Three housing indicators released today didn’t change the general picture about the US housing sector: it’s stuck.
Housing and employment are highlighted are the soft spots of the US economy and are highlighted by the Federal Reserve.
The Case Schiller indicator showed a year over year drop of 3.5%, exactly as expected. The last time it showed a rise was in September 2010.
New Home Sales stood on an annual level of 328K, marginally higher than 321K expected. This is a 7.1% fall from last month, driven by a significant upside revision of data from 313K to 353K.
The official House Price Index rose by 0.3%, better than 0.1% that was expected, but it came on top of a serious downside revision of last month’s figure from 0% to -0.5%.
Last week’s data adds to the mixed picture: existing home sales disappointed last week while building permits rose nicely. All in all, the data is quite mixed and doesn’t point to any direction. The bright side is that this could be the bottom, and that we’ll see a gradual climb from here, but this is far from certain.
Tomorrow we will hear how the Fed treats the housing sector and if the current situation justifies hinting about a third round of quantitative easing. The odds are slim.
For more, see the FOMC Preview.
Also in the US, CB Consumer Confidence dipped to 69.2 points, a bit under expectations of 69.6 points. The Richmond Manufacturing Index surprised with a jump from 7 to 14 points, yet this is a second or third tier indicator.Get the 5 most predictable currency pairs