side of Toronto. Also a company building solar panels I think in Kingston. I don’t know if these would be applicable for you. Also, some engineers I know use recruiting firms to help with the search. I agree with the other posters- get creative and use all your skills.

Spend lots of time reading, thinking, and discovering yourself. I find creative ideas and problem solving come better when you immerse yourself in creative and new endeavors. Try reading new novels, going to museums, concerts, socializing, find new hobbies and using humour. Things you’ve always wanted to do but haven’t. These activities will actually help you maintain your energy and give you a boost to help you get through and find your way. Good luck.

#80 Dave on 05.14.09 at 9:42 pm

#62 Dave. I take it you must be new to the whole concept of irony. Here this should help:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Irony

And if your brain doesn’t hurt too much after trying to figure the whole “irony” thing out, give this page a glance too:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Common_sense

Something tells me it may be beneficial to you.
—————————————

this is coming from the guy that thinks the Oshawa truck plant is the leading economic indicator? LOL. .. don’t be upset, you’re just part of the herd that doesn’t understand economics. Lets clarify things, in your post earlier you said Oshawa truck plant is closing, Canadian Tire reports loss of profit in Q1, and a plane manufacturer based out of Montreal cut 700 jobs <— all negative news. You then said the TSX is up 200 points <— positive news. You sarcastically said “one of these don’t belong” meaning the TSX increase.

So let me explain for the lemmings like yourself. Purchases of things you see on the TSX aren’t confined to Canada’s economy. Sorry for the rocket science. Just because Canadian Tire (Sam Walton’s biggest global competition ;) ) reported a Q1 loss, and jobs were lost in Oshawa etc. there is no reason why that should effect the TSX in the grand scheme of things. In the grand scheme of things and the global economy, nobody knows where Oshawa is and nobody knows what Canadian Tire is. Canada’s vast resource base is known and desperately needed globally.

Oshawa truck plant is closing!! Oh my gosh, the population growth in China should come to halt then and the commodity & energy boom are over!! haha

#81 Alex on 05.14.09 at 10:26 pm

Dave (poster #69), did it ever occure to you that Fed may actually try to corner market. I mean if they spend trillions left and right
and being unaudited by definition, they may easily propel
Dow and S&P. I wouldn’t discard this as a possibility.

#82 Eduardo on 05.14.09 at 10:33 pm

Hey Garth,

When are the auto plant shutdowns in Ontario goin to migrate to Alberta? Is it going to hurt the auto sector here? What about the steel industry? What about the auto suppliers?

Considering oil has bottomed for the long term, is the rising oil price going to hurt the Alberta consumer too much? Does 100$ oil mean the end for Alberta?!!

The layoffs started here earlier, are done now, and my company is still looking for good engineers. MOVE TO ALBERTA MIKE, whoever said that is right. There is no driver for more layoffs. If someone can think of one please enlighten me other than saying “OMG OIL TO 20$”.

Garth, stop bashing Alberta as a place that’s going to get it the worst with the biggest bubble. You’re going to look foolish soon.

#83 Bailing in BC on 05.14.09 at 10:47 pm

Garth I can’t help but post this comment that I read on the B.C. Real Estates talk. Some one posted an excerpt from your weblog today and …
eyesthebuy said “it’s pretty obvious this guy is mentally ill – his statements are loaded with paranoia and conspiracy theories. Are you really posting this because you agree or because you derive some twisted pleasure in watching an individual self destruct?”

Apparently not everyone agrees with you. Eyesthebuy has just bought a character home in Vancouver with financial help from family (hehe). Time will tell who’s mentally ill ;-)

#84 Vancouver_Renter on 05.15.09 at 12:38 am

#31… “I really wish that I choose to be something else. Why did I choose to be an engineer…..why was I soooo stupid to choose this for a living.”

Yes, engineers are on the front lines during recessions. Everyone still needs dental work, legal help, accounting services, hospitals, etc. But NEW ENGINEERING DEVELOPMENT is the first thing to go at any hint of a downturn. That’s why if you are an engineer you MUST save money during the feasts in preparation for the inevitable famines.

