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Which Way is Up?

 


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There seems to be more conflicting foreclosure numbers hitting the media this week. With numbers out from all the leading foreclosure reporting companies, it is inevitable that there is a disparity between them, and a misrepresentation of those numbers within the media and journalistic outlets.

Let's take a look at the latest examples of faulty foreclosure reporting and its respective media coverage. An article published by the Lansing State Journal, or LSJ.com, on August 14, 2008, offered the following headline: “Foreclosures continue to rise across mid-Michigan. " Yet according to the headline of an article published in the Toledo Blade on the very same day, “Michigan's foreclosure drop, Ohio's increase. "

While foreclosures seem to have decreased in only Mid-Michigan, yet another article adds to the confusion. According to an article published in The Detroit News again on August 14, 2008, “Michigan's foreclosure rate, and those of Wayne and Macomb counties, dropped from what they were a year ago. " Here is the question that readers should be asking themselves: How could foreclosures in mid-Michigan have decreased and foreclosures in the heavily-foreclosure prone area of Detroit decreased, yet all Michigan foreclosures have increased?

As for the Toledo Blade article claiming Ohio foreclosures increase, it was easy enough to find yet another contradictory article. Coming directly from Ohio.com, an article states that according to a “firm keeping tabs on foreclosure activity nationwide says the flood of filings may be leveling off in Ohio. " However, in the Toledo Blade article foreclosures in Ohio only increased 2% from the previous month, which could be an indication of foreclosures leveling off. Needless to say, article headlines, and for that matter, foreclosure figures, can be misleading depending on the way they are presented.

Chris Sopaz

Foreclosure Data

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