Tag Archive for ‘eye on the economy’

Eye on the Economy: February Construction Holds Steady

As the unusually cold winter continued in many parts of the country, March builder confidence remained steady. The NAHB/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index came in at a level of 47, one point lower from February’s 46. Ongoing weather challenges and increasing concern among builders about supply chain issues have held builder confidence down in recent months. Census reported housing construction… Read More ›

Eye on the Economy: New Home Sales Bounce Back in January

The housing market and the broader economy shivered at the end of 2013 as weather-related factors held consumers back and generated production delays. These impacts should prove temporary and our forecast remains positive for housing and home building for the year to come. Indeed, reports from January suggest some improvement over disappointing December data. New home sales in January, as… Read More ›

Eye on the Economy: Cold Start for 2014

Weather and supply chain issues took a toll on home builder confidence and housing production at the start of 2014. The February NAHB/ Wells Fargo Housing Market Index fell 10 points to 46, dropping below the key 50 threshold for the first time since May 2013. The decline is the largest in the 30-year history of the index. Mirroring the… Read More ›

Eye on the Economy: Residential Construction Spending Up 18% in 2013

While the year 2013 ended on a weak note for housing, the statistics for year-end totals reveal a strong performance for home building. Census data for December indicate that on a three-month moving average basis, for the year 2013 single-family construction was up 20%, multifamily gained 34.5%, and remodeling was up 14%. Total residential construction spending increased 18.3% year over… Read More ›

Eye on the Economy: Positive Signs for 2014

Housing data for the end of 2013 cap off a year of post-recession growth. While construction activity remains below normal levels of production, the expansion experienced last year produced jobs and business growth. Yet headwinds remain in the form of rising materials costs and policy risk. The Census Bureau/HUD December housing starts report revealed a solid finish for the end… Read More ›

Eye on the Economy: New Home Sales Rise in October

After dipping during the “pause” in September, new home sales rebounded in October. Some slowdown in housing was expected due to declines in consumer confidence and the uncertainty produced by the partial government shutdown. However, the October data add more evidence that the recovery for housing will continue into the new year. For the economy as a whole, job creation… Read More ›

Eye on the Economy: Builders Hold Steady in November

The economy is beginning to emerge from the shadow of uncertainty created by the partial government shutdown of October and the temporary jump in mortgage rates earlier in the year. As a result of these factors, combined with a persistently underperforming labor market, the housing sector entered a soft patch during the fall. However, recent permit data suggests that the… Read More ›

Eye on the Economy: 55+ Housing Market Improving

Builder confidence in the 55+ housing market showed continued improvement in the third quarter of 2013 compared to the same period a year ago, according to latest NAHB 55+ Housing Market Index. All segments of the market – single-family homes, condominiums and multifamily rentals – registered strong increases. The single-family index increased 14 points to a level of 50, which… Read More ›

Eye on the Economy: Slowing Sales

The housing sector entered a slow patch as the summer ended, one made worse by the economic uncertainty produced during the partial government shutdown. With the shutdown ended — for now — and a federal debt ceiling extension in place until February, home sales are suffering due to lower affordability, increases in interest rates from early fall, and general uncertainty…. Read More ›