Posts Tagged ‘Economist’

OMG, It’s Zillow-Palooza 2012 – Half Day Real Estate Forum at Palace Hotel Oct. 12th – FHA Commish! USC! Free!

Friday, September 14th, 2012

I don’t know, this whole deal sounds like a lot of cheerleading for the real estate industry, which is still heavily subsidized by the Feds.

Oh, and the state of California as well.

But “post-bottom landscape” and “good time to buy?” Well, after hearing those phrases bandied about, how can you resist?

So if you want to be the next Donald Trump, have at it. After all, you can’t win your share of middle-class welfare if you don’t play.

Just don’t get too optimistic, again…

“Zillow, USC Lusk Center to Host Housing Forum in San Francisco; FHA Commissioner Carol Galante to Give Keynote - “California’s Housing Market: Navigating the Post-Bottom Landscape” - To Explore Whether It Is a Good Time to Buy, Issues Around Prop 13

SEATTLE, Sept. 13, 2012  – After a housing recession that eclipsed the Great Depression, many markets are again experiencing home value appreciation sparked by high demand but a low supply of homes. What are the sources of this situation, and how long will it last? What will come next? What should real estate professionals and consumers know about this “new” housing market?

To help answer some of these questions, Zillow®, the leading real estate information marketplace, and the University of Southern California Lusk Center for Real Estate will host the half-day “Forum on California’s Housing Market: Navigating the Post-Bottom Landscape” Oct. 12 at San Francisco’s Palace Hotel.

“When it comes to today’s housing market, it’s a confusing time for professionals and consumers alike,” said Zillow Chief Economist Stan Humphries. “The sheer size of California’s real estate market, along with the fact that cities in the state were among the first to enter the housing recession, combine to make California a kind of bellwether for what to expect as other major housing markets begin to stabilize and recover. We’re thrilled to host an esteemed group of national and California-based experts to discuss the state of the market and issues of particular relevance to California.”

“With rising rents and historically low mortgage rates, owning a home appears to be very appealing,” said Richard Green, Lusk Chair in Real Estate at USC. “But underwater borrowers are reluctant – or unable – to sell, tying up supply in a high-demand environment. We look forward to discussing the implications of these factors on the housing market.”

This will be the second housing forum hosted by Zillow this year. The first, “America’s Housing Crisis: Private-Sector Responses and Public Policy Innovation,” was held in New York in April.

Full details of the San Francisco event are below, and guests can register for this free forum at http://cahousingforum.eventbrite.com. More information and updates about speakers can be found at www.zillow.com/blog/category/housing-forum.

       Forum on California’s Housing Market:
        Navigating the Post-Bottom Landscape
              October 12, 8 a.m.-noon
                   Palace Hotel
               2 New Montgomery St.
                   San Francisco

                 Keynote Speech by
                   Carol Galante
       Acting Federal Housing Administration
     Commissioner and Assistant Secretary for
                      Housing

    Top Housing Experts in Public and Private
       Sectors Will Debate and Discuss in Two
                      Panels:
     Is It a Good Time to Buy in California?:
          The Housing Market’s New Normal
    Moderated by Richard Green, Director of the
          USC Lusk Center for Real Estate
                        and
                        —
        Prop 13 in a Healing Housing Market
     Moderated by Colleen Edwards, Owner, EMC
                      Creative
Other speakers include:
    —  Spencer Rascoff, CEO, Zillow
    —  John Burns, CEO, John Burns Real Estate Consulting
    —  Bert Selva, President, Shea Homes
    —  Eric Gutshall, President and COO, Haven Realty Capital
    —  Dowell Myers, Professor, Director, Population Dynamics Research Group,
        USC Sol Price School of Public Policy
With a special overview of the nation’s housing market by Zillow Chief Economist Stan Humphries.

About Zillow, Inc.

Zillow (NASDAQ: Z) is the leading real estate information marketplace, providing vital information about homes, real estate listings and mortgages through its website and mobile applications, enabling homeowners, buyers, sellers and renters to connect with real estate and mortgage professionals best suited to meet their needs. In addition, Zillow operates an industry-leading economics and analytics bureau led by Zillow’s Chief Economist Dr. Stan Humphries. Dr. Humphries and his team of economists and data analysts produce extensive housing data and research covering more than 150 markets at Zillow Real Estate Research. Zillow, Inc. operates Zillow.com®, Zillow Mortgage Marketplace, Zillow Mobile, Postlets®, Diverse Solutions(TM) and RentJuice®. The company is headquartered in Seattle.

Zillow.com, Zillow, Zestimate, Postlets and RentJuice are registered trademarks of Zillow, Inc. Diverse Solutions is a trademark of Zillow, Inc.

