The news looks good. The unemployment rate in December fell from 9.8 percent to 9.4 percent.
However, the number of jobs added was only 103,000—less than the roughly 150,000 new jobs that are needed per month just to keep pace with entrants into the labor market.
And everyone knows by now that half of December’s decline in the unemployment rate is attributed to those who dropped out of the labor force and are no longer counted in the unemployment rate.
Still, the apartment market is due to have a good 2011, even it will probably take many, many years for the labor market to recover, if at all.
Maybe the apartment market has even recovered, at least in many locations. Gleb Nechayev, senior economist at Global research Consulting-Econometrics Advisors at CB Richard Ellis, forecasts that the average apartment rent will reach $1,130 per unit by the end of this year. This level is a mere 3 percent below the $1,167 average rent that was achieved at the height of the apartment market in the third quarter of 2008. See MHN’s January 2011 issue (p.24) for further details.