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Shifting Momentum, Demographics, Women, the 2018 Midterms, and Manufactured Housing

May 23rd, 2018 Comments off

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If one takes candidates at their word – which is never a given once they are elected  – it must be noted that candidates Secretary Hillary Clinton, and businessman, builder and media maven Donald J Trump each made a range of stated policy positions.

 

Last night, the House passed S. 2155, see that report linked below. The bill gives manufactured housing professionals some benefits and relief from Dodd-Frank.  It fulfills part of the 45th presidents pledge to undo what he said was the economic damage wrought by the CFPB and the Dodd-Frank regulatory regime.

 

That bill which has now been passed by the House and Senate would not have been signed had Ms. Clinton been the president, per her own statements.

By contrast, there is every expectation that President Donald J. Trump will sign the measure that provides relief for the industry on the MLO rule and other fronts.

Also last night, President Trump, addressed the conservative, pro-life women’s group gala, the Susan B. Anthony List. He was welcomed like a rock star.

The video posted will reflect several things that industry leaders, investors, and strategists should consider. Note that the female population is slightly larger than that of men. Note to the charts that will follow.

First, the president is repeating a theme, that the group also spotlighted – “promises made, and promises kept.”

Next, the pro-life group is pledging a serious voter mobilization effort for the fall.

Note that the NRA – the National Rifle Association – has made a similar pledge to the president for supporting candidates that he and his party will back. The president and Vice President Mike Pence are signaling that they will be very active on the campaign trail in much of the rest of 2018.

Reuters’ latest generic ballot has now tipped the midterm race slightly ahead for GOP candidates over Democratic ones. It is a tidal shift from the end of last year.

According to Vote Run Lead, exit polls reported that 53 percent of voters in the 2012 election were women.

In every presidential election year from 1980 – 2008 women have outnumbered men in voting Democratic and the same is true for men outnumbering women voting Republican,” says Wikipedia.

The U.S. Census Bureau tells the Daily Business News that, “Voting rates have also historically varied according to age, with older Americans generally voting at higher rates than younger Americans (Figure 4). In 2016, this was once again the case, as citizens 65 years and older reported higher turnout (70.9 percent) than 45- to 64-year-olds (66.6 percent), 30- to 44-year-olds (58.7 percent) and 18- to 29-year-olds (46.1 percent). However, in 2016, young voters ages 18 to 29 were the only age group to report increased turnout compared to 2012, with a reported turnout increase of 1.1 percent. All older age groups either reported small yet statistically significant turnout decreases (45- to 64-year-olds and those age 65 and older) or turnout rates not statistically different from 2012 (30- to 44-year-olds).”

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There is every indication that the president’s popularity is rising among blacks, Hispanics, and women. He already had a strong lock on Evangelicals, and white men.

MHProNews cited the New York Times polling, our own yard sign straw poll of a Florida manufactured home community, and a straw poll of industry professionals at an MHI event as part of our pre-election projections in 2016 that Mr. Trump would do well among manufactured housing residents and professionals.

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It was part of our MHProNews broader analysis. These were among the reasons for our projecting that he could pull off an upset on election night.

There is no other known group or media in manufactured housing that made similar projections. We editorially supported the Trump candidacy, as being better for business, workers, investors, and our industry.

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While the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) paid for two pro-Clinton speakers in the closing days before the 2016 election, the Kovach family and MHProNews supported Donald J. Trump’s candidacy as the best for the industry, small business, and hundreds of millions of Americans. One of those stories ended up on the president’s campaign website, and hundreds of conservative and pro-Trump websites.

 

Washington Insider Info

While MHProNews doesn’t claim much advantage over anyone else that is willing to dig for data and insights.  We have not yet personally met the president, but we do get several daily media and other briefs from the White House.

There are good reasons to believe that baring the unexpected, the GOP under President Trump’s leadership could pull off yet another surprise in the upcoming midterms.

The president himself is predicting it.

When you listen to the enthusiasm of this crowd from last night, does it remind you of the rallies from his campaign? No ‘entertainment’ was needed.

The theme is “Promises Made, Promises Kept.” It’s a powerful message for a campaign.

