Tag Archive for ‘home building’

GDP Growth in Q2 Ticks Up With Third Estimate

The U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) released its third estimate of the nation’s economy for the second quarter of 2017. According to the release, faster economic growth was maintained over the second quarter. The nation’s economy, measured by real gross domestic product (GDP), rose by 3.1 percent over the April to June period. This rate of growth exceeds the… Read More ›

Pending Sales Fall, Market Stalls

The Pending Home Sales Index decreased in August for the fifth time in six months, pulling 2017 existing sales below the pace set in 2016. The Pending Home Sales Index (PHSI), a forward-looking indicator based on signed contracts reported by the National Association of Realtors (NAR), decreased 2.6% to 106.3 in August, the lowest level since January 2016. The PHSI… Read More ›

Implications Of FOMC Normalization Process For Mortgage Rates

In its statement, the Federal Open Markets Committee (FOMC) left its key interest rate unchanged at a range of 1.0 to 1.25 percent. As signaled in its last statement, the FOMC, beginning in October, will initiate the balance sheet normalization program. The contents of this program are described in the June 2017 Addendum to the Committee’s Policy Normalization Principles and… Read More ›

August Existing Sales Remain Sluggish

August existing sales declined for the fourth time in five months, and only some of that decline was attributed to Hurricane Harvey. Despite gains in the Northeast and Midwest, existing home sales fell 1.7% in August, and remained only 0.2% above the level a year ago. Some 51% of homes sold last month were on the market less than a… Read More ›

Single-Family Starts Post Slight Gain in August

The pace of single-family starts posted a slight gain in August, albeit over downwardly revised estimates of the rate of July construction. Nonetheless, the three-month moving average for single-family starts is at a post-recession high of 849,000 as the gradual recovery in home building continues. Total starts declined almost 1% in August to a 1.180 million seasonally adjusted annual rate, according to the… Read More ›

Builder Confidence Drops As Hurricanes Add Uncertainty

Builder confidence in the market for newly-built single-family homes fell three points to a level of 64 in September from a downwardly revised August reading of 67 on the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index (HMI). The recent hurricanes have intensified our members’ concerns about the availability of labor and the cost of building materials. Despite this… Read More ›

Inflation Accelerated in August

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that its seasonally adjusted Consumer Price Index – Urban Consumer (CPI) rose by 0.4 percent over the month of August, a significant acceleration from the 0.1 percent month-over-month increase in July. Prices of energy commodities, gasoline in particular, rose by 6.1 percent over the month after treading flat in July. At the same… Read More ›

Over 60 Percent of Construction Firms Are Profitable Ventures

According to recently released data from the Annual Survey of Entrepreneurs (ASE), 61.3 percent of American construction firms are profitable commercial enterprises.  The differences between construction and businesses in other industries in this regard are relatively minor.  As Exhibit 1 shows, the shares of construction businesses recording positive profits, breaking even, and sustaining losses are all within 1.2 percentage points of the averages across all U.S. industries. The… Read More ›

Construction Job Openings Rise During Summer

The count of unfilled jobs in the construction sector continued to rise in July, following an increase in June and a soft month in May. Given the significant need for repair and restoration work in the wake of Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, we can expect additional increases in the months ahead. NAHB, for example, estimates a need for an additional 10,000 to 20,000 construction… Read More ›