2014 U.S. Economic Events & Analysis
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Housing Market Index  
Released On 2/18/2014 10:00:00 AM For Feb, 2014
PriorPrior RevisedConsensusConsensus RangeActual
Housing Market Index56 56 56 54  to 58 46 

This winter's severe weather has been holding down certain areas of the economy more than others, and especially holding down housing. The home builders' housing market index fell very sharply, down a record 10 points to a much weaker-than-expected 46 which is the lowest reading since May last year. The reading is far below the low-end Econoday estimate for 54. The traffic component fell 11 points to a very weak 31 which is the lowest reading since April.

The component for current sales slowed substantially, also down 11 points but to a still plus-50 level of 51 that indicates monthly growth. Future sales fell 6 points to a still respectable 54. The regional breakdown shows broad weakness especially in the Northeast. The strongest region remains the West where California has been mostly spared by heavy weather.

The housing market has been stumbling the past few months due hopefully to the temporary issue of weather in what would point to a snap-back for the spring. But other factors are still negative for the sector including unappealing mortgage rates, high prices, low supply, and a soft jobs market. Housing starts for January, which slipped in December following a surge in November, will be posted tomorrow on the Econoday calendar at 8:30 a.m. ET.

Consensus Outlook
The NAHB housing market index was steady and solid at 56 in January versus 57 in December. The index came in at 54 in the two prior months. The report's three components all declined versus December, but only marginally. The present sales index at 62 remained the leading component and points to extending strength for new home sales. The outlook for future sales was right behind at 60 with traffic lagging badly at 40. Weakness in traffic contrasts with the strength in sales and reflects the high proportion right now of all cash deals.

The National Association of Home Builders produces a housing market index based on a survey in which respondents from this organization are asked to rate the general economy and housing market conditions. The housing market index is a weighted average of separate diffusion indexes: present sales of new homes, sales of new homes expected in the next six months, and traffic of prospective buyers in new homes.  Why Investors Care

2014 Release Schedule
Released On: 1/162/183/174/155/156/167/168/189/1710/1611/1812/15
Release For: JanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNovDec

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