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The Recession Trickles Up

This column was written by CBS News Early Show Co-Anchor Harry Smith.

I've been writing in this space for two years now about the sub prime crisis.

And of course those toxic loans and the instruments bank used to pretend the loans weren't toxic have left all of us in a world of financial hurt.

The median price of homes fell 15 percent from December 2007 to December 2008, reflecting the growing number of houses on the market and the absence of people wanting to buy them. Last month there was an uptick in sales of existing homes, but my hunch is homes are turning over in places with fire sale prices, and in the price range of $200,000 and less.

But hang on, the giants are beginning to fall. Today's Wall Street Journal informs us that the number of failing jumbo mortgages is on the rise. Nearly seven percent of jumbo mortgages that average $750,000 are 90 days late.

So look for a growing number of "For Sale" signs on McMansions. Before the recession, America was turning into a country of haves and have-nots. Suddenly all of us have a lot more in common.
By Harry Smith

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