Enjoy it while it lasts, economist tells NM Housing Summit - Albuquerque Journal

Enjoy it while it lasts, economist tells NM Housing Summit

The U.S. economy may be going “gangbusters” at the moment, but there are signs of a slowdown by 2020.

“Everything’s on fire” through 2019 economist Elliot Eisenberg told a crowd of housing industry professionals Wednesday during the 2018 New Mexico Housing Summit, which was presented by the New Mexico Mortgage Finance Authority. About 500 people attended Eisenberg’s keynote speech at Hotel Albuquerque.

Signs of a booming national economy are strong consumer confidence and spending, small-business optimism and a rising stock market. Unconventional signs include record purchases of RVs, racehorses and trips to Las Vegas, Nev., said Eisenberg, who shared a wide range of economic projections during a highly energetic presentation.

“There’s nothing like 3.9 percent unemployment to make the world go ‘round,” said Eisenberg.

Eisenberg predicted the tax cut package passed by Congress will provide an economic stimulus through 2019, though the effects will wind down by 2020, shrinking gross domestic product, which hit 4 percent in the last quarter.

Trade tariffs also will hurt GDP growth by 2020 “unless some accommodation” is reached with China, said Eisenberg.

Another area of concern: with baby boomers retiring in droves, labor force participation and productivity gains have been weaker than the historical norm, said Eisenberg. The upshot: labor shortages could become a more serious problem for future economic growth.

Another indicator dragging down the economy in the coming years: The burdens of student loans “have metastasized like mushrooms after a rainstorm,” said Eisenberg.

The main problem with the housing market around the country and in New Mexico is the lack of inventory, said Eisenberg. “We’re chronically underbuilt” for a nation of this size, he said.

Because builders face issues such as a contracting pool of construction workers, higher land and permitting costs, the single-family homes that do hit the market are increasingly higher-end products that maximize profits, said Eisenberg, who specializes in real estate and housing.

“We built 850,000 single-family homes last year,” the economist said during his presentation. “That’s a travesty. And while demand is high, there’s very little builder activity at the newly built starter-home level.

The Albuquerque area is averaging about 1,700 new homes a year, which is insufficient for a market this size, according to local home builder groups.

Home » News » Albuquerque News » Enjoy it while it lasts, economist tells NM Housing Summit


Albuquerque Journal and its reporters are committed to telling the stories of our community.

• Do you have a question you want someone to try to answer for you? Do you have a bright spot you want to share?
   We want to hear from you. Please email yourstory@abqjournal.com

taboola desktop

1
Incumbent BernCo commissioner faces challenger
ABQnews Seeker
District 5 rep touts record of ... District 5 rep touts record of service
2
Cancer survivor sings the praises of community
ABQnews Seeker
'We should all be taking care ... 'We should all be taking care of each other,' he says
3
US House reps team up on bipartisan water, drought ...
ABQnews Seeker
Databases help groups weigh scarce water ... Databases help groups weigh scarce water conditions
4
Documents detail rape allegations against shooter
ABQnews Seeker
Man who killed two teens and ... Man who killed two teens and himself was under investigation
5
APD: Man detained after lengthy standoff, shooting at police ...
ABQnews Seeker
A man is in custody hours ... A man is in custody hours after authorities say he fired at officers from a balcony Thursday evening in a Southeast Albuquerque neighborhood. Daren ...
6
APD solving more homicides
ABQnews Seeker
Department touts 97% clearance rate with ... Department touts 97% clearance rate with 47 suspects arrested
7
There's a new baby at the BioPark
ABQnews Seeker
Orangutan Sarah gives birth to a ... Orangutan Sarah gives birth to a male, her fifth offspring with partner Tonka
8
St. Pius X names Deely as its new Head ...
ABQnews Seeker
Barbara Rothweiler to retire after 18 ... Barbara Rothweiler to retire after 18 years as principal
9
APS hosts donation drive for firefighters
ABQnews Seeker
Albuquerque Public Schools is collecting a ... Albuquerque Public Schools is collecting a range of items for firefighters battling wildfires in northern New Mexico. APS's Drive for Supplies will be held ...