May 29 2011 Earthquake Swarm in North Eastern United States

Map showing earthquakes

Earthquake List for Map Centered at 42°N, 75°W

Update time = Sun May 29 13:00:03 UTC 2011

Here are the earthquakes in the Map Centered at 42°N, 75°W area, most recent at the top.
(Some early events may be obscured by later ones.)
Click on the underlined portion of an earthquake record in the list below for more information.

MAG UTC DATE-TIME LAT deg LON DEPTH km LOCATION
MAP 1.3 2011/05/29 08:33:07 40.823 -73.973 8.0 1 km ( 0 mi) S of Edgewater, NJ
MAP 1.7 2011/05/28 01:33:53 40.083 -74.989 4.2 4 km ( 2 mi) W of Cornwells Heights-Eddington, PA
MAP 1.2 2011/05/27 21:50:06 44.606 -74.573 6.8 25 km ( 16 mi) S of Brushton, NY
MAP 1.4 2011/05/27 21:05:45 44.738 -75.065 12.9 5 km ( 3 mi) WSW of Norwood, NY
MAP 2.8 2011/05/27 02:18:17 43.399 -78.346 5.0 9 km ( 6 mi) NNE of Lyndonville, NY
MAP 1.5 2011/05/26 03:43:50 45.147 -75.117 7.0 30 km ( 19 mi) NW of Massena, NY
MAP 1.3 2011/05/24 07:31:07 43.748 -71.485 8.5 10 km ( 6 mi) N of Meredith, NH
MAP 2.3 2011/05/24 07:13:33 45.544 -75.098 14.0 25 km ( 16 mi) E of Cumberland, Canada
MAP 2.0 2011/05/23 19:56:22 43.497 -74.129 7.0 19 km ( 12 mi) E of Speculator, NY
MAP 1.5 2011/05/23 13:39:51 45.211 -74.240 6.7 10 km ( 6 mi) SW of Salaberry-de-Valleyfield, Canada

May 27 2011 Pending home sales dive 11.6 percent in April

On Friday May 27, 2011, 10:32 am EDT

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Pending sales of existing U.S. homes dropped far more than expected in April to touch a seven-month low, a trade group said on Friday, dealing a blow to hopes of a recovery in the housing market.

U.S. consumer sentiment improved in May as job gains offset high gasoline prices, while inflation expectations diminished, a survey released on Friday showed.

COMMENTS:

MARC PADO, U.S. MARKET STRATEGIST, CANTOR FITZGERALD & CO. IN SAN FRANCISCO

“The bigger picture is that housing isn’t really at the heart of the economic recovery in the first place so to see a down number like this while disappointing is probably not critical to the bigger picture in the economy.”

PIERRE ELLIS, SENIOR ECONOMIST, DECISION ECONOMICS, NEW YORK

“The pending home sales figure is very negative when taken at face value, but it’s not clear that this is a valid reading. Compared to government releases, it’s a small survey and still a bit experimental. Taken at face value, it’s an indication that people have become unwilling to buy houses. Last month pending sales were relatively strong, but the actual existing home closings that occurred a month later were flat so a lot of contracts apparently were not financed. This month it looks like the willingness to buy at all seems to have evaporated.

“The sentiment numbers were good. The inflation expectations were also a good result. The number from late in May declined from the early month reading for both the near-term and longer-term inflation expectations.

“The five- to 10-year expectations are of great importance to the Fed because they amount to a vote of confidence in the Fed’s ability to control inflation. We’re finding out that the short-term inflation developments do impact short-term inflation expectations, but don’t seem to be impacting longer-term inflation expectations.”

JACOB OUBINA, SENIOR U.S. ECONOMIST, RBC CAPITAL MARKETS, NEW YORK

“Pending home sales saw a sizable increase earlier this year as people were front running the increase in PMI insurance. Now we are seeing some payback from that. This is a testament to the spring selling season and what we have at hand is pretty horrendous.”

“This paints a picture for existing home sales to fall back below the 5 million mark as pending home sales lead existing home sales by one to two months. There was absolutely nothing positive in this report. Housing remains in a depression right now. People are talking about a double-dip, but we never even recovered.”

SEAN INCREMONA, ECONOMIST, 4CAST LTD, NEW YORK

“Very disappointing. We kind of had a base-case scenario that housing was going to improve in the second quarter but now it looks like things are not getting off the floor at all.

