Tag Archive for ‘inflation’

Consumer Confidence Rebounds in March Despite Inflation Concerns

After dropping to a one-year low last month, consumer confidence rebounded slightly in March as strong job growth offset consumer’s concerns about the Ukraine crisis and decades-high inflation. The Consumer Confidence Index, reported by the Conference Board, rose 1.5 points from 105.7 to 107.2 in March. The Present Situation Index increased 10.0 points from 143.0 to 153.0, while the Expectation… Read More ›

Building Materials Prices Increase Slightly, Held in Check by Metal, Gypsum, and Concrete Products

The prices of goods used in residential construction ex-energy climbed 1.6% in February (not seasonally adjusted), according to the latest Producer Price Index (PPI) report released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Building materials prices increased 20.4%, year-over-year, and have risen 31.3% since January 2020. Over the past five months, the index has climbed 10.6%. The price index of services inputs to residential… Read More ›

Inflation Remains at 40-Year High in February

Consumer prices continued to break 40-year highs in February due to higher food, gasoline and housing costs. This was the largest year-over-year gain since January 1982. This pace of inflation will likely stay high in the months ahead as Russia-Ukraine crisis continues drive up oil and commodity prices. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that the Consumer Price Index… Read More ›

Total Mortgage Activity Varies in Latest Month

In the past month, total mortgage activity, as measured by the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Market Composite Index, underwent a series of weekly declines, but increased in the latest week by 8.5 percent. The latest week’s survey is for the week ending March 4. The latest week’s activity consisted of an 8.6 percent increase in purchasing and an 8.5 percent… Read More ›

Led by Lumber and Paint, Building Materials Prices Jump in January

The prices of goods used in residential construction ex-energy climbed 3.6% in January (not seasonally adjusted), according to the latest Producer Price Index (PPI) report released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The index was led higher by a 25.4% jump in softwood lumber prices and 9.0% price increases for indoor and outdoor paint. Building materials prices increased 20.3%, year-over-year, and have… Read More ›

Inflation Reaches 40-Year High in January

Consumer prices continued to accelerate in January due to higher food, electricity and housing costs. This was the largest year-over-year gain since February 1982. This higher-than-expected inflation may push the Federal Reserve to become more aggressive and raise the federal funds rate at a faster pace. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that the Consumer Price Index (CPI) rose… Read More ›

Lumber Prices in 2020 and 2021 Set Record Highs Even When Adjusted for Inflation

Most analyses of lumber price trends and levels fail to account for inflation because the price data for softwood lumber used in framing applications is generally quoted using the Random Lengths Framing Lumber Composite Price or lumber futures prices–neither of which is inflation-adjusted. Adjusting for inflation shows that, although the historical price differences are smaller in real terms than nominal,… Read More ›

Building Materials Prices Increase 1.5% in December, Lumber Volatility at 75-Year High

The prices of goods used in residential construction ex-energy climbed 1.5% in December (not seasonally adjusted), according to the latest Producer Price Index (PPI) report released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The index was driven higher by large price increases for wood products. Building materials prices increased 15.9% in 2021 and have risen 18.6% since December 2020. Since declining 1.8% between July… Read More ›

Inflation Hits 39-Year High

Led by higher prices for shelter and used vehicles, consumer prices soared by 7.0% in December from a year ago. It was the largest year-over-year gain since June 1982. However, energy prices fell in December, ending a long series of increases. Supply-chain constraints and strong consumer demand related to the pandemic and the reopening of the economy have contributed to… Read More ›

Consumer Confidence Improved in December

Consumer confidence continued to improve in December as inflation concerns eased after hitting a 13-year high last month. Spending intentions for homes, cars, and major appliances all increased. However, consumer spending will continue to face headwinds from higher prices, Omicron surge and reduced fiscal stimulus in 2022. The Consumer Confidence Index, reported by the Conference Board, rose 3.9 points from… Read More ›