Tag Archive for ‘home building’

House Prices Record Annual Gains

Recently released data by Standard and Poor’s (S&P) and Case-Shiller indicates that its measure of house prices, the House Price Index – National, rose by 5.6% on a year-over-year not seasonally adjusted basis. This is the 27th consecutive month of year-over-year increases in the house price index. Over this period of more than two years, house prices have risen by… Read More ›

It’s All About Jobs

The Conference Board reported that the Consumer Confidence Index, which had increased the previous four months, declined in September, primarily because consumers judged current and future employment conditions less favorably. The Consumer Confidence Index declined to 86.0 in September from 93.4 in August. The share of consumers describing the current job climate as “plentiful” decreased to 15.1% in September from… Read More ›

Interest Rates Stay Flat on Loans for New Homes

Today, the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) reported that interest rates on home mortgages remained essentially the same in August. The same was true for the subset of mortgages used to purchase new homes. On conventional mortgages for new homes, the changes in August were both very small and offsetting. While the average contract interest rate increased by a single… Read More ›

Investors Pause Pending

Pending home sales decreased 1.0% in August, reflecting the gradual withdrawal of investors as the supply of distressed properties at bargain prices continues to decline. The Pending Home Sales Index (PHSI), a forward-looking indicator based on signed contracts reported by the National Association of Realtors (NAR), decreased to 104.7 in August from 105.8 in July. The August reading was down… Read More ›

Happy Days

September Consumer Sentiment reached a 14-month high, driven by favorable prospects for the US economy and personal income expectations. Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan reported that consumer sentiment reached 84.6 in September, up from 82.5 at the end of August. The September index reading was the second highest in the past seven years, and boosts prospects for new home construction. Rising… Read More ›

Housing’s Share of GDP: 15.5% for the Second Quarter

Housing is an important source of economic growth. As of the second quarter of 2014, housing’s share of gross domestic product (GDP) was 15.5%, with home building and remodeling yielding 3.1 percentage points of that total. Housing-related activities contribute to GDP in two basic ways. The first is through residential fixed investment (RFI). RFI is effectively the measure of the home… Read More ›

Millennials and the American Dream

A recent survey of younger Americans illustrates that the goal of homeownership remains an important part of the American Dream. The economic future of Millennials is key to the future of housing demand. A record number of individuals aged 18 to 34 years are delaying household formation as a consequence of the Great Recession. In a recent post, we referred to… Read More ›

Cash Investors Withdraw

Existing home sales declined for the first time in four months as all-cash investors continue to retreat, further opening up the market for first-time buyers. Returning first-time homebuyers to the existing home sales sector is important because prospective repeat buyers must sell their existing homes before buying newly built homes. Existing home sales decreased 1.8% in August, and are 5.3%… Read More ›

Eye on the Economy: Builders Look Forward

Housing starts fell in August, according to the most recent government data, but the NAHB/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index (HMI) rose to a post-recession high. The market data suggest future increases in single-family building as the sector expands to higher levels of activity more consistent with long-run rates of household formation and population growth. For August, the Census Bureau and… Read More ›