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Real estate by the numbers

Diary of a Real Estate Rookie

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I work with words a lot, but I wouldn't love real estate the way I do if I didn't have a feel for numbers too. So over the past week, as I've been reading news stories, I've been making notes about some interesting numbers that have popped up here and there. Sometimes my curiosity would lead me to track down another number -- all data is as current as possible. 1.17: the percent of prime jumbo loans made in the beginning of 2007 that are expected to lose money for their investors, according to Standard and Poor's rating agency. That "vintage" has a projected loan loss rate greater than the vintage of 2006 (0.81 percent) and 2005 (0.32 percent) indicating that loan standards got looser as the party wore on. The projected loss rate from similar subprime loans? 27 percent. 4: the number of houses Sen. John McCain's campaign initially guessed that he owned (as opposed to his answer, "I can't tell"). The actual number, according to news reports, is seven. Z...