Your questions answered about “The Catfish Recovery”

June 7, 2011

by Scott Sambucci


Questions galore about “The Catfish Recovery” in last week’s webcast.   The good people at Business Insider covered the event and posted our favorite image:This is a catfish

Here are the main takeaways and responses to a few comments.

  1. If you’re expecting a smooth, consistent 3-5% annual growth rate in housing, you’ll be waiting a while. It just ain’t happening.
  2. No, we didn’t proclaim – “It’s a great time to buy or sell real estate.”  What we said was that periods of volatility and market inflections offer opportunities for traders to profit with the right information.  (See John Paulson circa 2007)
  3. Expect a triple dip, a quadruple dip, and a quintuple dip.  Heck, we saw back in July that 2011 home prices would fall below 2009 levelsWe confirmed this in November. Expect volatility. Repeat: Expect volatility.
  4. History shows that volatility is normal. And we all agree that the mid-90’s through 2007 was just a bit abnormal. (a.k.a “The Constant Growth Myth”):

"History of Home Values" from Robert Shiller's "Irrational Exuberance"

Additional comments, criticisms, and scathing remarks welcome.


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