Breaking up a well-known team of housing market analysts, Yale University Economics Professor Robert Shiller announced today that he's leaving the Ivy League, and the Case-Shiller Index
, for Troy.
"It's just too damn cold here," Shiller explained from New Haven, as a late-season Nor'easter approached. "And frankly the whole environment is fusty. I'm going where the climate suits my clothes."
Shiller – widely known for being among the first to call out the tech and housing bubbles – is leaving Yale for the University of Southern California, where he's launching a new housing-related institute devoted to the study of high-end real estate markets.
"Detroit? Minneapolis? Las Vegas?," Shiller said. "I am so over those places. The action is in places like the 90210, NYC, and hey, anything coastal. Give me coastal. The data in the luxury markets tell a different story, and we'll devote ourselves to making that clear."
Shiller, whose incentive-laden package with USC – combined with his past successes in publishing and financial consulting – will put him in a top-earning tier among academics nationwide, also announced that he'd chosen a place to live already: Manhattan Beach.
"We're renting on an ocean-view walkstreet for now," Shiller said, "but the plan is to buy a lot or two and build a custom home. You can't lose buying by the beach, so that's where we're headed."
So is Shiller still a housing bear?
"Look at the numbers," Shiller said, "and sure, most of the housing world is still going to hell. But the ocean cools the fires. Where would you rather be?"