From a small northwestern observatory…

Finance and economics generally focused on real estate

Archive for September 2010

Foul weather, foul moods

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It’s fall. The time of year when Seattle’s absolutely beautiful summer turns into yechy autumn.

With all of that in mind, three yechy pieces of economic info hit my desk all at once today. First, the Conference Board’s Consumer Confidence Index hit a 7-month low of 48.5, which was not only lower than last month (53.2) but also much lower than economists consensus forecast (52.1). Why? The general public has internalized the notion that significant levels of unemployment will be with us for quite a while.

Then, the Business Roundtable released it’s 3rd quarter 2010 CEO survey. You’d think, with corporate profits on the rise, that this bunch would be breaking out the good champagne. But no, even though major corporations plan to increase capital spending over the next few months, they have lower expectations of both revenues and employment.

Finally, S&P Case Shiller, who normally send out quarterly reports, sent me a July update (dated September 28), which shows housing prices continue to be disappointing. While prices are, indeed, up from a year ago (by about 4%), the price index has been cycling below 2003 levels for over a year. Among major markets, the best year-on-year performance was in San Francisco (up 11.2%) while the worst was in Las Vegas (down 4.9%). Intriguingly, all of the California major markets are looking strongly up.

Written by johnkilpatrick

September 28, 2010 at 2:48 pm

Where have I been?

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LOL… sometimes this blog feels like “what did I do on my summer vacation.”

Spent a big chunk of last week in Juneau, AK, riding a float plane out to Admiralty Island. Can’t talk about it very much (lots of confidentiality), but the scenery was beautiful. If you ever get to make a trip like that, do it. Kuddos to Ward Air a the Juneau Airport for a great trip on one of their Cessna 206’s.

On Saturday, the weather here in Seattle was absolutely perfect. I had the opportunity to ride on Carlyn, the 61-foot sailboat owned by Salish Expeditions. Salish runs a great program in the Fall and Spring, taking middle- and high-school students on 3- and 4-day hands-on research excursions. The kids are guided in formulating a “do-able” research project focused around marine biology and the environment. This is a terrific program, and we at Greenfield certainly want to support programs like this.

Written by johnkilpatrick

September 27, 2010 at 11:36 am

Posted in Real Estate

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My upcoming schedule

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The next couple of months will be pretty busy, “speaking engagement” wise. Thought I’d keep you up-to-date on what’s in store.

This month, most of my travel is for business meetings, with only ONE presentation on tap — I’m a member of the Real Estate Counseling Group of America (and allegedly the Membership Chair, but I’m not quite sure yet what that means) and our semi-annual meetings are scheduled for D.C. the last weekend in September. I’ll speak in Friday morning on the Gulf Oil Crisis (naturally). Right now, I’m figuring out how to embed YouTube videos into a powerpoint presentation. Wish me luck.

On October 7, I’m back in the Pacific Northwest as the keynote speaker for the annual Brownfields Conference, sponsored by the Northwest Environmental Business Council.

We TENTATIVELY have a web-in-ar planned for October 29 on the Gulf Oil Spill. More on that later. If you want info (as soon as we have scheduling), please send us an e-mail at info@greenfieldadvisors.com and we’ll be sure to keep you up-to-date.

Finally (well, not FINALLY, but at least for this list…) I’m scheduled to be in Miami Beach on November 4 to speak on the Gulf Oil Crisis at the Ritz Carleton Miami Beach (Yeah — terrible job I have, right?). For more info on that conference, click here.

Written by johnkilpatrick

September 4, 2010 at 7:08 am