Tag Archives | US housing

US homeownership equals all-time low as demand patterns change

It is is 10 years since the US subprime bubble began to burst, with disastrous results for the US and global economy. The US Federal Reserve  had created the bubble in the belief that higher house prices would boost the economy.  It then made a bad situation into a disaster by refusing to accept that […]

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Demographic changes hit US chlorine and caustic soda demand

Its not all fun being part of the US millennial generation (those born between 1980 – 2000).  They number 80 million, about the same as the BabyBoomer generation.  But as the New York Times notes: “The millennial generation has less wealth and more debt than other generations did at the same age, thanks to student […]

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Atlanta Fed Q1 GDP indicator at 0.2%, as US housing, auto sales remain below previous trends

US housing starts are slowing so far this year, with February’s starts just below the million level again on an annualised basis.  This follows the steadily declining rate of home ownership, which is now back at 1995’s level of 64%.  And yesterday’s Case-Shiller report on home prices suggests the 10-City Index may well have peaked back in […]

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US housing markets will never be the same again

US housing markets will never be the same again.  That’s the conclusion of a new analysis by the blog for ICB. The picture above of a typical US family from the BabyBoom days tells the story: The number of US babies born between 1946 – 64 increased by 50% versus the previous 18 years 4 million […]

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“None so blind, as those that will not see?”

Every now and then, the blog scratches its head and wonders, “what would it take to convince US policymakers that demographics have an influence on demand?” Suppose, for example, they loudly and consistently announced that the US was now in full recovery mode, and would be certain to achieve economic growth of 3% or more?  And that then, growth […]

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US housing starts rise as investors buy into rental sector

US housing markets have been a disaster for many homeowners. Overall, they have lost $6tn since the collapse began in 2006. Nationally, prices are still down 32% versus their peak, according to the Case Shiller Index. Temporarily, however, the market is continuing to stabilise. Banks have slowed the rate of foreclosure, and are wary of […]

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US home prices slip as foreclosures increase

Since 2007, every spring sees a rush of forecasters to claim that – finally – the US housing market has hit bottom. Sadly, for those trapped in foreclosure, and for those in the chemical industry who depend on housing sales, there is little real evidence today for such optimism. Housing also provides a good example […]

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US housing in double-dip as BabyBoomers age

US house prices fell 4.2% in Q1, and have entered ‘double-dip’ territory, having fallen below March 2009 levels, according to the S&P Case-Shiller Index. They are now back to mid-2002 levels. Further falls are more or less inevitable. S&P suggest the ‘shadow inventory’ of homes is now 52 months at current sales rates, up from […]

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The end of the US housing dream

Most economists still expect a major recovery in US housing markets. This would be very welcome for chemical companies, as housing represented a $35bn market as recently as 2006, when 2.2m new homes were built. But the above chart suggests they may be over-optimistic. It comes from Yale’s Prof Robert Shiller, who co-founded the authoritative […]

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US heads towards New Normal for housing markets

Major changes are underway in Western housing markets. They are generational in nature, meaning that we are starting to see a New Normal develop in terms of future demand patterns for chemicals and polymers. The past 30 years have seen Western leaders committed to the concept of a ‘property-owning democracy’. Both US President Reagan and […]

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