How Do You Want People to See You as a Leader? By: Jim Rohn

June 30th, 2015

For a leader, honesty and integrity are absolutely the keys to success.


A lot of people don't realize how closely they're being watched by others. But do you remember when you were a kid in grade school, how you used to sit there staring at your teacher all day? By the end of the school year, you could do a perfect imitation of her mannerisms. You were aware of the slightest nuances in her voice—all the little clues that distinguished levels of meaning and told you the difference between bluff and "I mean business.”


Now fast forward and use that analogy as a manager. How much does your team know about you right this minute? Have you been completely honest with them, or do you feel like you've gotten away with small dishonest things?


An act of dishonesty can't be hidden, and it will instantly undermine the authority of a leader. However, an act of integrity and kindness is just as obvious. When you're in a leadership position, you have the choice of how you will be seen—but you will be seen, one way or the other.


In any organization, people want to believe in their leaders. If you give them reason to trust you, they're not going to go looking for reasons to think otherwise, and they'll be just as perceptive about your positive qualities as they are about the negative ones.

Yet we all know people who have gotten ahead as a result of dishonest or unethical behavior. But like the old saying goes, "Hope of dishonest gain is the beginning of loss.” I don't think it’s referring to loss of money. I think it actually means loss of self-respect. You can have all the material things in the world, but if you've lost respect for yourself, what do you really have? The only way to ever attain success and enjoy it is to achieve it honestly with pride in what you

NY City, 577 shootings in the first half of 2015, 10% more than in the first half of 2014

June 30th, 2015


NEW YORK CITY — the number of people injured by gunfire across the city is up 10 percent so far this year over last, continuing a rise in shootings that has been increasing in recent years, according to NYPD data. Police reported 577 shooting victims across the city between Jan 1 and June 14 of this year, up from 523 during the same time last year, according to their CompStat data.


The department reported 1,390 people shot in all of 2014, 92 more than in 2013, police data shows. "We are struggling with homicides and shootings,” NYPD Chief of Department James O’Neill said during a press conference earlier this month. “As we expect, when warm weather comes, we see an increase in certain crimes.”


The department distinguishes between shooting incidents and shooting victims, as multiple people could be shot during the same incident. The CompStat data does not distinguish between shootings that were fatal and those that were not. Brooklyn has led the city in overall shootings so far this year, with 233 victims in 201 shootings.


But The Bronx's 46th Precinct, which covers Mount Hope and Morris Heights, has recorded the most shooting victims of any individual precinct in the city so far this year, data show. There have been 35 people shot in the 46th Precinct so far this year, a 52 percent rise over this same time last year. Similarly, the 70th Precinct, which covers Ditmas Park and East Flatbush, has seen a 66 percent rise in shooting victims since last year. Twenty people have already been shot in 12 shootings, that trend is on pace to surpass the 29 shot in 2014.


Gun violence also appears to be spreading. There were 10 precincts that reported zero shootings in all of 2014 — six of them in Manhattan. However, in just the first six months of this year, the number of precincts without a single shooting fell to eight. Midtown's three precincts, which all reported no shootings in the entirety of 2014, have already seen one shooting each so far this year. There is also some good news in the statistics.


The number of shootings appears to be slowing in some areas that had posted high numbers in 2014. East Flatbush's 67th Precinct led the city in 2014 with 85 shooting victims in 63 shootings. But there have been 26 people shot there so far this year — an 18 percent drop over this same time last year, police statistics show.


Brownsville, where 83 people were shot in 2014, has only had 25 in 2015 — 35 percent fewer than the same time last year. East New York, which had 77 victims in 2014, has only had 35 this year, which is just a 2.9 percent ahead of last year's pace. And The Bronx, which recorded a shooting in every single precinct so far this year, saw several drops in hotspot areas, including in the South Bronx's 40th Precinct, which covers Port Morris, Mott Haven and Melrose. There were 42 people shot in the precinct last year and only 9 so far this year, stats show. 


The rise of shootings also comes as Mayor Bill de Blasio is taking heat for a rise in crime throughout the city. But, he said putting more police on the streets will help. "We're absolutely confident we're going to turn this around," the mayor said earlier this month. "I have tremendous faith in the NYPD. We went through a similar situation last year. They turned it around very effectively. We've moved hundreds of officers to where the need is greatest," de Blasio said, touting the NYPD's seasonal crime fighting initiative, "Summer All Out."


On Monday, the city approved a budget that includes enough money to hire 1,300 new police officers. "I'm confident that's going to turn the tide," the mayor said.


Agency Purchase Loans Increase Substantially; Risk Index Hits Series High

June 30th, 2015

The number of Agency purchase loans increased substantially year-over-year in May, but with that increase came a slight nudge upward for the National Mortgage Risk Index (NMRI), according to data released Monday by the American Enterprise Institute (AEI)'s International Center on Housing Risk.


The total of Agency purchase loans in the NMRI stood at about 6.2 million at the end of May following the addition of about 223,000 loans during the month – an increase of about 23 percent from May 2014.


