Fitch report says housing recovery to continue

Fitch Ratings' latest Chalk Line report for Fall 2013 emphasized the continued strength of the housing recovery, despite recent setbacks such as the government shutdown and increased mortgage rates.

"Still low absolute mortgage rates and home prices well below former highs in most markets suggest that affordability is still attractive," said Fitch managing director Robert Curran. "Recent government struggles, negative equity and challenging mortgage qualification standards appear to be little more than short-term headwinds restraining the housing recovery."

The analysis points to stable ratings for most issuers within the homebuilding sector during the short-term outlook.

Additionally, Fitch predicts a 17% increase in single-family housing starts for 2013, with new home sales up a projected 20% and an 8.5% growth in existing home sales. Total housing starts are estimated to grow 16.5% to 1.1 million in 2014.

The report also touches on quarterly growth trends and margin statistics for homebuilders, liquidity analyses, recovery ratings for six single B or lower-rated homebuilding credits, updated population projections from the Census Bureau, foreclosure statistics, general commentary on the industry, and more.

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