Diana Olick is an Emmy Award-winning journalist, currently serving as CNBC's real estate correspondent as well as the author of the Realty Check section on CNBC.com, which won the Gracie Award for "Outstanding Blog" in 2015. She also contributes her real estate expertise to NBC's "Today" and "NBC Nightly News."
Prior to joining CNBC in 2002, Olick spent seven years as a correspondent for CBS News.
Olick began her career as a local news reporter at WABI-TV in Bangor, Maine; WZZM-TV in Grand Rapids, Mich.; and KIRO-TV in Seattle. She joined CBS in 1994 as a New York-based correspondent for the "CBS Evening News with Dan Rather" and "The Early Show." She also contributed pieces to "48 Hours" and "Sunday Morning." During that time, she covered such stories as the World Trade Center conspiracy trial and the Boston abortion clinic shooting.
In 1995, Olick was assigned to cover the Midwest as a Dallas bureau correspondent. In the three years she was there, she covered all forms of natural disaster, including the crash of TWA Flight 800, the JonBenet Ramsey murder mystery and was the exclusive correspondent for the trial of Oklahoma City bomber Terry Nichols. During that time, she also took a temporary assignment in CBS' Moscow bureau, where she chronicled the brief presidential campaign of Mikhail Gorbachev.
In 1998, Olick was reassigned to the New York bureau and then immediately posted to Bahrain for the buildup to a possible second Gulf War. A year later, she went to Albania to cover the U.S. military buildup during the conflict in Kosovo.
Upon her return, Olick was reassigned to CBS' Washington bureau and the Capitol Hill beat. During Campaign 2000, Olick covered the Senate campaign of First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton and later joined the Bush campaign as a special correspondent for "The Early Show." That fall, she was named Supreme Court correspondent; her first case was Bush v. Gore.
Olick has a B.A. in comparative literature with a minor in soviet studies from Columbia College in New York and a master's degree in journalism from Northwestern's Medill School of Journalism.
Follow Diana Olick on Twitter @Diana_olick.
Home prices fell 6.7 percent in February year over year, according to a new report from CoreLogic. That numbers includes distressed sales, that is, sales of foreclosed properties or short sales, where the bank agrees to let the homeowner sell for less than the value of the mortgage. If you take those sales out, however, home prices were basically flat.
An improving jobs picture may be improving demand for housing, but that demand is hamstrung by equally low confidence in home ownership and inability to obtain good financing.
Right now banks are pushing foreclosures to market faster than ever, perhaps due to improving paperwork procedures, and perhaps due to the fear of some kind of settlement/penalty coming down the pike from state attorneys general and federal regulators. In any case, the volumes are rising, and that hurts home prices and home builders.
There's no question that consumer confidence, or lack thereof, is the greatest barrier in the way of a full-blown housing recovery. Credit, while tough to get, is historically cheap, home prices have fallen so far as to open the market to many more buyers, and there is ample inventory from which to choose. The trouble is, no one wants to catch a falling sword, and home prices are still falling.
Today the Obama administration released its monthly "scorecard" for the Making Home Affordable Program, a.k.a. the federal mortgage bailout. The Home Affordable Modification Program, which is part of MHA, continues to add trial modifications at about 29,000 per month and permanent modifications, a bit less, at 26,000.
At the end of a day-long negotiation session over the foreclosure paperwork mess at the Department of Justice, Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller and Associate Attorney General Thomas Perrelli came out for a brief chat with reporters. They essentially said nothing.
Yesterday morning I attended the FDIC's background press briefing before the vote on proposed risk retention rules. While the rules covered a vast ground, I was of course most interested in those that focus on the "Qualified Residential Mortgage." The QRM would be the exemption from risk retention, and therefore banks would want most borrowers to fall under the QRM standard.