Step-by-step, President Donald J. Trump has undone in less than 18 months, much of the 8 year legacy of President Barack Hussein Obama. The Heritage Foundation claims over 60 percent of his agenda is already accomplished.  While that statistic might be debatable, what is certain is that his steady and relentless pace is getting voters to respond.  

Look for our Daily Business News latest U.S. economic report, and how that will play into the manufactured housing industry’s calculations. That surprising snapshot will be published later this morning.  We Provide, You Decide.” © ## (News, analysis, and commentary.)

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Housing Starts Fall, Bottleneck to Economic Recovery-Manufactured Housing to the Rescue?

May 17th, 2017 Comments off
HousingStartsFallBottlenecktoEconomicRecoveryManufacturedHousingtotheRescuecreditTheEconomist-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Is the bottleneck bubbling just under the surface? Credit: The Economist.

New U.S. homebuilding numbers showed an unexpected drop in the month of April, dropping to their lowest level in the last five months.

According to Newsmax, persistent weakness in the construction of multi-family housing units, could suggest a slowdown in the housing market recovery.

The Commerce Department said that housing starts dropped 2.6 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.17 million units. April’s results follow a downwardly revised rate of 1.20 million units in March.

The single-family homebuilding market rose 0.4 percent to a pace of 835,000 units.

By region, single-family starts grew 19.4 percent in the Midwest and 9.1 percent in the West, while they fell 3.4 percent in the South and tumbled 29.2 percent in the Northeast.

Economists polled by Reuters believe that homebuilders are failing to take advantage of a chronic shortage of properties for sale amid complaints about expensive building materials and shortages of lots and labor.

Analysts also believe weather was a factor.

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Credit: BMO Capital Markets.

Some of the drop in starts could be weather-related – parts of the United States experienced snowstorms in March and heavy rains in April,” said Jennifer Lee, a senior economist at BMO Capital Markets in Toronto.

So Mother Nature had a hand in this. Looking ahead, there is room for growth.

National Association of Realtors chief economist Lawrence Yun sees the problems lasting longer.

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Lawrence Yun. Credit: The Business Journals.

With housing starts declining in April, inventory shortages will continue for a longer period of time,” said Yun.

The intensifying housing shortage will push up home prices and rents, and easily above wage growth and the broad consumer price inflation. This continued, slow pace of construction of new homes is a major bottleneck to a faster economic and housing recovery.”

According to HousingWire, experts were not expecting the decrease in starts this month, and were actually waiting for an increase after the decline in March.

HousingStartsFallBottlenecktoEconomicRecoveryManufacturedHousingtotheRescuecreditFirstAmerican-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Credit: First American.

The lack of inventory of homes for sale is one of the most pressing challenges in the housing market today, and new homes are the source of supply that increases the total stock of housing to meet our nation’s growing demand,” said First American Financial chief economist Mark Fleming.

 

 

Manufactured Housing: The Answer, Hiding in Plain Sight 

The Daily Business News has covered the labor shortage in home construction extensively, and continues to show evidence that manufactured housing is a practical and affordable solution to provide quality homes at a competitive price.

And, even though manufactured and modular homebuilders can also feel the “pinch” at times, one of the numerous advantages of factory building is the ability to recruit and train team members who can work effectively in a production center environment.

JohnBostickSunshineHomesRedBayALmanufacturedHomeLivingNews-MHProNews-

John Bostick, president, Sunshine Homes, Red Bay, AL.

As John Bostick, owner and president of Sunshine Homes said in an interview this summer, “We have an almost unlimited capacity” to expand production.

For more on manufactured housing being the solution that’s hiding in plain sight, see MHProNews  and MHLivingNews Publisher L.A. “Tony” Kovach’s insight into the opportunity linked here. ##

 

(Image credits are as shown above, and when provided by third parties, are shared under fair use guidelines.)

 

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RC Williams, MHProNews.

Submitted by RC Williams to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.

 

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Outsourcing and the U.S. Economy: Can Trump Muscle Save the Day?

May 3rd, 2017 Comments off
OutsourcingandtheUSEconomyCanTrumpMuscleSavetheDaycreditlastlineofdefense-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Credit: Last line of defense.

