Latest Housing Starts, Construction Employment Undermine Strong Q1 GDP

U.S. Gross Domestic Product (GDP) for the first quarter of 2020 (advanced estimate) plunged by 4.8% as the coronavirus pandemic put the economy on lockdown. The following categories made positive contributions to GDP in ascending order of their contribution to the percentage change: Housing and utilities: .08% Change in farm inventories: 0.10% Government consumption expenditures … Read more

Housing Downturn: Optimism Races Ahead of the Data – Housing Market Review (April, 2020)

The iShares Dow Jones US Home Construction Index (ITB) gained 4.2% and closed at a 2-month high.

Housing Market Intro and Summary Something surprising is happening in the middle of the current downturn in the housing market: buyers keep coming and home builders are staying resilient and resolute. A series of earnings reports from publicly traded home builders do not reflect the historic plunge in builder sentiment from April (see below). The … Read more

Warren Buffett Welcomes More Discussion On Diversity

“We are a very young country. What we’ve accomplished is miraculous… We have made progress. And we are a better society… You would think that with the level of prosperity that we have, we would do better taking care of people…We’ve been going in the right direction in the country, but it’s been awfully slow.” … Read more

Fresh Hopes for the Canadian Dollar As Central Bank Talks Recovery

The Canadian Dollar After the Canadian dollar (USD/CAD) sold off in the wake of the Bank of Canada’s latest Monetary Policy Report (MPR), I doubled down on my bullish bet on the currency (short USD/CAD). That bet paid off as general weakness in the U.S. dollar took USD/CAD back down to its 50-day moving average … Read more

Mortgage Forbearance Programs Help Support Housing Prices

In a press release titled “‘No Lump Sum Required at the End of Forbearance’ says FHFA’s Calabria” the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) sought to reassure home owners that they will not risk defaulting on their homes coming out of a mortgage forbearance program. The forbearance program gives home owners relief from paying their mortgage … Read more

Crash Culture – A Warning In Negative Oil Prices – Above the 40 (April 20, 2020)

AT40 = 30.6% of stocks are trading above their respective 40-day moving averages (DMAs) AT200 = 11.7% of stocks are trading above their respective 200DMAsVIX = 43.8Short-term Trading Call: cautiously bullish Stock Market Commentary The culture of collapse that has accompanied the coronavirus pandemic reached new lows. The on-going collapse in oil prices reached new … Read more

Housing Downturn: Home Builder Sentiment Counters Freddie Mac Optimism

“…if not for the pandemic, the strong momentum going into the Spring may have actually sent confidence higher still. Instead, confidence will undoubtedly plunge in the next report. The consumer sentiment index plunged to a 4-year low as a leading indicator of where builder confidence will go.” Housing Downturn: Put Spring’s Momentum On the Shelf … Read more

Housing Downturn: Put Spring’s Momentum On the Shelf – Housing Market Review (March, 2020)

Housing Market Intro/Summary The housing market has become a lot more dynamic than usual, so over the past few months I have written more pieces beyond the monthly housing market review. The current economic crisis coming from the coronavirus pandemic has increased my frequency of coverage. The most telling moments came when I wrote to … Read more

Housing Downturn 2020: Redfin Transitions from Hopeful to Defensive

The change was swift and dramatic. In mid-February, Redfin (RDFN) delivered a very bullish earnings report proclaiming it’s on “like Donkey Kong.” In the face of nascent concerns about the coronavirus (covid-19) threat, on March 11th Redfin (RDFN) delivered a semi-reassuring press release titled “Housing Demand Holding Up Surprisingly Well, For Now.” Two weeks and … Read more

Green Shoots Push Into the Next Downtrend Threatening to Trample Stocks – Above the 40 (March 27, 2020)

AT40 = 3.8% of stocks are trading above their respective 40-day moving averages (DMAs) (23rd oversold day)AT200 = 5.0% of stocks are trading above their respective 200DMAs (new low for the oversold period)VIX = 65.5Short-term Trading Call: bullish Stock Market Commentary First a dose of hope: “Coronavirus treatment: Palo Alto woman recovers from coronavirus after … Read more