The Fed's man-made housing market recession hit so hard that 4 real estate titans just lost their Fortune 500 status
Not only did rock-bottom interest rates during the pandemic spur a refinancing bonanza, but with the help of remote work and tight inventory, they also heated up the housing market in a way that hadn’t been seen since the bubble. Borrowers simply couldn’t pass up on 30-year fixed mortgages with a rate of 3%—or in some cases 2%. Few companies, of course, benefited more from that housing boom than Rocket Companies, which during the roughest part of the lockdowns did $5 billion in sales in the second quarter of 2020 compared to $1.6 billion in the same quarter in 2019.
That’s behind us now: The mortgage rate shock created by the Federal Reserve’s rate hiking campaign has set off a housing market recession. While national home prices remain fairly stable, housing activity hasn’t been so lucky. Residential fixed investment, otherwise known as housing GDP, has fallen for