Monday, August 15, 2022

Weekly Economic and Housing Market Update -GROUP

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July 8, 2022

  • The Realtor.com® economics team weekly video update gives you the relevant economic and real estate information you need to know to navigate the housing market as a homebuyer, home seller, or industry professional.
  • This week with our video editing team on vacation, Chief Economist Danielle Hale covers the data highlights with a short blog post including what’s happening in the economy and housing markets. If you’ve  missed prior videos, this week might be a good week to catch up. Find them on our Realtor.com YouTube channel playlist.
  • This week’s data yields insights on the labor market courtesy of JOLTS, the jobs report and weekly unemployment claims
  • We also saw minutes from the June Fed meeting which were largely consistent with what was released in the statement and subsequent press conference and coupled with this week’s labor market readings raise the odds of another large rate hike in July.  
  • This week’s mortgage rate data, gathered before the strong labor market readings, actually showed a dip in rates, as my colleague Joel Berner details. 
  • In addition to this week’s reprieve in mortgage rates, home shoppers continue to enjoy new options to choose from as more homeowners list homes for sale and a growing number of homes remain on the market without a buyer.
  • Find details along with Realtor.com® housing data for download at realtor.com/research.  And follow us on twitter: @rdc_economics, for real time updates.

WEEKLY DATA SUMMARY:

  • I’m Danielle Hale, Chief Economist for Realtor.com® and here’s what you need to know this week. 
  • We saw two major jobs reports along with weekly data that highlight a still strong labor market even as there are hints of weakening in the face of the Fed’s policy actions. 
  • First, the Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey showed that both job openings and job quits remain elevated. Both the number (4.3. million) and rate (2.8%) of employees leaving their jobs voluntarily in May–presumably for better opportunities–remain just slightly below late 2021 highs (4.5 million and 3.0%). Meanwhile, the number of May job openings (11.3 million) continues to dwarf the number of work-seekers currently without a job (5.9 million in June). In sum, these conditions put workers in the driver’s seat with companies having to compete for talent.
  • It comes as no surprise then, that the June jobs report showed that wages continued to grow at a higher than normal pace (5.1%) while the unemployment rate held steady at 3.6%, just slightly above the pre-pandemic long-term low of 3.5%. Companies added a net 372,000 workers to payrolls in June, better than expected and only modestly lower than the previous few months’ pace of hiring.
  • We’re at the midpoint between the June Fed meeting and its upcoming meeting in July which marked the release date for the June meeting minutes. The minutes repeated the Fed’s strong commitment to bringing inflation back to the 2% target, and relying on a wide array of data indicators and information to assess the appropriate course of policy.
  • This week’s favorable labor market readings reinforce the idea that a fourth rate hike, likely the third to exceed a quarter point in size, is in store for the July Fed meeting. The increase will most likely total 75 basis points, bringing the short-term rate to a range of 2.25 to 2.50%, especially if inflation and inflation expectations readings, due out next week, remain high. 
  • For the housing market and home shoppers, this means a risk of higher mortgage rates remains even though rates moved lower for a second consecutive week, dropping a combined one-half percentage point over the two week period to 5.3%.
  • In addition to lower mortgage rates last week, home shoppers benefited from the ongoing influx of homeowners deciding to sell with new listings climbing 8% according to Realtor.com weekly housing data. Additionally, soaring home prices, up 18.3% from a year ago, are prompting today’s home shoppers to be choosier, resulting in a slower pace of home sales and rising number of homes available. In fact, active inventory climbed 29% over the same week last year.
  • You’ll find the details along with our housing data for download at realtor.com/research.  And follow us on twitter for real time updates.

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