India based IT services firm Infosys announced yesterday that they plan to hire 10,000 U.S. workers over the next two years and open up four additional technology centers, beginning in Indiana.

According to Newsmax, the move comes at a time when Infosys, along with fellow Indian companies Tata Consultancy Services and Wipro, are on the radar of the Trump Administration for displacing U.S. workers by bringing in cheaper foreign workers as a part of the H1-B Visa program, paying them less.

The Trump Administration has ordered federal agencies to review the program.

When you think about it from a U.S. point of view, obviously creating more American jobs and opportunities is a good thing,” said Infosys Chief Executive Vishal Sikka, who said the company plans to hire U.S. workers in fields such as artificial intelligence.

Sikka also says that Infosys has already hired 2,000 U.S. workers as part of a previous effort started in 2014.

OutsourcingandtheUSEconomyCanTrumpMuscleSavetheDaycreditHindustanTimes-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Vishal Sikka. Credit: Hindustan Times.

We started small at first and have been growing since then,” said Sikka.

The reality is, bringing in local talent and mixing that with the best of global talent in the times we are living in and the times we’re entering is the right thing to do. It is independent of the regulations and the visas.”

 

How Outsourcing Jobs Affects the Economy

According to a report from The Balance, the main negative effect of outsourcing is it increases U.S. unemployment.

The 14 million outsourced jobs are almost double the 7.5 million unemployed Americans. If all those jobs returned, it would be enough to also hire the 5.7 million who are working part-time but would prefer full-time positions.

The report also says that imposing laws or terms to restrict job outsourcing could make U.S. firms less competitive.

According to a study from Pew Research, major changes are reshaping U.S. workplaces as the economy moves deeper into the “knowledge-focused age.”

OutsourcingandtheUSEconomyCanTrumpMuscleSavetheDaycreditPewResearch-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Credit: Pew Research.

These changes are affecting the very nature of jobs by rewarding social, communications and analytical skills. They are prodding many workers to think about lifetime commitments to retraining and upgrading their skills.

The study cites that the number of workers in occupations requiring average to above-average education, training and experience increased from 49 million in 1980 to 83 million in 2015, or by 68 percent.

This was more than double the 31 percent increase over the same period in employment, from 50 million to 65 million, in jobs requiring below-average education, training and experience.

 

Hope for Lost Jobs? President Trump in Action 

JobsGoBoomEmploymentNumbersShowTrumpEffectcreditHeathersHomilies-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Credit: Heather’s Homilies.

President Trump is known for his no-nonsense, get things done style. Coming into the White House, he had no plans to change it.

I will be the greatest jobs producer God ever created,” said President Trump just before his inauguration. “Believe me.

By all appearances, he’s on his way to delivering on that statement.

In the ADP March private payrolls report, companies added 263,000 jobs for the month, which was well above the 185,000 expected from economists surveyed by Reuters, and also bested the 245,000 reported for February.

Even with a slight move down in April, surveys still show that confidence in the economy is strong.

Job growth is off to a strong start in 2017,” said Mark Zandi, chief economist of Moody’s Analytics at the time.

The gains are broad-based but most notable in the goods producing side of the economy including construction, manufacturing and mining.“

That has resonated with the small business community as well, as the January, February, and March reports reflect anticipation of President Trump’s policies, including the highest Small Business Optimism Index in 37 years from the NFIB.

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Juanita Duggan. Credit: NFIB.

We haven’t seen numbers like this in a long time,” said NFIB President and CEO Juanita Duggan in January.

Small business is ready for a breakout, and that can only mean very good things for the U.S. economy. Business owners are feeling better about taking risks and making investments.”

 

 

A View from the Industry

Even with the progress that’s been made, President Trump still faces an uphill battle.

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L. A. ‘Tony’ Kovach is the publisher of MHProNews.com, MHLivingNews.com and MH Consultant.

As well as the markets and new job creation are already responding to his initiatives, where could we be if there wasn’t a non-stop assault on our new president?” said MHProNews and MHLivingNews Publisher L.A. “Tony” Kovach.

In November, Tim Williams told MHProNews that, “I am deeply encouraged that less than 24 hours into President Trump’s term, he has frozen new, potentially burdensome regulations.”  For his full comments, click here.

