Thursday, December 24, 2009

REALTOR® Magazine-Daily News-Another Big Gain in Existing-Home Sales

REALTOR® Magazine-Daily News-Another Big Gain in Existing-Home Sales

Tax Credit Gets Buyers Off the Fence

The new $6,500 move-up Homebuyer Tax Credit is apparently motivating buyers, according to a Campbell Communications survey of 1,500 real estate practitioners.

Existing home owners accounted for 41 percent of home purchases in November, up from 38 percent in October, the survey found.

“Current home owners jumped at the credit,” says survey research director Thomas Popik.

Source: Housing Wire, Austin Kilgore (12/22/2009)

Economy Improving in 4th Quarter

Economy Improving in 4th Quarter
The economy grew 2.2 percent in the third quarter. The U.S. Commerce Department had previously estimated a 2.8 percent growth rate. Officials attributed the discrepancy to consumer caution, saying that consumers simply didn’t spend as much.

Many analysts still believe the economy is likely to improve in the current quarter, growing at an estimated 4 percent, or perhaps, even 5 percent. Fourth quarter results will be released Jan. 29.

Companies stocking depleted inventories will drive fourth-quarter growth, but the results will continue to reflect consumer caution. "We expect a better performance in the fourth quarter, but the core problems for the economy – bust banks and a massively overleveraged consumer – have not gone away," says Ian Shepherdson, chief economist at High Frequency Economics.

Source: Associated Press, Jeannine Aversa (12/22/2009)