Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Why American housing prices are soaring

Just basic Adam Smith law of supply and demand stuff. Housing prices are rising because of demand. Why create even more demand by encouraging illegal immigrants to buy homes? The needs of Americans should come first.

Recent press reports indicate the federal government is making it easier for illegal immigrants to buy homes in the United States. In fact, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation which supervises the savings and loan industry actively promotes it. Yesterday, I learned at first hand the Treasury Department's Comptroller of the Currency's office which regulates the national banks simply looks the other way by asking no questions.

Because of such news stories I asked at the Oakland, CA mortgage office of one of America's biggest money center banks in which I own shares whether they screened for illegal immigrants. They don't because of "anti-discrimination" laws. It's not discrimination and is also good business to ask an applicant if their presence in the United States is legal. Besides aiding and abetting a crime, if the person eventually is deported, the property could end up in foreclosure creating a loss to the bank.

I asked a senior Treasury official about this. Replied the department only responds to problems brought to its attention by government bank examiners. There are no plans to ask the national banks to enquire about an applicant's legal residency status.

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