Interesting Personal Debt News Links (February 27, 2009)

February 27, 2009

* Mortgage-fraud defendant sentenced to seven years in prison (Sanjay Bhatt, Seattle Times)

A federal judge sentenced a former Bellevue loan officer today to seven years in prison for perpetrating what prosecutors say is one of the largest home-mortgage fraud cases brought so far in Western Washington.

* House prices fall to lowest level on record says Land Registry (Myra Butterworth, Telegraph)

The Land Registry said house prices dropped by a record 15.1 per cent in January compared with a year ago. It is the largest drop since the Land Registry began its records in January 1995.

* ‘ALZHEIMER’ SCAMMER GETS 2 YRS. (William J. Gorta, New York Post)

A former Long Islander was sentenced on hate-crime charges yesterday for pulling a brazen, $800,000 mortgage scam on a 94-year-old Alzheimer’s victim, officials said.

* JPMorgan Chase to cut 14,000 jobs as it braces for losses (Sacramento Business Journal)

JPMorgan Chase told investors Thursday that it will cut 14,000 jobs, up from a previously announced 9,200 in December.

* Economy shrinks at fastest pace in 26 years (Jeannine Aversa-)

The economy contracted at a staggering 6.2 percent pace at the end of 2008, the worst showing in a quarter-century, as consumers and businesses ratcheted back spending, plunging the country deeper into recession.The Commerce Department report released Friday showed the economy sinking much faster than the 3.8 percent annualized drop for the October-December quarter first estimated last m…

* Lloyds counts cost of HBOS takeover and property slump as 500,000 customers slip into negative equity (Times Online)

The number of mortgage-holders borrowing from Lloyds Banking Group that are trapped in negative equity surged last year to half a million, the group, which is 43 per cent owned by the taxpayer, revealed yesterday.

* Jobless claims hit new record high, again (Jeannine Aversa-)

WASHINGTON The economy’s downhill slide at the end of last year was likely much steeper than the government initially thought and it is probably doing just as poorly now if not worse as a relentless slew of negative forces feed on each other, pushing the country deeper into recession.

* Chase to cut 14,000 jobs (San Francisco Business Times)

J.P. Morgan Chase told investors Thursday that it will cut 14,000 jobs, up from a previously announced 9,200 in December.

* Foreclosure jump could rock suburbs (The Gamecock)

With astronomical foreclosure rates, skyrocketing energy prices looming as soon as the economy recovers and a newfound concern for environmental affairs, the suburbs look to be headed toward downsizing.

* Economists disagree on crises’ causes (Lois M. Collins, Deseret Morning News)

We’re not all experiencing the recession in the same way, so even economists don’t agree on what economic recovery is going to look like when it happens, members of the CFA Society of Salt Lake heard at their fifth annual economic-forecast breakfast Thursday.


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