U.S. builders continued in September to reduce the number of new homes they erect, reflecting a glut of unsold properties nationwide.
U.S. builders continued in September to reduce the number of
new homes they erect as the country suffers from a glut of unsold properties,
the government reported.
The Commerce Department said nationwide housing starts
dropped 6.3 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 817,000, the lowest
Officials with the National Association of Home Builders
said the report’s findings were predictable.
“While lower than generally
expected, today’s numbers are not surprising in light of our latest builder
surveys and evidence of persistently high inventories of new and existing
homes, weakening home prices, falling payroll employment and declining consumer
sentiment,” said David Seiders, the NAHB’s chief economist. “With the impacts
of the record-breaking housing contraction now spilling over to other key
sectors of the economy and weighing heavily on financial markets, an additional
economic stimulus package -- including substantial measures to spur home buying
and limit foreclosures -- is the best chance we have to limit the severity of
Some political watchers have
predicted that Congress could pass an additional stimulus bill in the final weeks of the 2007-2008 session following Tuesday’s elections.
It’s strongly needed, said
association Chairwoman Sandy Dunn, a builder from Point Pleasant, W.Va.
“Builders are doing all they can to bring supply and
demand back into balance by limiting new production and offering substantial
incentives to prospective buyers,” she said. “Unfortunately, the heavy toll
that today’s financial-market woes are taking on consumer confidence is a major
impediment to getting housing back on track as an engine of economic growth,
and additional government help most likely is needed to help stimulate new
Housing starts stay on down trend
November 3, 2008