An "incomplete" snapshot and a "stinking lie"
The information currently provided isn't inappropriate -- just incomplete. Imagine how valuable those figures would be if we could combine them with data, broken down by region, on how long those houses spent on the market, or the variance between their asking price and final sales price. The Realtors have all that information readily on hand, and those metrics would better help us assess whether each housing region was waking up, or still comatose.Motley Fool writer Seth Jayson, meanwhile, chastises the National Association of Realtors for its word choice:
Take a look at this ridiculous and self-contradictory release, titled "Mixed Results for October Existing-Home Sales; Mortgages Improving." The NAR follows that front-line fib with what I can only characterize as a big, fat, stinking lie. The first line begins, "Single-family existing-home sales were stable in October."
"Mixed" results? "Stable" sales? There's nothing mixed about a nearly 21% drop from October 2006. There's nothing stable about a housing inventory that has jumped 15.4% year over year, so that the months'-supply number screamed upward by 46%, meaning there is now an incredible 10.8 months' worth of homes on the market.