“This would offset any positive outlook for the economy. The Fed knows housing’s weak, the Fed’s still on the dovish side of the game. This is unlikely to affect policy, especially if this does turn out to be below the other data.”

RUDY NARVAS, SENIOR ECONOMIST, SOCIETE GENERALE, NEW YORK

“Pending home sales were pretty much a disaster, well below market expectations. They are saying this had to do with inclement weather, but overall the headline does not look good and this points to pretty dismal new homes sales and existing homes sales for May.”

GUS FAUCHER, DIRECTOR OF MACROECONOMICS, MOODY’S ANALYTICS, WEST CHESTER, PENNSYLVANIA

“There may some temporary factors like bad weather in the Southeast. Higher gasoline may be making potential home buyers a bit cautious. It is signaling further weakness in housing, but we do expect housing to turn around later this year. It just hasn’t happened yet.”

“Lending has loosened up a bit. It’s a not a good sign it’s not happening yet. To get a really strong rebound in the economy, you really need some pickup in housing.”

DAVID ADER, HEAD OF GOVERNMENT BOND STRATEGY AT CRT CAPITAL GROUP, STAMFORD, CONNECTICUT

“U.S. April pending home sales fell 11.6 percent from previous month, led by 17 percent drop in the South. Weather surely had an impact. March pending sales rose 3.5 percent, revised from a 5.1 percent gain. The (Treasury bond) market firms further.”

VIMOMBI NSHOM, ECONOMIST, IFR ECONOMICS, A UNIT OF THOMSON REUTERS:

“After March’s unexpected 5.1% increase (now a softer rise of 3.5%), pending home sales sank by 11.6% in April to an index score of 81.9, more confirmation that surprise monthly readings reflecting the housing data eventually level out to general trend of a flat market at a depressed level.

“While April’s decrease is nearly four times that of March’s gain, sales activity — measured by signed contracts — still reflects scores seen in the summer of 2010 just after the expiration of the tax credit, thus despite the magnitude of the decline, we’ve seen this weak level of activity before.

“Pending home sales had indicated a positive existing home sales performance in April — that didn’t materialize — so it would be safe to say that forthcoming sales data will post on the down side. Three of the four regions experienced lower activity, led by the South — the largest home market– with only Northeastern sales rising.”    Read Story >>

May 26 2011 Comet Elenin Time-Line and Path Update

ELENIN Position Update for May 25 2011: By Morpheus of 50kView.com

1 – Comet Elenin is currently at 1.853 AU distance from the earth.

2 – The comet Elenin will pass through the orbit of planet Mars on June 27 2011.

3 – Comet Elenin will reach the orbit pattern of Earth on August 1 2011.

4 – On August 19 2011 comet Elenin will passs through the orbit of Venus.

5 – On September 5 Elenin will reach the orbit of Planet Mercury.

6 – On September 11 2011 the comet Elenin will be at its closest point of its orbit to our Sun which will be a distance of (.482 AU). Elenin will then begin its journey back to outer space on its 11,000 year orbit of our sun. Before Elenin leaves the known solar system it will pass relatively close Earth.

7 – On September 25 2011 the comet Elenin will come in direct alinement with the Earth and our Sun as it passes between. At this point Elenin will be at .412 AU to Earth and .593 AU to the Sun.

9 – On October 17 Elenin will again cross the Earth orbit of the sun. At this date Elenin will be at the very close celestial distance of .232 AU to the Earth.

As comet Elenin approaches the Earth’s orbit and comes in alinement between the Sun and the Earth all types of magnetic, gravitational, electrical and other influences of this comet will affect the tectonic movements of earth, the weather patterns of earth and the communications systems on earth. Crops of food could become affected. Electrical power could be affected. The Ocean’s tidal forces could become affected. The earth’s magnetic polarity could become affected.

The geological history of earth shows that cataclysmic changes did occur about 11,000 years ago when comet Elenin last past by the Earth’s path in its orbit of the Sun.

The comet does not have to hit earth to have monumental affects on the natural rhythms of the Earth.

It would be wise to stock up on food and necessities to be safe rather than sorry you did not prepare. By Morpheus

Read in depth article at: Mar 13 2011 Comet “Elenin” to Pass Very Close to Earth: Path in 2011

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May 26 2011 Foreclosure Homes Driving Market Down with Big supply, low prices

There is a three-year inventory of homes in foreclosure for sale, and that’s devastating home prices.

