‘They Are Not Confessing, They Are Bragging’ Matt Stoller Exposé on Equifax ‘Monopoly Power’ in Credit, Employment, Income, more – Key Insights for MHPros to Know; plus MHVille Markets Update

‘They Are Not Confessing, They Are Bragging’ Matt Stoller Exposé on Equifax ‘Monopoly Power’ in Credit, Employment, Income More – Key Insights for MHPros to Know; plus MHVille Markets Update

Goliath is a book that ““Every thinking American must read” (The Washington Book Review) this startling and “insightful” (The New York Times) look at how concentrated financial power and consumerism has transformed American politics, and business,” said Simon and Schuster about Matt Stoller’s tome. Stoller is also the author of the BIG newsletter, which similarly explores monopoly power via Substack and emailed newsletter items, which includes MHProNews among its readers. The headline topic on Equifax will follow some more information from Simon and Schuster which helps frame the Part I of today’s topics by shedding light on Stoller’s thinking on monopoly power.

Stoller’s perspective, which can fairly be described as forged in good measure from the left or a liberal perspective, has been covered by MHProNews for years, as evidenced in the example of the flashback report like the one linked below.


“It’s a Con” – #OpenMarkets Touts Matt Stoller’s “Goliath,” “100-Year War Between Monopoly Power and Democracy”

Part I

That said, according to Simon and Schuster is the following.

QuoteMarksLeftSideGoing back to our country’s founding, Americans once had a coherent and clear understanding of political tyranny, one crafted by Thomas Jefferson and updated for the industrial age by Louis Brandeis. A concentration of power—whether by government or banks—was understood as autocratic and dangerous to individual liberty and democracy. In the 1930s, people observed that the Great Depression was caused by financial concentration in the hands of a few whose misuse of their power induced a financial collapse. They drew on this tradition to craft the New Deal.

In Goliath, Matt Stoller explains how authoritarianism and populism have returned to American politics for the first time in eighty years, as the outcome of the 2016 election shook our faith in democratic institutions. It has brought to the fore dangerous forces that many modern Americans never even knew existed. Today’s bitter recriminations and panic represent more than just fear of the future, they reflect a basic confusion about what is happening and the historical backstory that brought us to this moment.

The true effects of populism, a shrinking middle class, and concentrated financial wealth are only just beginning to manifest themselves under the current administrations. The lessons of Stoller’s study will only grow more relevant as time passes. “An engaging call to arms,” (Kirkus Reviews) Stoller illustrates here in rich detail how we arrived at this tenuous moment, and the steps we must take to create a new democracy.”


As with any source, MHProNews editorially advises a generous application of the principle of separating the wheat from the chaff.

From Stoller’s Big on 1.23.2023 is the following under the title “How Equifax Became a Private IRS.” ZeroHedge and Redditt are among the platforms that have shared this specific column of Stoller’s. For sellers and renters of manufactured homes, as well as for employers and employees, consider his opening bombshell.

QuoteMarksLeftSideAt a Goldman Sachs conference in December, Equifax CEO Mark Begor told investors that his company has a monopoly in an obscure but important area – selling data about your salary to third parties.


In 1964, historian Richard Hofstadter wrote a famous sentence about the importance of antitrust law. “Anybody who knows anything about the conduct of American business”, he noted, “knows that the managers of the large corporations do their business with one eye constantly cast over their shoulders at the antitrust division.”

This piece is about how far we have fallen from that era. It’s also about how Equifax – through its monopoly power – has become a firm that sells what are effectively tax records of any American to pretty much anyone who wants them. …

… And now…



QuoteMarksLeftSideConfessing? No, Bragging.

The movie The Big Short is about the housing crisis and its collapse, along with all the fraudulent activity up and down the financial system that abetted it. It is as much a cultural story as it is one about finance, a film about what banking corruption does to human beings and the law itself. In it, there’s a famous scene where fund investors betting on a housing collapse are trying to learn about the Florida housing market, and are interviewing some frat-boy type Florida real estate agents. The agents keep discussing their self-serving and illegal behavior, like falsifying paperwork or selling to people who knowingly can’t pay back loans. At a certain point, the main character asks his colleagues, ‘why are they confessing?’ to which the others respond, “they’re not confessing, they’re bragging.”

The point of this scene is to show that people in the industry during the housing bubble weren’t just breaking the law, but saw the law itself as irrelevant. Enforcement was so weak that those in finance and real estate would just openly brag about all the crime they were doing.

It was a true story. And it continues to be a true story in most white collar areas.

Late last year, the CEO of Equifax Mark Begor presented at a Goldman Sachs conference for investors, and openly told the investors how much market power his firm has in the business of selling income verification services to creditors. “We have meaningful pricing power,” he said, because “only Equifax has that income and employment data.” Equifax aggressively raises prices on the Work Number product line annually, and has, according to Begor, “already got our January 1, 2023 price increases in the market.” Long term, he says, “we have an ability to grow price well in excess of GDP.” This is fairly shocking stuff from a CEO, who should know better than to confess to monopolization. Only, it seems as if Begor wasn’t confessing, he was bragging.”


Stoller has that audio of Equifax CEO Mark Begor on his Substack website. He continued his written narrative as follows.


QuoteMarksLeftSideStill, why wouldn’t Begor brag to investors? Equifax’s controversial behavior is near-legendary. The firm is an important credit bureau, and credit data is exactly what we wouldn’t want to fall into the hands of hackers, who could then easily use it to engage in identity theft, en masse. But in 2017, Equifax had a massive scandal, one of the biggest data breaches in history, when it accidentally exposed the personal data of 147 million people. The Federal Trade Commission fined the company more than $575 million, and the CEO, CIO, and chief security officer were all forced out.

