Standard Pacific Homes (NYSE:SPF) released preliminary order numbers for July and August late Monday Sept. 15 in advance of upcoming investor conferences. There was little to celebrate.

Overall, net new home orders for those two months were down 30% over the same two months of '07. The cancellation rate--at 28%--improved compared to the same period last year when it was 34%, though it was a bit of a deterioration from the 25% cancellation rate logged in the year's second quarter.

In market-by-market snapshots, orders were off 31% year-over-year in Arizona, 49% in Texas and 25% in the Carolinas. Florida orders, however, were up 7%.

The California cancellation rate was 32% for those two months, the same as last year. Florida and Arizona cancellation rates shrunk to 24% and 18% respectively, compared to 53% and 35% in the same two months last year.

"Despite the positive comparisons in some of our markets, our absolute sales absorption rates continue to reflect the difficult housing conditions in substantially all our markets," the company said in the press release.