January 26, 2006

Realtors Group Says Housing Slowdown Is Likely to Mean Slower Growth for U.S. Economy

It's interesting to read articles that are acknowledging that we're post-peak

Seems just yesterday the real estate industrial complex folks were talking about the good times continuing, soft landings and buy buy buy..

The five-year housing boom is showing increased signs of cooling, and that's likely to mean slower growth for the entire national economy. The big question now is whether home prices will come crashing to earth with even more severe consequences.

"The bloom is definitely off the housing rose. Housing peaked last summer and has been weakening ever since," said Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody's Economy.com.

8 comments:

Wes D said...

It's very interesting to read these comments. Just a few months ago the NAR Economists were painting a rosy picture for as "far as the mind could imagine" and now they are in full-scale damage control. I hope those bastards get called before Congress and get a nice reaming for duping the general public about the state of the market. I do not absolve the general public from all responsibility, but they certainly don't need the conflict-of-interest ridden NAR spouting off all day about the values and benefits of home ownership (including never having a national price decline since the great depression, yadda yadda).

Left Las Vegas said...

"I hope those bastards get called before Congress and get a nice reaming for duping the general public about the state of the market."

You should go check the Another F@cked Borrower blog. He posted an email last week that a realtor sent a prospective buyer *guaranteeing* a 10% annual increase if you buy now. Of course, this caused an uproar with several readers demanding the realtor's name so they can report him to the Washington State RE board.

On another note, it's funny that the realtors always hide behind that mantra that "*national* home prices* have never decreased" without failing to disclose that historically many local markets have been hit hard. We can still experience mass carnage in the form of mass disclosures, excessive supply, builder firesales, etc, just in the localized areas of California, Arizona, and Nevada, without the national median going down one single penny.

Wes D said...

I did post a similar thing on that topic on AFB.

Every state except Rhode Island could have a bust and be down 10% but if RI is flat, the national market did not bust. Get it? What a scam. NAR is really stretching the truth here.

Dave said...

Lots of realtors are still in full on lie/denial mode. This article (San Luis Obispo median house price falls 12% last month) http://www.sanluisobispo.com/mld/sanluisobispo/13717958.htm has a great quote:

"A one-month adjustment does not justify fear that the bubble is bursting. The figures can be skewed by a few million-dollar homes selling one month and then not the next," said Lenny Jones, the vice chairman for region 31 (representing San Luis Obispo County) for the state association of Realtors. "It's too early to tell if this was a blip in the market or the start of a trend."

The fact is that a statistical MEAN can be heavily skewed by a few individual samples at one end or the other of a distribution but a MEDIAN won't be significantly skewed if the population size is significant. That's why they publish medians instead of means. The quote was clearly misleading and then he added the "seasonal blip" spin.

The only short term "blip" in the California real estate markets is an affordibility index that falls into single digits!

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