Author Archives

  • Nationally House Prices Edge Down, But Some States Show Improvement

    House prices turned down in the third quarter according to the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) with the release of their monthly purchase-only house price index (HPI).  The FHFA HPI indicated that nationally house prices fell 1.6% to 190.5 (seasonally adjusted) in the September quarter, following a 0.7% increase in the second quarter.  On a month-over-month basis, the HPI fell… Read More ›

  • Pending Home Sales retreat in September

    Pending homes sales retreated in September, following solid gains in July and August. The National Association of Realtors (NAR) announced a 1.8% decline in the Pending Home Sales Index (PHSI) in September, following growth of 4.4% in August and 4.5% in July. With existing home sales typically lagging the PHSI by one to two months, the PHSI signals to a… Read More ›

  • Consumers Sentiment remains weak

    Consumer Sentiment remained weak in October, with the release of the University of Michigan Consumer Sentiment survey by Thompson Reuters suggesting that, “There has been no discernable change in the overall level of consumer confidence during the past four months.”  The Consumer Sentiment index lost 8.2 points in July to 67.8 and has remained around that level since.  In October… Read More ›

  • Consumer Confidence shows little improvement in October

    Consumer confidence remained low and continues to be very volatile.  The October reading of the Conference Board Index of Consumer Confidence Index inched up 1.6 points to 50.2 in October after a 4.6 point decline September.  The index has shown very little improvement since the end of the recession in June last year, when the index was 49.32. Consumers’ view… Read More ›

  • House Price Indexes show mixed results in August

    The change in house prices was mixed in August, but continued the roughly 18 month pattern of stabilization. The Standard & Poor’s Case-Shiller House Price Index (HPI) eased slightly in August, with the Composite 20 (CS20) index falling 0.2% and the Composite 10 (CS10) index down 0.1% on a non-seasonally adjusted basis (NSA). (As noted in the past, when observing… Read More ›

  • Recovery in Existing Home Sales is Underway

    The recovery in existing home sales is underway.  The payback period associated with the expiration of the homebuyer tax credit that led to the sharp decline in July, is now behind us. The National Association of Realtors (NAR) reported a 10% increase in existing home sales in September, building on 7.6% growth in August. While the recovery has begun, at… Read More ›

  • Consumer sentiment remains weak in October

    Consumer sentiment is expected to remain weak in October. The release of the preliminary data of the University of Michigan survey of consumers by Thompson Reuters indicated the consumer sentiment index will deteriorate further in October, edging down 0.3 points, following a 0.7 point decrease in September. The preliminary numbers show that consumers are becoming frustrated and disenchanted with their… Read More ›

  • Inflation remains very low, with the CPI up only 1.1% over the past 12 months

    The rate of increase in the Consumer Price Index (CPI) remained very low in September.  The Bureau of Labor Statistics release of the Consumer Price Index indicates that the CPI for all urban consumers (CPI-U) rose only 0.1% in September, following a 0.3% increase in August. Over the past 12 months the index has increased 1.1%.  Increases in the price… Read More ›

  • Producer Price Index continues its upward trend in September

    The Bureau of Labor Statistics release of the Producer Price Index (PPI) indicates that the PPI for finished goods continued its upward trend in September, rising 0.4%, its third consecutive monthly increase. On an unadjusted basis finished goods have advanced 4% for the 12 months ended September. The increase was driven mainly by higher food prices, which were up 1.2%…. Read More ›

  • Home sales improving …payback from the homebuyer tax credit now behind us

    Pending homes sales gained further ground in August, signaling that the payback period associated with the expiration of the homebuyer tax credit is now behind us. The National Association of Realtors (NAR) release of the Pending Home Sales Index (PHSI) indicated that contracts signed on existing homes gained a further 4.3% in August, following a rise of 4.5% in July…. Read More ›