10-25-2020  7:20 am   •   PDX and SEA Weather
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NORTHWEST NEWS

Candidate Iannarone Welcomes Ruling on Complaint Against Mayor Wheeler

Mayoral challenger Sarah Iannarone has welcomed the Multnomah County Circuit court ruling requiring City Auditor Mary Hull Caballero to look into a complaint against Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler for loaning his own re-election campaign 0,000

Some Hospitals in Crisis as US nears high for COVID-19 cases

The global surge in coronavirus infections is hitting the United States hard and overwhelming hospitals across the nation

Report: Seattle Officers Used Excessive Force at Protests

Since May, the office has received 19,000 complaints about police misconduct during protests.

PSU’s Black Studies Department Grows, Offers Students Immediate Support

Chair Ethan Johnson announces new hire and COVID-19 Relief Fund

NEWS BRIEFS

How Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard got its Name

Oregon Historical society has republished Publisher Bernie Foster's account of how activists persuaded Portland to rename Union Avenue...

New Crisis Line will Serve BIPOC Community

Lines for Life have launched a new crisis line dedicated to and staffed by Black, Indigenous and People of Color ...

Oregon Reports the Highest Daily Case Count Since the Beginning of the Pandemic

OHA reports 550 new confirmed and presumptive COVID-19 cases, 3 new deaths ...

Thursday, October 22: All Registered Voters Should Have Received Their Ballots

Contact Multnomah County Elections TODAY if you have not yet received your ballot in the mail. ...

Forest Service Now Hiring

Agency accepting applications for more than 1,000 seasonal positions in Oregon and Washington ...

Crews vacuum 'murder hornets' out of Washington nest

BLAINE, Wash. (AP) — Heavily protected crews in Washington state worked Saturday to destroy the first nest of so-called murder hornets discovered in the United States. The state Agriculture Department had spent weeks searching, trapping and using dental floss to tie tracking devices to Asian...

Roseburg VA police officer accused of placing hidden cameras

ROSEBURG, Ore. (AP) — A Roseburg man who works as a police officer at a Veterans Affairs hospital has been accused of hiding cameras in the bedroom of a young teen. Detectives began investigating after the cameras were found in the 14-year-old’s bedroom, the Douglas County...

Missouri grinds out 1st victory over Kentucky in five years

COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) — Missouri kept handing the ball to Larry Rountree, and Kentucky barely got a chance to take a turn. Rountree carried 37 times for 126 yards and two touchdowns as the Tigers dominated the clock and the Wildcats in a 20-10 victory on Saturday.Missouri (2-2 Southeastern...

Humbled LSU eyeing QB contingency vs surging South Carolina

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — LSU coach Ed Orgeron was grateful for an extra week to help the Tigers confront considerable challenges on both sides of the ball.He’ll have to hope that’s enough time for the unranked Tigers (1-2, 1-2 SEC) to turn back South Carolina (2-2, 2-2), which...

OPINION

The Skanner News National 2020 Election Endorsements

Vote like your life depends on it. Read The Skanner News' endorsements for US President, and more ...

The Skanner News Statewide Election 2020 Endorsements

Read The Skanner News' endorsements for Portland Mayor, Portland City Council, and more ...

Muslim Advocates Denounces Trump’s Racist Attacks on Rep. Ilhan Omar and Refugees

The organization says Trump’s attacks invite violence against Rep. Omar and Minnesota’s Somali community ...

Trump and the Lost Country

Discussing the debate, Robert Koehler refers to an article by psychiatrists describing how power causes brain damage ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

Minority communities question election-year push by EPA

TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. (AP) — Theresa Landrum lives in southwest Detroit, where residents complain frequently about dirty air. Tree-shaded neighborhoods with schools, churches and parks lie on either side of an interstate highway and in the shadow of a sprawling oil refinery that belches soot...

Black woman shot by officer seeks justice from hospital bed

WAUKEGAN, Ill. (AP) — A Black woman who was shot and wounded inside a vehicle by a police officer who also fatally shot her 19-year-old boyfriend on Satuday told about 200 people gathered at an emotional rally in suburban Chicago that she's fighting “to be strong" for her son. The...

Attack, then pandemic: Pittsburgh Jewish congregations cope

Two years ago, the three congregations sharing space at Pittsburgh’s Tree of Life synagogue relocated after an anti-Semitic gunman killed 11 worshippers. Last March, the congregations dispersed from their new locations due to the coronavirus pandemic and switched to virtual services. On...