Yet the firm didn’t suffer any long-term reputation damage. And in all the hoopla around the scandal, there really wasn’t a lot of discussion about why that is, and how Equifax actually makes money. So looking at Begor’s braggadocio around the firm’s market power is useful. The product Begor told investors about at the Goldman Sachs confab is called The Work Number, which is a business line that bundles data about the incomes of hundreds of millions of people and sells it to interested parties, like lenders, landlords, employers, and government agencies. Payroll and data is by some estimates a $10 billion market, and now brings in a majority of the firm’s domestic revenue.

Equifax used to be a firm, which, along with Experian and TransUnion, focused on keeps tabs on all of us and whether we pay our debts. But over the last four years, it has transformed itself into a sort of tax information agency, which sells information about our salary and income to third parties. It’s a better business than just credit data, because while three firms have information about whether you pay back your credit card company, only Equifax has complete information about where you work. And a monopoly, as Begor bragged, is better than an oligopoly.” …

QuoteMarksLeftSideThe Work Number

First let’s start with why this business exists. Sharing information about where you work and what you make is something we all need to do on occasion. If a bank or auto dealer wants to lend someone money to buy a home or car, they need a verification that the person works where he says he works and makes the income he says he makes. Sometimes a potential employer or landlord needs to check work history, or a public agency needs to ensure someone qualifies for government assistance, or they have to update immigration status.

How do third parties verify this information? Employers don’t like it when their HR departments are getting constant requests from lenders about their employees and what they make. And getting this information from the IRS is illegal (or least has been since progressives in the 1920s temporarily had tax returns made public.) So for decades, employers have been sending data on this to brokers, who sell the records to interested parties. Today, the biggest and in some ways only meaningful broker in this space is Equifax. If you are trying to find out someone’s work history and income, it’s pretty likely Equifax has it, and it’s unlikely anyone else does. (Experian is the second player in the market, but they just started their product line in 2021, and as I’ll explain, they are far behind.) And we’re not just talking about the data the IRS has, we’re talking about data on pay for every payroll cycle, your overtime amount, the start and end date for your job, your title, your health care provider, whether you have dental insurance, and if you’ve ever filed an unemployment claim.

There are network effects in this business; the more data Equifax gets from employers, the more likely it is to be the place lenders and government agencies seek to do income verification. In addition, having lots of data about workers also allows Equifax to build services for firms, such as managing unemployment compensation. When a firm lays off a worker, that worker is supposed to have rights to unemployment compensation, which the firm has to pay for. But if that employee was fired for cause, or quit, then that worker isn’t entitled to unemployment payments, and the firm is off the hook. There are lots of grey areas here, it’s a quasi-legal setup between the state, the business, and the employee. Managing this process, along with appeals, is also something Equifax does, as it’s a natural extension of its data business.

Because of this extensive warehouse of data and set of services, firms and agencies then integrate themselves into the Work Number. So one could argue this business has natural barriers to entry. But the story here isn’t just one of scale efficiencies. The Work Number is a legacy business, started decades ago. With the internet, however, there’s no technical reason for a centralized repository of employment and verification data, or at least not the way it’s set up today. It’s quite possible to set up a system allowing any verifier to ask the individual for his or her records. But that would cut against Equifax’s business model, which involves not only taking your data without you knowing about it and selling it, but also, crucially, preventing any other third party from innovating to build a more privacy-safe version of the same service.

Indeed, the story here is monopolization. Fifteen years ago, Equifax had already run into the Federal Trade commission, not for privacy violations, but for antitrust violations. Only, because its income verification business was a sideshow to its main credit reporting revenue line, people didn’t really notice. Today, however, Equifax is now a monopoly income verifier with a side credit information business.

The original Work Number product came from a company called TALX Corporation, which was founded in the 1970s and that Equifax bought in 2007. From 2002-2005, TALX had bought up seven rivals, consolidating the verification of income and employment business. Immediately after this acquisition spree, TALX raised prices and forced customers to move from buying annually to signing long-term multi-year contracts. Additionally, TALX had non-competes and non-solicitation agreements with its employees, which further locked up the market.

In 2008, the Bush administration FTC sued Equifax over acquisitions and unfair methods of competition. It was a creative complaint, with the Chair of the commission – Bill Kovacic – looking skeptically at a series of small acquisitions, instead of one big one. But the FTC didn’t seek to undo any of the mergers. Instead, it signed a consent decree forcing TALX, now Equifax, to let customers out of long-term contracts and employees out of non-compete agreements. These consent decree obligations ended in 2017. Ultimately, this FTC action, because it didn’t require a break-up, didn’t restore competition in the market, allowing Equifax to fortify its monopoly. Equifax’s TALX subsidiary was even caught for violating of the Fair Credit Reporting Act just two years later. And the company is still a merger machine, purchasing small and large firms nearly every year. For instance, just in 2021, it made $3 billion in acquisitions, buying HIREtech and i2Verify.

After the consent decree ended, the exclusive arrangements came back. ADP, Intuit, Paycor, PrismHR, Rippling, and many other providers of outsourced payroll services have deals with Equifax to turn over or sell records. So do large companies. In 2017, Joel Winston at Fast Company reported that “75% of the Fortune 500 companies, 85% of the federal government workforce, entire state governments and agencies, courts, colleges, and thousands of small businesses nationwide” handed over data. Facebook, Amazon, Oracle, Google, Wal-Mart, Twitter, AT&T, Harvard Law School, and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania do too. The number of entities handing over this data has only gone up since then.

And Equifax pays many of these entities for their employee data, turning human resources into a revenue generator. Of course, the employees don’t know their own data is being sold by their employer, and even small businesses who use payroll services like ADP don’t realize their data is being sold. (Small businesses can opt-out, but they have to tell their payroll provider.)