May's NMRI stood at 12.33 percent, which was an increase of 0.4 percentage points from the prior three-month average and a jump of 0.7 percentage points from May 2014, according to AEI. The composite risk index reached a series high, as did the index for Veterans Affairs-backed loans, while the share of high-risk loans backed by the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) increased.


The first-time buyer NMRI reached a new series high of 15.66 percent in May, compared with just 8.88 percent for the Repeat Buyer NMRI, according to AEI.


The number of first-time buyer Agency purchase loans added in May totaled nearly 119,000, an increase of 28 percent from May 2014. The total of first-time buyer Agency purchase loans in the NMRI totaled 2.7 million as of the end of May. AEI cites robust first-time buyer volume driven by increasing leverage and an improving job market as the main drivers for a strong spring home buying season.


The AEI's data for May suggest that access to credit for first-time buyers is not tight. During the month, 71 percent of first-time buyers had down payments equal or less than 5 percent and 25 percent had debt-to-income ratios or greater than 43 percent, which is the limit defined by the qualified mortgage rule. The median FICO score for first-time buyers was 706, slightly below the median of 713 for all individuals in the United States, according to AEI.


To this point, low mortgage rates and high leverage have been supporting the housing market; leverage is likely to rise further as mortgage rates normalize unless income gains pick up, AEI reported.



Also according to AEI, the FHA premium cut has boosted its market share at the expense of the Agency's most direct competitors, Fannie Mae and Rural Housing Service, and that more higher-priced homes have been purchased with riskier FHA loans.

Foreclosure Starts, and Delinquencies All Rise Month-Over-Month

June 30th, 2015

May, saw month-over-month increases in foreclosure starts, non-current residential housing inventory, and mortgage delinquencies, according to Black Knight Financial Services.


Non-current inventory, which is comprised of all residential properties 30 days or more delinquent or in foreclosure, totaled approximately 3.3 million in May – an increase of about 89,000 from April, according to Black Knight. It was the second consecutive month-over-month increase for non-current inventory; despite this, May's total was down by more than half a million (537,000 loans) from May 2014. The state with the largest six-month improvement in non-current inventory was Florida, which had a non-current inventory of 8.31 percent in May – a 22 percent improvement from six months earlier.


The delinquency rate, which is the percentage of properties 30 days or more overdue but not in foreclosure, represented 4.96 percent of all residential mortgage loans nationwide in May – a 4 percent increase from April. May marked the second consecutive month-over-month increase in delinquency rate.


Overall, the number of delinquent mortgages jumped by 98,000 up to about 2.5 million in May.  Despite the increase in delinquent loans for the last two months, the delinquency rate is still down by 12 percent from May 2014 and is at its lowest point since the summer of 2007, according to Black Knight.


Foreclosure starts climbed by 11 percent nationwide from April to May, from 73,500 up to 81,900, just one month after declining by nearly 22 percent from March to April.



The foreclosure pre-sale inventory rate ticked slightly downward month-over-month by about 10,000 properties to 754,000 in May, representing 1.49 percent of all mortgages nationwide. May's foreclosure inventory total represented a decline of about 212,000 properties (22 percent) from May 2014, according to Black Knight.

SFR Vacancy Rate Stays Flat While Delinquency Rate Rises Slightly

June 30th, 2015

Vacancy rates among single-family rental securitizations remained relatively flat month-over-month despite a general trend of a rising number of lease expirations,  according to data reported by Morningstar Credit Ratings in its June 2015 Single-Family Research: Performance Summary Covering All Morningstar Rated Securitizations released Monday.


The Morningstar data found that delinquency rates rose slightly across all transactions even though the number of tenants late on their rent payments remained low. The transaction with the highest number of tenants with delinquent payments (out of the 17 single-borrower, single-family rental securitizations covered in the report) was ARP 2014-SFR1 (Atlas Resource Partners), which increased from 2.3 percent in April to 2.4 percent in May. The vacancy rate on the APR transaction dropped from 8.0 percent in April to 7.3 percent in May and is way down from its peak of 10.0 percent reached in February.


However, whereas the ARP transaction was the only one out of 17 securitizations that reported a delinquency rate of 1 percent of higher in April, the number increased to six out of 17 securitizations with a delinquency rate above the 1 percent level in May.


The ARP 2014-SFR 1 and SBY 2014-1 (Silver Bay Realty) reported an elevated number of month-to-month (MTM) leases compared to the other 15 securitizations, according to Morningstar. The ARP and SBY transactions reported 10.8 percent and 7.4 percent of properties with MTM leases in May, respectively (down from 11.0 percent and 8.4 percent in April), but still remained higher than other single-family securitizations, which generally reported MTM shares of lower than 5 percent. "Not surprisingly, these two securitizations report higher retention rates for their MTM leases," the report said. "MTM tenants are usually subject to a monthly fee, which may encourage MTM tenants to eventually sign full-time leases."


Overall, monthly retention rates remained in the mid-70s to low-80s range, according to Morningstar.

"Vacancy rates generally remain low, cash flows remain sufficient to cover bond obligations, and the asset class mostly shows performance in line with its recent history," Morningstar said in the report.