Tag Archive for ‘home building’

Existing Home Sales Decline, Median Prices Increase

Existing home sales declined 5.4 percent from May, but are up 4.5 percent from the same period a year ago. The National Association of Realtors (NAR) reported June 2012 total existing home sales were at a seasonally adjusted rate of 4.37 million combined for single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops. The May 2012 seasonally adjusted rate was revised upward to… Read More ›

Housing Starts Rise 6.9 Percent in June

Nationwide housing production rose by 6.9 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 760,000 units in June, according to newly released figures from HUD and the U.S. Census Bureau. This is the fastest pace of new-home construction since October of 2008. Single-family housing starts rose for a fourth consecutive month to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 539,000 units… Read More ›

Eye on the Economy: Can Housing Improvement Persist in a Slowing Economy?

*Eye on the Economy is an NAHB newsletter that is published every two weeks and takes a larger view of recent economic and housing policy news. Recent economic data clearly indicate that the economy is experiencing slowing growth rates, with job creation and growth in Gross Domestic Product (GDP) at weaker-than-expected levels. Despite these headwinds, the housing sector continues to… Read More ›

JOLTS Data: Growing Weakness for the Job Market

May data from the Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS) confirm an ongoing slowdown in the labor market, with net hiring for the construction sector (residential and nonresidential) turning negative year-to-date for 2012. For the economy as a whole, the May JOLTS data reveal that hiring rates increased to 3.3%, one of the few pieces of good news in the report. The job openings rate (the… Read More ›

Improving Markets Index Shows Modest Increase

The NAHB/First American Improving Markets Index (IMI) increased in July to 84 from the June level of 80. The modest net increase was the result of an addition of 11 new metropolitan areas and a loss of seven areas. Six of the seven MSAs that were dropped from the list were because house prices fell back below their previous low… Read More ›

Property Tax Receipts Remain Constant Despite Housing Price Declines

Property taxes are an important source of revenue for state and local governments to finance services, particularly education. And despite claims to the contrary, property tax payments continue to provide an outsized share of state and local tax collections. From the first quarter of 2012 to the second quarter of 2011, approximately $471 billion of tax was paid by property… Read More ›

Pending Home Sales Increase

The Pending Home Sales Index, a forward-looking indicator based on signed contracts, increased 5.9 percent in May 2012, from 95.5 in April.  At this level, the PHSI equaled the level of March 2012, and reached the highest level since the expiration of the home buyer tax credit in April 2010. The May PHSI was 13.3 percent higher than in May… Read More ›

Study Reveals Often Overlooked Costs of Environmental Regulation

A recent technical article by MIT Associate Professor of Economics Stephen Ryan investigates how a particular set of environmental regulations, the 1990 Amendments to the Clean Air Act, affected the Portland cement industry. Although the Amendments didn’t impose any new restrictions on pollutant levels, they did require firms in the industry to apply for permits, submit plans for monitoring compliance, and pay… Read More ›

Pent-Up Housing Demand: Number of “Shared Households” Grew from 2007 to 2010

Earlier this month, the Census Bureau published  a report examining “household sharing,” which is the situation in which people join or combine households. While the report does not examine the causes of household sharing, it is widely accepted that the housing crisis and the economic impacts of the Great Recession have led many individuals to share housing in order to… Read More ›

Improvement for New Home Sales in May

Sales of new single-family homes gained strength in May, after lackluster reports for March and April. The seasonally adjusted annual rate of new home sales increased to 369,000 according to estimates from the Census Bureau and Department of Housing and Urban Development. This represents a nearly 20% improvement for the sales rate year-over-year. Inventories of new home have remained approximately constant throughout… Read More ›