Las Vegas has so many foreclosures that 53% of all the homes sold in Nevada are in some stage of foreclosure, according to a report from RealtyTrac, the online marketer of foreclosed properties. Foreclosures represent 45% of sales in California and Arizona, and 28% of all existing home sales during the first three months of 2011.

“This is very bad for the economy,” said Rick Sharga, a spokesman for RealtyTrac. What’s more, the homes are selling at steep discounts, especially so-called REOs, bank-owned homes that have been taken in foreclosure procedures.

The average REO cost on average about 35% less than comparable properties, according to RealtyTrac. But in some areas, the discounts were ever greater: In New York State, the discount for REOs was 53% during the first quarter. And it was nearly 50% in Illinois, Ohio, and Wisconsin.

Also weighing on market prices are “short sales,” homes where the selling price is less than what is owed by the borrowers. These sales sold at an average 9% discount. Including both REOs and short sales, Ohio had the biggest discount of any state, at 41%. There were 158,000 deals involving distressed properties nationwide during the first quarter, less than half the nearly 350,000 during the same period two years earlier.

With the slowed sales pace, it will take three years to just to burn through the existing inventory of 1.9 million distressed properties, according to Sharga. “Even if you look at REOs alone, it will take 24 months to clear them and that’s without any new foreclosures at all coming into the system,” said Sharga.  House prices will continue to decline in the near term.     Read Article

Springfield Vintage car race canceled Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Vintage car race canceled Tuesday, May 24, 2011

SPRINGFIELD – Gentlemen, shut off your engines. Two months before the Springfield Vintage Grand Prix was set to roar through downtown, the inaugural event was canceled Tuesday, with organizers and city officials promising a new start next summer. Citing legal and logistical obstacles, Mayor Domenic J. Sarno said city officials could not guarantee that the July 22-24 race would be staged as the safe, crowd-pleasing event initially envisioned by the organizers. “We want this to be first class,” said Sarno following a 75-minute meeting with officials from the Vintage Sports Car Club of America and John Hall, the event’s local promoter. “We want to be sure it’s done correctly,” he added. Both Sarno and Peter Roberts, representing the sports car club, downplayed disagreements between the city and the organizers, and denied that the cancellation was triggered by a city demand for a $300,000 performance bond. Both sides also expressed disappointment that a race intended to bring thousands of sports car enthusiasts downtown to help celebrate the city’s 375th anniversary will be postponed to 2012. “Nobody’s more disappointed than I am,” said City Councilor Melvin A. Edwards, who helped organize the event. But city Solicitor Edward M. Pikula said there were too many obstacles – from details of the race route to the need for a special act from the state Legislature permitting racing downtown – and too little time to iron them out. “We’re looking to have this as a longterm (event), something we can do annually,” Pikula said. “The first one we do is the most important thing we do,” he aid. The 1.6-mile race was to feature between 80 and 110 pre-1960 cars, including Porsches, Ferraris, Jaguars, at no cost to the city and with no admission charge for the public. Besides coinciding with the city’s 375th anniversary, the race would have commemorated the city’s role as the birthplace of the first gasoline-powered automobile in North America, produced in the late 19th century by the Duryea brothers. In 1895, the first automobile race in the United States was won by the Duryea brothers. Without the special act from Beacon Hill, the organizers have been hard pressed to line up sponsors to help finance the event, said Heriberto Flores, chief executive officer for the New England Farm Workers Council, which is backing the race. “You can’t raise money if it’s an illegal loan,” Flores said.   READ STORY>>

Great Homes Right Out of a Box

Great Homes Right Out of a Box

By Melissa Friedling, MainStreet
May 17, 2011
High-end prefab homes feature modern amenities and eco-friendly materials.
Photo: Resolution: 4 Architecture

Prefab is often synonymous with cheap and shoddy when it comes to homebuilding.

Houses partly built in a factory are known for their low costs and fast construction. You just need some land to build on. The manufacturer simply delivers the home in pieces and sets it up.

But like many construction advancements, prefab homes have come a long way in recent years, making them attractive to even affluent buyers. Prefabrication techniques reduce waste, making it a more eco-friendly homebuilding method, and factory precision keeps modern clean edges and angles all in line.

