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Saturday, July 13, 2024

Real Estate Newsletter Articles this Week: A Discussion of the Housing Market

by Calculated Risk on 7/13/2024 02:11:00 PM

At the Calculated Risk Real Estate Newsletter this week:

Closed Existing Home SalesClick on graph for larger image.

2nd Look at Local Housing Markets in June

Part 1: Current State of the Housing Market; Overview for mid-July 2024

A Discussion of the Housing Market with Lance Lambert (ResiClub)

Fannie and Freddie: Single Family Serious Delinquency Rate Decreased in May, Multi-family Increased Slightly

1st Look at Local Housing Markets in June

This is usually published 4 to 6 times a week and provides more in-depth analysis of the housing market.

Schedule for Week of July 14, 2024

by Calculated Risk on 7/13/2024 08:44:00 AM

The key reports this week are June Retail Sales and Housing Starts.

For manufacturing, the June Industrial Production report and the July New York and Philly Fed manufacturing surveys will be released.

----- Monday, July 15th -----

8:30 AM: The New York Fed Empire State manufacturing survey for July. The consensus is for a reading of -6.0, unchanged from -6.0.

12:30 PM: Discussion, Fed Chair Jerome Powell, Conversation with David M. Rubenstein, Chairman of the Economic Club of Washington, D.C.

----- Tuesday, July 16th -----

Retail Sales8:30 AM: Retail sales for June is scheduled to be released.  The consensus is for no change in retail sales.

This graph shows retail sales since 1992. This is monthly retail sales and food service, seasonally adjusted (total and ex-gasoline).

10:00 AM: The July NAHB homebuilder survey. The consensus is for a reading of 44, up from 43. Any number below 50 indicates that more builders view sales conditions as poor than good.

----- Wednesday, July 17th -----

7:00 AM ET: The Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) will release the results for the mortgage purchase applications index.

Multi Housing Starts and Single Family Housing Starts8:30 AM ET: Housing Starts for June.

This graph shows single and multi-family housing starts since 1968.

The consensus is for 1.310 million SAAR, up from 1.277 million SAAR in May.

Industrial Production 9:15 AM: The Fed will release Industrial Production and Capacity Utilization for June.

This graph shows industrial production since 1967.

The consensus is for a 0.3% increase in Industrial Production, and for Capacity Utilization to increase to 78.6%.

2:00 PM: the Federal Reserve Beige Book, an informal review by the Federal Reserve Banks of current economic conditions in their Districts.

----- Thursday, July 18th -----

8:30 AM: The initial weekly unemployment claims report will be released.  The consensus is for 228 thousand initial claims, up from 222 thousand last week.

8:30 AM: the Philly Fed manufacturing survey for July. The consensus is for a reading of 2.9, up from 1.0.

----- Friday, July 19th -----

10:00 AM: State Employment and Unemployment (Monthly) for June 2024

Friday, July 12, 2024

July 12th COVID Update: Wastewater Measure Increasing Sharply

by Calculated Risk on 7/12/2024 09:12:00 PM

Mortgage RatesNote: Mortgage rates are from and are for top tier scenarios.

For deaths, I'm currently using 4 weeks ago for "now", since the most recent three weeks will be revised significantly.

Note: "Effective May 1, 2024, hospitals are no longer required to report COVID-19 hospital admissions, hospital capacity, or hospital occupancy data."  So I'm no longer tracking hospitalizations.

COVID Metrics
Deaths per Week✅🚩327290≤3501
1my goals to stop weekly posts,
🚩 Increasing number weekly for Deaths
✅ Goal met.

COVID-19 Deaths per WeekClick on graph for larger image.

This graph shows the weekly (columns) number of deaths reported.

Although weekly deaths have met the original goal to stop posting, I'm going to continue to see if deaths increase again.   This week was up from the pandemic low.

And here is a graph I'm following concerning COVID in wastewater as of July 11th:

COVID-19 WastewaterThis appears to be a leading indicator for COVID hospitalizations and deaths.

COVID in wastewater is increasing - especially in the West and South - and unfortunately this suggests weekly deaths will likely increase further. 

2nd Look at Local Housing Markets in June

by Calculated Risk on 7/12/2024 12:45:00 PM

Today, in the Calculated Risk Real Estate Newsletter: 2nd Look at Local Housing Markets in June

A brief excerpt:

NOTE: The tables for active listings, new listings and closed sales all include a comparison to June 2019 for each local market (some 2019 data is not available).

