Builders have dim view of new-home sales; unlikely to hire until housing market improves

Chicago Tribune
February 16, 2011

Optimism is in short supply among U.S. homebuilders, a sign that the depressed housing market will slow the economy's gains this year.

Less home building means fewer jobs for the economy. Construction work now accounts for about 5 percent of the nation's private employment. But nearly 2 million of the roughly 14 million unemployed Americans previously worked in construction.

Analysts say the economy needs to accelerate job creation before the housing industry can fully recover. Without more jobs and higher wages, home sales will stagnate, according to a Feb. 15 AP report in the Chicago Tribune.

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