MHARR CEO, Mark Weiss, JD, shared similar thoughts with MHProNews in a story, linked here.

For more on the nations economic progress, including a recap of President Trump’s first 100 days, click here. ##

(Image credits are as shown above, and when provided by third parties, are shared under fair use guidelines.)

 

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RC Williams, MHProNews.

Submitted by RC Williams to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.

Rise and Fall – NAHB March Housing Report

April 20th, 2017 Comments off
NAHB Logo

Credit: NAHB.

New data in from the National Association of Homebuilders (NAHB) shows that homebuilding in the U.S. fell in the month of March, recording its biggest decline in three years.

According to the St. Louis Dispatch, housing starts declined 6.8 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.22 million units. February housing starts were revised up, to a 1.30 million-unit pace. Starts were previously reported at a 1.29 million-rate.

Single-family homebuilding dropped 6.2 percent to 821,000 units, with starts in the Midwest seeing their biggest drop (25 percent) since January 2014.

Economists polled by Reuters had forecast groundbreaking activity falling to a 1.25 million-unit pace last month. Homebuilding was up 9.2 percent compared to March 2016.

The report cites that unseasonably warm temperatures boosted construction in February, and a drop in temperatures, along with storms in the Northeast and Midwest, could have contributed to the drop in March homebuilding numbers.

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Credit: Men of Value.

Overall, single family home starts in the Northeast remained unchanged while they rose 3.2 percent in the South, but fell 5.5 percent in the West. Starts for multi-family housing dropped 7.9 percent to a 394,000 unit-pace.

As the Daily Business News has reported prior, the traditional housing sector remains constrained by a dearth of properties available for sale.

Builders have cited a range of problems including shortages of labor and land as well as rising material prices. A recent survey showed that homebuilder confidence slipped in April from a near 12-year high in March.

The Daily Business NewsMHProNews and MHLivingNews have covered the case for manufactured housing as a viable solution to hope for the American Dream of home ownership at a reasonable price extensively, including Bloomberg making a statement to the same effect.

The myths, and the facts surrounding manufactured housing abound. To learn more, including why manufactured housing is the solution hiding in plain sight for many to achieve the American Dream, click here. ##

 

(Image credits are as shown above.)

 

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RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

Submitted by RC Williams to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.

Trump Card: March Jobs Report Delivers

April 6th, 2017 Comments off
TrumpCardMarchJobsReportDeliverscreditFortune-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Credit: Fortune.

President Donald Trump is known for his no-nonsense, get things done style. Coming into the White House, he had no plans to change it.

I will be the greatest jobs producer God ever created,” said President Trump just before his inauguration.

Believe me.

 

 

By all appearances, he’s on his way to delivering on that statement.

The ADP March private payrolls report is out, and showed another big jump.

According to CNBC, companies added 263,000 jobs for the month, which is well above the 185,000 expected from economists surveyed by Reuters and also better than the 245,000 reported for February.

JobsGoBoomEmploymentNumbersShowTrumpEffectcreditHeathersHomilies-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Credit: Heather’s Homilies.

Goods producing firms added 82.000 jobs, with construction accounting for 49,000 of that number.

Professional and business services was the leading sector for new jobs with 57,000, and leisure and hospitality added 55,000. Health added 46,000 jobs, manufacturing payrolls grew by 30,000 and trade, transportation and utilities rose by 34,000.

Also of note is where the jobs were created. As part of an ongoing commitment by President Trump to help small business, companies with fewer than 50 employees saw the biggest growth in jobs for March with 118,000, while companies with 50 to 499 employees added 100,000 jobs.

TrumpCardMarchJobsReportDeliverscreditCNBC-postedtothedailybusinessnewsmhpronewsmhlivingnews

Credit: CNBC.

Job growth is off to a strong start in 2017,” said Mark Zandi, chief economist of Moody’s Analytics.

The gains are broad-based but most notable in the goods producing side of the economy including construction, manufacturing and mining.

Markets were hopeful yesterday that President Trump could deliver on his pro-growth agenda. The report from the Labor Department is due at 8:30a ET tomorrow morning.

