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Softwood Lumber, OSB Lead August Price Increases

The prices of softwood lumber, OSB, and ready-mix concrete increased by 2.5%, 2.9%, and 0.5%, respectively, in August according to the latest Producer Price Index (PPI) release by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. In contrast, the price paid for gypsum fell 0.6%, its first monthly decline since May. Softwood lumber prices rose for the second consecutive month the 3.0% decrease in June. … Read More ›

A Deeper Look at Rent-Burdened Households

Households paying 30 percent of more in rent, a threshold long used by the federal government to identify “rent-burdened” households, has been a significant housing issue for some time. Nearly half of renter households (48 percent) in the U.S. were rent-burdened in 2015.[1]  The large share of rent-burdened households is a symptom of the broader affordability problem in the housing… Read More ›

Property Tax Revenue Keeps Climbing

NAHB analysis of the Census Bureau’s quarterly tax data shows that $549 billion in taxes were paid by property owners over the four quarters ending in Q1 2017.[1] This represents an $8 billion—or 1.5%—increase over the previous trailing four quarters.  After slowing in three consecutive quarters, the growth rate of property tax receipts has now accelerated over the last two and remains robust… Read More ›

The Multifamily Production Index Bounces Back to Trend in Second Quarter

The Multifamily Production Index (MPI) climbed eight points to 56 in the second quarter of 2017, according to the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB). This quarter’s reading is the highest since the third quarter of 2015 (Figure 1). The MPI measures builder and developer sentiment about current conditions in the apartment and condominium market on a scale of 0… Read More ›

Top Ten Sources of Softwood Lumber Imports

The softwood lumber trade dispute between the U.S. and Canada has sent prices significantly higher in the first seven months of 2017.  The Random Lengths Composite Price—a weighted-average measure consisting of multiple species and dimensions of softwood lumber products—increased 14% over just three weeks in February.  Certain framing lumber—such as spruce-pine-fir (S-P-F) studs—remains 40% more expensive than it was seven… Read More ›

Economy Grew At a Faster Pace in Q2

In the second quarter of 2017, the nation’s economy grew at a faster pace than in the first quarter. According to the Bureau of Economic Analysis, real gross domestic product (GDP) increased at an annual rate of 2.6 percent in the second quarter of 2017. In the first quarter, GDP grew at an annual rate of 1.2 percent. The first… Read More ›