Wednesday, August 29, 2007

David Lereah Admits He Was Wrong

David Lereah, admitted that his predictions were wrong. In a New York Times article:

Perhaps the most prominent housing booster was David Lereah, the chief economist at the National Association of Realtors until April. In 2005, he published a book titled, “Are You Missing the Real Estate Boom?” In 2006, it was updated and rereleased as “Why the Real Estate Boom Will Not Bust.” This year, Mr. Lereah published a new book, “All Real Estate Is Local.”

In an interview, Mr. Lereah, now an executive at Move Inc., which operates a real estate Web site, acknowledged he had gotten it wrong, saying he did not fully realize how loose lending standards had become and how quickly they would tighten up again this summer. But he argued that many of his critics have also been proved wrong, because they were bearish as early as 2002.

“The bears were bears way too early, and the bulls were bulls too late,” he said. “You need to know when you are straying from fundamentals. It’s hard, when you are in the middle of the storm, to know.”

It is heartening to know that Mr. Lereah now admits that he was wrong. Notice how even though he admits his mistake, he is still busy pointing out that some of the bubbleheads (aka realists) were also wrong.


At 9:39 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

“You need to know when you are straying from fundamentals. It’s hard, when you are in the middle of the storm, to know.”

What was so hard to figure out? Clearly, people couldn't have "afforded" all of these $900,000 houses on $100k/year (combined household) incomes without the insane creative financing. It was quite obvious that those loans were clearly going to bite the owner's in the ass.

The funniest thing about this bubble bursting is that I, along with millions of others, saw it coming 10,000 miles away. It was very easy to figure out. A true economist, such as Lereah claims to have been, should have known better.

At 11:31 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

If you purport to be an expert, give advice in the field in which you claim to be an expert, and the result leads to an injury or loss to a person who took the advice, then I think a lawsuit in negligence would naturally follow.

Lereah had a duty to those who bought his book and took his advice, he breached his duty by misinforming those people and there is damage resulting.

A classic case of negligence. He could be sued to recover losses.

At 10:43 AM, Blogger Pegasus said...

It is one thing to be wrong and another thing to intentionally mislead people to defraud them. Saying you made mistakes does not let you off the hook when you intentionally lied to the public.

Lereah was placed into a position of trust and power both of which he badly abused to mislead the public so deviantly. Time for Lereah to come to justice for what he did.

At 7:38 PM, Blogger bearmaster said...

Time does not move backwards. The housing bears in 2002 correctly saw a disaster down the road. The disaster took a bit longer to reach than anticipated, but it's here. Sorry Lereah, blaming the bears for being too early doesn't wash.

At 2:03 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi David
I would like to interview you for the Real Deal Magazine
My name is Jen Benepe, and I can be reached at

At 11:49 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Didn't see it coming? I would normally say, admitting you were wrong is quite noble, but, didn't see it coming? I have been a part of the Marin real estate market, a market that is usually unaffected compared to most markets...and I saw it coming from miles away. Hmmmmm, maybe, I should start writing books.


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