201802.16
3
4

The Home Builder Rationalization

Home construction rebounded in January 2018, though that may have been nothing more than statistical noise. Total permits filed to build new residential structures totaled 1.396 million (SAAR) last month, up from a revised 1.300 million in December. The entirety of that increase was due to a big jump in permits for the multi-family segment….

201711.17
2
2

It’s Approaching A Record, But Not For Expansion

Home construction activity bounced back in October from several months of appreciable weakness. It may have been hurricane related where plans and projects delayed by the path of Harvey and Irma were finally cleared to resume. More likely, in my view, it was just the normal variation that the construction figures always have exhibited. Total…

201411.19
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Apartment Construction Downshifts Against Recovery Idea

The latest volatility in housing construction figures transferred to the single-family segment, as apartment construction has now entered full-scale languishing. In some respects that is contradictory to 2014’s view of a boom in rental properties, but I wonder if the lack of household formation is finally starting to catch up – rent or not. There…

201409.18
2
0

Home Construction Still Moving Down

Another month, another instance where supposed “tight” supply and high home prices fail to register any significant change in home construction. Construction figures for August bear little resemblance to the idea that anything other than monetary interference is responsible for the mini-bubble in activity. Further, August represents another month’s worth of confirmation, despite any and…

201409.04
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A Reminder About Payrolls and Revisions

Despite any intent, the revisions to wages and real incomes that I highlighted yesterday actually go a long way toward providing an explanation for other “aberrations” that still exist. The primary problem I have with accepting the mainstream version of economic events, particularly that of the Establishment Survey, is that the labor force is still…

201408.01
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What Is Being Left Out of the ‘Inarguable’ Payroll Expansion Is Far More Important

With all due respect to durable goods, perhaps I was a bit too hasty in assigning it the moniker of most boring. There is certainly competition now, as the monthly payroll euphoria has become just as homogenous, curiously, and engrained enough where commentary can simply be copied and pasted from month-to-month. Most people probably will…

201406.17
1
0

Home Construction Not Buying Supply Explanation

When home sales rose M/M (slightly) in April for the first time in 2014, the NAR theorized it as the turnaround signal. Their reasoning for it was strange in the context of basic, intuitive economics (meaning non-textbook). Rising prices on too few available homes for sale was supposed to signal more construction, as this shortage…

201406.06
3
0

Straight Line Marches On

It’s payroll day again, which means we get to watch the straight-line march of the Establishment Survey “confirm” whatever the observer wishes to infer because a straight line is both uninteresting and mostly not useful. This happens, of course, regardless of what other parts of the survey or other surveys show. The most prominent disagreement…

201405.21
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0

Systemic Poverty, Part 2

In advance of another rash of housing statistics, one of the main components driving more optimistic expectations is household formation. After being severely depressed by the Great Recession and then the lack of real recovery, at some point population dynamics should begin to drive actual demand for owning shelter. Of course, it seems like a…