Tag Archives: Seasonally Adjusted Annual Rate

CR: New Home Sales at 411,000 SAAR in February

New Home Sales at 411,000 SAAR in February

by Bill McBride on 3/26/2013  

The Census Bureau reports New Home Sales in February were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR) of 411 thousand. This was down from a revised 431 thousand SAAR in January (revised down from 437 thousand).

The first graph shows New Home Sales vs. recessions since 1963. The dashed line is the current sales rate.

“Sales of new single-family houses in February 2013 were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 411,000, according to estimates released jointly today by the U.S. Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development. This is 4.6 percent below the revised January rate of 431,000, but is 12.3 percent above the February 2012 estimate of 366,000.

New Home SalesClick on graph for larger image in graph gallery.

The second graph shows New Home Months of Supply.

The months of supply increased in February to 4.4 months from 4.2 months in January.

The all time record was 12.1 months of supply in January 2009.

New Home Sales, Months of SupplyThis is now in the normal range (less than 6 months supply is normal).

“The seasonally adjusted estimate of new houses for sale at the end of February was 152,000. This represents a supply of 4.4 months at the current sales rate.”

On inventory, according to the Census Bureau:

“A house is considered for sale when a permit to build has been issued in permit-issuing places or work has begun on the footings or foundation in nonpermit areas and a sales contract has not been signed nor a deposit accepted.”

Starting in 1973 the Census Bureau broke this down into three categories: Not Started, Under Construction, and Completed.

New Home Sales, InventoryThis graph shows the three categories of inventory starting in 1973.

The inventory of completed homes for sale is just above the record low. The combined total of completed and under construction is also just above the record low.

The last graph shows sales NSA (monthly sales, not seasonally adjusted annual rate).

In February 2013 (red column), 33 thousand new homes were sold (NSA). Last year 30 thousand homes were sold in February. This was the eight weakest February since this data has been tracked. The high for February was 109 thousand in 2005, and the low for February was 22 thousand in 2011.

New Home Sales, NSA

This was below expectations of 425,000 sales in February, but still a fairly solid report.  I’ll have more soon …

Read more at http://www.calculatedriskblog.com/2013/03/new-home-sales-at-411000-saar-in.html#aFrtr6uwQMoHjIft.99

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Lawler: Early Read on January Existing Home Sales

Lawler: Early Read on January Existing Home Sales

by CalculatedRisk on 2/17/2012 

Economist Tom Lawler is forecasting that the National Association of Realtors (NAR) will report sales of 4.66 million on a seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR) basis for January. The NAR is scheduled to report existing home sales on Wednesday, Feb 22nd at 10 AM ET.

This is a slight increase from the 4.61 million rate in December, and essentially unchanged from the 4.64 million rate reported in January 2011.

Tom didn’t send me an estimate for inventory, but based on other reports, I expect inventory to decline slightly from the 2.38 million houses for sale reported for December.

This sales rate, combined with a decline in inventory, could put months-of-supply under 6 months for the first time since early 2006.

Note: Even though there is a seasonal pattern for inventory (inventory usually bottoms in January and peaks in the summer), the months-of-supply metric is calculated using the seasonally adjusted sales rate and the not seasonally adjusted inventory. So the months-of-supply will probably increase again over the next 6 months.

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Existing Home Sales Held Back By Increasing Contract Cancellations

Existing Home Sales Held Back By Increasing Contract Cancellations

by Peter Grist — Eye on Housing

Existing home sales continue to drift sideways, with a high rate of contract failures holding back a recovery. The National Association of Realtors reported a modest, 1.4% increase in existing home sales in October, creeping up to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.97 million units. The increase recovers only part of the 3% decline in September. Although existing home sales are 13.5% above the 4.38 million unit level observed in October 2010, they have changed little in the nine months since February — bouncing around a 5 million unit annual rate.

Sales of single-family homes edged up 1.6% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.31 million units, while condominium and co-op sales were unchanged at 570,000 units. Across the regions, gains in existing home sales occurred in the West (jumping 4.4% to an annual pace of 1.19 million units), Midwest (rising 2.8% to 1.10 million units), and the South (up 2.1% to 1.94 million), but a decline in the Northeast (down 5.1% to 750,000 units).

The housing inventory continued to trend down, falling 2.2% with 3.33 million existing homes available for sale at the end of October. At the current sales level, this represents an 8.0-month supply — an improvement on the 8.3 months in September and 10.6 months recorded in October 2010.

Contract cancellations rose sharply, with 33%of NAR members reporting contract failures in October. This compares to 18% in September and only 8% a year ago. Contract cancellations are typically the result of declined mortgage applications or the appraised value of a home coming in below the negotiated price, which typically results in a rejection during the loan underwriting process. The NAR advise that “we should be seeing stronger sales”, but the sales recovery is being held back, as “many people who are attempting to buy a home are thwarted in the process.” Problems with the appraisal process and the very tight lending conditions have been a recurring theme reported by the Realtors over the past year.

The relatively flat result for existing home sales in October also reflects waning interest by investors. Investors’ share of existing home sales edged down in October, with investors purchasing 18% of homes, compared to 19% in September and 22% in August. As suggested last month, investor sentiment has greatly influenced existing home sales over the past year, with weaker home sales corresponding to a decrease in investor share (and vice-versa).

