Tuesday, March 31, 2015
YOLO COUNTY NEWS
99 CENTS

If housing comeback is for real, recovery is, too

By
From page A8 | October 25, 2012 |

The issue: While jobs numbers are important, housing starts are the real economic drivers

While political analysts were happily hashing over Mitt Romney’s binders of women and what President Barack Obama did or did not say in the Rose Garden about the Benghazi attack, the U.S. Department of Commerce was issuing a report that will have more to do with the president’s re-election than anything said during the debates.

THE DEPARTMENT announced that housing starts in September grew at their fastest rate since July 2008. Last year was the lowest on record for new home construction; this year, housing starts are up 21 percent, with apartment construction especially strong.

Last month, the unemployment rate fell to 7.8 percent from 8.1 percent, breaking the 8 percent barrier for the first time since Obama took office. The jobless rate is symbolically and psychologically important. Voters want to be assured that if they need a job they can find one.

But the housing starts are economically the more important number. In short, there is no economic recovery without a housing recovery, and it looks like Obama has lucked into a full-fledged housing recovery.

The jobless figures can be volatile, and the government is continuously revising them. But all the evidence points to the housing recovery as a trend, not a one-shot aberration but a robust, full-fledged recovery with the potential to pull the broader economy along with it. The National Association of Home Builders expects increases of 26 percent and 30 percent in the next two years.

For one thing, housing permits, a key indicator of future building, jumped 12 percent, to the highest number since the nadir month of July 2008. That number is an annual rate of 894,000, still short of an annual rate of 1.5 million, the benchmark for a truly healthy market.

And the Federal Reserve indicates that mortgages, already at a record low, will stay low and may even go lower.

MAJOR PLAYERS in the industry were pleased. The National Association of Home Builders called it “good, solid evidence” that the recovery is under way. Global economic analyst Dan Greenhaus told the Associated Press, “If there was any doubt that the housing market was undergoing a recovery, even a modest one in the face of the terrible 2008 decline, those doubts should be erased by now.” And HIS Global Insight told USA Today that the housing market was registering “blowout numbers.”

While sales of existing homes are improving, it’s the new homes that boost the economy, with each new home being labor-intensive to build, creating about three new jobs a year and generating sizable expenditures on the durable goods to furnish them.

Housing created an average of 4.7 percent of the Gross Domestic Product and the National Association of Home Builders expects construction to add more than 10 percent a year.

By any measure, that’s a recovery. Now, all Obama has to do is contrive a way to take credit for it — and soon.

Comments

comments

  • Recent Posts

  • Enter your email address to subscribe to this newspaper and receive notifications of new articles by email.

  • .

    News

    Special playground dedication slated

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A1

     
     
    ‘Old Autos’ at Hattie Weber Museum

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

    Parent-child open house previews new Waldorf classes

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

     
    Summer garden alert!

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4

    Poker tourney benefits DMTC

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

     
    Davis FFA and ag students host plant sale

    By Anne Ternus-Bellamy | From Page: A4

    Camp Shakespeare begins Saturday

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

     
    Davis tops list of best schools for the buck

    By Jeff Hudson | From Page: A4

    Lenten giving project highlights climate justice

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A4 | Gallery

     
    DCCNS plans open house April 8

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A4

    City extends nomination period for Huynh Awards

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A5

     
    CBH hosts Passover Community Potluck Seder

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A5

     
    Parenting class meets Tuesdays

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A5

    RSVP for Gerber Young Community Leader reception

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A5

     
    Neighbors invited to adopt Willow Creek Park

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A5

    Yolo animal shelter seeks donations

    By Lauren Keene | From Page: A5Comments are off for this post

     
    Move over, Muggles

    By Wayne Tilcock | From Page: A5

    Pence Gallery recruiting volunteers

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A5

     
    Tour de Cluck has selected its coops

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A5 | Gallery

    Meeting examines Northstar Pond priorities

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A6

     
    .

    Forum

    Why can’t we be friends?

    By Creators Syndicate | From Page: B5

     
    .

    Sports

    A very palpable hit

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1 | Gallery

     
     
    UC Davis plays 7 of next 8 softball games at home

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1

    Over the years, The Show has been a reach for Davis

    By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B1 | Gallery

     
    UC Davis opens hopeful spring football camp

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B1

    Sleiffer leads Aggie tennis win versus Montana

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: B2 | Gallery

     
    Grizzlies beat Kings to end three-game skid

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B10 | Gallery

    Snubbed Temple, returning Stanford highlight NIT semis

    By The Associated Press | From Page: B10

     
    .

    Features

    .

    Arts

    30 years of dance in Davis with Pamela Trokanski

    By Chloe Lessard | From Page: A1 | Gallery

     
    Mischief to play at Picnic in the Park

    By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A9 | Gallery

    Yolo Mambo will play at winery

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A9

     
    Thursday Live! plans a blues party

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A9

    Jane Lynch performance rescheduled to August

    By Jeff Hudson | From Page: A9 | Gallery

     
    Hear some April Fool’s night jazz

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A9

     
    Dance the night away at house party

    By Enterprise staff | From Page: A9

    ‘A Year with Frog and Toad’ a delightful family show

    By Bev Sykes | From Page: A9 | Gallery

     
    .

    Business

    .

    Obituaries

    .

    Comics

    Comics: Tuesday, March 31, 2015 (set 1)

    By Creator | From Page: B5

     
    Comics: Tuesday, March 31, 2015 (set 2)

    By Creator | From Page: B7