(ZFIN)

SOURCE  Zillow.com

Zillow.com

CONTACT: Katie Curnutte, Zillow, +1-206-757-2701 or press@zillow.com

Web Site: http://www.zillow.com

Burn: New UCLA Study Concludes California High Speed Rail Offers No Net Economic Benefits – “Simply Moving Jobs Around”

Friday, June 22nd, 2012

Well this one is hot off the presses of the UCLA Anderson Forecast:

California High-Speed Rail and Economic Lessons from Japan

Jerry Nickelsburg
Senior Economist
UCLA Anderson Forecast

Saurabh Ahluwalia
Anderson School of Management
UCLA

June 2012

Here’s the start and the end – you’ll have to click above to read the whole thing.

“California High Speed Rail (CHSRL) is once
again in the news as the governor and state legislature
take up the issuance of construction bonds approved
by the voter passage of Proposition 1A of 2008.
Under “project vision and scope” on the CHRSL Authority
website are listed three categories of benefits:
economic, environmental and community.

In this article we focus on the economic benefits.
Specifically we look at economic growth and,
by implication, job creation. That is to say, we are
examining the benefit side of the equation and leaving
the cost side to other analysis.

Though CHSR Authority has developed and vetted a forecasting
model and has commissioned a number of economic
impact studies, these rely on relatively strong, though
perhaps plausible, assumptions. As an alternative,
we examine an actual case of high speed rail, one that
has been widely deemed a success, for evidence of
the magnitude of benefits measured by induced GDP
growth that one can expect from the building and
operation of CHSR over the next 40 years.
Our study of the Japanese Shinkansen system
from 1964 to present fails to provide evidence of
induced aggregate growth.

Rather, the evidence suggests high-speed
rail simply moves jobs around the
geography without creating significant new
employment or economic activity. That is not to say that
CHSR is not justified by population growth, pollution
abatement, or other factors. However, the evidence
from Japan is relatively clear. As an engine of
economic growth in and of itself, CHSR will have only a
marginal impact at best.

Governor Brown claims CHSR to be a visionary
project along the lines of the U.S. Interstate Highway
System, The California Central Water Project, and
the Panama and Suez Canals. As with these projects,
Governor Brown claims HSR will result in job
creation, economic development, particularly in the
Central Valley, the accommodation of population
growth and a cleaner environment.
The California High Speed Rail Authority
(CHSRA) has a set of studies demonstrating a sufficient
benefit cost analysis, a business plan that claims
operating costs will be covered by setting prices at
the currently charged airline prices for travel between
Los Angeles and the Bay Area.

The principal economic benefits cited by the CHSR Authority are the
creation of 100,000 construction jobs for the duration
of the project, operation and maintenance jobs for
the running of the trains, and the creation of 450,000
jobs and faster economic growth as a benefit of the
existence of the rail lines.

But, critics of the business plan abound. The
Board of Supervisors from both Tulare and Kern
Counties, counties who would presumably benefit
from the increased connectivity and economic growth
potential of CHSR voted their opposition to the program
as “currently constituted.

Moreover, questions have been raised about construction costs and timing,
environmental impact, operating costs and ridership
forecasts.

The State Legislative Analyst’s Office,
while not taking a position on the desirability of
CHSR, has critiqued the decision making process and
the quality of information available for legislators to
properly evaluate the issue.

 

 

Conclusions
In this study we have looked for, and failed to
find evidence of economic development that could
be clearly identified with the introduction or
operation of high-speed rail in Japan. This is surprising
because, at least for the Tokaido Line, conditions
were ripe for economic development. To be sure the
prefectures along the Tokaido Line grew. The late
60s and early 70s were a period of transformation and
growth throughout Japan. But the data don’t admit a
clear story that high-speed rail was in and of itself a
differentiating contributor.

Is it possible that absent high-speed rail Kanagawa
Prefecture would have grown more slowly? That
is an experiment that can never be performed. But
when we keep in mind that Japan’s growth in the 60s
and 70s were due to exports of goods and Kanagawa’s
main city, Yokahama, is a major port city for the
Tokyo area, it is easy to conclude that the economic
growth would have occurred with existing low speed
rail and truck transport.

The lessons for California are two-fold.

First, high-speed rail tends to create sprawl as it lowers
the cost for commuters and makes more far-flung
locations possible bedroom communities. This may
be considered a benefit by some and a detriment by
others.

Second, the claims that a multiplier effect (or
economic development effect) of 450,000 jobs as a
result of the introduction and operation of CHSR are
not likely to be realized. There may be good reasons
to invest in CHSR including the possibility that
CHSR is the optimal infrastructure investment for a
growing population; but the economic argument, the
jobs argument, does not seem to stand on very solid
ground.