Tag Archive for ‘economics’

Jump for Open Construction Sector Jobs in March

Job openings in construction increased in March to 344,000 unfilled positions, according to data from the BLS Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS). The housing market remains hot and requires additional labor, lots and lumber and building materials to add inventory. Overall, hiring in the construction sector increased in March, rising to a 6% rate. The peak rate of… Read More ›

Strong Gain for Consumption in the First Quarter of 2021

In the first quarter of 2021, real GDP surged and approached its pre-pandemic level as the economy continued to reopen. This quarter’s growth reflected strong gains for consumer and government spending. According to the “advance” estimate  released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA), real gross domestic product (GDP) increased at an annual rate of 6.4% in the first quarter… Read More ›

Housing Share of GDP: 17.6% at Start of 2021

Thanks to a surge in residential investment during 2020, housing’s share of GDP has returned and remains near historic norms. Last year’s market conditions involved a renewed focus on the importance of home, an evolving geography of housing demand, and a lack of for-sale inventory. Housing should continue to expand in 2021. For the first quarter of 2021, overall GDP growth continued… Read More ›

Higher Lumber Costs Add More Than $35K to New Home Prices, $119 to Monthly Rent

According to NAHB’s latest estimates, rising softwood lumber prices over the last 12 months have added $35,872 to the price of an average new single-family home, and $12,966 to the market value of an average new multifamily home.  That increase in multifamily value translates to households paying $119 a month more to rent a new apartment. These estimates are based on the softwood lumber used… Read More ›

New Home Sales Jump in March on High Consumer Demand

New single-family home sales surged in March as housing demand was supported by low interest rates and strong consumer demand, despite the ongoing building materials challenges impacting the housing industry. The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and the U.S. Census Bureau estimated sales of newly built, single-family homes in March at a 1.02 million seasonally adjusted annual pace,… Read More ›

How Builders Try to Deal with Rising Lumber Prices

As most industry observers know, softwood lumber prices have been extremely high and volatile over the past year.  During an unprecedented four-month surge in 2020 prices nearly doubled, reaching an all-time high in September.  Since then prices have continued to fluctuate, increasing recently to the point that they are now considerably higher than they were even at last September’s historic… Read More ›

Employment Situation in March: State-Level Analysis

Nonfarm payroll employment increased in 49 states and the District of Columbia in March compared to the previous month while Alaska lost just 200 jobs. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, nationwide total nonfarm payroll employment increased by 916,000 in March, following an increase of 468,000 jobs in February. On a month-over-month basis, employment data was strong in California,… Read More ›

Housing Starts Spring Forward in March

Housing production jumped in March despite rising lumber and other material prices affecting the housing industry. Overall housing starts increased 19.4% percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.74 million units, according to data from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and the U.S. Census Bureau. This was the fastest pace for combined single-family and multifamily construction… Read More ›

Builder Confidence Edges Up as Strong Demand Offsets Supply-Side Challenges

Strong buyer demand pushed builder confidence up in April even as builders continued to grapple with rising lumber prices and supply chain issues and consumers faced higher home prices due to a lack inventory. The latest National Association of Home Builders (NAHB)/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index (HMI) shows that builder confidence in the market for newly built single-family homes rose… Read More ›

Remodeler Confidence Up Strongly Year over Year

Remodeler confidence was up strongly on a year-over-year basis, according to the Remodeling Market Index (RMI) released today by the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB).  In the first quarter of 2021, the RMI posted a reading of 86, up a full 38 points from the first quarter of 2020.  The large year-over-year increase signals a very strong recovery in… Read More ›