Tags: Wells | Stumpf | bullish | housing

Wells Fargo’s Stumpf: ‘I’m Bullish on Housing’

Tuesday, 27 Nov 2012 08:26 AM

By Dan Weil

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Recent strong housing data have made a believer out of Wells Fargo CEO John Stumpf.

“I’m bullish on housing,” he tells Fortune.

“I think it will be slow, but it’s healing almost everywhere.”

Editor's Note: Google Banned This Video But You Can Watch it Here

Signs of strength include the 3.6 percent increase in new home construction during October and the 2.1 percent increase of existing home sales for that month.

“We’re starting to see values come back,” Stumpf says. “I don’t know that we’ll ever be or should be back to where we were the last six, seven, eight years. … But housing is still the dream for two-thirds of Americans.”

One area of the housing market that needs reform is the government conservatorship of mortgage agencies Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, Stumpf says.

“No one ever contemplated that this conservatorship would go on for three, four, five years.” It’s been four years so far. “We need to get on to what the end state will look like,” Stumpf says.

Others share his bullishness. "We are clearly in recovery," real estate consultant John Burns of Irvine, Calif., tells The Wall Street Journal.

Ward McCarthy, chief financial economist at Jefferies, agrees. “Housing’s cheap, borrowing is cheap, and, if you can get credit, it’s a great time to buy,” he tells Bloomberg. “We’re fighting our way through distressed-property sales.”

Editor's Note:
Google Banned This Video But You Can Watch it Here

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