Tag Archives | US house prices

US housing recovery stalls as Boomers head for retirement

“Recent economic reports suggest a bleaker picture for housing…. Some of the weakness reflects the cold weather in much of the country. However, higher home prices and mortgage rates are taking a toll on affordability.” This was the sober report yesterday from the chairman of the authoritative S&P Case-Shiller Home Price Index, adding that “the strongest part […]

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US house price recovery “living on borrowed time”

Housing used to be the key driver for US chemical demand in the SuperCycle, and went into overdrive in the subprime era between 2003-6, when housing starts rose to 2 million/year.  We don’t yet have December’s data, but we already know that 2013′s total will be only half this level, despite all policymakers’ efforts to revive the […]

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US home prices hit new post-crisis lows in Q1

The blog is changing its regular presentation of US house price movements, to mirror that used for auto sales. This should help to identify month-by-month changes. It also means there is no need to use seasonally adjustmed numbers. These are guesswork at the best of times. And in Q1 they have been tested to the […]

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US foreclosure period doubles, as house prices fall

The US foreclosure process used to take around 36 weeks, once the homeowner stopped making payments. But as the chart shows, based on information provided by LPS Applied Analytics, this period has doubled since the housing crisis began in 2008. In November, it was taking nearly 72 weeks, or 16 months. Meanwhile, the number of […]

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US housing markets could weaken further

US housing was the prime cause of the current financial crisis. US banks spent most of the 2000-7 period lending at low ‘teaser’ rates to borrowers who had no prospect of repaying the loan. And by syndicating the loans to gullible European banks, they ensured that losses were shared equally, when credit standards finally began […]

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US house prices continue to fall

Q4 was never going to be good for US housing markets. The financial crash of September/October not only terrified potential buyers, but also meant they found it increasingly difficult to secure loans. As the chart shows, this lethal combination hit house prices hard. The latest S&P/Case-Shiller figures show prices down 24% in October from the […]

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Californian house sales jump, as prices fall

We now have an possible indication of how far house prices may have to fall in some parts of the USA, in order to attract buyers. Last month, Southern California saw a 65% rise in property sales versus September 2007. The reason, a major increase in foreclosed properties for sale. The impact on prices was […]

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US car sales plummet, house prices fall again

September was another difficult month for the cornerstones of US chemical demand, autos and housing: • GM cut prices dramatically via its ‘Employee discount for everyone’ programme. But even so, sales fell 16% versus last year (blue column) • Toyota (red column), fell 30% • Ford (green column) fell 34% • Chrysler (purple column) fell […]

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The $5 trillion bailout

The US government has finally decided to nationalise the two home loan giants, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Readers will remember I forecast this would be necessary a year ago, in a letter to the Financial Times. I argued then that ‘a buyer of last resort, such as the Federal government, would probably now need […]

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US house prices keep on falling

US house prices, according to today’s S&P/Case-Shiller Index, are still falling quite sharply. As shown in the chart, they are now down 17% versus last year. The key influence, according to S&P, is that ‘the markets that were the high-flyers during the recent real estate boom continue to be the ones that are leading the […]

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