From the Financial Times: Home Depot chief warns on US housing
Growing optimism over the US housing market may be premature, a leading retailer warned on Tuesday.
“We are concerned about the accelerating rates of foreclosures, particularly in the western part of the country,” [Frank Blake, chief executive of Home Depot] said, noting that one out of every 54 homes in California was in foreclosure.
Mr Blake said that a slowing foreclosure rate in California during the fourth quarter had led to an improvement in regional store sales but the trend had then reversed as foreclosure rates rose again in the first quarter.
The shift “provides a cautionary note on signalling a recovery prematurely”, he said. “Before we see real improvement we believe we need to see sustainable deceleration in foreclosures.”
Now that the foreclosure moratorium is over, the pace of foreclosures is picking up again. And, according to Mr. Blake, this will probably impact the home improvement companies.