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Juanita Duggan, President and CEO of the National Federation of Independent Business (credit, NFIB).

As Daily Business News readers are aware, the January, February, and now March reports reflect anticipation of President Trump’s policies, meetings and movement, including the highest Small Business Optimism Index in 37 years from the NFIB.

We haven’t seen numbers like this in a long time,” said NFIB President and CEO Juanita Duggan in January.

Small business is ready for a breakout, and that can only mean very good things for the U.S. economy. Business owners are feeling better about taking risks and making investments.”

 

A View from the Industry

Even with the progress that’s been made, President Trump still faces an uphill battle.

As well as the markets and new job creation are already responding to his initiatives, where could we be if there wasn’t a non-stop assault on our new president?” said MHProNews and MHLivingNews Publisher L.A. “Tony” Kovach.

LATonyKovachMHProNews-com-

L. A. ‘Tony’ Kovach addressing industry professionals in an educational session.

Back in November, Tim Williams told MHProNews that, “I am deeply encouraged that less than 24 hours into President Trump’s term, he has frozen new, potentially burdensome regulations.”  For his full comments, click here.

MHARR CEO, M. Mark Weiss, JD, shared similar thoughts with MHProNews in a story, linked here.

For more on the progress of the Trump Administration, including proposed budget cuts to National Public Radio (NPR) and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB), click here. ##

 

(Image credits are as shown above.)

 

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RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

Submitted by RC Williams to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.

Post-Hurricane Matthew, Windstorms, Stereotypes and Manufactured Housing

October 12th, 2016 Comments off
hurricanematthewwindstormsandmanufacturedhousingmatthewdamagecocoabeachcreditcraigrubadouxfloridatoday-postedtodailybusinessnews

Damage from Hurricane Matthew, Cocoa Beach, FL. Credit: Craig Rubadoux, Florida Today.

In the aftermath of Hurricane Matthew, a number of cities and towns from Florida to North Carolina are beginning to see the full magnitude of the storm damage.

According to Reuters, CoreLogic, a real estate data firm, estimated the storm might have caused up to $800 million in damage to property along the U.S. coast.

A story by Rick Neale for Florida Today highlights damage throughout the area known as Florida’s “Space Coast,” which includes Cape Canaveral and Brevard County. The Daily Business News reported on the area as part of its post-storm coverage here.

In his breakdown, Neale reported the follow damage numbers:

  • 10 homes and one Palm Bay business destroyed.
  • Damage to 1,379 structures.
  • Of the 10 homes destroyed, five were single-family homes – three site built and two manufactured or possibly mobile homes.
hurricanematthewwindstormsandmanufacturedhousingbaytowersdamagetitusvillecreditcraigrubadouxfloridatoday-postedtodailybusinessnews

Hurricane Matthew damage, Bay Towers apartment complex, Titusville, FL. Credit: Craig Rubadoux, Florida Today.

The final statistic points and the video below to a problem that the MH industry is all too familiar with.  Too many don’t realize what this report and this video highlight. That 80% of the storm damage is caused by improperly installed add-ons.

Manufactured housing built to HUD Code Wind Zone II and III specifications and properly anchored, is no less safe than traditional site built housing during events such as hurricanes or tornados.

That box is going to be built better than any site-built home, unless it’s built to hurricane standards,” Dr. Tim Reinhold, senior vice president of research and chief engineer for the Insurance Institute for Business & Home Safety (IBHS) told MHLivingNews.

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Dr. Tim Reinhold. Credit: Disastersafety.org.

Dr. Reinhold has made a career of studying how structures of all kinds hold up to wind, and his work at IBHS has shattered many of the myths about modern manufactured homes.

When it comes to the monster whirlwinds that exceed 135 mph, it matters little whether you are in an RV or a suburban site-built home. If you are in the path of an EF3, EF4 or EF5, you’re in a world of trouble, and climbing into a bathtub with a mattress over you may be your best last-minute option.

The good news, says Reinhold, is that 93 percent of the nation’s tornadoes are EF 2 or below. Nonetheless, site-built homes constructed to the national standard of 90 mph are not engineered to stand up to even these smaller intensity storms.

We were surprised at the relatively small price difference between Zone I and Zone III homes,” Reinhold says. “The industry has a potential market there.

