Buffett: US Housing Picking Up, Rest of economy slowing down

Buffett: US Housing Picking Up, Rest of economy slowing down

by Bill McBride on 7/12/2012  

From CNBC: Warren Buffett: US Economic Growth Slowing, Europe Slipping ‘Pretty Fast’

In a live CNBC interview from Sun Valley with Becky Quick of “Squawk Box,” Buffett says the general economy’s growth has “tempered down” so that it is now “more or less flat.”

He does, however, see a “noticeable” pickup for residential housing from a “very low base” that “doesn’t amount to a whole lot yet, but it’s getting better.”

For months, Buffett had been seeing general U.S. economic growth held back by a weak residential housing market.

Buffett also says things are beginning to “slip pretty fast” in Europe, especially over the past six weeks.

Warren Buffett (my transcript):

“I have a different story this time. For a couple of years, I’ve been telling you that everything except residential housing was improving at a moderate rate, not crawling, but not galloping either. But that residential housing was flat lining.

The last two months have been sort of the opposite. The general economy in the US has been more or less flat; the growth has tempered down. But residential housing – we’re seeing a pickup – it is noticeable, it is from a very low base, and it doesn’t amount to a whole lot yet – but it is getting better. You have a flip-flop on that.”

The rest of the economy is slowing down – it is not heading downward – but it is not growing at the rate that it was earlier.”

His comments on Europe were very negative.

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