After the extremely strong market post COVID it is instructive to take a slightly longer-term look.
These 3 charts are very much big picture for the entire Naples region and include all types of property. They do show, however, that sales and new listings have reverted to the norm, while prices overall are some 65% higher. (more…)
The August jobs report published yesterday showed that the labour market remained red-hot in July despite expectations job growth would cool as tighter monetary conditions and company layoffs stoked fears of a recession.
Here were the key numbers from the report, compared to economist estimates compiled by Bloomberg:
There is widespread misunderstanding about what drives mortgage rates. Indeed, I read an article recenlty on the National Association of Realtors website which stated that mortgage rates had risen sharply following the increase in the Federal Reserve’s interest rate.
When I proposed to my wife, she was taken by surprise and responded: “Yes, no, maybe.”
I was reminded of that response while listening to all the conversations in recent days about whether or not the US already in, is about to be in, or will escape a recession.
A lot of the confusion relates to the question: “how do you define recession?” and “who gets to decide if it is a recession?”
And no, it’s not by Punxsutawney Phil looking for his shadow.
Two comments from Federal Reserve Chair Powell struck me while I was listening to his Press Conference on Wednesday:
On the “speed” of the Fed’s move to increase rates:
“When inflation changed direction, really, in October. We’ve moved quickly since then. I think people would agree. But before then, inflation was coming down month by month. And we kind of thought we had the story. Probably had the story right. But then I think in October, you started to see a range of data that said no. This is a much stronger economy and much higher inflation than we’ve been thinking.”
The number of closed sales is starting to resemble pre-pandemic levels — but this is a very different market now because homes are listed at significantly higher prices and inventory levels remain much lower than before.
The trends evident in 2021 – persistent demand meeting lower inventory leading to fewer sales at higher prices – continued into the early months of 2022, but there was a notable cooling of the market towards the end of the second quarter, as rising mortgage rates and fears of recession, along with a sharp drop in the stock market, contributed to a hesitation amongst buyers. As always, caution should be exercised when looking at small numbers of transactions.
NEW YORK – Moody’s Analytics Chief Economist Mark Zandi predicts that the latest Federal Reserve interest rate hike will cause a housing correction across the United States – but there won’t be a housing crash.
He suggests that the Southeast and Mountain West are the most overvalued housing markets, and the pendulum will swing back down. Cities and states due for a correction include Phoenix and Tucson in Arizona, the Carolinas, northeast Florida, and above all, Boise – “the most overvalued market in the country,” according to Moody’s analysis. (more…)
The combined share of younger millennial (23 to 31 years old) and older millennial buyers (32 to 41 years old) rose to 43% in 2021, up from 37% the year prior. Almost two out of three younger millennials (65%) found the home they ultimately purchased on the internet, a number that gradually decreases with older generations. (more…)
The most expensive home in Collier County history sold Thursday for $62 million, shattering the old record by $10 million.
Built in 2014, the 16,000-square-foot estate features six bedrooms, a glass wine room, a gourmet kitchen, a game room and a second-level pool and came furnished in the transaction.
After I published Have Mortgage Rates peaked? last week a reader asked me why I thought the yield on the 10-year Treasury Bill would not continue to increase, so that even if the spread over the 30-year Fixed Rate Mortgage (FRM) narrowed, the FRM rate itself might still increase.
In Are we already in a Recession?, published on June 18, I wrote: “Just as the yield on 10T has more than doubled since pre-COVID while the Fed Funds rate is unchanged, so the Fed Funds rate can increase sharply – the Fed is forecasting it will reach 3.4% this year, also double its pre-COVID level – without necessarily impacting the yield on 10T. That will depend upon the economic outlook. Ironically, perhaps, the more determined the Fed is to drive down inflation – even at the cost of a recession and higher unemployment – the greater the chance that the yield on 10T – and by extension the FRM – will decline – at some point.”
In the last few days, as more economists talked about a recession after the Atlantic Fed updated its Q2 GDP estimate to minus 2.1% (it was 0% when I wrote on June 18), the yield on 10T has dropped sharply, falling to 2.9% from a peak of 3.5% in the middle of May: (more…)
With all the noise about the determination of the Federal Reserve (Fed) to continue to increase interest rates it might be tempting to asume that mortgage rates will continue to rise.
But I believe there are good reasons for thinking that mortgage rates may have peaked. Read on to find out why I think this.
The 30-year Fixed rate Mortgage (FRM) reached its highest level since 2008 this week: (more…)
Immediately following the issuance of the Federal Reserve’s decision on Wednesday to increase the Fed Funds rate by 0.75% and the accompanying, optimistic statement and press conference, both bonds and equities rallied strongly, leading some to think – hope – that the worst was over in markets.
And then came Thursday, when equities resumed their plunge and bonds rallied further – on the belief that a recession was now likely. (See my Are we already in a recession?).
For my part, were it not so serious I would have allowed myself a louder chuckle as I heard Chair Powell say that the Fed would be “data-dependent” – and then forecast that inflation – using the Fed’s preferred measurement – would be 5.2% this year, 2.6% in 2023 and 2.2% in 2023. Based upon what “data” exactly? And what does all this mean for the housing market?
If you google “Federal Reserve and Fantasyland” you will get a lot of hits. And while many of the comments from Wall Street insiders – particularly those working for investment banks who tend to be optimists – were supportive of the Fed, many of those with perhaps more objectivity were in the fantasyland camp.
The response to COVID
The world’s economy faced a major shock and challenge with the outbreak of COVID. In response the Fed acted swiftly – cutting the Fed Funds rate by 1.5% in two weeks in March 2020 – and with shock and awe – a huge program of Quantitative Easing – injecting vast amounts of liquidity into markets. The Fed became the main buyer of Government and Mortgage-Backed Securities (MBS) and its balance sheet doubled from $4 trillion to over $8 trillion: (more…)