Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Re-visiting John Tuccillo...........probably not his finest hours....

In March of 2008, the former chief economist for the National
Association of Realtors was quoted as saying,

     "People think the market is down and the market will
      still go down. That's not the truth. The market is down,
      but it's not going down anymore." 

     "I think it's because consumers focus on national news
     and not enough on local news."

In April of 2009, Tuccillo said,

     "Yes, knowledge is power, but increasingly in a world
     where we are told far more than we need to know,
     knowledge is fear. Take the swine flu affair. A virulent
     disease which is ripping its way through Mexico is being
     played as if the Apocalypse is upon us. Yet, in the United
     States, a country where vaccines and drugs are readily
     available to blunt the symptoms of the disease, there
     have been only a handful of cases. On this basis, the
     price of airline stocks dip, oil prices go down and there
     is a widespread belief that our friend the pig will bring
     down the whole world economy.

     The handling of this story by the media is intended to make
     us very, very afraid. But so was the media handling of the
     real estate cycle, and so it still is. We are coming out of a
     severe downturn in the real estate market, a price we are
     paying for a ten year expansion. These things happen,
     sometimes gently, sometimes harshly. The reporting of this
     story has ignored how cycles operated, focused on prices
     rather than sales and made a hero out of Bob Shiller, an
     economist-entrepreneur who is attempting to profit from a
     futures market that has yet to get off the ground. And we
     are being taught to be very, very afraid.

Pretty sure I disagree with that "knowledge is fear" quote.  Pretty
sure I agree with the "price we are paying for a ten year
expansion" part.

This punditry stuff is a tough business.

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