CHICAGO, April 7, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- "All is not bleak; there is still hope for housing, just not much for 2011. We are still years, not months, away from seeing any sense of normalcy in this sector of the economy," says Mesirow Financial Chief Economist Diane Swonk.
View a video featuring Diane Swonk discussing the knock-on effects for the U.S. economy, in the April issue of Themes on the Economy®. Read this month's issue. She points to a list of positive factors emerging in the housing market:
- "Housing affordability has hit a record high and is likely to stay there for some time to come. In fact, rents have now exceeded the marginal costs of home ownership in most major markets."
- "Mortgage rates are expected to remain near historic lows, despite some upward movement over the course of the year."
- "Income growth is expected to reaccelerate as employment rebounds."
- Household wealth has rebounded from recession lows, especially for wealthy households.
- "Pent-up demand for housing is building, as many people still want to buy but have deferred the purchase of a home, either because they couldn't qualify for a mortgage, or they expect prices to fall further."
It will take most of the year for the positive factors to build into a real housing recovery. The housing bust may feel like the boom, in that it doesn't seem to end, but unlike the title character in Samuel Beckett's existential play, "Waiting for Godot," recovery in the U.S. housing market will show up. Much like the main characters in the play though, the housing recovery could be a little ragged, tracking closer to 2009, which was a transition year, rather than the sort of recovery we're used to seeing.
Mesirow Financial is a diversified financial services firm headquartered in Chicago. Founded in 1937, it is an independent, employee-owned firm with more than $43 billion in assets under management and 1,200 employees in locations across the country and in London. With expertise in Investment Management, Global Markets, Insurance Services and Consulting, Mesirow Financial strives to meet the financial needs of institutions, public sector entities, corporations and individuals. For more information about Mesirow Financial, visit its Web site at mesirowfinancial.com.
SOURCE Mesirow Financial