The net effect of these arrangements is that smaller players in the market, such as ExperianVerify, Truework, Thomas & Company, and Certree, simply cannot get the data that Equifax has. They are boxed out. If you are doing income verification, and you put someone’s Social Security number into Equifax, you have a 50-70% chance of getting a successful conversion. For other brokers, it’s much lower. There isn’t so much a market for employer/income verification information, there’s a market for information about each specific person. To a lender, it doesn’t matter if a rival to Equifax has information on 30% of the country, it matters if that rival has information on the individual to whom they are considering loaning money. If they don’t, you have to use Equifax.

On the other side, Equifax has also erected barriers to entry. If you are a frequent buyer of income and employment data, Equifax sometimes offers a loyalty discount if you move all your business to the Work Number. One background check provider, SwiftCheck, explained Equifax offered that “if our organization performs The Work Number Verification on every employment verification, a discount is offered.” This is a classic loyalty discount, what looks like an unlawful mechanism to exclude competitors.

So that’s how Equifax establishes its market power, by blocking rivals from getting data and by locking in customers of that data. And we can see this market power at work in the pricing, as their CEO noted in December. Equifax has been raising prices substantially for years. How much? Well like an airline or any firm with market power, Equifax doesn’t just have one price. It can engage in price discrimination depending on the willingness to pay. But the price hikes that are public, are extreme. In 2017, the price for a record was $20, in 2020 it was $41.95. Today, it lists its price as $54.95 for a record of where you currently work, and potentially up to $200 for records with more historical information. And it’ll keep going up.

The Real Cost: Equifax as Private Government

Consumers pay for this cost in ways they don’t see. When you get a loan or rent an apartment, the lender or landlord has to pay Equifax’s toll, and will include that extra cost in the price of your loan or rent. But more than just higher prices, Equifax’s database is powerful. The Work Number can, according to the government, help determine “an applicant’s social service eligibility” or “inform child support collections and enforcement.”

There are often errors, and getting your own data from Equifax can be difficult if not maddening. Just read this thread of frustrated consumers trying to do so, and often encountering mistakes in the process. And as we know, Equifax is prone to hacking. People don’t know that their employment data is being sold to Equifax, and they tend to be upset when they find out. Google workers were outraged about it, which is ironic. It’s also prone to abuse; Apple told the Work Number that every worker who left was automatically given the title “associate,” regardless of whether they were a top engineer. According to one former Apple worker, this error “delayed the hiring process at a prospective employer by nearly a week, during which time the company rescinded the offer.” I don’t tend to focus on privacy, but though Equifax claims there are controls on who can buy this information, security researcher Brian Krebs noted in 2017, that it’s easy for pretty much anyone to learn your salary. These flaws are all quality harms, standard for any monopolist who isn’t subject to competition.

The Work Number is so important that Equifax is engaged in the work that should be reserved to a government. Generally speaking, people would get really upset if the IRS shared our tax information for a fee. Effectively, Equifax is doing that, because for most people, employment and income is our tax information. But since it’s a private monopoly, the anti-government types don’t notice or care. At the height of the Great Recession in 2010, Equifax’s TALX division was processing 30% of the unemployment claims in the country. Though originally intended to automate the process, what Equifax ended up doing was automating the refusal to pay out unemployment claims. It systemically denied applications regardless of merit so its clients – employers – would have to pay less in unemployment taxes. And this goal is on the firm’s investment documents, which uses the anodyne wording of “reduce the cost of unemployment claims through effective claims representation” to describe the service it provides to employers who give it data.

It’s perhaps no exaggeration to note that Equifax is a quasi-governmental agency, a monopoly provider of evidence that you work, where you work, and what you make. If there’s an error, or if someone lies about you, too bad. If Equifax itself is paid to harm you, too bad. If a government agency gets the wrong data and denies you assistance or screws up your immigration status, that’s on you, well, you have limited to no rights in this situation. In some ways, you might have more to fear from Equifax than the IRS.

It Need Not Be This Way

As is always the case, most things created by people can be unmade by people. And so too with Equifax. I learned about the Work Number from a contact on Wall Street who pays attention to monopolies. He told me the Work Number is one of the purest examples of market power he’s seen, which of course, the CEO of Equifax helpfully confirmed in public. I’ve also talked to a number of people in the industry trying to compete in the payroll data space. Two firms – Certree and Argyle – recently sent letters to the Federal Trade Commission asking for an investigation into this market, pointing at the abuse of consumers by Equifax (and to a lesser extent Experian).

The strategies for each small rival are different, but both give the consumer control over who can access their data, instead of building a giant centralized repository controlled by a monopolist. Certree gives each employee a ‘personal vault’ where his or her data resides. While they verify that the data came from an employer, only the employee can give permission for a third party to look at what’s inside – even Certree can’t see it. Certree is paid when a lender or third party successfully verifies an employment or income record.

Argyle has a totally different model. It isn’t even a data broker, but a ‘data transfer agent.’ It lets third parties ask consumers about their income and employment information by sending them a link, and then gets consumers to give them their passwords for their employment information. Argyle doesn’t keep any data on hand, but is controversial because it engages in screen-scraping of your employer’s website, which can be a security risk. And yet it is weird to think it’s problematic for employees to take their own data from their employer, but fine for employers to sell that data to Equifax.

Both Certree and Argyle charge much less than Equifax for their service.

Regardless, the overall point is that having a centralized data broker that has a quasi-monopoly over income and verification data, and sits largely unregulated, is ridiculous. Breaking up Equifax’s monopoly wouldn’t be that hard, at least conceptually. Many of the practices that it engages in today are things the FTC banned in its old consent decree with the firm. And it’s obvious that Equifax is immune to competitive forces. Despite the price hikes and devastating and routine news stories about hacks, errors and problems, as well as public polling showing increasing concerns over privacy, Equifax marches on, unbothered and unchastened. That’s the classic monopoly position, a recognition that there is no alternative.

