Tag Archive for ‘economics’

Federal Open Market Committee September Meeting Concludes – Moving Right Along

The September meeting of the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) concluded with the release of the traditional summary statement, Chairwoman Yellen’s press conference, and the economic projections of the meeting participants. The Fed also released a brief update to its June 2011 plans for normalizing monetary policy. There was little changed in the language of the statement. The economy is… Read More ›

Rents Increase as the Consumer Price Index Falls

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that consumer prices decreased for the first time since April 2013. On a seasonally adjusted month-over-month basis prices decreased 0.2% in August. Over the past twelve months, prices on expenditures made by urban consumers increased 1.7% before seasonal adjustments. In spite of the month-over-month decline in the consumer price index, the shelter index… Read More ›

Builders Believe

Builders’ sentiment jumped four points to 59, the highest level since November 2005, according to the September NAHB/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index. Many of the builders commented on the renewed interest by potential home buyers and higher traffic in their models and through their phone calls. Supporting those comments, all three components rose led by the traffic measure increasing to… Read More ›

Inflation at the Producer Level in August – Builder Materials Prices Soft, Fewer Shortages

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) released the Producer Price Indexes (PPI) for August. Inflation in prices received by producers (prior to sales to consumers) was flat in August from July. Over the 12 months ending in August prices were up 1.8%. Softwood lumber prices rose 2.4% in August but are down modestly from an earlier March peak. OSB prices… Read More ›

Furniture and Appliance Purchases off Lows

The Bureau of Labor Statistics recently reported results from the 2013 consumer expenditure survey. In 2013, the average annual expenditure on housing increased 1.5% to $17,148. As a share of total expenditures housing was 33.6%; an increase from the 2012 share of 32.8%. The increase in housing expenditures is the result of rising home prices and rents as well as… Read More ›

Consumer Credit Grows

Data released by the Federal Reserve Board indicates that consumer credit outstanding expanded over the month of July. On a seasonally adjusted annual rate basis, total consumer credit, which excludes housing related credit such as mortgages and home equity lines of credit, rose by 10%, $312 billion, over the month. Non-revolving credit outstanding, largely composed of auto loans and student… Read More ›

The Great Delay: Student Loan Debt and Homeownership

A record number of millennials, individuals aged 18 to 34 years, are delaying household formation. This Great Delay, instead of the forbearance of impending doom, may actually be a sign of prudent economic decision making from a generation coming of age during turbulent economic times. Instead of forming a household, many have enrolled in college or stayed in school to… Read More ›

Unfilled Construction Sector Jobs Increase

The estimate of the number of open, unfilled construction sector jobs was revised significantly higher for the month of June and remained elevated in July. While hiring and separations increased for the sector, the current count of unfilled construction jobs is among the highest since 2008. According to the BLS Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS), the number of open… Read More ›

The Employment Situation for August – A Disappointing Surprise

Job growth slowed and the unemployment rate ticked down; job growth is the more important signal. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) released the Employment Situation report for August. The establishment survey showed payroll employment expanded by 142 thousand, well below expectations. The June figure was revised down from 298 thousand to 267 thousand, and July was revised up from… Read More ›

The Typical American Subdivision

Data collected during a 2014 survey allow NAHB to produce, for the first time, summary statistics that describe the typical residential subdivision being built in the United States.  The results were recently published as a Special Study in HousingEconomics.com. For subdivisions of single-family detached homes, the summary statistics are as follows: Median size: 22 acres. Median number of housing units: 48. Median gross density:… Read More ›