Wednesday, November 15, 2006

For Whom the Housing Market Tolls

Toll Brothers, a leading upscale home builder that has continued to forecast lower and lower earnings as the year has progressed and whose financial health is looked upon as an indicator for the residential building sector as a whole, reported Tuesday that contracts for new homes fell 57% during its fiscal fourth quarter, which ended Oct. 31.

"We continue to look for signs that a recovery is imminent but can't yet say that one is in sight," CEO Robert Toll said in a statement.

Toll said during a conference call with analysts that the company reported 585 contract cancellations on new homes during the last quarter -- the highest quarterly number ever recorded by the upscale builder.

The company will report its end of year numbers on Dec. 5.

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Home Prices Drop, Mortgage Rates Rise

The median price of a new home in the United States dropped to $217,100 in September, a 9.7 percent decline from September 2005 and the biggest annual fall in more than 35 years, according to the Commerce Department. That median price was the lowest since September 2004, and the annual decline also was sharper than the 2.5 percent drop in the price for existing homes reported in September, the largest annual plunge on record.