Sam Zell’s Tell on Pandemic Opportunities, Market Moves; plus Manufactured Home Investing, Stock Updates

DowJones5.05.2020ManufacturedHomeStockUpdatesBroaderMarketSnapshotSam Zell, Equity Group Investments and Equity LifeStyle Properties chairman and founder, equates the current coronavirus pandemic to the Great Depression.

Zell told Bloomberg today that everyone will be “permanently scarred” from this contagion’s effects.

Besides the Bloomberg video snippets and the full interview video, all found below in our featured focus segment of tonight’s report, there is also a collage of Depression era photos.

Right now, America – while tens of millions have been harmed economically, nevertheless has some 80 percent of the work force still working.

What happens next will depend to some extent on the reopening plans that are emerging in various states.

There is also a small business survey on SBA PPP and EIDL loan applications that will prove insightful.

All that is beyond our industry’ leading market report’s left-right signature headlines, market snapshot summary graphics and the standard fare that includes the business-daily reminders of how manufactured housing has been underperforming for years. With that intro, let’s press ahead.

Click to open full size. Whatever side of the left-right divide you are on, this quote by President Obama is quite right. That’s true in political news. But there is something similar with respect to manufactured housing news and reports. We sift through the facts and figures to provide insights found no where else in MHVille.
To clarify this common presidential comment POTUS Donald J. Trump himself makes it clear that his condemnation of the media isn’t all news. The White House media team routinely source across the left-right divide on a routine basis. Put differently, this comment is targeted to reports where it ‘fits.’
Understanding media bias is useful to sifting through possibly hidden agendas. We are mindful of the ancient and tested principle of separating the wheat from the chaff.

To see this full size, download and then click to open.
Jerry Brown is the former Democratic Governor of California.


Headlines from left-of-center CNN Business

  • Uncle Sam can’t do it all
  • NEW YORK, NY – MAY 01: A person walks past a J. Crew Store on Madison Avenue on May 1, 2020 in New York City. Clothing apparel company J. Crew is preparing for a file for bankruptcy protection.
  • The Fed is spending trillions to keep US businesses alive, but it can’t do everything
  • United Airlines tells staff to take 20 unpaid days off and will lay off 30%
  • Europe’s leading airline is losing $1 million an hour and needs a bailout
  • LIVE UPDATES US stocks edge higher for the second day in a row
  • US households had record debt when coronavirus hit. It may get worse
  • Elon Musk is now in line for a $720 million payday
  • California sues Uber and Lyft over alleged worker misclassification
  • Opinion: Women are better leaders. The pandemic proves it
  • Thousands of government workers are compiling the jobs report from home
  • Tesla comes out on top as UK car sales fall 97% in worst month since 1946
  • Meet the NASA astronauts who will fly on historic SpaceX mission
  • Recession worries? Get your credit score now
  • Elon Musk lists two Bel Air homes after promising to sell off his possessions
  • KATWIJK, NETHERLANDS – APRIL 20: In this photo illustration, a man looks at the website of Airbnb on April 20, 2020 in Katwijk, Netherlands.
  • Airbnb is laying off 25% of its employees
  • JACKSONVILLE, FLORIDA – MARCH 27: Norwegian Cruise Line’s Norwegian Pearl cruise ship is docked at the Port of Jacksonville amid the Coronavirus outbreak on March 27, 2020 in Jacksonville, Florida. JaxPort is accommodating cruise ships displaced due to the cruise industry’s voluntary suspension of operations because of the pandemic. The World Health Organization declared coronavirus (COVID-19) a global pandemic on March 11.
  • Norwegian Cruise Line may go out of business
  • A Sears store that is going out of business in Livonia, Michigan on March 26, 2020.
  • Crew declared bankruptcy. Three other famous stores may follow it
  • Some retailers are too broke to go bankrupt
  • The high price of cheap clothes
  • Victoria’s Secret owner calls off deal to take lingerie brand private

