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LEVENTHAL POLL SHOWS REAL ESTATE LEADERS AGREE ON HOUSING RESURGENCE; DON'T FAULT REPUBLICANS FOR INDUSTRY WOES

LEVENTHAL POLL SHOWS REAL ESTATE LEADERS AGREE ON HOUSING RESURGENCE;
 DON'T FAULT REPUBLICANS FOR INDUSTRY WOES
 LOS ANGELES, Oct. 20 /PRNewswire/ -- In response to a national poll, real estate leaders acknowledge that the economy remains mired in a recession with most predicting housing will be the bright spot while some parts of their business show no prospect for growth until 1995 and beyond, according to the accounting firm of Kenneth Leventhal & Co. (KLCO).
 More than 1,650 builders, developers, lenders and professional real estate advisers responded to the KLCO fax poll. Asked which political party would most positively influence the real estate industry, respondents voted nearly two to one -- 59 percent to 31 percent -- Republican over Democrat with 9 percent undecided.
 Estimates of Recovery
 When asked about the depth of the recent recession, replies were mixed. One-third of respondents (33 percent) believe the country is experiencing a moderate recovery while 64 percent of those polled feel the economy is still in a severe to moderate recession.
 Californians expressed concern about cutbacks in the aerospace industry, high unemployment and downsizing in financial services.
 Stan Ross, KLCO managing partner reported that, "The West Coast is still bearish on the economy with 50 percent of the region's respondents saying we are still in a severe recession."
 Midwest optimism prompted 56 percent of respondents from that region to say their economy is already in a weak to moderate recovery, but the picture was not as bright in the Northeast -- 37 percent of the real estate executives there said their area is in a severe recession compared to only 10 percent of Southerners. "This mirrors our recent study of economic indicators in both regions which shows that the South's strong international business, tourism and health services sectors are bringing in more jobs while the Northeast continues to lag behind because of cuts in defense spending and consolidation in financial services," Ross said.
 Housing Is Bright Spot
 "When it came to an assessment of real estate's recovery, regional and industry differences clearly set in," said Ross.
 No matter what their location or line of business, Ross pointed out that the majority of respondents agreed that single-family homes and apartments would be the quickest to recover, with some parts of the country quite bullish.
 "Home builders were the most positive, despite the fact that housing starts have been at an all-time low this year," said Ross. "Sixty-nine percent of home builders in the survey felt their industry would begin to recover by 1993.
 "Supporting their optimism were the sources of capital, with some 70 percent of pension fund, insurance and banking executives seeing a recovery in the single-family and apartment segments by next year," Ross added.
 "Housing continues to look good in the long term because lingering concerns over job security are keeping consumers from making firm commitments to a mortgage," he explained. "Once consumer confidence picks up, continued low interest rates could help single- family starts go through the roof."
 The South is the most optimistic region with 45 percent of those polled saying the single-family recovery has already begun in their area, while only 24 percent said it's begun nationwide.
 Conversely, 90 percent of respondents in the Northeast thought the single-family housing market had begun recovering nationwide, but only 60 percent thought it had begun in their area.
 Midwesterners, for the most part, felt the single-family market would recover in 1993 both nationally (73 percent) and in their area (78 percent). West Coast respondents were a bit less optimistic about their housing markets, with only 56 percent predicting a regional recovery by 1993 and 66 percent predicting a national recovery by next year.
 The office and hotel markets continue to get a vote of no confidence from the industry. Nearly three-quarters of all respondents (73 percent) don't see either market segment recovering until 1995 and beyond.
 "Now the question remains, who will they vote for on Nov. 3?" said Ross.
 Kenneth Leventhal is the country's eighth largest accounting firm known for its expertise in real estate and financial services. It has offices in 14 cities and is affiliated internationally with Clark Kenneth Leventhal.
 -0- 10/20/92
 /EDITOR'S NOTE: Copies of the questionnaire and other graphics are available. Call Francie Murphy or Karen Diehl at Casey & Sayre, 310-457-3676./
 /CONTACT: Francie Murphy or Karen Diehl of Casey & Sayre, 310-457-3676, for Kenneth Leventhal & Co./ CO: Kenneth Leventhal & Co. ST: California IN: SU: ECO


KJ-JB -- LA016 -- 2102 10/20/92 10:04 EDT
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Date:Oct 20, 1992
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