When Reinhold and his team studied damage to manufactured homes after Hurricane Charley in 2004, they found “a big difference” between how well Zone I, Zone II, and Zone III-code homes fared in the storm.

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Credit: Clayton Homes

One of the myths that continue to be pointed out by the media is that the manufactured homes themselves are what sustain the most damage during these events. The facts, according to Reinhold, say differently.

One of the big weaknesses was when people used these thin, flat pan-types of roofs,” says Reinhold, noting that a flaw in the manufacturers’ installation recommendations caused the add-on structures to fail at lower wind speeds than they should have.

Last year IBHS engineers conducted wind tests at its South Carolina research center, where NBC News documented the impact of hurricane-force winds on a manufactured home with a carport.

In one test, the thin pan carport roof buckled and took the roof of the home with it, peeling it off and leaving the open “box” exposed to the raging simulated storm — even though the carport was installed to manufacturer’s specifications.

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The more the public and media learn of our industry’ truths, the better off our nation will be. Photo credits, Sunshine Homes – Red Bay AL, by ManufacturedHomes.

It’s something they need to change their design guidance on,” Reinhold says. “It’s a physical reality versus a mathematical computation.”

Knute Chauncey, national sales manager at Tie Down Engineering, echoed similar comments when speaking to MHLivingNews about manufactured home quality.

When you build something in a factory and have a government agent looking over your shoulder and putting a tag on something that’s the least bit crooked — you would think that would be a better option all around,” Chauncey says.

Accessories, as opposed to the manufactured homes themselves, are usually the culprits of damage and inaccurately portray the home as the problem.

When combined with pre-HUD code “mobile homes,” which are not built to standards and have not been produced since June of 1976, stereotypes persist. ##

(Image credits are as shown above.)

rcwilliams-writer75x75manufacturedhousingindustrymhpronews

RC Williams, for Daily Business News, MHProNews.

Submitted by RC Williams to the Daily Business News for MHProNews.

Dodd-Frank Act is Harming the Economy, says Donald Trump

May 18th, 2016 Comments off

Donald_trump__newsmax_mediaIn an interview with Reuters, presidential candidate Donald Trump stated financial reforms implemented under President Obama, specifically the Dodd-Frank Act, and the ensuing Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), are stifling the economy and he would ditch most all of their provisions.

Dodd-Frank has made it impossible for bankers to function,” he said. “It makes it very hard for bankers to loan money for people to create jobs, for people with businesses to create jobs. And that has to stop.”

In about two weeks he will release a plan for overhauling Dodd-Frank, which would be tantamount to dismantling of the legislation, prompting Democratic frontrunner Hillary Clinton to say that is a “reckless idea” which would “leave middle-class families out to dry.”

Dodd-Frank was passed in the aftermath of the Great Recession to make banks less vulnerable in times of crisis, but it also had the unintended consequence of making it more difficult for consumers to purchase manufactured homes, something the CFPB’s Director Richard Cordray could change with the stroke of a pen, as MHProNews understands.

Congressional Republicans have tried to ease the burden of the new regulations on small and medium-sized banks, and have called for the replacement of the sole CFPB director with a commission, as well as bringing the agency under Congressional oversight. Some have said the CFPB needs to be shelved altogether.

Banks and other lenders have spent six years and millions of dollars in attempting to comply with the law, according to newsmax.

John Hall, of the American Bankers Association (ABA), said, “Every law can be improved, and Dodd-Frank is no exception. Sometimes there are drafting errors. Sometimes a good idea in theory turns out to be unworkable after a closer look in the light of day.”

Representative Jeb Hensarling (R-TX), the chairman of the House Financial Services Committee, who has endorsed Mr. Trump, intends to release his own financial reform package in several weeks.

However, Dennis Kelleher of Better Markets said Trump’s plan would be “a slap in the face to the American people who have suffered so much from the 2008 crash.”

While Trump has not discussed specifics of his plan, he suggested that financial institutions should separate commercial banking activities from investment banking.

He did praise Fed Chair Janet Yellen for keeping interest rates low, but when her term expires he would replace her with a Republican.