Beyond the monopoly problem, however, why not have a system where individuals control their own data? Prior to the internet this would have been impossible, but today it’s quite doable. Giving individual control over their data would probably require both antitrust law and an aggressive reading of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s authority over Credit Reporting Agencies, or a new Congressional statute for ownership and control of employment data.

Regardless, I’d like to thank Equifax CEO Mark Begor for bragging last month about his firm’s market power. Without that, I never would have taken the time to learn why Equifax can act as a private IRS, put out a middle finger to each one of us, and collect our money regardless.” …  ##


Eric Belsky’s remark “Credit is the lifeblood of housing” should be totally apparent to those who witnessed the steady melt-down of manufactured home lending following the industry’s last highwater mark achieved in 1998. The process accelerated when Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac pulled secondary market support for HUD Code manufactured homes around the turn of the century. Numbers of lenders exited the market during the wave of repossessions that followed, and no doubt, also because there was a loss of access to the secondary financial markets. There is more to the story, shown further below in the graphic that provides the rise and fall in production info by year.


Part II. Additional Information with More MHProNews Analysis and Commentary

“Credit is the lifeblood of housing,” said then Harvard Fellow Eric Belsky. Belsky was quite correct. Without affordable financing, housing sales slow. It has been demonstrated in the impact of rising interest rates which made the financing of many conventional houses, and numbers of potential manufactured home deals, unaffordable for a significant share of would-be buyers.

Among the insights about Equifax that manufactured home professionals involved in selling (or to a different extent, in leasing) is that Equifax maintains a database on the incomes of millions of Americans.

Unlike the ‘stated income’ or ‘liar loans’ of the past, there are reasons that housing lenders routinely want proof of income on an application for home financing.  For those who might be tempted to falsify loan documents, the Equifax revelation on salaries/pay is a reminder that a database exists that may well have someone’s income in an electronic file.

That said, from time-to-time credit reporting firms do have erroneous or outdated records.

There is a common, but arguably flawed, notion that ‘bigger is better.’ But time and again, that idea is debunked by the history of actual behaviors and results.  For example, federal spending hit at an all-time high under the Biden regime.  Similarly, inflation has hit levels not seen for some 40 years. Then House Minority Whip James “Jim” Clyburn told MSNBC that Democrats ‘knew’ they would cause inflation with their record spending.  They simply justified that spending in their own minds. It is an ironic example of how Clyburn’s insights on history can also be deployed on Clyburn’s own statements.

One may or may not agree with Clyburn’s politics. But the wisdom of this statement by Clyburn is demonstrably true.

After tall talk and big promises, the Biden regime claims about affordable housing have been debunked months or years later by the actual results.  Largely left-leaning CNN cited facts from the National Association of Realtors (NAR) that pointed out that young homebuyers purchasing housing during the Biden era have dropped to an ‘all-time low.’




An array of data supports that report linked above.  Much of that data comes from sources that are left-leaning.




Now, with apparently some of the largest spending sums in peacetime (the U.S. is not at war at this time), housing has become ever more unaffordable. How has ‘big’ government or big spending helped the housing market? The short answer should obviously be – it hasn’t.  There is a middle ground, one that MHProNews explored in the report linked below.


Two Best Times to Plant a Tree – Epic Lessons on Errors – Democracy, Republic, Socialism, Capitalism, Distributism, Chestertonian Principles – Why it Matters – Sunday MHVille Weekly Headlines Recap


While the Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) hyped examples that members of the Biden regime have used the words “manufactured housing” in some statement, it isn’t just saying or writing the words “manufactured housing” that matters most. Rather, it is the actual results reflected by manufactured home production which ought to count and be examined. Those production figures have fallen in the last two months. Can anyone at MHI or on their board spell, “Oops?”


50 State-by-State Manufactured Home Data for Nov 2022, New Jan 2023 HUD Code Manufactured Housing Official Statistical Report; plus MHVille Stocks, REITs, Markets Daily Update


By contrast to MHI, while not a per-se partisan position, Tom Hardiman, the executive director of the Modular Home Builders Assocation (MHBA) pulled no punches when he said early on in the Biden era that Democratic legislation was packed with what he called “political payoffs.”




Despite tall talk about affordable home ownership, it may not be surprising that Biden and the Democrats are talking up rental housing issues.  When people can’t afford to buy, they rent.


As Democrats Push National Rent Control, Biden White House Rolls Out Federal ‘Renter Protection Actions’ – MHEC Executive Sounds Alarm; plus MHVille REITs, Stocks, Markets Update


The Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR) has highlighted a call, reported in the article below, that is pressing for congressional hearings on manufactured housing’s regulators by Congress.  Note that MHARR has previously supported such probes by Congress on the manufactured home industry’s regulators, as the report describes.


Call for Congressional Oversight Hearings of Manufactured Home Industry Regulators Highlighted by Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform (MHARR); plus MHVille Markets Update


It is useful to flash back a couple of weeks to what might be seen as complimentary insights to Stoller’s from Matthew Brouillette. Brouillette shared his analysis on energy executive Nick Deiuliis’s new book, Precipice: The Left’s Campaign to Destroy America. In Precipice, Deiuliis is said to describe four “categories” of modern society. Those “categories of members of modern society: “Creators,” “Enablers,” “Servers,” and “Leeches,” said Brouillette.


