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Now that we're three weeks into 2011, we think everyone in the industry has stated their opinion, from mortgage lending to the Bears' Super Bowl chances. So today we bring you the last (maybe) of this year's forecasts. Now who's ready for a year in review?
Inland's Joe Cosenza and Bank of America's Glenda Gabriel
Borders is the falling elephant that might go out of business this year now that everyone has an e-reader and is purchasing books online, according to Inland Real Estate Cos' Joe Cosenza, who kicked off the postulating by talking retail at the Chicago Association of Realtors conference yesterday. With a reported9.2% delinquency in commercial mortgages, Joe thinks the best thing to buy this year is someone else's debt. Bank of America'sGlenda Gabriel says consumers are still wondering if now is the right time to buy a home, which will keep residential buying slow.
Michael Miller, Russ Haraus and Dennis Rodkin
Despite uncertainty, retail sales have grown 4% in the last six months, mostly because people are tired of not buying things, says DePaul economist Michael Miller. And Illinois' 67% rise in income taxes will drive some businesses out of state because it's now at acompetitive disadvantage to Indiana, Iowa, and Missouri. Appraisal Research Counselors' Russ Haraus says we have to get used to a new normal; that is, unemployment rates will continue to be above average throughout 2011.
Fifth Third Mortgage's Michael Klein and Bank of America's David Kasprisin and Coby Hakalir
We snapped Fifth Third Mortgage's Michael Klein and Bank of America's David Kasprisin and Coby Hakalir before the event. They report that lending is getting healthier, but Michael's unsure of what recent federal financial reform acts will lead to. David says he's seen a lot of pre-approvals for home loans in the last month, so maybe consumers are actually starting to look again.