There was little cheer about for the real estate and housing industries this week, but the news flow was not as unrelentingly negative -- some would say depressing -- as the previous two weeks. This week, the mortgage side of the business took the spotlight.
There was, as is often the case these days, a serving of doom-and-gloom, real or imagined.
American Home Mortgage Investment, a large U.S. mortgage provider, Friday said it was shutting down most of its operations and laying off about 7,000 workers because of problems with its loan portolio.
Beazer Homeshares plunged Wednesday on rumors of a bankruptcy filing, which the company said were unfounded.
Mortgage activity slid again in the most recent week, even as interest rates edged lower amid the credit market rally.
The home lending industry received a bit of a jolt when several companies said they were limiting mortgages.