Here are some cutting-edge prefab home options:

Blu Homes Custom Prefab Eco-Friendly

Solar-power panels, bamboo floors and eco-friendly insulation come standard.
Photo: Blu Homes

This company builds its prefab modules in its 80,000-square-foot Massachusetts factory and “folds” them using proprietary methods to facilitate shipping in more compact forms. The modules are “unfolded” on-site, allowing for up to 12-foot ceilings and more than 20-foot room spans. The homes can also be “folded up” and moved if necessary.

A Blu prefab will arrive on a flatbed, 90% complete, in as little as five to seven months after your initial purchase is made. Blu has six basic designs that can all be modified for size and tweaked with several additions and options. The three-bedroom single-story “Element” model starts at $168,000 complete from the factory.

The base price includes standard fixtures, stainless steel Energy Star appliances and fittings, delivery and setting on your foundation and finishing by Blu Homes’ crew. The homes unfold with full kitchens, bathrooms and finished floors included. Cabinets, sinks, toilets and all sorts of fittings and fixtures are already in place. For this reason it takes only a week or two on-site to finish the home.

Marmol Radziner Prefab

Marmol Radziner homes have preinsalled tiles, fixtures and cabinets.
Photo: Jim Simmons

Marmol Radziner Prefab is a Los Angeles-based firm that builds modular prefabs and offers pre-designed models starting at $200/per square foot for its Locomo Series, which can be built from 800 to 2,200 square feet (not including delivery or the cost of foundation). Pictured here is the company’s Hollywood Hybrid home, located in the Hollywood Hills above Runyon Canyon. It combines prefab and traditional site-built construction that meets the needs of this challenging, sharply down-sloping site.

Marmol Radziner Prefab homes are delivered in nearly finished condition with most of the flooring, tiling, countertops, cabinets, windows, appliances and fixtures already installed. It owns its factory and is a licensed general contractor. Once delivered and installed, the modules typically require another two to three months to be “buttoned up” in preparation for move in.

Resolution: 4 Architecture

The interior of this prefab home is very contemporary.
Photo: Resolution: 4 Architecture

Resolution: 4 Architecture (RES4) designs its prefabs based on its Modern Modular concept – a series of modular typologies that can be arranged into nearly endless permutations. The concept allows the company to design quickly, make very accurate cost estimates and build prefab homes that are tailored to every design requirement, site condition, budget and local code restriction.

About 80% of a typical RES4 prefab home is built in a factory using a combination of modular, panelized and hybrid delivery methods, while leveraging the efficiency of factory prefabrication. Joseph Tanney, a Principal at RES4, says the method allows them to offer the “highest level of design and quality at the lowest cost.”

While construction costs vary across the country, RES4 recommends budgeting around $225 – $275 per square foot for a typical RES4 prefab complete with basic finishes, plus a 15% fee for architectural services. Complete finishes include Anderson windows, cedar siding, EPDM rubber roofing membrane, hydro-air heating/AC system, bamboo flooring, high-end kitchen cabinets & vanities, Ceaserstone and Corian counters, Kohler plumbing fixtures, Zuma tubs, Lutron dimmers and Lightolier light fixtures.

Bamboo Living

With a traditional, but thoroughly modern approach to building and materials, this Hawaii-based company produces the only certified all-bamboo living structures in the world. The company is committed to using bamboo because it is a renewable, ecologically friendly and extremely versatile resource, using one of the fastest growing plants in the world. The company’s panelized home packages can be designed, built and delivered in as fast as three months, but usually they will arrive about six months after placing your order.

Features include exposed bamboo rafters and vaulted ceilings.
Photo: Bamboo Living

The homes can be shipped anywhere in the world, but to date, most sales have been in Hawaii, the Caribbean and Central America. Bamboo Living recently introduced a new “cavity wall” system, which allows the homes to be fully insulated, so now they can be built in any climate.

The David Sands Signature collection is designed by Bamboo Living’s senior architect and co-founder with artisan features, including exposed bamboo rafters, high vaulted ceilings and a wrap-around covered porch. There are six models that start at a base price of $80 /square foot for the kit. The base price includes timber bamboo structure and walls, sheathed roof panels, painted interior with bamboo trim, split bamboo exterior siding or painted/stucco-ready exterior walls, hand-crafted bamboo bolt covers and Feng Shui color themes. However, this doesn’t include construction and finishing costs.