Headlines from right-of-center Fox Business

  • Stocks trim gains after Fed promises cheap money and oil soars
  • S. equity markets finished the session higher but pared earlier gains after a series of Federal Reserve officials gave assessments of the U.S. economy.
  • Oil prices double during 5-day winning streak
  • Texas declines to mandate oil production cuts
  • Stocks rally, but could crash back to coronavirus lows as pandemic wobbles economy
  • Regeneron says COVID-19 antibody cocktail may be available by fall
  • IBM hosts Think 2020 conference with focus on AI, 5G coronavirus solutions
  • Apple takes iconic developers conference virtual
  • Las Vegas startup creates tech innovation that could help save casinos, slots
  • Workers want coronavirus protections before casinos reopen
  • Varney: Rush to escape coronavirus lockdown will soon become ‘stampede’
  • Man arrested at coronavirus lockdown protest in North Carolina
  • Small-business loan forgiveness clouded by confusion, uncertainty
  • Goldman Sachs reopens Asia offices as America, UK lag behind
  • Disney World could reopen sooner than you might think
  • State attorneys general call for DOJ to probe coronavirus meat shortage
  • Small coronavirus-hit states took a big share of federal money
  • WeWork unveils coronavirus plan for tenants
  • NBC News chairman Andy Lack exits, as network investigation surfaces
  • Men seeking $500K in PPP loans charged with coronavirus stimulus fraud
  • Popular crackers recalled after major ingredient mix-up
  • How much it costs to attend virtual Biden fundraiser with Hillary Clinton
  • NEWS
  • Several FedEx workers at New Jersey facility succumb to coronavirus
  • How to tackle your credit card debt in this coronavirus economy
  • How much money rare Bob Dylan lyrics could fetch in auction
  • Johns Hopkins: Leaked pandemic model showing spike in deaths not final
  • More coronavirus protection needed for meat plant workers: AFL-CIO president
  • Who was Jerry Krause? Michael Jordan’s Bulls rival scrutinized in ‘The Last Dance’
  • Coronavirus-related debt mounting? These steps can help reduce it
  • Walgreens updates store hours
  • Consumer debt surged to $14.3T before worst of coronavirus crisis, Fed says
  • YouTube hosting Google CEO, big-name celebs for virtual Class of 2020 celebration
  • New home listings plunged in one of real estate’s busiest months
  • Martha Stewart launches Wayfair shop, digital series as more consumers shop from home
  • Cruise crew member, 27, killed by virus after being kept on ship, lawsuit alleges
  • Detroit automakers push to restart plants within 2 weeks
  • Social Security cuts looming: How to prepare now so you’re protected later
  • Mother’s Day gift baskets, food demand boost sales for flower retailer
  • Pork plant will stay open after at least 116 employees contract coronavirus
  • Still employed during coronavirus? Focus on building savings, paying down debt
  • Humana picks up the tab for Medicare Advantage doctor visits
  • Alexion to buy Portola Pharma for $1.4B
  • Impossible Foods to sell plant-based burgers in Kroger
  • WATCH: Giant ‘murder hornets’ from Asia are taking US by swarm
  • Gold miner Newmont posts 641% jump in profit
  • Small business rescue program still dishing out huge loans despite backlash
  • Democrats push to send most Americans this much money during pandemic
  • TECH
  • Microsoft employees not returning to office for long time, worker says
  • Who is Bulls owner Jerry Reinsdorf?
  • Taco Tuesday: Where to find delicious Cinco de Mayo deals today


10 Market Indicator Closing Summaries – Yahoo Finance Closing Tickers on MHProNews…



Featured Focus – Where Business, Politics and Investing Can Meet

Still from video posted below.

Bloomberg’s Erik Schatzker on May 5, 2020 wrote the following pull quotes from the Sam Zell video interview clips. The images inserted, and the videos, were not in the original Bloomberg news report.




  • Sam Zell, the billionaire known for buying up troubled real estate, said the coronavirus pandemic will leave the same kind of impact on the economy and society as the Great Depression 80 years ago, with long-lasting changes in human behavior that imperil many business models.
  • Too many people are anticipating a kind of V-like recovery,” Zell said in an interview with Bloomberg Television. “We’re all going to be permanently scarred by having lived through this.”



