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Monday, February 04, 2013

Tuesday: ISM Service Index

by Calculated Risk on 2/04/2013 08:20:00 PM

A different view from Stephen Foley at the Financial Times: House price rebound cruising for a fall

The new flippers of US housing are not the individual speculators of the boom years ... These investors, who have poured into the US housing market since its nadir, are hedge funds and private equity vehicles, and recently (belatedly) individual entrepreneurs. They may be planning to hold the property for a while and harvest rental income in the interim, but decent returns are predicated on a sale, and usually a quick one.

That makes them flippers – and it means that the recent run of strong housing market data may be more chimeric than real.
excerpt with permission
Maybe. But these investors initially bought for the cash-flow, and they would only sell now if they could make a solid profit - and that means a higher price. This isn't logic for a "fall" in house prices, rather this is an argument for less future appreciation.

Also - the author argues "individual entrepreneurs" were late to the party and that is incorrect. Many individuals and small groups were ahead of the hedge funds and private equity groups. I've noted my discussions with some of these groups over the last few years, and they are very happy with their properties (I called one group after reading this article, and I was told they have no intention of selling any properties).

Tuesday economic releases:
• At 10:00 AM ET, the ISM non-Manufacturing Index for January. The consensus is for a decrease to 55.0 from 55.7 in December. Note: Above 50 indicates expansion, below 50 contraction.

• Also at 10:00 AM, the Trulia Price Rent Monitors for January will be released. This is the index from Trulia that uses asking prices adjusted both for the mix of homes listed for sale and for seasonal factors.