Wednesday, July 16, 2008

NAHB: Builder Confidence Declines to Record Low

by Calculated Risk on 7/16/2008 01:00:00 PM

The NAHB reports that builder confidence was at 16 in July, down from 18 in June. Usually housing bottoms look like a "V"; this one will probably look more like an "L". (this refers to activity like starts and sales, but will probably also be apparent in the confidence survey).

Current sales activity is at a record low of 16. Traffic of Prospective Buyers
at a record low of 12!

NAHB Press Release: Builder Confidence Declines Further In July (excerpts below graph)

Residential NAHB Housing Market Index

Builder confidence in the market for newly built single-family homes fell for a third consecutive month in July, according to the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index (HMI), released today. The HMI fell below its previous record low of 18 in June to a new record low of 16 in July, with each of its three component indexes also hitting record lows.

“The worsening housing slump and the near-meltdown in financial markets last week makes it even more urgent for Congress to complete action on the housing bill now, a move that will help stabilize and restore confidence in housing and the U.S. economy,” said NAHB President Sandy Dunn, a home builder from Point Pleasant, W.Va.
...
Builders are reporting that traffic of prospective buyers has fallen off substantially in recent months,” said NAHB Chief Economist David Seiders. “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,” he said.
emphasis added