For more information on an MH related topic, click here. ##

(Photo credit: newsmax–presidential candidate Donald Trump)

matthew-silver-daily-business-news-mhpronews-comArticle submitted by Matthew J. Silver to Daily Business News-MHProNews.

Clayton Weathers Storm, Turns $706M Profit in 2015, 2016 Looking Good

May 6th, 2016 Comments off

clayton_knoxnews_shelley_kimel_creditDespite all the criticism aimed at Berkshire Hathaway’s Clayton Homes over allegations of predatory and discriminatory lending through its two finance wings, marketing director Carl Hill said Clayton has had a very good spring and continued year-over-year growth, according to reuters. As MHProNews has reported monthly, manufactured home (MH) production has been on a rebound since Aug. 2011, and is currently up 25 percent over last year at this time.

Noting that nobody wins if an MH has to be repossessed, Hill said Clayton sold over 34,000 homes last year, resulting in revenue of $3.58 billion, producing a pre-tax profit of $706 million.

He also said one-third of Clayton’s borrowers are Millennials, mostly renters and those with lower credit scores. The next largest percentage are retirees looking to downsize. The prices for the MH start below $50,000, but Hill said the “vast majority sell for under $150,000.”

Speaking at the annual Berkshire Hathaway shareholder’s meeting, Berkshire Chairman Warren Buffett, who had praised CEO Kevin Clayton in Feb. during the firestorm of criticism, said only 2.64 percent of Clayton’s MH loans went into default last year, although the company did lose $157 million on 8,444 foreclosures. What percentage of these originated by other lenders was not disclosed.

As MHProNews reported April 29, 2016, Clayton expanded its reach into the site-built home building market by acquiring middle-Tennessee builder Goodall Homes, its second such acquisition following last year’s $50 million purchase of Chafin Communities of Georgia, as reported here Nov. 2, 2015. ##

(Editor’s Note: for a related story on Warren Buffett, click here.)

(Photo credit: knoxnews/Shelley Kimel)

matthew-silver-daily-business-news-mhpronews-comArticle submitted by Matthew J. Silver to Daily business News-MHProNews.

Pending Home Sales Rise in February

March 29th, 2016 Comments off

pending sale  paul sakuma  AP Photo creditThe National Association of Realtors (NAR) reports its pending home sales index of existing homes rose 3.5 percent in Feb., to 109.1, the highest level in seven months, as cnbc tells MHProNews. With Jan.’s rate revised to indicate a three percent decline, lower than initially perceived, the fluctuating numbers make it difficult to determine the strength of the housing market.

Economists surveyed by Reuters had forecast a rise of 1.2 percent for Feb. Compared to one year ago, contracts have risen 0.7 percent. Typically, a sale is completed a month or two after the contract is signed.

Regionally, pending sales rose the most in the Midwest, +11.4 percent, with more modest gains in the South and West, while the Northeast slipped -0.2 percent, reports the Associated Press. ##

(Photo credit: Associated Press/Paul Sakuma)

matthew-silver-daily-business-news-mhpronews-comArticle submitted by Matthew J. Silver to Daily Business News-MHProNews.

Pending Home Sales Drop in January

March 1st, 2016 Comments off

pending sale  paul sakuma  AP Photo creditAttributing the drop to tight housing inventories, which is limiting choices and increasing prices, the National Association of Realtors (NAR) says its pending home sales index fell 2.5 percent in Jan. to 106.0, the lowest level since Jan. 2014, as yahoofinance tells MHProNews.

In percentages by region, only the South saw a rise in pending home sales, but of only 0.3 percent. They plummeted 4.9 percent in the Midwest, dropped by 4.5 percent in the West, and fell by 3.2 percent in the Northeast. A survey of economists by Reuters had revealed a forecasted rise of 0.5 percent overall.

While pending home sales have been weak lately, some other housing indicators, including the mortgage purchase application data reported through most of February have looked strong, giving us hope the housing market is continuing to recover,” said Daniel Silver, an economist at JPMorgan in New York. ##

(Photo credit: Associated Press/Paul Sakuma)

matthew-silver-daily-business-news-mhpronews-comArticle submitted by Matthew J. Silver to Daily Business News-MHProNews.