David Lereah’s Kind-of Mea Culpa
Though he’s hardly a household name, David Lereah — formerly the chief economist for the National Association of Realtors — achieved not a little notoriety for writing the extremely ill-timed (2005), “Are You Missing the Real Estate Boom?”
For that, Lereah is forever assured a place in financial trivia Hell along with James (“Dow 36,000”) Glassman and economist Irving Fisher (“stock prices have reached what looks like a permanently high plateau”) — that, just before the 1929 Stock Market Crash.
However, Lereah no more caused the real estate bubble than Glassman caused tech stocks to skyrocket or Fisher was behind the roaring ’20’s stock market.
Today’s Wall Street Journal profiles Lereah with a half-tweak, half “where are they now” piece, Realtors’ Former Top Economist Says Don’t Blame the Messenger.
Given all the truly culpable actors in the housing and credit mess, piling on Lereah seems a little gratuitous.