This is the second look at several early reporting local markets in May. I’m tracking over 40 local housing markets in the US. Some of the 40 markets are states, and some are metropolitan areas. I’ll update these tables throughout the month as additional data is released.

Closed sales in June were mostly for contracts signed in April and May when 30-year mortgage rates averaged 6.99% and 7.06%, respectively (Freddie Mac PMMS). May was the first month since last Fall with average 30-year mortgage rates over 7%.
Closed Existing Home SalesIn June, sales in these markets were down 11.8% YoY. Last month, in May, these same markets were down 0.3% year-over-year Not Seasonally Adjusted (NSA).
This is a year-over-year decrease NSA for these early reporting markets. However, there were two fewer working days in June 2024 compared to June 2023 (19 vs 21), so seasonally adjusted sales will be much higher than the NSA data suggests.
Many more local markets to come!
There is much more in the article.

Q2 GDP Tracking: Around 2%

by Calculated Risk on 7/12/2024 10:50:00 AM

From BofA:

Since our last weekly publication, 2Q GDP tracking is up one-tenth to 2.0% q/q saar. The increase largely results from a lower-than-expected June CPI print. [July 12th estimate]
emphasis added
From Goldman:
We lowered our Q2 GDP forecast to +1.8% (qoq ar). [July 8th estimate]
And from the Altanta Fed: GDPNow
The GDPNow model estimate for real GDP growth (seasonally adjusted annual rate) in the second quarter of 2024 is 2.0 percent on July 10, up from 1.5 percent on July 3. After last Friday’s employment report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics and this morning’s wholesale trade report from the US Census Bureau, the nowcasts of second-quarter real personal consumption expenditures growth and second-quarter real gross private domestic investment growth increased from 1.1 percent and 6.5 percent, respectively, to 1.5 percent and 7.6 percent. [July 10th estimate]

An Early Look at 2025 Cost-Of-Living Adjustments and Maximum Contribution Base

by Calculated Risk on 7/12/2024 08:12:00 AM

The BLS reported yesterday:

The Consumer Price Index for Urban Wage Earners and Clerical Workers (CPI-W) increased 3.3 percent over the last 12 months to an index level of 308.163 (1982-84=100). For the month, the index increased 0.1 percent prior to seasonal adjustment.
CPI-W is the index that is used to calculate the Cost-Of-Living Adjustments (COLA). The calculation dates have changed over time (see Cost-of-Living Adjustments), but the current calculation uses the average CPI-W for the three months in Q3 (July, August, September) and compares to the average for the highest previous average of Q3 months. Note: this is not the headline CPI-U and is not seasonally adjusted (NSA).

• In 2023, the Q3 average of CPI-W was 301.236.

The 2023 Q3 average was the highest Q3 average, so we only have to compare Q3 this year to last year.

CPI-W and COLA Adjustment Click on graph for larger image.

This graph shows CPI-W since January 2000. The red lines are the Q3 average of CPI-W for each year.

Note: The year labeled is for the calculation, and the adjustment is effective for December of that year (received by beneficiaries in January of the following year).

CPI-W was up 2.9% year-over-year in May, and although this is very early - we need the data for July, August and September - my very early guess is COLA will probably be around 2.5% this year, the smallest increase since 1.3% in 2021.

Contribution and Benefit Base

The contribution base will be adjusted using the National Average Wage Index. This is based on a one-year lag. The National Average Wage Index is not available for 2023 yet, although we know wages increased solidly in 2023. If wages increased 5% in 2023, then the contribution base next year will increase to around $177,000 in 2025, from the current $168,600.

Remember - this is an early look. What matters is average CPI-W, NSA, for all three months in Q3 (July, August and September).

Thursday, July 11, 2024

Friday: PPI

by Calculated Risk on 7/11/2024 07:00:00 PM

Mortgage Rates Note: Mortgage rates are from and are for top tier scenarios.

• At 8:30 AM ET, The Producer Price Index for June from the BLS. The consensus is for a 0.1% increase in PPI, and a 0.2% increase in core PPI.