Precipice – Reveals, Exposes American ‘Leech Class’ – Corp CEO Aims to Protect American Dream from Leeches in Key Roles – Eye Opener for Biz, Policy Leaders, More; plus MHVille Stocks, REITs Updates


Stoller’s description above of why Equifax has ‘monopoly power’ is because they have established what Warren Buffett might term a durable competitive advantage, or a “moat.” What Brouillette summed up from Deiuliis’ new book, Precipice: The Left’s Campaign to Destroy America,” is a different way of looking at some of the same driving forces that explain why a “moat” can work. Recall what Buffett ally William “Bill” Gates III said about his pal Warren. “I didn’t even want to meet Warren because I thought, ‘hey this guy buys and sells things and so he found imperfections in terms of markets, that’s not value added to society, that’s a zero sum game that is almost parasitic.”

Think about Gates’ choice of that word, “parasitic.” Then think about Brouillette’s description of Deiuliis’ “leech” class. As the Collins Dictionary said: “Leeches feed by attaching themselves to other animals and sucking their blood.” It is a kind of ‘parasite.’ What has occurred in manufactured housing since the entry of Buffett led Berkshire Hathaway (BRK) into manufactured housing? The industry has shrunk during an affordable housing crisis. To Gates’ keen point, in a parasitic fashion, or applying Deiuliis’ “leech” class description, the industry has been reduced in size by sucking out some of the life-blood  out of the business.


This statement is revealing. A parasite feeds on its host. Bill Gates admits he thought ill of Warren Buffett. But they got together on numerous business, nonprofit, and political levels. Clearly, whatever held Gates back he overcame. What he didn’t say in this quote is that Buffett changed. There is an inference that Gates learned from Buffett and embraced that parasitic business model.
To Stoller’s point that Equifax’s CEO Begor is “bragging,” it is emblematic of what has gone wrong in America because monopoly power hasn’t been stopped and rooted out.  The potential good news? With some many on the left and right waking up to the harms caused by rampant oligopoly style monopoly power, there is potential for any sincere leaders on the left and right to bring together a serious antitrust effort. Indeed, that’s what liberal Democrat Robert Reich has pitched.


‘U.S. Should Break Up Monopolies’ Democrat Robert Reich Guardian Plan Would Hit Clayton Homes, Skyline Champion, and Cavco Industries with Costly Antitrust Lawsuit – Statements, Facts, Analysis


Reich worked in the Clinton Administration. It was the former President William Jefferson “Bill” Clinton who aptly said there is nothing wrong with America that can’t be fixed by what’s right in America.


President Bill Clinton-Curing What’s Wrong by What’s Right in America, Coalition Building, Wildly Potent Quotable Quotes, Profitable Liberty Lessons-Gonzo Journalism; plus MHVille Markets Updates


You don’t have to agree with every nuance of Stoller’s thesis to recognize the keen point he made about monopolists bragging.  Consider the following, from an MHI member who per Tim Williams at 21st Mortgage Corporation does a lot of business with his company and Clayton Homes.



MHAction Demand Letter to Impact Communities’ Dave Reynolds, Frank Rolfe’s Partner, Calls on Manufactured Housing Institute to Cancel Impact Communities MHI Membership – “Hypocrisy Anyone?”

Income and credit are factors that clearly matter to manufactured housing professionals engaged in selling or leasing homes. MHProNews will continue to monitor reports across the left-right divide that shed light on the nuances impacting the housing market or manufactured housing more specifically.


Sec Carson vs. Fudge; Dec 22 Jan 23 Data – Single-Family, Multifamily Facts as Mortgage Rates Slide – 2023 Louisville Manufactured Housing Show-Facts & Analysis; plus MHVille Markets Updates

U.S. Housing Data Reveals Gaps-Underscores Vast Manufactured Housing Industry Potential, But Raises Corp, Trade Group Performance Concerns, Apparent Shareholder Effects; plus MHVille Stocks Update

Over $1 Million! Manufactured Housing Institute Doc Drop! Top MHI Staff Pay Revealed. Additionally, Unpacking Evidence of Perjury, Fraud, Other Possible Federal Crimes; plus MHVille Stocks Update

Concessions by Speaker Kevin McCarthy in House Speaker’s Battle Called ‘Most Significant Win for Conservatives in a Decade’ By Federalist’s Emily Jashinsky Report; plus MHVille Stocks Updates


Part III. Daily Business News on MHProNews Markets Segment

The modifications of our prior Daily Business News on MHProNews format of the recap of yesterday evening’s market report are provided below. It still includes our signature left (CNN Business) and right (Newsmax) ‘market moving’ headlines. The macro market moves graphics will provide context and comparisons for those invested in or tracking manufactured housing connected equities.

In minutes a day readers can get a good sense of significant or major events while keeping up with the trends that are impacting manufactured housing connected investing.

Reminder: several of the graphics on MHProNews can be opened into a larger size. For instance: click the image and follow the prompts in your browser or device to OPEN In a New Window. Then, in several browsers/devices you can click the image and increase the size. Use the ‘x out’ (close window) escape or back key to return.




