A common theme in what we have come to call "disaster data" is that the next set of "disaster data" will almost uniformly be worse than expected, and that it will follow weeks of talking heads insisting that the worst is past us, since the last data set was so ugly.
One in five U.S. homeowners with mortgages owe more to their lenders than their properties are worth, and the rate will increase as housing values drop in states that have so far avoided the worst of the crisis, a new study shows.
About 8.31 million properties had negative equity at the end of 2008, up 9 percent from 7.63 million at the end of September, according to the study, released Wednesday by First American CoreLogic. The percentage of "underwater" borrowers rose to 20 percent from 18 percent.
One in five U.S. mortgage borrowers are underwater [Reuters]