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Thursday, June 23, 2011

Misc: Release of Oil Reserves, Greek Agreement, another House Price index shows increase

by Calculated Risk on 6/23/2011 04:10:00 PM

• The big story of the day was the announcement of the release of oil from reserves. From the WSJ: U.S., IEA to Release Oil from Reserves

[T]he International Energy Agency said its members will release 60 million barrels of crude from emergency stocks, half from the U.S. strategic reserve, to offset production lost to the unrest in Libya, only the third time in its history that the IEA has intervened in this way.
• From CNBC: Greece Agrees on Austerity Plan With EU, IMF: Report
Greece won the consent of a team of EU-IMF inspectors for its new five-year austerity plan after committing to an additional round of tax rises and spending cuts, both Reuters and Dow Jones reported Thursday.
• And on house prices from Radar Logic:
The 25-MSA RPX Composite price increased two percent month over month ... Nevertheless, the change in the RPX Composite from January to April was negative for only the third time in the last ten years
The Radar Logic index is based on public records of all closed housing transactions nationally for the month of April, expressed as a price per square foot (not a repeat sales index). This is another index showing a bounce in April.

Radar Logic has a pretty good track record of predicting Case-Shiller house prices, so this prediction was especially interesting:
Last month, we predicted that the S&P/Case-Shiller 10-City composite for March 2011 would be about 152 and the 20-City composite would be roughly 138. In fact, the 10-City composite was 151.66 and the 20-City composite was 138.16.

This month, we expect the April 2011 10-City composite index to be about 153 and the 20-City index to be roughly 140.
This is for the Not Seasonally Adjusted (NSA) Case-Shiller data - and usually April is seasonally a tough month for Case-Shiller (since it is an average of closed transactions in February, March and April). This would be the first increase in Case-Shiller NSA since last July, and the first increase seasonally adjusted (SA) since last June.

The Case-Shiller index will be released next Tuesday.

And on May Home Sales:
New Home Sales in May at 319 Thousand SAAR
May Existing Home Sales: 4.81 million SAAR, 9.3 months of supply
• Graph Galleries: New Home sales and Existing Home sales