Thursday, May 28, 2015

New Home Sales Still in the Basement (except)

On Tuesday, the Bureau of Census reported that new home sales (a more timely barometer of the housing market than existing home sales) rose 6.8% to 517,000 units (saar) in April, but that followed a 10.0% drop in March. Nevertheless, these sales remain on an uptrend that started in mid-2011. The bad news is that the latest pace of activity isn’t much better than the previous cyclical lows in this series starting back in 1970.

The recent rebound in household formation should be bullish for new home sales. Over the past year through March, the number has increased 1.5 million, back to the fast pace last seen in the middle of the previous decade. The problem is that the number of households renting rose 1.9 million, while the number of home-owning households fell 0.4 million.

Today's Morning Briefing: Lack of Conviction. (1) Convinced vs. unconvinced investors. (2) Ice patch vs. soft patch. (3) Chart technicians seeing bearish patterns again. (4) S&P analyst’s share count is bullish. (5) S&P 500 forward earnings recovering as Energy stops plunging. (6) Fed working to avoid tightening tantrum. (7) Regional business surveys diverging. (8) Upticks in capital goods orders and new home sales don’t put an end to soft patch. (9) BEA working on fixing GDP’s residual seasonality problem. (More for subscribers.)

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