U.S. - Housing Remains at the Forefront of the Recovery
- Housing starts jumped 5.8% during December. Single-family starts soared 12%, while multifamily starts dropped 13.6%. Total starts are running at a 1.67 million-unit pace, the strongest pace since 2006. Existing home sales rose 0.7% to a 6.76 million-unit pace in December. Mortgage applications for purchase are up 14.7% over the year as of January 15.
- The NAHB Housing Market Index fell to 83 in January. Builder confidence remains exceptionally high, but the index has slipped in recent months alongside rising material prices and the latest COVID surge. Initial jobless claims fell to 900K during the week ended January 16. Despite the drop, new filings remain elevated, which means another negative print for payrolls in January is possible.
Global - Mixed Fortunes for the Global Economy
- This past week saw some reports showing mixed fortunes for key international economies. China reported another solid GDP increase in Q4, while for full-year 2020 GDP rose 2.3%, the only major global economy to enjoy positive growth last year. Elsewhere, Japan and Mexico appear to be experiencing a steady rather than especially strong rebound, while Eurozone PMI surveys hint at a renewed contraction across the region in late 2020 and early 2021.
- For now, central banks are sitting on the sidelines. The European Central Bank held monetary policy steady and, with regard to its asset purchases, said that it might not use its full envelope of asset purchases, but equally that its purchase program could be re-calibrated. The Bank of Canada kept policy unchanged, though hinted at an eventual tapering in bond purchases as confidence in the economic recovery improves, while the Bank of Japan held monetary policy unchanged at its meeting this week.
Wells Fargo Economics & Financial Report / Oct 15, 2021
September\'s disappointing employment report clearly takes center stage over this week\'s other economic reports. Nonfarm employment rose by just 194,000 jobs, as employers continue to have trouble finding the workers they need.
Wells Fargo Economics & Financial Report / Jul 30, 2021
In the biggest financial news this week not connected to college football conference realignment, July\'s NAHB Housing Market Index slipped one point to 80.
Wells Fargo Economics & Financial Report / Jan 20, 2023
The housing sector has borne the brunt of the Fed\'s efforts to slow the economy, and this week\'s data showed the industry continues to reel.
Wells Fargo Economics & Financial Report / Jan 30, 2021
In the second installment of our series on economic risks in the foreseeable future, we analyze the potential for higher inflation in coming years stemming from excess demand.
Wells Fargo Economics & Financial Report / Jun 08, 2022
While talk of recession has kicked up in recent weeks, the majority of economic data remain consistent with modest growth.
Wells Fargo Economics & Financial Report / Aug 29, 2020
Employers added jobs for the fourth consecutive month in August, bringing the total number of jobs recovered from the virus-related low to 10.5 million.
Wells Fargo Economics & Financial Report / Oct 31, 2022
Headline GDP continues to send mixed signals on the direction of the U.S. economy. During Q3, real GDP rose at a 2.6% annualized rate, ending the recent string of quarterly declines in growth registered in the first half of 2022.
Wells Fargo Economics & Financial Report / Aug 15, 2020
The consumer has been a bright spot in the recovery so far, but with jobless benefits in flux and no clear path for the long-awaited stimulus bill, the support here could fade.
Wells Fargo Economics & Financial Report / May 25, 2021
Over the past year, the housing market has become white-hot.
Wells Fargo Economics & Financial Report / Nov 09, 2019
Optimism soared this week on hopes of a forthcoming trade deal, as equity markets hit all-time highs and the yield curve steepened.