There’s another big leg down and the question is how long does it stay. You can’t have much of a rally when you’ve got this big overhang.

Lew Ranieri, chairman of Ranieri Partners LLC, speaking at at the Milken Institute Global Conference in Beverly Hills: via Bloomberg

We’ve turned a corner with housing, though it’s hard to see any robustness. Prices could fall further, but as long as mortgage rates don’t jump and employment continues to improve, we should see housing play a key role in preventing a double-dip recession…There’s some light at the end of the real estate tunnel, but there are lots of things, like inventory, in the way.

Karl Case: via Bloomberg

Affordable home prices and the improving economy are doing more to lift sales than the tax credit. Consumers are becoming more confident about a major purchase such as a house. We’ll see a surge as buyers rush to close before the deadline, followed by a subsequent falloff. After that dip, we expect home sales to increase for the rest of the year.

Dean Maki, chief US economist for Barclays Capital, NY: via Bloomberg

The big plunge is over, but significant strength is unlikely. There is still a huge excess of vacant houses.

Jim O’Sullivan, chief economist at MF Global: via Bloomberg

Beginning last November, each report showed gains as fewer cities reported year-over-year declines than in the previous month; those gains ended with this report. Further, in six cities prices were at their lowest levels since the prices peaked three-to-four years ago. These data point to a risk that home prices could decline further before experiencing any sustained gains. While the year-over-year data continued to improve for 18 of the 20 MSAs and the two Composites, this simply confirms that the pace of decline is less severe than a year ago. It is too early to say that the housing market is recovering. Nineteen of the 20 MSAs and both Composites declined in February over January. Fourteen of the MSAs and both Composites have now fallen for at least four consecutive months. In addition, prices reached recent new lows for six cities inFebruary – Charlotte, Las Vegas, New York, Portland, Seattle and Tampa – sending a more cautionary message compared to the annual figures. While 14 MSAs and the two composites show improvementover their trough values reached in the spring 2009, we are not completely out of the woods. Existing and new home sales, inventories and housing starts all show tremendous improvement in their March statistics. The homebuyer tax credit, available until the end of April, is the likely cause for these encouraging numbers and this may also flow through to some of our home price data in the next few months. Amidst all the news, however, we should also pay heed to foreclosure activity, which have reached their highest level in at least the last five years. As these homes are put up for sales, we may seesome further dampening in home prices.
David M.Blitzer, Chairman of the Index Committee at Standard & Poor’s: via S&P
==========================================================================
                   Feb.    Jan.    Dec.    Nov.    Oct.    Sept.   Aug.
                   2010    2010    2009    2009    2009    2009    2009
==========================================================================
                   -------------- US Composite-20 City Index -------------
Monthly NSA %      -0.85%  -0.42%  -0.25%  -0.24%  -0.10%   0.38%   1.25%
3-Mth Annualized   -5.91%  -3.55%  -2.30%   0.16%   6.29%  14.07%  18.93%
Yearly %            0.64%  -0.73%  -3.10%  -5.35%  -7.27%  -9.22% -11.21%
Index Level        144.03  145.27  145.88  146.24  146.59  146.73  146.18
                   -------------- US Composite-10 City Index -------------
Monthly NSA %      -0.64%  -0.20%  -0.18%  -0.25%  -0.06%   0.47%   1.37%
3-Mth Annualized   -3.98%  -2.45%  -1.92%   0.66%   7.35%  15.28%  19.76%
Yearly %            1.43%  -0.08%  -2.44%  -4.54%  -6.40%  -8.33% -10.50%
Index Level        156.82  157.83  158.14  158.42  158.81  158.91  158.16
==========================================================================

==============================================================
                  Current Previous 3-Mth   YoY%    Index
                   MoM%    MoM%   Annual% Change   Level
==============================================================
US Composite-20    -0.85%  -0.42%  -5.91%   0.64%  144.03
--------------------------------------------------------------
San Francisco      -0.71%  -0.56%  -5.62%  11.90%  134.67
San Diego           0.62%   0.42%   4.85%   7.55%  157.92
Los Angeles        -0.67%   0.93%   5.04%   5.30%  171.82
Washington DC      -0.52%  -0.78%  -5.89%   5.02%  176.49
Denver             -0.84%  -1.27% -11.19%   3.59%  124.54
Cleveland          -2.13%  -0.69% -13.81%   3.24%  100.93
Minneapolis        -2.15%  -0.88% -13.37%   2.99%  119.91
Dallas             -1.76%  -1.30% -14.83%   2.65%  115.24
Boston             -1.04%  -0.49%  -6.44%   1.79%  151.44
Atlanta            -1.29%  -1.45% -12.64%  -0.93%  105.66
Phoenix            -1.48%  -0.64%  -6.45%  -1.64%  110.11
Charlotte          -0.99%  -0.46%  -8.39%  -2.48%  116.09
Chicago            -2.03%  -1.69% -19.40%  -3.01%  122.57
New York           -0.44%  -0.33%  -5.70%  -4.15%  170.46
Miami              -0.54%  -0.23%  -4.12%  -4.35%  147.52
==============================================================
                  Current Previous 3-Mth   YoY%    Index
                   MoM%    MoM%   Annual% Change   Level
==============================================================
Portland           -2.44%  -1.77% -16.64%  -4.77%  143.69
Detroit            -1.84%  -1.06% -11.03%  -5.38%   70.50
Seattle            -1.05%  -1.66% -12.80%  -5.63%  143.56
Tampa              -1.19%  -0.48%  -8.64%  -6.05%  136.54
Las Vegas          -0.40%  -0.54%  -3.11% -14.62%  103.40
==============================================================

via Bloomberg
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