Interesting Personal Debt News Links (March 1, 2009)

March 1, 2009

* Letter: Shame belongs to politicians (Appeal-Democrat)

On Jan. 29, President Obama called the bonuses paid to Wall Street employees shameful. Radio host Tom Sullivan reported that up to 90 percent of wages earned by Wall Street employees are in the form of bonuses. The term shameful should be applied to many others before it is used to label Wall Street employees.

* Washington Mutual kept mortgage payments so low, loan balances ballooned (Dallas Morning News)

During the great American housing bubble, many mortgage loans were made with little attention to borrowers’ ability to repay over the long term.

* Wall Street touches 12-year low (Sydney Morning Herald)

THE Australian share market is expected to open lower today following a drop on Wall Street, before attention shifts to the Reserve Bank of Australia’s meeting tomorrow.

* Bargain dilemma (Megan K. Scott-)

NEW YORK – In “Confessions of a Shopaholic,” a 20-something glam girl has a serious problem: She can’t stop shopping and her credit card debt is mounting.

* Buffett blames himself, others for losses (Akron Beacon Journal)

Renowned investor Warren E. Buffett was uncharacteristically critical of himself and the business world at large in his annual letter to shareholders of his holding company Saturday, as he sifted through the wreckage of his worst year in four decades.

* Don’t worry about losing hours, Lake workers told (Orlando Sentinel)

TAVARES — Lake County won’t cut employee hours to pay for a projected budget imbalance this fiscal year, County Manager Cindy Hall informed workers late Friday in an e-mail obtained by the Orlando Sentinel .

* Governments new Citi plan may serve as model (Newsweek)

WASHINGTON – The government made another run at saving Citigroup Inc. on Friday, giving taxpayers a bigger stake in its fortunes with a plan that could become a model for saving the nation’s most troubled big banks.

* Wanted: Full-time housing court (Sharon Coolidge, Kentucky Enquirer)

For six years, lackadaisical landlords and errant property owners have spent their Friday mornings answering to a judge about why they failed to keep their properties in good shape.

* House prices fall 18% in year to February, says Nationwide (Mathieu Robbins, The Independent Online)

House prices fell by a bigger-than-expected 1.8 per cent in February for a record annual decline of 17.6 per cent, figures from the mortgage lender Nationwide showed yesterday.

* Dallas Mayor Tom Leppert had front-row seat to Washington Mutual’s collapse (Dallas Morning News)

After a conference call with fellow board members of Washington Mutual on Oct. 15, 2007, Dallas Mayor Tom Leppert boarded a night flight to Seattle to attend a full meeting of directors the next day in the company’s hometown.

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