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Economic Data Initial Jobless Claims Fell 3k To 302k In The Week Ending July 12

The four-week moving average, a less-volatile measure than the weekly report, declined from 312k to 309k, the lowest since June 2007.

Initial Jobless Claims with 8-week Average Source: Bloomberg Bottom Line: Initial jobless claims continue to decline, suggesting further improvement in the US labor market. Although, even coupled with months of impressive headline job creation, the improvements seen thus far have not translated into wage pressures, a presumed, unofficial prerequisite for the Fed to initiate rate increases.


Also this morning, housing starts fell 9.3% in June from 985k to a 893k unit pace, a nine-month low.

Housing Starts Source: Bloomberg Year-over-year, starts are up 7.5%, thanks to a 38% rise in multi-family starts.

Single-family starts, on the other hand, are down 4.3% over the past 12 months.

The monthly decline was nearly equal across single-family and multi-family starts, down 9.0% and 9.9%, respectively. On a regional basis, however, the decline was centered on the South, down 30%.

Lindsey M. Piegza, Chief Economist (312) 924-0607 lpiegza@sterneagee.com

800 Shades Creek Parkway Suite 700 Birmingham, AL 35209 205-949-3500 Sterne, Agee & Leach Inc. is Member NYSE, FINRA, SIPC Building permits also slowed at the end of the second quarter, down 4.2% in June to a 963k unit pace. The decline in June was centered on multi-family, down 14.9%. Single-family permits rose 2.6% in June.

Building Permits Source: Bloomberg Over the past 12 months, permits are up 2.7%, thanks to a near 7% annual rise in multi-family permits. Single-family permits are up only 0.6% year-over-year.

Bottom Line: While sales activity has picked up in recent months after a lackluster first quarter, homebuilders remain cautious amid a still uneven recovery. As Chairman Yellen noted in her testimony earlier this week, the housing market activity "has shown little recent progress" as potential buyers are discouraged by higher mortgage rates and rising prices. As rising home prices continue to outpace income growth, many potential homebuyers are being squeezed out of the market, limiting new demand.

-Lindsey Piegza APPENDIX SECTION IMPORTANT DISCLOSURES:

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION AVAILABLE UPON REQUEST: Contact Robert Hoehn at 1-212-338-4731.

Other Disclosures:

Opinions expressed are our present opinions only. This material is based upon information that we consider reliable, but we do not represent that it is accurate or complete, and it should not be relied upon as such. Past performance is no guarantee of future results.

For UK Professional Clients This research report is disseminated in the UK by Sterne Agee UK LLP which is authorized and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. This research report is intended for distribution in the UK only to, and should be relied upon only by, persons who or may be classified as eligible counterparties or professional clients pursuant to the FCA's rules or who are investment professionals as defined in Article 19 of the Financial Services and Markets Act 2000 (Financial Promotion) Order 2005.

Copyright © 2014 Sterne, Agee & Leach, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Appendix Section, Page I July 17, 2014

 

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