Headlines from left-of-center CNN Business – from the evening of 1.27.2023 

  • Too easy to steal
  • Hyundai Motor Co. Santa Fe sport utility vehicles (SUV) stand on display during a launch event for the updated vehicle in Goyang, South Korea, on Wednesday, Feb. 21, 2018. To recapture buyers in the U.S. who have shunned its sedans and compact cars, Hyundai has said it will bring eight new or redesigned crossovers or SUVs by 2020.
  • Some auto insurers refuse to cover certain older Hyundai and Kia models that may lack some basic theft prevention technology
  • Do you have money tied up in FTX? Share your story
  • Pending home sales increased last month for the first time since May
  • GOP-led states sue Biden administration to block ESG investment rule
  • Prices rose at a slower pace last month, the Fed’s favored inflation gauge shows
  • Goldman Sachs CEO got 30% pay cut — but still made $25 million
  • ‘GMA3’ anchors Amy Robach and T.J. Holmes expected to depart ABC after reported romantic relationship, source says
  • Mercedes leapfrogs past Tesla on automated highway driving
  • Why gas prices are surging this month
  • CVS and Walmart cut pharmacy hours, close some locations earlier, citing staffing shortage
  • McDonald’s is testing a new strawless lid
  • China still wants to control Big Tech. It’s just pulling different strings
  • Pakistani rupee plummets as markets adjust to removal of unofficial controls
  • LVMH cheers the ‘spectacular’ return of Chinese tourists
  • BuzzFeed’s CEO says AI could usher in a ‘new model for digital media,’ but warns against a ‘dystopian’ path
  • 6 Committee failed to hold social media companies to account for their role in the Capitol attack, staffers and witnesses say
  • Meta and Twitter decided to restore Trump’s account. Will other platforms follow suit?
  • Madison Square Garden CEO doubles down on use of facial recognition tech
  • Southwest posts quarterly loss and warns more losses are ahead after service meltdown
  • BuzzFeed says it will use AI to help create content, stock jumps 150%
  • ChatGPT passes exams from law and business schools
  • Buying a home is now more affordable than renting in these five cities
  • Mega-publisher Dotdash Meredith cuts 7% of its workforce, citing weakened ad market
  • Mortgage rates tick down ahead of Fed meeting next week

Notice: the graphic below can be expanded to a larger size.
See instructions below graphic, or click and follow the prompts.

In the business world, the rear-view mirror is always clearer than the windshield.” – Warren Buffett. That begs a key question. Why don’t more people LOOK at the rearview mirror more so they can learn more about the patterns that influence what’s ahead? Note: depending on your browser or device, many images in this report can be clicked to expand. or example, in some browsers/devices you click the image and select ‘open in a new window.’ After clicking that selection, you click the image in the open window to expand the image to a larger size. To return to this page, use your back key, escape or follow the prompts. https://www.manufacturedhomepronews.com/in-the-business-world-the-rear-view-mirror-is-always-clearer-than-the-windshield-warren-buffett-mhville-leader-showcases-efforts-to-renew-american-dream-plus-sunday-weekly/

