Analysts Say Housing Flat -- At Best
Has the housing market hit a bottom -- or is it still sliding? Mike Englund, principal director and chief economist at Action Economics, and Mark Kiesel, investment strategist and portfolio manager at PIMCO, gave their views on "Power Lunch." One thing they agree on: Housing is not about to rise anytime soon.
Englund told CNBC's Bill Griffeth that the market has been focused on the subprime meltdown, but the real story -- "the full mix of housing data" -- is "sideways." He pointed to completions and starts falling "fairly rapidly" -- but said those dire trends are balanced somewhat by strong existing-home sales, which were boosted by the December and January weather.
But Kiesel thinks the bottom has yet to come, especially in California, where he resides. The portfolio manager told Griffeth he'd sold his home and has been renting for a year while he awaits the bottom -- and expects to rent for "at least" a few more years. He believes the market is in a "credit creation bubble that's unwinding." With record inventories and no pent-up demand, Kiesel is sure "prices will only go lower."