Posted at 1:52 PM on December 20, 2011
by Paul Tosto
Filed under: Housing and mortgages
Look at 50 years of trend and you can see why. Housing starts have never fallen this hard, this fast in a recession.
This chart doesn't have today's data posted. Today's numbers -- estimating 685,000 starts at an annual rate -- will bump up that chart but still nowhere near "the 1.2 million homes that economists say would be built each year in a healthy housing market," according to the New York Times.
The other thing to keep in mind as you look at that chart: Housing starts often jumped sharply while the economy was still in recession and providing some real economic muscle into and through recoveries.
That's not the case this time.
So while the markets today applaud the newest numbers, there's still a long road ahead for the new housing construction business and all the workers who depend on it.