Tag Archive for ‘economy’

Consumer Confidence Falls to 3-Month Low

After modest decline in August, consumer confidence continued to fall in September, marking the biggest monthly decline this year. The Consumer Confidence Index, reported by the Conference Board, slipped 9.1 points from 134.2 in August to 125.1 in September, as households are less optimistic about short-term economic outlook and recent escalation in trade tensions. The Present Situation Index decreased 7.0… Read More ›

Prices of Most Building Materials Increase in November

Prices received for three key building materials (prior to sales to consumers)— OSB, gypsum products, and ready-mix concrete—all rose in November according to the latest Producer Price Index (PPI) release by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.  In contrast, softwood lumber prices continued a three-month downward trend, falling 1%. Prices received for ready-mix concrete and gypsum products increased by 1.0% and… Read More ›

Key Building Materials Remain Stubbornly Expensive

Inflation in prices received for building materials (prior to sales to consumers) was mixed in September according to the latest Producer Price Index (PPI) release by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Although their monthly changes were relatively modest, the prices of OSB and ready-mix concrete have been trending upward for quite some time and remain at historically high levels. OSB… Read More ›

Producer Prices Surprise in July

Contrary to economists’ expectations of a small gain, inflation in prices received by producers (prior to sales to consumers) fell 0.4% in July, nearly erasing June’s 0.5% increase. According to the latest Producer Price Index (PPI) release by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the decline was a result of nearly identical drops in prices of services and goods of 0.3%… Read More ›

Producer Price Index Posts Broad-Based Gains

Inflation in prices received by producers (prior to sales to consumers) increased 0.5% in June according to the latest Producer Price Index release by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.  The increase was driven by a 0.4% increase in the price of services, while the final demand index for goods rose 0.8% (the price of services is weighted roughly double the… Read More ›

Property Tax Revenue Grows Over Four Percent

NAHB analysis of the Census Bureau’s quarterly tax data shows that $524 billion in taxes were paid by property owners over the four quarters ending in Q1 2016. This represents a $22 billion—or 4.4%—increase over the previous trailing four quarters, the largest percentage increase since 2009. Property taxes accounted for 39.3% of state and local tax receipts, the largest share… Read More ›

US Real House Prices In a Global Context: Is The Dress White and Gold or Blue and Black?

According to the Global Housing Watch at the International Monetary Fund (IMF), real house prices across the world continued to grow in the in the 4th quarter of 2014, however, global house prices remain below their pre-financial crisis peak. Globally, real house prices rose by 1.6% over the 4 quarters ending in the 4th quarter of 2014, 0.6 percentage points… Read More ›

Fed Provides Deeper Look at Lending Standards on Residential Mortgages

The Federal Reserve Board recently released its survey of senior bank loan officers. The January 2015 Senior Loan Officer Opinion Survey on Bank Lending Practices (SLOOS) addressed changes in the standards and terms on, and demand for, bank loans to businesses and households over the fourth quarter of 2014. The January 2015 iteration of the survey featured revised and expanded categories of… Read More ›

House Price Growth Shows Signs of Normalizing

The recent release by the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) shows that its measure of house prices, House Price Index – Purchase Only, rose by 5.3% on a 12-month seasonally adjusted basis in November 2014. This marks the 34th consecutive month of year-over-year growth. Over this period of more than two-and-a-half years, house prices have risen by 19.0% and have… Read More ›

Is it Easy to Obtain a Mortgage?

For many households, obtaining a mortgage is the most important step when seeking to purchase a home. As housing analysts, a natural question to ask when assessing the prospects for home buying is “how easy is it for households to obtain a mortgage?” The Federal National Mortgage Association (FNMA) or Fannie Mae attempts to shed light on this question with… Read More ›