Single-family home prices were unchanged in August, pointing to a market that continued to stabilize but has yet to gain traction, a closely watched survey said on Tuesday.
PIERRE ELLIS, SENIOR GLOBAL ECONOMIST, DECISION ECONOMICS, NEW YORK
It's not quite as good as expected, but certainly it's not bad. The revamped HARP program will make life easier for people under water and promote some spending. But what might be good for homeowners comes at the expense of bondholders. In term of actual sales, it would probably not have much effect.
Demand is in approximate balance with the huge inventory for sale. It's reassuring that this level of inventory is not forcing prices lower. House prices are stabilizing so that's good for household balance.
IAN LYNGEN, SENIOR GOVERNMENT BOND STRATEGIST, CRT CAPITAL GROUP, STAMFORD, CONNECTICUT
Overall, another weak read from the housing sector -- consistent with ratcheted lower expectations as the selling season winds down.
DAVID SLOAN, ECONOMIST, IFR ECONOMICS, A UNIT OF THOMSON REUTERS
There does not appear to be much prospect of a significant near term revival in house prices, though in the NAHB homebuilders' index for October there is a tentative signal that sales are starting to improve in response to low mortgage rates. Both the Fed and Obama administration appreciate the importance of housing for the economy and are doing what they can, but their ability to stimulate a sector that is still working off past excesses remains modest.
TODD SCHOENBERGER, MANAGING DIRECTOR AT LANDCOLT TRADING IN WILMINGTON, DELAWARE
There's no way this is good news. We're stepping over dollars to pick up nickels when it comes to housing. We see these values, and there's nothing here. It just reaffirms what we've already known: we're in a 21st century depression for housing.
Today is all about Europe. Earnings are secondary, but 3M especially caught us off guard. We had been doing well in futures before that. What we're going to see is further lower volume, don't expect a lot of trading. It's all about what's going to happen tomorrow after the summit. Macro data is not important at this time.
STOCKS: U.S. stock index futures hold losses.
BONDS: U.S. bond prices hold slight gains.
FOREX: The dollar remains higher against the euro.