It seems that everywhere I go, online and off, there’s someone talking about real estate and the US morgage crisis. The conversation about the US economy over at Drumsmith reminded me of an article that I saw on the BBC’s website. The article is The US sub-prime crisis in graphics, and it does a good job of explaining how it happened. Fundamentally I think there were two fundamental problems. First is consumer spending habits, a lack of financial education, and a willingness to take a morgage that was too good to be true. The second is a lack of transparency in the market about these morgages (and a similar issue with the related ABCP market). It’s going to be a tough ride for a lot of people, and there are some difficult times coming up for the US economy and the new administration. I’d also point you to this article by Don Campbell (of REIN) about the sub-prime issue.