The falling investor share is likely to be a response to a declining number of distressed homes for sale. Investors typically prefer undervalued distressed homes that they either turn-over for a short-term profit or convert to rental housing. The share of distressed sales slipped to 28% of existing home sales in October, from 30% in September and 34% in October 2010. The NAR note that, “In some areas we are hearing about shortages of the foreclosure inventory with multiple bidding on the more desirable properties.”

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Existing Home Sales Turn Back Down in September

Existing Home Sales Turn Back Down in September

 

 

 

The National Association of Realtors (NAR) reported sales of existing homes turned down again in September, falling 3.0% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.91 million in September, after an 8.4% gain in August. Existing home sales have been somewhat volatile this year, but for the most part have remained in the neighborhood of an annual rate of 5 million units since the beginning of the year. Relative to September 2010, existing home sales are 11.3% higher, but the year-over-year gain is notably smaller than previous months – down from 19.3% in August and 21.0% in July.

Results were mixed across housing types and regions. Single-family home sales declined 3.6% to 4.33 million units, while condominium and co-op sales rose 1.8% to 580,000 units. By region, existing home sales rose 2.6% in the Northeast to an annual rate of 790,000 units; but slipped 0.9% in the Midwest to 1.09 million units; fell 2.6%  in the South to 1.89 million units and dropped 8.8% the West sales to 1.14 million units.

The influence of investors was again noticeable, with investors’ share of home purchases slipping to 19% in September from 22% in August. Investor sentiment has been driving the market over the past year, with home sales shadowing changes in investors’ share of home purchases. The declining investors’ share may be responding to a smaller number of distressed sales, with the share of distressed sales slipping to 30% of home sales in September, from 31% in August. The NAR previously suggested that investors take advantage of their cashed up position in the current market, mainly purchasing undervalued distressed homes that they either turn-over for a short-term profit or convert to rental housing.

The NAR again expressed their concern at the high rate of contract failures, noting that “contract failures were reported by 18% of NAR members in September,” … “double the level of September 2010.” Contract failures are cancellations caused by declined mortgage applications, failures in loan underwriting from appraised values coming in below the negotiated price, or other problems including home inspections and employment losses. The NAR imply that contract failures are a key constraint on home sales in the current market, in light of the historically high affordability conditions generated by the record low 4.11% average commitment rate on a 30-year conventional fixed-rate mortgage in September.

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Housing Starts increased in September

Housing Starts increased in September

by CalculatedRisk on 10/19/2011

From the Census BureauPermits, Starts and Completions

Housing Starts:
Privately-owned housing starts in September were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 658,000. This is 15.0 percent (±13.7%) above the revised August estimate of 572,000 and is 10.2 percent (±13.3%)* above the September 2010 rate of 597,000.

Single-family housing starts in September were at a rate of 425,000; this is 1.7 percent (±9.4%)* above the revised August figure of 418,000. The September rate for units in buildings with five units or more was 227,000.

Building Permits:
Privately-owned housing units authorized by building permits in September were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 594,000. This is 5.0 percent (±1.3%) below the revised August rate of 625,000, but is 5.7 percent (±2.6%) above the September 2010 estimate of 562,000.

Single-family authorizations in September were at a rate of 417,000; this is 0.2 percent (±1.0%)* below the revised August figure of 418,000. Authorizations of units in buildings with five units or more were at a rate of 158,000 in September.

Total Housing Starts and Single Family Housing StartsClick on graph for larger image in graph gallery.

Total housing starts were at 658 thousand (SAAR) in September, up 15.0% from the revised August rate of 572 thousand. Most of the increase was for multi-family starts.

Single-family starts increased 1.7% to 425 thousand in September.

The second graph shows total and single unit starts since 1968.

Total Housing Starts and Single Family Housing StartsThis shows the huge collapse following the housing bubble, and that housing starts have been mostly moving sideways for about two years and a half years – with slight ups and downs due to the home buyer tax credit.

Multi-family starts are increasing in 2011 – although from a very low level. This was well above expectations of 590 thousand starts in September.

Single family starts are still “moving sideways”.

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August New Home Sales: Following Starts Bouncing Along the Bottom

August New Home Sales: Following Starts Bouncing Along the Bottom

by Robert Denk

Today’s release of August new home sales reflected the same depressed housing market visible in the starts data last week. Newly constructed homes were sold at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 295 thousand. This isn’t a record low, but adds to the pattern of bouncing along the bottom we’ve seen since the expiration of the homebuyer tax credit. Meanwhile the inventory of new homes for sale dipped to a new record low of 162 thousand units.

 

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August Housing Starts: Still Bouncing Along the Bottom

August Housing Starts: Still Bouncing Along the Bottom

by Robert Denk

Today’s release of August housing starts added one more month’s worth of data to a disappointing pattern. We continue to bounce along the bottom. Total housing starts in August were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 571,000 per year, with single family starts running at 417,000. Housing starts have been stuck at this low level, with little movement up or down since the April 2010 expiration of the homebuyer tax credit.

The litany of impediments to a more robust recovery remains the same: tight credit for both builders and consumers, a glut of foreclosed units depressing prices, faulty appraisals, and weak consumer demand due to the fragile state of the economic recovery, particularly the persistently high unemployment rate.

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