Even with a modest rise in construction last month, the pace of building would need to at least double to signal a healthy market and contribute in a meaningful way to job growth, according to most economists. They don't see that happening until the middle of the decade.
Builders are competing with millions of foreclosures and other distressed properties that show no signs of abating. They are unlikely to ramp up construction until those are cleared away and demand for new homes picks up.
And home building usually helps the economy out of recession, but might have to do it without the boost in construction due to all the homes in the foreclosure pipeline.