10:00 AM: University of Michigan's Consumer sentiment index (Preliminary for July). Reports Active Inventory Up 34.5% YoY

by Calculated Risk on 7/11/2024 04:56:00 PM

What this means: On a weekly basis, reports the year-over-year change in active inventory and new listings. On a monthly basis, they report total inventory. For June, reported inventory was up 36.7% YoY, but still down 32.4% compared to April 2017 to 2019 levels. 

 Now - on a weekly basis - inventory is up 34.5% YoY. has monthly and weekly data on the existing home market. Here is their weekly report: Weekly Housing Trends View—Data for Week Ending July 6, 2024
Active inventory increased, with for-sale homes 34.5% above year-ago levels.

For the 35th week in a row, the number of for-sale homes grew compared with one year ago. This past week, the inventory of homes for sale grew by 34.5% compared with last year, slightly slower than the rate observed in the previous week. Despite nearly 8 months of building inventory, buyers still see more than 30% fewer homes for sale compared with pre-pandemic.

New listings–a measure of sellers putting homes up for sale–were down this week due to the Independence holiday, by -4.9% from one year ago

After 13 consecutive weeks of growing new listings, newly listed homes fell below the previous year’s level. However, this decline is in part due to how July 4th fell this year compared to last year. Even without the holiday impact, the annual growth rate of new listings has slowed over the past couple of months. While newly listed homes increased by 6.3% annually in June, this rate is only half of what it was two months ago.
Realtor YoY Active ListingsHere is a graph of the year-over-year change in inventory according to

Inventory was up year-over-year for the 35th consecutive week.  

However, inventory is still historically low.

New listings remain below typical pre-pandemic levels.

Part 1: Current State of the Housing Market; Overview for mid-July 2024

by Calculated Risk on 7/11/2024 01:04:00 PM

Today, in the Calculated Risk Real Estate Newsletter: Part 1: Current State of the Housing Market; Overview for mid-July 2024

A brief excerpt:

This 2-part overview for mid-July provides a snapshot of the current housing market.

I always like to start with inventory, since inventory usually tells the tale!
Here is a graph of new listing from’s June 2024 Monthly Housing Market Trends Report showing new listings were up 6.3% year-over-year in June. New listings are still well below pre-pandemic levels. From

New Listings
However, sellers continued to list their homes in higher numbers this June as newly listed homes were 6.3% above last year’s levels and higher than May’s figure of 5.9%. This marks the eighth month of increasing listing activity after a 17-month streak of decline.
Note the seasonality for new listings. December and January are seasonally the weakest months of the year for new listings, followed by February and November. New listings will be up year-over-year in 2024, but still below normal levels.

There are always people that need to sell due to the so-called 3 D’s: Death, Divorce, and Disease. Also, in certain times, some homeowners will need to sell due to unemployment or excessive debt (neither is much of an issue right now).

And there are homeowners who want to sell for a number of reasons: upsizing (more babies), downsizing, moving for a new job, or moving to a nicer home or location (move-up buyers). It is some of the “want to sell” group that has been locked in with the golden handcuffs over the last couple of years, since it is financially difficult to move when your current mortgage rate is around 3%, and your new mortgage rate will around 7%.

But time is a factor for this “want to sell” group, and eventually some of them will take the plunge. That is probably why we are seeing more new listings now.
There is much more in the article.

Cleveland Fed: Median CPI increased 0.2% and Trimmed-mean CPI increased 0.2% in June

by Calculated Risk on 7/11/2024 11:45:00 AM

The Cleveland Fed released the median CPI and the trimmed-mean CPI.

According to the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, the median Consumer Price Index rose 0.2% in May. The 16% trimmed-mean Consumer Price Index increased 0.2%. "The median CPI and 16% trimmed-mean CPI are measures of core inflation calculated by the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland based on data released in the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ (BLS) monthly CPI report".

Inflation Measures Click on graph for larger image.

This graph shows the year-over-year change for these four key measures of inflation. 

On a year-over-year basis, the median CPI rose 4.2% (down from 4.3% in May), the trimmed-mean CPI rose 3.3% (down from 3.4%), and the CPI less food and energy rose 3.3% (down from 3.4%). 

Core PCE is for May was up 2.6% YoY, down from 2.8% in April.

Note: The Cleveland Fed released the median CPI details. Motor fuel decreased at a 36% annual rate in June.

Rent and Owner's equivalent rent are still high, and if we exclude rent, median CPI would be around 2.0% month-over-month, annualized.