Looking for signs of a bottom in the housing business has become a full-time obsession on Wall Street--but there's precious little evidence we are there.
Credit Suisse put out their monthly survey of new and existing home sales trends this morning. Conditions remained unchanged in 62% of markets surveyed--improved in 19% surveyed--and deteriorated in another 19%. Sales did pick up modestly, but those higher sales came at the expense of margins. Inventories did drop modestly--but still remain high.
"The significant inventory overhang is expected to continue to pressure margins and pricing for some time," analyst Ivy Zelman writes.