ENTERTAINMENT

Kevin Hart: Hosting MDA telethon is a 'major level-up'

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Kevin Hart says hosting a re-imagined online fundraiser for the Muscular Dystrophy Association is “a major level-up for me.”“It’s different from anything that you’ve really seen me do. And there’s a great reason behind it,”...

Sandra Oh celebrates Asian culture in film 'Over the Moon'

NEW YORK (AP) — Sandra Oh’s role in the new animated feature “Over the Moon” may not be her largest, but it has deep meaning.The story is set in China and Oh voices the stepmother of a girl named Fei Fei, grieving after the loss of her mother. So she builds a rocket to...

Film depicts Black Lives Matter, #MeToo as new feminist wave

LOS ANGELES (AP) — The documentary genre’s power of immediacy is evident in “Not Done: Women Remaking America," which includes the still-unfolding possibility of the first Black female vice president and the loss of Breonna Taylor.The film depicts a powerful female-driven...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

Stumbling stunner! Rays shock Dodgers in 9th, tie Series 2-2

ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) — Brett Phillips squatted on the field crying, Randy Arozarena sprawled in the dirt...

Virus is pummeling Europe's eateries — and winter is coming

HEIKRUIS, Belgium (AP) — As the Friday night dinner service began earlier this month at the De Viering...

For transgender activists, election stokes hopes and fears

Among transgender-rights activists, there’s a powerful mix of hope and fear heading toward the Nov. 3...

Lithuania holds parliamentary vote as pandemic hits jobs

VILNIUS, Lithuania (AP) — Lithuanians voted Sunday in a parliamentary runoff where the winner will have to...

Afghanistan claims killing an al-Qaida leader wanted by FBI

KABUL, Afghanistan (AP) — Afghanistan claimed Sunday it killed a top al-Qaida propagandist on an FBI...

Malaysia's king rejects PM's proposal to declare emergency

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP) — Malaysia's king on Sunday rejected a proposal by embattled Prime Minister...

Vote like your life depends on it
Derek Kravitz AP Real Estate Writer

WASHINGTON (AP) -- The number of people who bought new homes fell for the third straight month in July, putting sales on track to finish this year as the worst on records dating back half a century.

Sales of new homes fell nearly 1 percent in July to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 298,000, the Commerce Department said Tuesday. That's less than half the 700,000 that economists say represent a healthy market.

Housing remains the weakest part of the economy. Last year was the worst for new-home sales on records that go back nearly 50 years.

While new homes represent less than one-fifth of the housing market, they have an outsize impact on the economy. Each home built creates an average of three jobs and $90,000 in taxes, according to the National Association of Home Builders.

Analysts said the report was further proof that the housing market is stuck in the doldrums.

"How much longer can we flat-line on housing?" said M. Cary Leahey, senior economist at Decision Economics.

All types of home sales remain weak. Sales of previously occupied homes fell in July for the third time in four months, and they are trailing last year's 4.91 million sales, the fewest since 1997. In a healthy economy, people buy roughly 6 million existing homes annually.

High unemployment, larger required down payments and tougher lending standards are preventing many people from buying homes.

Plunging stocks and a growing fear that the U.S. could tip back into another recession are also keeping people from entering the troubled housing market.

A report last week on sales of previously owned homes showed that more sales than usual fell apart at the last minute, a sign that many buyers may be nervous about the economy. At least 16 percent of deals were canceled head of closings last month - four times the rate in May.

Foreclosures and short sales are forcing down prices. A short sale is when a lender accepts less than what is owed on the mortgage.

Those homes are selling at an average discount of 20 percent, and they lower neighboring values. That's made many re-sales a bargain compared with new homes, creating an average 30 percent disparity in prices.

Sales of new homes doubled in the Northeast in July, but the region has the weakest sales in the country by far. In the South and West, sales fell 7.4 and 5.9 percent, respectively. Sales rose 2.4 percent in the Midwest.

The median price of a new home fell more than 6 percent to $222,000 nationally. But it is still roughly 27.5 percent higher than the median price of a re-sold home, which was $174,000 in July.

The number of new homes for sale at the end of the month dropped to a record low of 165,000, down 0.6 percent from June. At the July sales pace, it would take 6.6 months to exhaust the current supply. Economists consider a 6-month supply a normal level, indicating that builders are heavily cutting back construction.

Sales of new homes have fallen 18 percent in the two years since the Great Recession officially ended.

A telling sign of how bad things have gotten for the housing industry: Prices have dropped more since the recession started, on a percentage basis, than during the Great Depression of the 1930s.

And it took 19 years for prices to fully recover after the Depression.

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