Forecast-for-housing-and-the-economy-suggests-gradual-improvement-through-2015 Housing activity was sub-par in the first quarter of this year, dampened in part by severe weather patterns, but an uptrend is expected with healthy underlying demand over the balance of the year and through 2015, according to presentations at a residential real estate forum here during the Realtor® Party Convention & Trade Expo. Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, said the U.S. population has been growing steadily, but job creation has not. “When you look at the jobs-to-population ratio, the current period is weaker than it was from the late 1990s through 2007,” he said. “This explains why Main Street America does not fully feel the recovery.” Yun said that growth in the Gross Domestic Product slowed in the first quarter, and possibly contracted. “There are no fresh signs of recession, and the second quarter could grow about 3 percent,” he added.