Saturday, March 14, 2009

A few who got it right: What do those who called the downturn think?

From MarketWatch:

The financial markets are littered with the broken reputations of so-called "experts" who failed to anticipate the global financial crisis, or the recession and bear market that have followed.
Finance ministers, central bankers, Wall Street strategists, famed economists, hotshot hedge-fund bosses, former star mutual fund managers and, yes, journalists and cable-television bloviators all dropped the ball big time in the years leading up to the current meltdown.

But a handful of brave souls got it right. Economist Nouriel Roubini, analyst Meredith Whitney and some others have gone on to fame and fortune for warning about the disaster to come.
They weren't alone. Economist Gary Shilling, options specialist Larry McMillan, strategist Sandy Jadeja and market technician Dan Sullivan all saw a big bear market ahead and advised moving money to the sidelines before the roof collapsed. We caught up with them in the midst of this week's rally to get their take on what's ahead.

Most believe we're getting pretty close to a market bottom, but we'll have to go through more pain before we get there. None thinks the current rally is for real.
Shilling, a longtime Cassandra and publisher of "Insight," has warned about the housing and credit bubbles for years and repeatedly predicted that the current recession would be deep. His 13 predictions for 2008 were right on the money.

Excess housing
And guess what? He's still bearish on housing. Shilling estimates there's excess inventory of 2.4 million homes on the market and "it's taking a long time to work that [down.]"
That's why home prices have a way to go before they bottom: He's looking for a peak-to- trough decline of 40% in housing prices nationwide. As of the fourth quarter, the 20-city Standard & Poor's/Case-Shiller home price index had fallen 27% from its high in 2006....MORE