Thursday, July 17, 2008

Homebuilder Blues: NAHB/Wells Fargo Home Builder Ratings July 2008

Yesterday, the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) released their latest Housing Market Index (HMI) showing continued evidence that the new home market is experiencing a prolonged bout of depression.

The release came along with a truly dire outlook and a continued plea for a government bailout of the housing debacle from Chief Economist David Seiders.

“Builders are reporting that traffic of prospective buyers has fallen off substantially in recent months … Given the systematic deterioration of job markets, rising energy costs and sinking home values aggravated by the rising tide of foreclosures, many prospective buyers have simply returned to the sidelines until conditions improve … An $8,000 tax credit, made available for a limited time, could be just the incentive needed to draw them into the game, and a policy-induced pickup in home sales could gain momentum further down the line.”

Each component of the NAHB housing market index is now sitting WELL BELOW the worst levels ever seen in the over 20 years the data has been being compiled strongly suggesting that the current severe contraction has surpassed all other events seen in the last 22 years and is now firmly in uncharted territory.