“The reports of my death are greatly exaggerated,” wrote Mark Twain in 1897 when his obituary was mistakenly published nearly 13 years before he died. Fast forward more than a century later, Ted Kennedy told well wishers to please “hold the eulogies” as he celebrated his 77th birthday in late February. In a similar vein, we respectfully request that the press refrain from sensationalizing the current new realities of the Manhattan residential marketplace. Our market is not dead, nor it is “cratering” or “rotting” as Barron’s February 23rd cover story would have us believe. Real estate values continue to decline, coming off highly inflated levels, and transaction volume is down considerably, but following last year’s most unusual 4th quarter of near inactivity amid grim global financial news, hints of optimism have been surfacing steadily in the first months of 2009.