Headlines from right-of-center Newsmax 1.27.2023

  • House Oversight Chair Comer Vows Hearings on AT&T DirecTV
  • James Comer, who chairs the powerful House Oversight Committee, said on Newsmax Friday that there will be “a committee that’s going to hold hearings” on DirecTV’s cancellation of its contract to air Newsmax, as there appears to be a “pattern” among media leaders to censor conservative speech. [Full Story]
  • AT&T/DirecTV Censors Newsmax
  • Jeffrey Lord to Newsmax: This Newsmax Purge Will Backfire | video
  • Powerful NRB Chief Chides DirecTV for Newsmax Drop
  • Mercedes Schlapp: Woke Firms Have ‘Gone Too Far’ | video
  • Trump Hits CNN/MSNBC Ratings: ‘Put Newsmax Back On’ | video
  • Harris: ‘Makes No Sense’ to Deplatform Newsmax | video
  • Dick Morris: Left Now ‘Privatizing’ Censorship | video
  • Mike Cloud: Network Cancellation ‘Unconscionable’ | video
  • De La Cruz: Conservatives Must Stand Up to DirecTV | video
  • Comer: Committee to Probe DirecTV’s Actions | video
  • Paul Says He Quit DirecTV; Others Slam Censorship | video
  • Huckabee: Tell DirecTV ‘You Just Don’t Matter’ That Much | video
  • Roy: This Proves Conservative Media Being Targeted
  • Trump Calls AT&T DirecTV ‘Disgusting,’ Urging Boycott
  • Comer: WH ‘Arrogant’ About Documents
  • Israeli Amb. Danon: ‘So Much Hate Spread on Social Media’ | video
  • Blaine Holt: Careful in Ukraine or Risk WWIII | video
  • Guthrie: ‘Get Back to Regular Order’ on COVID
  • Lara Trump: Megadonors Will Show Up | video
  • Babin: WH Not Protecting From Border ‘Invasion’ | video
  • Dan Schneider: Soros Has Sway Over Key Media | video
  • Fallon: Border Terror Threat Trends Up Under Biden | video
  • Ric Grenell: DNI ‘Politicizing’ Intel From Biden Docs | video
  • Blackburn: Unknown Got-Aways the ‘Really Bad Guys’ | video
  • More Newsmax TV
  • Newsfront
  • GOP Chair Ronna McDaniel Defeats Rival in Leadership Vote
  • Republican National Committee Chair Ronna McDaniel won her bid Friday to lead the GOP for two more years, prevailing in an election that highlighted fierce internal divisions that threaten to plague the party into the next presidential season.McDaniel, whom Donald Trump…… [Full Story]
  • Paul Pelosi Attack Video Released
  • San Francisco Superior Court on Friday released video and audio [Full Story]
  • Consumers Preparing for Recession Despite Rising Optimism
  • The number of consumers who said they are feeling better about the [Full Story]
  • Alec Baldwin Prosecutors Likely to Find Celebrity Trials Problematic
  • Trials involving celebrity defendants create issues for just about [Full Story] | Platinum Article
  • WH Approves More Than 16M for Student Loan Forgiveness, But Can’t Move Forward Yet
  • The White House has approved student loan forgiveness for more than [Full Story]
  • Pence: ‘Mistakes Were Made’ in Classified Records Handling
  • Former Vice President Mike Pence said Friday that he takes “full [Full Story]
  • Report: Putin Plans Ukraine Offensive, Expects Long War
  • Russian President Vladimir Putin is preparing a new major offensive [Full Story]
  • Related
  • Fighting Intensifies in East Ukraine, Kyiv Seeks More Weapons
  • Poland to Send 60 Modernized Tanks to Ukraine in Addition to Leopards
  • Russia Claims It Struck Ukraine’s Energy Infrastructure, Arms Shipments
  • Putin Blasts ‘Neo-Nazis’ in Ukraine on Holocaust Remembrance Day
  • Blaine Holt to Newsmax: US ‘Should Get Something in Return’ for Tanks |video
  • SEC Probes Musk’s Role in Tesla Self-Driving Claims
  • The U.S. securities regulator is investigating Elon Musk’s role in [Full Story]
  • Could Biden Dump Harris for 2024 Campaign?
  • Vice President Kamala Harris’ omission, whether intentional or [Full Story] | Platinum Article
  • US Condemns ‘Apparent Terrorist Attack’ in Jerusalem: State Dept
  • The United States on Friday condemned an “apparent terrorist attack” [Full Story]
  • NYC Mayor Adams Joins Calls for George Santos to Resign
  • Just two weeks ago, New York City Mayor Eric Adams pledged to work [Full Story]
  • Mercedes Schlapp to Newsmax: Woke Companies Like DirecTV Have ‘Gone Too Far’
  • Former Trump White House communications director Mercedes Schlapp [Full Story] | video
  • House Passes Bill to Limit Biden in Selling Oil From Strategic Reserve
  • The Republican-controlled House passed legislation Friday that would [Full Story]
  • Rasmussen Poll: More Than Half Say They Pay Too Much in Taxes
  • More than half 51% of Americans say they pay more than their fair [Full Story]
  • 29-Year-Old Woman Arrested for Enrolling in New Jersey High School
  • A 29-year-old woman who attempted to enroll in a New Jersey high [Full Story]
  • Trump Reveals Plan to ‘Save’ American Education
  • Former President Donald Trump, saying public schools have been taken [Full Story]
  • Related
  • Trump Rips Atlanta Rioters
  • Elon Musk, Top Biden Officials Discuss Electrification
  • Tesla Chief Executive Elon Musk met two top Biden administration [Full Story]
  • Boeing to Hire 10,000 in 2023
  • Boeing expects to hire 10,000 workers in 2023 as it recovers from the [Full Story]
  • GOP Mulls Mimicking Democrat Donor Tactic for 2024
  • To qualify for the first 2024 presidential primary debate, Republican [Full Story]
  • Jay Leno Recovering From Multiple Broken Bones After Motorcycle Accident
  • Jay Leno sustained several broken bones in a motorcycle accident mere [Full Story]
  • House GOP Leadership Opposes Fair Tax Act
  • House Republican leadership is pushing back on an attempt to abolish [Full Story]
  • Nehls to Biden: Call Trump to End War in Ukraine
  • Troy Nehls, R-Texas, this week suggested that President Joe [Full Story]
  • Legendary Basketball Analyst Billy Packer Dies at 82
  • Legendary college basketball announcer Billy Packer, who covered the [Full Story]
  • Pending Home Sales Post 1st Gain in 7 Months
  • Contracts to buy U.S. previously owned homes increased for the first [Full Story]
  • Inflation, Consumer Spending Cool Down
  • The Federal Reserve’s preferred inflation gauge eased further in [Full Story]
  • Russia Blocks CIA, FBI Websites for ‘Spreading False Information’
  • Russia’s communications regulator Roskomnadzor said on Friday it had [Full Story]
  • House Prepares First Hearing on Biden’s COVID-19 Response
  • House Republicans have called top U.S. health officials to testify in [Full Story]
  • Biden Pays Tribute to Victims of California Shootings
  • President Joe Biden on Thursday honored 18 people killed in two [Full Story]
  • Virginia Democrats Defeat Bills Limiting Abortion Access
  • In a series of key votes Thursday, Virginia Senate Democrats defeated [Full Story]
  • Blinken Headed to Mideast as US Alarm Over Violence Grows
  • Secretary of State Antony Blinken will travel to Egypt, Israel and [Full Story]
  • FBI Director Wray: Politicians Must Know Rules for Handling Secret Docs
  • FBI Director Christopher Wray publicly addressed the recent rash of [Full Story]
  • More Newsfront
  • Finance
  • Rasmussen Poll: More Than Half Say They Pay Too Much in Taxes
  • Fifty-one percent of Americans say they pay more than their fair share of income taxes, according to a new poll by Rasmussen Reports…. [Full Story]
  • Goldman Foresees Lower Gas Prices
  • 3rd Trader Joe’s Votes to Unionize
  • Fireball Maker Sued Over Mini Bottles That Don’t Contain Whiskey
  • Wall Street Set for Weekly Gains on Fed Pivot Hopes
  • More Finance
  • Health
  • The Healing Power of Scents
  • An emerging trend in virtual reality (VR) – incorporating smells – could be an exciting and effective option for health care. Already many hospitals across the country are using VR to help patients manage pain, overcome phobias and calm anxiety. And VR therapies may become…… [Full Story]
  • FDA Approves Eli Lilly’s Lymphoma Drug
  • Early Heart Disease Linked to Memory Issues by Middle Age
  • FDA Eases Rules on Blood Donations From Gay Men
  • FDA: Updated Booster Shots, Not Original COVID Vaccines, Should Be Standard

Notice: the graphic below can be expanded to a larger size.
See instructions below graphic, or click and follow the prompts.

In instances such as Apollo, Berkshire Hathaway, Blackstone or others, manufactured housing may only be part of their corporate interests. Note: depending on your browser or device, many images in this report and others on MHProNews can be clicked to expand. Click the image and follow the prompts. For example, in some browsers/devices you click the image and select ‘open in a new window.’ After clicking that selection you click the image in the open window to expand the image to a larger size. To return to this page, use your back key, escape or follow the prompts.


