HOUSTON - Job growth in Houston fell sharply after the price of oil went from over $100 per barrel to $30.
There is a historically tight correlation between oil prices and housing demand in Houston.
Houston has recently gone from more than 100,000 new jobs a year to fewer than 20,000.
Houston new home sales and starts are down by 10-11 percent
First quarter 2016 was not as bad as feared, in terms of housing starts, but the $400,000+ tranche has suffered the most.
Most builders have been negatively impacted, but not all; the range across our sampling of builders is from 20 percent up to 20 percent down (in volume for the past year).
The builders who have recently opened developments aimed at entry-level buyers are the ones who are doing the best.
It is also important to keep in mind the positive impacts on downstream energy businesses.
Petrochemical producers use oil as an input, and they thrive when oil is cheap. There are $50 billion worth of petrochemical plants under construction right now in east Houston.