Denton County home prices shattered records last month. The median price of a home in the area hit $410,000, up 22.4 percent from the same time a year ago. The average price of a Denton County home hit $506,957, shattering the previous high set in June. The new average home price above half a $million was 29.7 percent higher than August of 2020.

Average prices for new construction and resale properties hit new records last month as inventory remained in the basement. The number of homes available for sale in Denton County dipped slightly from the previous month. Months of supply remained at 1.1 because of cooling sales numbers. Both sales and the percent of list metrics show the market is gasping for oxygen with prices at nosebleed levels. Closed sales in Denton County fell 15 percent from the same time a year ago. Pending sales were down 10 percent.

The entire North Texas market showed continued declining sales activity. Home sales in the DFW area were 5 percent lower in August, with pending sales showing a similar decline. Record high prices and rampant economic inflation are beginning to eat away at buyer’s demand for homes. The producer price index for August showed a whopping 8.3 percent year-over-year jump in August. That was the largest jump since 2010. Businesses continue to complain about labor shortages, supply-chain bottlenecks and rampant inflation.

It’s almost as though boatloads of central bank liquidity is distorting asset markets everywhere you look. As a reminder, the Federal Reserve is STILL engaged in asset purchases to the tune of $120 billion per month! There has been no taper announcement from the Powell Fed, and Jerome has continued to stick to his transitory inflation road show. Some real estate investors are catching on to the game, as they have begun unloading their artificially inflated assets into this overheated market. Probably not a bad idea considering the taper is eventually coming.

Fed Balance Sheet September 8 2021

It looks like someone else will be selling assets. There was a major news story that broke this week, while being completely ignored by every major Dallas media outlet. I wonder why? (rhetorical question). The Wall Street Journal detailed how Dallas Fed president, Robert Kaplan, had been actively trading stock during the Covid pandemic. Kaplan is what you might call a 0.1 percenter.

“Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas President Robert Kaplan made multiple million-dollar-plus stock trades in 2020, according to a financial disclosure form provided by his bank.”

That’s just for starters. Apparently Kaplan, a Goldman alum, has 27 different asset holdings valued at a $million or more, including some bond ETFs. As David Belle noted, the optics of Kaplan’s trading activity last year are beyond terrible.

“The Fed had never bought corporate bond ETFs before. The year they do, Kaplan is active in the space. Again, sure, this might be a very feasible investment strategy. But one thing matters when you’re in the public eye…OPTICS”

This week’s tragicomedy was accompanied by a CNBC appearance from former Dallas Fed chief, Richard Fisher, excusing Kaplan’s behavior as no big deal. Apparently it was a big deal, because Bloomberg reported that Robert Kaplan and Boston Fed chief, Eric Rosengren will be selling their stock holdings to avoid the appearance of any conflict of interest”. It would seem the Federal Reserve’s ethics policies are about as robust as big bank stress tests.

For the guys with a seat at the table like Powell, Kaplan, Rosengren an other elites, rampant home price inflation is probably a minor concern, especially if they have significant real estate holdings to profit from rising prices. To think that Martha Stewart spent time in a federal prison and Pete Rose received a lifetime ban from baseball, yet somehow these Fed officials are getting a free pass to cash in their holdings with stock prices near all-time record highs. This is the kind of behavior you would expect in a corrupt third-world dictatorship, but apparently that’s where we have arrived. Just when you think the public’s trust in our major financial institutions can’t sink any lower, the Federal Reserve manages to stoop to new lows.

Pam & Russ Martens understand the underbelly of Wall Street as well as anyone. They note that the recent outrage over Federal Reserve presidents’ trading activity is just the tip of the iceberg.

“This level of arrogance on the part of two Fed Presidents is part of an overarching level of contempt for the sensibilities of the American people by the Federal Reserve over many decades.

On August 7 of last year, Wall Street On Parade reported that Fed Chairman, Jerome Powell, was having private phone calls with BlackRock CEO, Larry Fink, while BlackRock managed upwards of $25 million of Powell’s personal money and the Fed awarded three no-bid contracts to BlackRock.

One of those no-bid contracts allowed BlackRock to use Fed money to buy up corporate bonds and Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs) in the secondary market, including BlackRock’s own ETFs. American taxpayers’ money was used to backstop losses in these operations.”

That kind of sums up the current state of the U.S. financial system and who it really serves. Jerome Powell is also involved in the recent scandal of conflicted trading. After initially reporting that Powell’s holdings were in a blind trust, CNBC has updated their story on the shady activities among Fed officials, noting that Powell himself had control over the municipal bonds he was invested in.

“This story has been updated to reflect new information. Fed Chair Powell owned the municipal bonds in question in a joint account over which he had control. Due to incorrect information provided by the Federal Reserve, CNBC reported initially that Powell owned the munis in a family trust over which he had no control.”

Go figure! It should be clear at this point these Fed officials are not sorry about their behavior. They are just sorry the public found out out about it.

The housing market is still chugging along with mortgage rates near record lows.

U.S. Mortgage Interest Rates September 9 2021

Rates are still low, because they have to be low to keep the wheels from falling off the wagon. Once the latest debt ceiling charade passes, you can expect another major increase in the U.S. debt bubble…and the interest expense that comes with it.

Total U.S. Public Debt Q2 2021

As insiders like regional Fed presidents cash in at the Wall Street table of bountiful central bank liquidity, America’s middle class continues to get gutted like a fish. That’s the nature of trickle-down economics. Trickle-down monetary policy is just as big a con as trickle-down fiscal policy. The entrenched political and financial class reaps the spoils while they toss a few crumbs to workers in the hopes of maintaining their grip on the power structures that made them wealthy.

Net Worth Share 50 to 90 Percentile Q1 2021