‘Stomach Churning Year’ CNN-Wall Street ‘Forget 2022’ Down Year – Major Equities Data Compared to Manufactured Housing Stocks, Manufactured Home Community REITs, Performance for Year by Company




      • NOTE 1: The 3rd chart above of manufactured housing connected equities includes the Canadian stock, ECN, which purchased Triad Financial Services, a manufactured home industry finance lender.
      • NOTE 2: Drew changed its name and trading symbol at the end of 2016 to Lippert (LCII).
      • NOTE 3: Deer Valley was largely taken private, say company insiders in a message to MHProNews on 12.15.2020, but there are still some outstanding shares of the stock from the days when it was a publicly traded firm.  Thus, there is still periodic activity on DVLY.
      • Note 4: some recent or related reports to the REITs, stocks, and other equities named above follow in the reports linked below.

‘Manufactured Housing in the News,’ Unpacking UMH CEO Sam Landy Op-Ed’ It’s Time for Bi-Partisanship on Affordable Manufactured Housing Homeownership’ in HousingWire; plus MHMarkets Updates

Warren Buffett’s Pledge to Kevin Clayton – ‘You Can Access Plenty of Capital’ for Projects – Quotes, Facts, Video, Transcript, and Implications for Manufactured Housing Industry

Manufactured Housing Properties-Results for Three and Nine Months Ending September 30.2022–Exploring ‘Mobile Home Park’ Manufactured Home Community Investing; plus MHVille REITs, Stocks Update

‘Changes Will Benefit Customers,’ Boost Sales-Legacy Homes CEO Duncan Bates – LEGH ‘Delivered 22.5% Return on Equity in 1 Yr’ – Corp Q3 2022 Insights, Analysis; plus MHVille REITs, Stocks Update  

‘No Assurance Inflation Will Not Affect Our Future Profitability Financial Position’=Cavco Industries 10-Q, Solitaire Deal, More CVCO Data; Supreme Court Ruled-SEC Regs on False-Omitted Remarks

Skyline Champion Provides Quarterly Results, Adding Retail Centers, Improved Delivery Times-CEO Mark Yost Says ‘Can Outperform Conventional Housing’ Explored; Plus MHVille REITs, Stocks Update

Triad Financial Services Q2-2022 FINANCIAL RESULTS, per ECN Capital – Several Bright Spots in Manufactured Home Market Highlighted, Including Communities, Retail, Land-Home, Floor; MHStocks Update


Manufactured Home Communities (a.k.a. ‘Mobile Home Parks’ – SIC) – Exploring UMH Properties; Fellow Manufactured Housing Institute Member Yes! Communities Suits and Settlements; plus MH Markets Updates


2023 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.

Disclosure. MHProNews holds no positions in the stocks in this report.

· For expert manufactured housing business development or other professional services, click here.
· To sign up in seconds for our industry leading emailed headline news updates, click here.

To get our x2 weekly industry-leading emailed news headlines, click here
We recommend that news tips NOT use company, nonprofit or organizational emails or cell phones. To report a news tip, click the image above or send an email to iReportMHNewsTips@mhmsm.com – To help us spot your message in our volume of email, please put the words NEWS TIP or COMMENTS in the subject line.

That’s a wrap on this installment of “News Through the Lens of Manufactured Homes and Factory-Built Housing” © where “We Provide, You Decide.” © (Affordable housing, manufactured homes, stock, investing, data, metrics, reports, fact-checks, analysis, and commentary. Third-party images or content are provided under fair use guidelines for media.) (See Related Reports, further below. Text/image boxes often are hot-linked to other reports that can be access by clicking on them.)

All on Capitol Hill were welcoming and interested in manufactured housing related issues. But Congressman Al Green’s office was tremendous in their hospitality. Our son’s hand is on a package that included a copy of the Constitution of the United States and other goodies. Tamas has grown considerably since this photo was taken. 

By L.A. “Tony” Kovach – for MHProNews.
Tony earned a journalism scholarship along with numerous awards in history. There have been several awards and honors and also recognition 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 MHLivingNews.com. This article reflects the LLC’s and/or the writer’s position and may or may not reflect the views of sponsors or supporters.









Facts You Didn’t Know – Martin Luther King Jr – Videos, Insightful Quotes, Surprising Revelations, Videos, Reports, and Illustrations in Champion for Human Rights Including Affordable Housing

HUD Code Manufactured Home Building Down Nov 2022–Higher for Year per Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform Data, Facts-Insights Others Lack; plus MHVille Stocks-REITs Update

‘Manufactured Housing Closes Year on Cool Note, But Optimism Grows for 2023’ Says TRERC, But TMHA VP Rob Ripperda Lets Cat Out of Proverbial Bag, Exposing MHI; plus MHVille Market, Stocks Update

U.S. Housing Data Reveals Gaps-Underscores Vast Manufactured Housing Industry Potential, But Raises Corp, Trade Group Performance Concerns, Apparent Shareholder Effects; plus MHVille Stocks Update


After Admitted Failure, Manufactured Housing Institute Doubles Down on CrossMods® in AP Terminology Doc Acquired by MHProNews–Are MHI Leaders Sabotaging MHVille Independents? Plus MHStocks Update

Concessions by Speaker Kevin McCarthy in House Speaker’s Battle Called ‘Most Significant Win for Conservatives in a Decade’ By Federalist’s Emily Jashinsky Report; plus MHVille Stocks Updates


mas kovach mhpronews shopping with soheyla .jp

Get our ‘read-hot’ industry-leading 

get our ‘read-hot’ industry-leading emailed headline news updates

Scroll to Top