Recession-level housing numbers nothing to applaud

Oct. 24, 2012, Fairfax, VA—Americans for Limited Government Bill Wilson today issued the following statement commenting on today’s report by the U.S. Census Bureau showing 389,000 new home sales

“To call 389,000 of new home sales annualized the ‘highest since April 2010’ is a lot like saying 7.8 percent unemployment is the lowest since January 2009. It tells you nothing about how such numbers compare to a healthy economy. In September 2003 — when home values were roughly where they are today — new home sales annualized was more than 1.1 million.

“Put another way, new home sales are about 66 percent below what one would consider healthy in a robust recovery. Home values are still 31 percent below their April 2006 highs. All this talk of a housing recovery is like going to a car dealer and saying you got a great deal on a four-wheel drive vehicle that only has first and second gear because two out of five gears ain’t bad. Meanwhile, the dealer assures you by saying at least it’s not stuck in reverse.

“We’re applauding the housing market hitting the recession levels of spring 2010, a time when everyone was saying that the weak market was still a major drag on economic growth. We’re scraping the bottom here. Those enthusiastic about today’s housing report are grasping at straws. We still have a long way out of this mess.”

Interview Availability: Please contact Rebekah Rast at (703) 383-0880 or at to arrange an interview with ALG President Bill Wilson.