Author Archives

  • Homeownership Rate Continues to Slide, Particularly among Younger Households

    According to the US Census Bureau, the seasonally adjusted homeownership rate declined to 66% during the second quarter of 2011. This is the lowest reading for homeownership since the first quarter of 1998. Overall, the homeownership rate is down 3.4 percentage points since the peak was observed back in mid-2004. While homeownership rates have trended lower for all age groups,… Read More ›


  • Beige Book Shows Slower Growth in Many Areas

    The newest release of the Federal Reserve’s Beige Book offers more evidence that the economic recovery has failed to gain much traction across much of the nation. The report, which is a summary of reports from business contacts within each of the Federal Reserve’s 12 individual districts, indicated economic growth has moderated in the majority of districts. In particular, the… Read More ›

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  • Consumer Confidence Remains Fragile

    The Conference Board reported a weaker reading on its Consumer Confidence Index (CCI) for June.  Consumers’ views of their current situation and their expectations for business conditions over the next six months have been quite negative. Indeed, approximately 86% of respondents anticipate that future prospects for job and income growth will be either the same or worse over the next… Read More ›

  • Households Continue to Deleverage, Mostly

    The Federal Reserve reported that total consumer credit outstanding increased for the seventh consecutive month, reaching nearly $2.43 trillion in April 2011—its highest level since February 2010. The gains in total consumer credit outstanding that started last October have been driven entirely by the non-revolving credit category, which is made up of auto and student loans. Non-revolving credit climbed at… Read More ›

  • Consumers Less Confident about the Future

    According to the Conference Board’s Consumer Confidence Index, consumers remain leery about future business conditions and are increasingly apprehensive about the availability of new jobs and income growth opportunities over the next six months. Consumers’ inflation expectations for 12 months hence also increased in May as households continue to feel the effects of high prices for food and energy. All… Read More ›

  • Pending Home Sales Falter in April

    Following two consecutive months of modest increases, the National Association of Realtors (NAR) reported a sizable decline in pending home sales during April 2011. The Pending Home Sales Index (PHSI) fell to 81.9 in April, an 11.6% drop from a downwardly revised 92.6 in March. On a year-over-year basis, the PHSI is 26.5% below its April 2010 reading, but this is… Read More ›

  • Mortgage Bankers: Little Change in Delinquencies and Foreclosures during First Quarter

    The latest Mortgage Bankers Association mortgage delinquency survey indicates loan delinquencies as a share of total loans outstanding ticked up slightly versus the fourth quarter of 2010. Meanwhile, the survey also revealed the share of mortgage loans in the foreclosure process edged lower nationally. Jay Brinkman, MBA’s Chief Economist noted: Most of these numbers continue to point to a mortgage… Read More ›