Mike, I’ve asked myself why I ever went into engineering many, many times. Engineering in university was a tough program – and all that effort could have gone into something with brighter long-term prospects. Everything you know becomes obsolete within a couple years and the need to continually retrain and update your technical skills is daunting. By the time you get to your 40s, you are sick and tired of reading mountains of dry, technical tomes just to keep up with the younger crowd. And your job can be outsourced to anywhere in the world.

Other friends became accountants, lawyers, dentists, and financial service people. Now in their 40s, they are sitting pretty as their skills have accumulated over the years and haven’t been regularly obsoleted. They now just casually “turn the crank” on their personal money making machines and do very well. And you can’t outsource your dentist needs to China.

The only big upside to engineering is the potential for big wins via equity positions in the business. This usually results from employment in a start-up or from creating your own business.

By the way, my engineering friends in Texas and California are reporting big slowdowns there. There are plenty of lay offs. So there may be nowhere to hide for awhile. Good luck.

#85 GTA001 on 05.15.09 at 12:58 am

To Post #31

Mike the Engineer:

I guess you probably heard today around 12pm that GM just shut down the Truck Plant in Oshawa resulting in the immediate loss of 3000 employees. As some one who worked in a parts plant it must be disheartening to see so many companies go under during this severe recession.

You have every right to be angry because you and your colleagues are not responsible for this economic mess.
It is easy to say that GM, Chrysler and Ford did not adequately undertake proper vehicle production forecasting, produce more fuel efficient car’s, adopt new technology and effectively use strategic planning to improve their business operations.

When the economic slowdown started in Summer 2007
no one expected that the subprime mortgage mess, CDO and SIV and of course the $60 trillion Credit default swaps (CDS) and $700 trillion derivatives in which over 1/2 or 535 trillion are mortgages which are a major factor in this crisis. No one knew that Bank of America, Citibank, JP Morgan-Chase Manhattan and Wells Fargo had $180 trillion of bad mortgage derivatives not to mention bad credit card, student, leasing and commercial real estate debt essentially making them insolvent. At present over 500 banks that have failed have been seized by the FDIC in the US.Without the bailout from the US Government these banks would not exist today.

When subprime mortgage borrowers had their adjustable rate mortgages (ARM) reset upward, many lost their homes through foreclosure’s and bankruptcies. Payments to CDO and SIV dried up and anyone who investedin these financial instruments(like pension funds and institutions) did not get paid and lost money. Banks who loaned money to the investment firms and hedge funds wanted their money back. The financial companies did not have the money so they liquidated their assets.To make matters worse corporate debt defaults triggered numerous credit default swaps taken out by foreign investors and SKF hedge funds resulting in the Federal Reserve Board spending $12 trillion to save Wall Street.

The downturn in the real estate market led to the loss of millions employed in the field who bought big ticket items such as appliances, electronics and yes cars and trucks. The jump in oil prices to $140 dollars/barrel in mid 2008 accelerated the drop in demand for cars and trucks and related industries. Jim Cramer of CNBC Mad Money stated on August 3, 2007 that 7 million homeowners in America were going to lose their principal residences due to the interest rates on their ARM resetting upwards. This means that right now 3-4 million home have been foreclosed. These displace people have lost everything including cars that have been repossessed and are filling storage lots. No one wants to buy them due to a glut of vehicles on the market.

By early 2008 all three automakers noticed demand for vehicles had slowed, but never expected a dramatic collapse. By the fall GM had lost $82 billion and was asking the US Government for help. The drop in demand for vehicles has resulted in the shutdown of firms making parts.

The 15 years that you spent employed as an engineer (assuming that your specialty is either industrial or mechanical) in the parts industry was not wasted. Many people (like yourself) who are unemployed feel angry and betrayed by the banks, companies and government for not making an effort to save the industrial sector in Ontario. Over 300,000 jobs have been lost up to this point. With the exception of government, accounting, health care and protective services sector job increases, the rest of the private economy is contracting, because no one can borrow money to buy anything, pay workers and cover overhead costs.

