U.S. housing market took December hit, but “crazy spring” could make up for lost ground

U.S. home sales fell hard in December, as in a 6.4-percent decline from November and a 10.3-percent drop from a year earlier, according to a monthly update Tuesday from the National Association of Realtors.

Big shifts like that are rare and usually associated with the rollout of a government program. There weren’t any. Big drops can also signal an economic slowdown, although the evidence is still mixed on that front.

“The latest decline is harder to explain. Perhaps it is the decline in consumer confidence that’s been occurring in the latter half of 2018,” said Lawrence Yun, chief economist for the NAR in […] Read more

Shutdown could hit federal workers’ credit scores

As the U.S. government’s partial shutdown stretched into its 21st day Friday, federal workers who’ve been furloughed or forced to work without pay are scrambling to avoid getting dinged by lenders and credit-reporting agencies for skipping loan payments that could damage their credit scores. Missing just one payment on a credit card, for example, can knock up to 100 points off a consumer’s credit score, and it can take several years to recover the deficit, according to experts. 

Some lenders, including banks and auto-leasing companies, say they are making concessions to accommodate government […] Read more

Union Pacific (UNP) Hit By Seaport Global Upgrade. Has $165 Target; Equifax (EFX) Sellers Increased By 16.36% Their Shorts – Hi New Ulm

In a an analyst report issued to investors and clients on Tuesday, 8 January, expert analysts at Seaport Global’s equities division increased Union Pacific (NYSE:UNP)‘s stock from a Neutral to Buy. They have a target of $165 on UNP or 8.78% more upside.

Equifax Inc (NYSE:EFX) had an increase of 16.36% in short interest. EFX’s SI was 3.25 million shares in January as released by FINRA. Its up 16.36% from 2.79 million shares previously. With 1.47 million avg volume, 2 days are for Equifax Inc (NYSE:EFX)’s short sellers to cover EFX’s short positions. The SI to Equifax Inc’s float […] Read more

Billions hit by growing number of cyberattacks

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The hotel chain told media outlets it will cover passport replacement costs for guests affected by fraud as a result of its recent data breach.
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Marriott says as many as 500 million people who made reservations at Starwood properties worldwide may have had their personal information accessed in a breach that lasted as long as four years. Among those hotels are Sheraton Hotels & Resorts and Westin Hotels & Resorts including the Westin Lima Hotel & Convention Center in Lima, Peru, shown here.(Photo: Marriott)

When […] Read more

Memphis’ Titan customers may have been hit by data breach

A clear shield over a background of digits(Photo: Getty Images)

Online customers of Memphis-based Titan Manufacturing and Distributing may have been victims of a data breach.

Titan’s computer system was “compromised by malware” from Nov. 23, 2017, through Oct. 25, 2018, according to a letter the company sent to customers who ordered from one of its stores online during that timeframe.

“The malware was programmed to access your shopping cart including your name, billing address, telephone number, payment card number, expiration date and verification code,” Titan said in the letter, penned by CEO Robert Hill. “We do […] Read more

The Housing Market Is Sliding Down The Wall It Hit In Late August

 — Published: Monday, 17 December 2018 | Print  | Disqus 

By Dave Kranzler

A couple of my subscribers emailed me expressing frustration over the fact that their recent homebuilder puts are either not moving higher or losing value despite the sell-off in the overall stock market. There’s two factors. First, the homebuilder sector has dropped well over 30% since late January. To an extent there may be some seller’s fatigue. At some point there will be short term rally that could generate at 15-25% bounce in the sector. I believe that rally will occur from a lower level on the […] Read more

Equifax says cyber attack may have hit 2.5 million more US consumers

WASHINGTON, Oct 2 (Reuters) – Equifax Inc was alerted in March to the software security vulnerability that led to hackers obtaining personal information of more than 140 million Americans but took months to patch it, its former CEO said in testimony to be delivered to Congress on Tuesday.

“It appears that the breach occurred because of both human error and technology failures,” former CEO Richard Smith said in written testimony released on Monday by the Energy and Commerce Committee.

Separately, Equifax said late Monday that an outside review determined about 2.5 million additional U.S. consumers were potentially impacted, for a revised total of 145.5 million.

RELATED: Cybersecurity tips

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Equifax data breach hit 2.5 million more Americans than first believed

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Richard Smith is out as Chairman and CEO of Equifax.
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Equinox offices in Atlanta(Photo: Mike Stewart, AP)

SAN FRANCISCO — Equifax said hackers may have stolen the personal information of 2.5 million more U.S. consumers than it initially estimated, bringing the total to 145.5 million.

The company said the additional customers  were not victims of a new attack but rather victims who the company had not counted before. Equifax hired the forensic security firm Mandiant to investigate the breach, and it finished its report on Sunday.

News of the new […] Read more