Winners and Losers by Sector, Per Zell

How soon will anybody get on an airplane? How soon will anybody stay in a hotel? How soon will anybody go to a mall?” Zell asked. “The fact that these places may be open doesn’t necessarily mean that they’ll be doing business.” Not unlike Bill Gates, some of these comments debatably appear to be poised to ‘talk the market further down.’

Nothing to Buy

  • Zell disagrees with the conventional wisdom that big cities like New York are doomed and warehouses are the smartest bet in commercial real estate.
  • For now, the raspy-voiced investor who earned his nickname, the Grave Dancer, buying distressed real estate in the 1970s, is watching from the sidelines. Like Warren Buffett, Zell hasn’t found anything to buy since the onset of the pandemic. Part of the problem is a lack of deals.


Full 40 minute Zell interview


Those sellers that wanted to sell still remember the prices that were available seven or eight weeks ago. The buyers are looking at a very different world and expecting to see significant discounts,” Zell said. “When you’ve got that big a spread, nothing happens.”

That’s arguably an exaggeration, as reports have emerged that Buffett’s announcement of Berkshire’s dumping airlines stocks have made short-sellers a quick $200 million on that market bet alone.

  • Zell’s own investments — concentrated in real estate and ranging from U.S. mobile-home parks to shopping centers in Latin America — have been a mixed bag. At one project, a bridge called the Cross Border Xpress that connects California with Tijuana International Airport in Mexico, business is down 90%. Yet at U.S. hospital chain Ardent Health Services, “the impact is almost unfelt,” other than government bans on elective surgery, he said.
  • Every weekday morning, Zell confers with his managers on a Zoom call from his office overlooking the Chicago River. Recently, he’s been briefed on the situation at Equity Residential, his largest publicly traded company.
  • Shares of the real estate investment trust, one of the biggest apartment owners in the U.S., are down almost 30% since late February. Rents, however, are holding up well enough that Zell said he doesn’t expect any significant changes in monthly collections.


Oversupply Warnings

For years, Zell has been warning that the U.S. construction boom would result in oversupply and lower prices, and the current shutdown “is going to dramatically make things much worse.”

Just like we won’t see a lot of retailers reopen,” Zell said, I think we’ll see a lot of hotels that basically can’t reopen.”

When he does decide it’s time to invest, Zell will have plenty of company. Apollo Global Management Inc. is pivoting its $25 billion private-equity fund to buy distressed corporate debt. Oaktree Capital is raising a $15 billion pool to capitalize on similar situations.

Bankruptcies are what you need to clear markets and what you need to end recessions and dips,” Zell said. “The fact that there’s a lot more distressed players today will help clear the market, but it also means that there aren’t anywhere near as many opportunities as there were in the past.”

“Where the hell have you been?” – MH Communities Giant Equity Lifestyle Properties Sees Pandemic Gold, Official Remarks, ELS Moves

See more on ELS in the related report above.

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Manufactured Housing Industry Investments Connected Closing Equities Tickers
Some of these firms invest in manufactured housing, or are otherwise connected, but may do other forms of investing or business activities too.

              • NOTE: The chart below includes the Canadian stock, ECN, which purchased Triad Financial Services, a manufactured home industry lender
              • NOTE: Drew changed its name and trading symbol at the end of 2016 to Lippert (LCII).

Spring 2020
Berkshire Hathaway is the parent company to Clayton Homes, 21st Mortgage, Vanderbilt Mortgage and other factory built housing industry suppliers.
· LCI Industries, Patrick, UFPI, and LP each are suppliers to the manufactured housing industry, among others.
· AMG, CG, and TAVFX have investments in manufactured housing related businesses. For insights from third-parties and clients about our publisher, click here.
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MHProNews traveled to Washington, D.C. on the week of 12.2.2019 so Tony could present to the FHFA Listening Session and meet with others in the Capitol during the week regarding industry issues.

By L.A. “Tony” Kovach – for
Tony earned a journalism scholarship and earned numerous awards in history and in manufactured housing. For example, he earned the prestigious Lottinville Award in history from the University of Oklahoma, where he studied history and business management. He’s a managing member and co-founder of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHProNews, and This article reflects the LLC’s and/or the writer’s position, and may or may not reflect the views of sponsors or supporters. Connect on LinkedIn:
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