Once the anger subsides which will take time, you will need to develop the will to face seemingly impossible odds with courage.It is easy to say , but very hard to do. Emotionally it is difficult to motivate oneself, given the daily dose of bad economic news in the media, but with knowledge and understanding you will start to see that you can leverage your engineering degree and experience in different job fields. One blogger suggested that you obtain your Project Management Institute (PMI) PM designation. That is an excellent suggestion. You can easily earn this designation in under 2 years with your past job experience. There is a big demand for project managers who can create teams to execute projects on budget and on time for small to mid size companies.

Mike, you may also look at becoming a consultant in industrial or mechanical engineering(depending on your specialty) in the environmental field. I recently seen a tv news report of a former car parts company that was converted to a facility that builds devices to handle solid waste garbage. Did you not even realize that your engineering degree and experience will qualify you for EIC loans and grants for a masters degree in environmental engineering at an Ontario university of your choice!

If you find a job in a new field outside of the city that you live in or in another province, it may be necessary to sell your house and relocate to a new city. Do not be afraid to start over in a new place. One option would be for you to rent a place in a new city that you are working in and commute back to your home in order to pay it off. That is a big decision between you and your wife.

Whatever you and your wife decide to do, never forget what Mr Garth Turner has advised people to do in this economic crisis. Find a job regardless if it is temporary to pay off your debts . Cut your cost, live and eat cheaply. Try to stockpile your food supplies and help others to weather the economic crisis.

Good luck Mike, and NEVER GIVE UP AND NEVER QUIT!

#86 Ghost of Tom Joad on 05.15.09 at 1:43 am

mike the engineer … sorry to hear you’re suffering. You aren’t alone. The west is going to collapse as the New World Order carry out their evil agenda.

We are all heading for the big flush, when the US dollar collapses (I’m guessing sometime in the Obama years).

My suggestion, give a listen to Alex Jones at http://www.infowars.com

In the bible, Jesus told Simon and Andrew to be fishers of men and I believe Alex Jones is such a man who is inspired by God to help men in these troubled times.

#87 Mike (authentic) on 05.15.09 at 4:54 am

Dave #80 said ” In the grand scheme of things and the global economy, nobody knows where Oshawa is and nobody knows what Canadian Tire is. Canada’s vast resource base is known and desperately needed globally. ”

Dave, let’s expand on that further as I can give you a London UK perspective…

Nobody really knows much about Canada or do they really care. The TSX isn’t even reported globally nor is any Canadian news. People in Europe/UK/EU couldn’t tell you what natural resources Canada even has.

Canada is seen more of a “Tourist destination” and even though it’s in the G8, it’s not really taken as a serious country.

It woke me up.

Oh and amazingly about housing the Canadian Realtors are using the same lines they use in the UK like “Buy now or be priced out forever… Green shoots and more”

Mike

#88 Jeannie on 05.15.09 at 7:45 am

For those interested in working in the M.E….rents here in Dubai have dropped by half.
Still plenty of opportunities for professionals with good credentials. Some projects have been put on hold until the oil prices rebound, most still going ahead.
Your fellow Canadians are enjoying the good life, sans Tax on their earnings. Just a thought.

#89 ally ally oxycontin free on 05.15.09 at 7:48 am

#80 Dave on 05.14.09 at 9:42 pm

Our money is going into RETROFITS to make our comfy, small, unpretentious, humble, unremarkable little house, ready for the generation which will replace us.

Meanwhile, since you appear to place a high value in stock market machinations, commodities and the like, we thoughtfully remind you of the repetitive / shark-like frenzy which has brought the entire house of cards down.

Be patient, and if you listen / view, what follows, you might gain something. Be particularly attentive to accounting oversight failures, and the quote; “Arthur Andersen [name now changed to Accenture ] shred more than 1-ton of insider business records.”

http://www.spike.com/video/enron-smartest-guys/2668890

#90 Bill-Muskoka (NAM) on 05.15.09 at 10:48 am

#77 gold bugger

As usual you blow your own self-serving horn. The ‘speculators’ I was talking about are the Citiots who try to buy up all the new homes to flip them and just add to the cost, they add nothing of value in the process.

