Blog

SIMPLER STARTS

While May housing starts rose 2.9% compared to April, 8.9% Y-o-Y, and 12.2% YTD, sales were weak in 16Q1 making comparisons easy. Critically, the median new home price surged 16.5% Y-o-Y to $345,800 while the average jumped 16.1% Y-o-Y to $406,400, both records....

SEATTLE SLEW

Seattle raised its minimum wage from $9.47/hour to $11/hour in 2015 and $13/hour in 2016. While the first increase had minimal employment impact, the second damaged low-wage workers. At $13/hour, the number of low-wage hours worked declined by a whopping 9%, while...

RATE REPRIEVE

Two weeks ago the Fed met and, unsurprisingly, gave no indication that a rate rise was is the offing; inflation is too weak. Instead, the Fed strongly suggested they will commence reducing their holdings of long-dated debt following their meeting in mid-September. If,...

CAPSTONE FINANCIAL ADDS NEW OPERATIONS MANAGER

Scottsdale, AZ – Capstone Financial announced today Trisha Toenjes has joined the firm to further develop their national loan origination operations. Trisha Toenjes comes with a wealth of experience within the real estate and private lending field. Joining in advance...

CAPSTONE FINANCIAL ADDS NEW FINANCE MANAGER

Scottsdale, AZ – Capstone Financial announced today Esther G. Hernandez has joined the firm to further develop their growing portfolio of regional and national finance accounts. Esther G. Hernandez comes with a wealth of experience within the field, having spent the...

POWERFUL PAY

Despite confusion wrought by hurricanes Harvey and Irma, September's employment report was stellar. Upward revisions to wage growth totaling three-tenths-of-one-percent for July and August and a 0.5% rise in September suggest wages are rising! Moreover, the...

AWESOME ABODES

New home sales in September came in at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 667,000, the highest level since 10/07! Sales were up 18.9% from August, the largest monthly percentage gain in almost 28 years. While some of the 26% sales rise in the South to 405,000,...

AFFORDABILITY ABSENCE

As tight as the affordable rental housing market is, it’ll worsen. The Republican tax plan lowers the corporate tax rate from 35% to 21% and lowers taxes on pass-throughs. These changes will reduce the value of tax credits used to build low income-housing, thus...

DIMINISHED DWELLINGS

In 1/18, sales of existing houses came in at a seasonally-adjusted annual rate of 5.38 million. That’s 3.2% lower than 12/17 and 4.8% lower than 1/17, the steepest Y-o-Y decline since 8/14. Y-o-Y inventory declined for the 32ndstraight month, and at 1.52 million, is...

HOUSING HARM

While housing starts have been steadily rising since 2011, and existing sales have been growing, albeit very slowly of late, for even longer, things may slow going forward. A combination of suddenly higher mortgage rates, new tax laws that mildly depress the value of...