December 28, 2005


Print Reports Snow Readers On Housing: Reports hype November sales drop while ignoring that 2005 will break 2004 new house-sale record. (Ken Shepherd, Dec. 27, 2005, Free Market Project)

The front page of the December 27 Investor’s Business Daily (IBD) joined other print outlets in blowing hot air on the so-called “housing bubble” with “Home Sales Plunge as Prices Pull Back and Supply Swells,” as reporter Kirk Shinkle painted a chilly winter landscape for the housing market. [...]

Yet a month prior, The Washington Post’s Sandra Fleishman reported on government figures showing sales for October 2005 had leapt 13 percent over September, “a monthly increase not seen in a dozen years, according to a government report.” In her November 30 report on the October numbers, Fleishman voiced caution from unnamed experts, noting that the “unexpected burst of activity in sales of new homes, particularly a 47 percent rise in sales in the West, could be an error in reporting,” adding that experts say, “monthly new-home statistics are volatile and often subject to revisions.”

Shinkle hyped one month’s aberrant statistics to hint at a housing bubble burst and warned new home building “might only add to a growing glut on the market.” That is only the latest example of the media eagerly misreporting the news to forecast a housing bubble burst which has not yet happened, despite four years of doom-saying. The Free Market Project placed the housing bubble myth as number five in its year-ending list of the Top Ten Economic Myths of 2005. The November 30 Free Market Project study on housing bubble coverage is also available at

Gee, you'd think the stories about the oil bubble bursting would crowd out the housing ones.

Posted by Orrin Judd at December 28, 2005 7:00 AM

your faith in statistics and the msm is touching :)

check the stock prices for home builders and you will learn the truth of the situation, re new home sales.

Posted by: toe at December 28, 2005 12:11 PM

So was a good buy because people flocked to it?

Posted by: oj at December 28, 2005 12:30 PM

KB Home looks like it's doing OK by me.

It's what happens when you sell to the masses.

Posted by: Brad S at December 28, 2005 2:15 PM

try "Toll Brothers"

Posted by: toe at December 28, 2005 2:48 PM

it was a good buy until it wasn't.

Posted by: toe at December 28, 2005 2:49 PM

Ah, but there's the rub. Toll Bros. is a "luxury" (i.e. McMansion) builder.

The list of people needing regular for-sale housing in CA will continue to grow for the forseeable future, despite the obvious gaming tactics.

Posted by: Brad S at December 28, 2005 3:25 PM