Archive for June, 2011

Bank of America Settlement Could Open Up the Foreclosure Market

Thursday, June 30th, 2011

We’ve talked at length about the pending mortgage fraud settlement currently in negotiations between the federal government, 50 state governments, and five major lenders – including the Bank of America, among others. We’ve pointed out how foreclosure filings have ground to a halt in many jurisdictions while the mortgage scandal was getting sorted out between lenders – who have all but admitted guilt – and the government.

Now, it appears that a . If this occurs, then foreclosure proceedings and slow processing times that have made up the bulk of what is slowing down the foreclosure market may go away sooner rather than later.

The Bank of America is one of the major entities at the heart of this deal, and it is closer to reaching an agreement with the government than other banks. In fact, it announced that it will pay who received the raw end of the deal.

Among the charges is the claim that the BoA, instead of foreclosing on bad mortgages, continued to service them, racking up servicing fees and still profiting off of loans that could not satisfactorily back the securities purchased by many investors.

Of course, the settlement option – independent of whatever may come down from the government in the coming weeks or months – doesn’t come close to attacking the $300 billion worth of securities that various real estate investors hold.

But, one good thing about this news for the market is that foreclosure filings will probably pick up, meaning the shadow inventory of homes waiting to be foreclosed will start to diminish. As this gradually occurs, investors and homebuyers will have even more buying options – and home prices will have another incentive to finally rise.

Follow this case closely; the closer these banks come to an agreement with the government, the better of a situation it will be for you if you want to invest in the foreclosure market or purchase a discounted home.

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Justin Timberlake to Run MySpace

Thursday, June 30th, 2011

Social media is something that has evolved quite a bit from just a few years ago. Back in the day, we were able to communicate with each other using an instant messaging program such as AOL IM or we could send email, there weren’t that many different ways to communicate. One of the biggest innovations on the scene in the past decade was MySpace. When it started, everyone jumped on that bandwagon and it seemed as though everyone and their mother had a MySpace. It was a good innovation that brought people together and led to a revolution of social media that is till occurring to this day. MySpace was copied and many tried to make money off of the platform, but there were many problems with MySpace. Too much spam and advertising, including shady ads for Cialis and obvious , cluttered pages and people were allowed to make their own designs. While in theory that seemed like a good idea, it actually backfired and pages took too long to load and messages with video or sound would auto-play, creating chaos on a webpage. The format faded away as Facebook took a similar concept and unveiled itself to the world.

500 million uses later, we know who is on top. Facebook has revolutionized the way we communicate with friends and family. It’s simple interface and integration with other sites has streamlined social media and has put MySpace on the backburner. In the Internet world, things come and go at a rather quick pace and the overall value of a website can change daily. In the case of , New Corporation paid $580 million for the site in 2005 and now has sold it to the highest bidder. Unfortunately, as with old technology, it isn’t really worth much. News Corporation only got $35 for the site, which amounts to a staggering $545 million loss on a gamble. Specific Media bought MySpace in hopes to revitalize the site and add more music and videos. It will be run by someone who is not only intimately involved with social media, but also in the music industry. Justin Timberlake will now run MySpace with a small staff of about 6 working with him all the time to help him with his new ideas for the site.

Evolution is the key to staying viable in the Internet business. Many experts believe that the only good aspects of MySpace were those that involved music acts and artists. Mr. Timberlake is dedicated to turning around MySpace and making it the destination for artist collaboration and will try new and exciting ideas to make that happen. $35 million is not a large for such a known commodity. If Justin takes the right steps and truly makes it about the music and forgoes all of the banner and advertising issues that the site has had for the past 5 or more years. A cleaner interface and a tighter focus might just save this Internet dinosaur of a site, but the jury is still out and there is a lot of work to be done.

Have fun wreaking havoc with the powers at hand