Housing maintains 'bellwether' status

September 13, 2002

Record low interest rates drive car, home sales


Inman News Features

Economic growth appears to have accelerated in the third quarter due in large part to low consumer interest rates, which have sparked a rebound in automobile sales and propelled home sales, according to Freddie Mac's monthly economic and housing outlook.

"Personal consumption expenditures and residential fixed investment will drive economic activity to about a 3 percent annualized growth rate for the second half of this year with further acceleration to close to 3.5 percent in 2003," said Freddie Mac Chief Economist Frank Nothaft. "A 'double dip' in growth seems out of the question."

Housing is predicted to remain the "bellwether industry" throughout the year; however, due to unemployment rates mortgage default rates are expected to continue to increase in areas that have been more affected by the recession, according to Nothaft.

Interest rates have plummeted in the past month and are expected to average 6.3 percent and 6.2 percent in the third quarter and fourth quarter, respectively, according to Nothaft.

Copyright: Inman News Service


Contact ALTA at 202-296-3671 or communications@alta.org.

SoftPro, based in Raleigh, NC, offers a mature suite of products, designed specifically for the closing and title industry. Our mission is to serve our client base, with best-in-class products and services. Our products are modular so we don't force you to buy anything you don't need. You can always add on as your business grows. Unlike other software companies, we view the sale as the beginning of the relationship rather than the end. North American Title Insurance Company (NATIC) is a seasoned title insurance underwriter, helping title agents to achieve their individual business goals for more than 50 years. Today, the company conducts real estate settlement services in 39 states and the District of Columbia through a network of experienced, independent agents.