Is the Housing Boom Over?

Today’s Wall Street Journal asks whether there’s a housing bubble that’s about to burst:

Millions of Americans became stockholders in the late 1990s, just in time to experience the biggest bear market in a generation. Does the same fate await millions of first-time homeowners?

. . . .

The housing boom’s demise has been wrongly predicted many times already. Still, there are straws in the wind. Housing starts and new-home sales both fell sharply in November and mortgage applications to buy homes dropped in early January. Prices in two of the world’s most buoyant housing markets, Australia’s and Britain’s, have stopped rising. The International Monetary Fund has found that housing booms and busts are synchronized around the world, so those countries’ experience may foreshadow the U.S.’s

Thanks to Instapundit for pointing out this article. I tend to agree with him that if indeed there is a looming housing bear market, then the impacts and severity would likely vary considerably by region.