During the recent Berkshire Hathaway (BRK) annual meeting, Warren Buffett admitted that signs of an economic recovery were few and far between, at least as his businesses.
His close advisors are saying the same thing. Speaking at the Ira Sohn investment conference in New York, top aide David Sokol, the head of Mid-America energy holdings said there were no signs of a rebound (“We’re not seeing the green shoots.”) in housing or the economy and that the housing mess might persist through 2011.
Bloomberg: Homes in the process of foreclosure are creating a “shadow backlog” of unsold properties that will continue to hang over the market, Sokol, 52, said in a speech yesterday at the Ira W. Sohn Investment Research Conference in New York.
While official statistics show a 10- to 12-month supply of unsold homes, “we believe the backlog of homes for sale is twice that.”
Many people who want or need to sell their homes haven’t put them on the market yet because the outlook for sales has been poor, he said. “It will be mid-2011 before we see the market in balance,” with no more than a six-month backlog, he said.