What the failure of Trump Mortgage says about Trump

In the spring of 2006, the tycoon hosted a glitzy event at Trump Tower to introduce Trump Mortgage LLC, a new firm that specialized in selling residential and commercial real estate loans. He devoted a floor of the Trump Organization headquarters at 40 Wall Street to the new business. And his picture appeared atop the company website with the instruction: “Talk to My Mortgage Professionals now!”

“I think it’s a great time to start a mortgage company,” Trump told a CNBC interviewer in April 2006, adding that “the real estate market is going to be very strong for a long time to come.”…

In attaching his brand to the residential mortgage market at the height of the bubble, Trump defied a growing chorus of pessimism among economic forecasters and cast his decision as a sign of his own good judgment.

“How you react to the so-called housing bubble can be a barometer of your business personality,” he wrote in a September 2005 blog entry, months before the launch of Trump Mortgage. The post, published on the website of Trump University, the now-defunct business that provided seminars for aspiring real estate entrepreneurs, appeared under the headline, “The Housing Bubble: Doom and Gloom Don’t Pay.”