Market Can’t Decide Whether It’s Recovering or Not

By Alex Girda, Associate Editor The housing market has been one of the weak points of Las Vegas economy but from time to time there have been indicators regarding a forthcoming recovery. A Las Vegas Review-Journal article pointed to a recent report [...]

The housing market has been one of the weak points of Las Vegas economy but from time to time there have been indicators regarding a forthcoming recovery. A Las Vegas Review-Journal article pointed to a recent report regarding a 15-city list published by Yahoo Finance on the worst housing markets in the U.S.

The good news is that Las Vegas doesn’t show up on that list (Miami headlines it) despite repeated negative signals in the market during past months. Las Vegas’ ranking comes as a bit of a shock especially since a recent report, quoted by the same LVRJ, listed the Strip as one of a small set of major cities in the U.S. that haven’t recorded any growth in home prices. In fact, growth was only recently recorded for the first time in eight months; this activity was spurred by the wave of home deals made in the spring.

Current growth indicators, however, do not support the idea that a rebound is expected in Las Vegas in the short term. Analysts such as David Blitzer, chairman of Standard & Poor’s Index committee, who was quoted by LVRJ as saying that the growth is very welcome, are more reserved making sure to mention that this might not necessarily mean a rebound is in the immediate future.

Further supporting the expectation that the upturn will arrive late to the party is another Las Vegas Review-Journal story that focuses on The Architecture Billing Index. The Index recorded another drop during the month of May reaching the 47.2 margin.

However, on a regional level, the West is by far the leader, managing to cope with the slide much better after it stood at the bottom of the list just a year ago. Values for the entire Western region stood at 49.3 points in May, with 50 points signaling an increase in billings for architecture services. This index is essential in determining the amount of construction done in the following 12 months.