From a small northwestern observatory…

Finance and economics generally focused on real estate

Posts Tagged ‘CoreLogic

Quarterly Phily FED survey

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Hey, gang!  It’s been a while!  I’ve been having a darned good winter, how about you?  It’s been busy, I’ll say that, hence the gap since my last post.

Anyway, as you may know by now, I’m a regular follower of the Phily Fed’s quarterly survey of economic forecasters.  It’s a delightfully simple model — just ask a not-so-random group of economist where they think the economy is headed, then look at both the central tendency (you know, mean, median, mode, that stuff) as well as the dispersion of forecasts (standard deviation, median absolute deviation, stuff like that).  The results are not only interesting in and of themselves, but also it’s fascinating to track what the forecasters were saying a quarter ago compared to what they’re saying now (which the FED does).

For example, the forecasters, PREVIOUSLY (end of the year last year) projected that GDP growth for 2018 would be 2.5% (real, annualized), the unemployment rate would be 4.1% on average (and 4.0% at year-end) and that we would add 163,400 folks to the nation’s payrolls on average each month during the year.  Today, however, these same forecasters have up’d the ante a bit, forecasting real GDP growth at 2.8% for the year, average unemployment at 4.0% (and ending the year at 3.8%) and adding 175,100 workers to payrolls per month.

Now, don’t get too excited, folks, because as with everything the “devil’s in the details.”  A big chunk of the change comes from shifting the shape of the new employment curve.  Previously, the forecasters projected a fairly flat payrolls change over the year — not bad, just flat.  However, new forecasts project this to be skewed to the early part of the year, and then declining after the summer.  Indeed, 2019 is currently projected to be anemic.  Early employment numbers has the effect of driving up GDP (people earn and spend money for more months in the year).  Note that when we look at the dispersion of GDP growth, there is some great news (very little sentiment for a recession this year) but also some not-so-great news (very little sentiment for growth above 4%).

The Phily FED also surveys for inflation projections, but that’s been flat-lined for years now.  Current CPI projections for the year are 2.1%, which is the same as previous projections.  Of more specific interest to us at Greenfield, the Phily FED is now reporting forecasts of house price growth for the coming two years, although rather than use their regular panel they are synopsizing several publicly available indices (Case-Shiller, FHFA, CoreLogic, and NAR).  In general these indices point to price growth from 4% to 5.2% this year, and slightly lower growth (3.3% to 5.1%) next year.

There’s a bit more to the survey, and if you’d like you’re own copy, just click here.

Written by johnkilpatrick

February 28, 2018 at 12:56 pm

Bottom, bottom, who can find the bottom?

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In the owner-occupied housing sector, a “bottom” seems to be like the weather — everyone talks about it, but no one seems to be able to do anything. I’ve been positing that a “bottom” (or at least “stabilization”) won’t be a reality until we get some sort of stability in the home ownershps rate, which has been creeping downward for about 5 years. If that stabilizes (and my own projection is somewhere between where it is — about 66% — and 64%), then prices will have the necessary demand stabilization to perk up.

Money Magazine, on the other hand, says “lo, the bottom is nigh”. Specifically, they say that in the coming year, 95% of home-ownership markets that they track will begin to rise. Caveats about, of course — “The median expectation among more than 100 economists and real estate pros surveyed by MacroMarkets is that home values will inch ahead by a mere 0.25%, compared to their 2011 median forecast decline of 2.8%. They also foresee annualized gains through 2015 of just 1.1%, as the real estate market slowly works its way through a mountain of foreclosures.”

Why the continued sluggishness? The folks at CoreLogic tell us that the “shadow market” is 5.4 million homes, including bank-owned properties, homes in the foreclosure pipeline that haven’t hit the market yet, or properties where owners are seriously behind on payments. Now, compare that forecasts from FreddieMac that the entire market for homes in this coming year will be 4.8 million, and that a 6-month inventory of available properties is generally thought to be healthy, and you can see the supply-demand imbalance.

Mark Fleming, chief economist over at CoreLogic, uses the analogy of a flood. “The water is very deep in the living room, but it’s no longer getting deeper and is starting to recede.”

Written by johnkilpatrick

November 21, 2011 at 9:24 am

CNBC reports on housing doldrums

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Diana Olick is the real estate blogger/reporter for CNBC, and has a great column this week commenting on the recent “semi-good-news” from CoreLogic. For her full column, and links to the CoreLogic report, click here.

The synopsis — CoreLogic reports that foreclosure sales as a percentage of total sales are down. Great news, if it wasn’t for the sad fact that distress sales in May were still at 31% of the total market, albeit down from 37% in April.

Ms. Olick correctly notes that the “shadow” market hanging out there is huge. A few snippits:

Loans in the foreclosure process (either REOs or in-process) total 1.7 million homes, down from 1.9 million a year ago. Given that total home sales in America seem to be hovering around 5 million per year, this is a huge portion of the inventory.

Written by johnkilpatrick

June 22, 2011 at 10:58 am

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