Criminal Victimization, 2008

The Bureau of Justice Statistics has released its annual survey of Criminal Victimization, 2008. The survey reports annual estimates of personal and property victimization, including the year-to-year change from 2007 and trends for the ten-year period from 1999 through 2008. As described by the Bureau, “the National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS) collects information on nonfatal crimes, reported and not reported to the police, against persons age 12 or older from a nationally representative sample of US households. During 2008, 42,093 households and 77,852 individuals were interviewed twice for the NCVS. The report includes data on violent crimes (rape/sexual assault, robbery, aggravated assault and simple assault), property crimes (burglary, motor vehicle theft and property theft), and personal theft (pocket picking and purse snatching), and the characteristics of victims of these crimes.”

Among the important points emphasized by the survey is the observation that, although the incidence of violent crimes in 2008 was statistically unchanged from the previous year, over the ten year period, the violent crime rate declined by 41% and the property crime rate fell by 32%.

Published in: on September 15, 2009 at 2:06 pm  Leave a Comment  

Mystery Dinner Theater 2009

Mystery Dinner Theater

Published in: on September 15, 2009 at 1:09 pm  Comments (1)  

Retirement Savings — How Are They Faring?

Retirement Savings Update -- Urban Institute

Retirement Savings Update -- Urban Institute

“The stock market lost 56 percent of its value between September 30, 2007, and March 9, 2009. These losses reduced the retirement savings of American households. Recently, however, a good portion of these losses has been reversed. Equities gained 53 percent between March 9, 2009 and August 31, 2009.”

The Urban Institute offers a brief fact sheet answering the question How is the Financial Crisis Affecting Retirement Savings?

The net assessment is “that retirement accounts are well off their lows. These accounts gained approximately $1.5 trillion (29 percent) between March 9, 2009 and August 31, 2009.”

Published in: on September 15, 2009 at 11:36 am  Leave a Comment  

Mortgage Closing Costs: National Survey Again Ranks Kansas Second Least Expensive

For the second year in a row, a national survey of mortgage closing costs has found Kansas to be the second least expensive market in the nation. According to a national survey by, Kansas was edged out only by Nevada this year, and North Carolina last year. Here’s how describes their survey and its results:

“ researchers gathered closing-cost information from at least four lenders in 50 states and the District of Columbia. In California, researchers also collected data separately for Los Angeles and San Francisco.

“Researchers requested a good faith estimate for a $200,000 loan, assuming a 20 percent down payment and good credit.”

The results of the survey are displayed in a table which “ranks the states, from most expensive closing costs to least expensive, by average closing costs charged by the lending industry for a mortgage in each state. Your costs will be higher than shown here because the most highly variable costs are not included: taxes, other government fees and escrow fees.

“In 2008, Bankrate surveyed 56 areas, including three in California (Los Angeles, San Francisco, Sacramento), two in Illinois (Chicago and Springfield), and two in New York (New York City and Buffalo). In 2009, Bankrate surveyed one area in 49 states, two areas in California (Los Angeles and San Francisco) and the District of Columbia.”

For more on the closing costs study, check here. For an interactive map of all the states which lists the detailed results, check here.

Published in: on September 15, 2009 at 9:31 am  Comments (1)