Housing Market Stumbles


As usual the WSJ has a great article. This time on the Housing market stumbling:

The housing market, whose collapse pulled the economy into recession in late 2007, is stalling again.

In major markets across the country, home sales are deteriorating, inventories of unsold homes are piling up and builders are scaling back construction plans. The expiration of a federal home-buyers tax credit at the end of April is weighing on the market.

The present looks bad:

On Tuesday, the U.S. Census Bureau said single-family housing starts in June fell by 0.7%, to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 454,000. The U.S. started 1.47 million homes in 2006, before the housing bubble popped.

The future looks weaker:

Future construction looks even weaker. Permits for single-family starts fell 3% in June, following big declines in both May and April. “We’re hovering at post-World War II lows,” said Ivy Zelman, president of Zelman & Associates, a research firm.

And the worst part may be that it is ‘one’ thing but many:

Economists aren’t singling out one reason for the stalling housing market. A variety of factors have led to flagging confidence, they say, including sluggish labor markets, global economic turmoil and falling stock prices.

The bumpy ride is just beginning.

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