You are hopelessly living in your own dogma, which I find typical of the Conswervatives, but not true conservatives. They are mindless people unable to evolve beyond the past. Extinction is their end result as the rest of society moves forward as they wallow in fear of change for the betterment of all.

#91 Dave on 05.15.09 at 12:50 pm

Dave (poster #69), did it ever occure to you that Fed may actually try to corner market. I mean if they spend trillions left and right
and being unaudited by definition, they may easily propel
Dow and S&P. I wouldn’t discard this as a possibility.
——————————————————

did it ever occur to you that the Chinese, Japanese, Korean, or Indian governments will try to do the same thing?

Governments have the money to buy the resources they want and they are doing exactly that

#92 Dave on 05.15.09 at 12:54 pm

Dave, let’s expand on that further as I can give you a London UK perspective…

Nobody really knows much about Canada or do they really care. The TSX isn’t even reported globally nor is any Canadian news. People in Europe/UK/EU couldn’t tell you what natural resources Canada even has.
——————————————————-

it doesn’t matter what people in London know. What matters is 80,000,000 villagers in China each year become middle class citizens. They need energy, infrastructure, and everything else the western world got 100 years ago

#93 Dave on 05.15.09 at 12:57 pm

Meanwhile, since you appear to place a high value in stock market machinations, commodities and the like, we thoughtfully remind you of the repetitive / shark-like frenzy which has brought the entire house of cards down.

Be patient, and if you listen / view, what follows, you might gain something. Be particularly attentive to accounting oversight failures, and the quote; “Arthur Andersen [name now changed to Accenture ] shred more than 1-ton of insider business records.”
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so because of a case of greed we’re going to confine the people of China and India to remain in their huts? Can you people have a little vision?! In the grand scheme of things, all these commodity, agricultural, energy goods will be highly in demand. There’s going to be corruption everywhere, even in places of prayer. Should I refrain from neglecting a major bull market because of Enron????

that’s ridiculous. I bet if Garth agreed with me, all these comments would stop instantly

#94 miketheengineer on 05.15.09 at 3:29 pm

Garth and all:

Thankyou very much for all the advice….

I will consider all of it and proceed as quickly as I can to find something, and then to find something meaningful….to do.

Post #85

Special thanks to GTA001. Your words of encouragement were taken seriously.

Mike

#95 AS on 05.15.09 at 4:41 pm

to #83 Bailing in Bc – Re: eyesthebuy comment from Real Estate Talks – yes, eyesthebuy says he just bought a house and eyesthebuy is most frequently on the receiving end of comments like the one you say he made about Garth – that’s pretty funny. He takes alot of hits for being considered flaky and wishy-washy…so…one must consider the source when giving any weight to comments – I wouldn’t give any credence to anything eyesthebuy has to say.

#96 oldenoughtorememberpreviousbubbles on 05.16.09 at 7:40 pm

I’ve had a few friends of friends who are roughly a decade younger than me – in their late 20s now – who are these first time buyers.
They live in a complete bubble. They don’t pay attention to the news so while they know there are some economic tough times somewhere or some big layoffs they don’t think they’ll be affected. Somehow their marketing jobs will be safe even if nobody’s buying cars, etc.
They earn good money and think they always will, or if they lose their job another will come along right away.
They have never seen a bad recession or are old enough even to remember the bursting of the tech bubble.
I’ve warned a few friends about buying at the height, but they seem to think they know it all and that I’m some doomer. Even though I called the stock crash and said it would be global. Even when I show them ads for houses in Florida that are asking $40K that were 10x that a couple of years ago they think Canada is different and it won’t happen here. Or not as much.
I don’t care, it’s their money and they’re enjoying posting pictures of their swanky new pads on facebook right now.
But bubbles always burst and it’s better to learn about them through other people’s folly than your own.

#97 Dan in Victoria on 05.22.09 at 7:52 pm

Jump! Jump! Jump! Look one’s jumping now! aaaaaaaah ker whump,oh how horrible!!!…… It’s okay! he’s alright,he landed on a taxpayer.And so it continued.