I’m a huge fan of Anirban Basu.
This guy really knows his stuff!!! He wrote this piece for today’s Washington Post. He serves as chief economist for Associated Builders and Contractors and the Maryland Association of Realtors, among other things. His focus here is on the current state of the DC region’s housing as well as the “nonresidential construction” sectors. Here is the complete article:
Across the Washington region are some hopeful signs for the construction industry … But the sector is far from rebounding … Privately financed commercial construction does not appear to be ready to move forward given still-tight credit and elevated vacancy rates in office and retail…. There’s a real prospect for a lack of sustained rebound and an ongoing recession in construction — and the possibility that the economy will exhibit new signs of weakness in 2011. As a result, one might expect to hear sometime over the next year calls for yet another stimulus package — this one more keenly focused upon construction projects and less oriented toward tax reduction and tax breaks.
But my sense is that it will take seven or so years to get back to where we were in 2007. Until then, for many property owners, this will be a lost decade …
Anirban Basu is chairman and chief executive of Sage Policy Group, a Baltimore economic and policy consulting firm. He also serves as chief economist for Associated Builders and Contractors and the Maryland Association of Realtors.