Shiller price index

Three things to know: change is in the air

By Ryan Casey Stephens, FPQP®
special contribution

Do you enjoy pleasant mornings with temperatures in the 60s? You are not alone, and the fresh air here is certainly a welcome change.

Just got back from hiking and biking in Colorado where the onset of fall is apparent – lows in the 30s, rainy afternoons and golden aspens on every mountainside.

Experts also predict changes in the economic season. Strong reports throughout the summer highlighted the stubborn nature of inflation, but the effects of the Fed’s aggressive rate hikes should soon start showing in the data. Is it possible that these impacts have already appeared?

Let’s take a look into this week’s three things to know.

Slowdown in door-to-door sales

The last weeks Door-to-door sales pending The report revealed a third month of decline for new contracts on existing homes, down 24% from a year ago. A negative figure was also expected for new construction contracts but surprised us with a 29% increase from July to August. However, this number is stable compared to last year, so the net effect is negative for the total number of houses under contract nationally.

Focus on the bigger price picture

Last week also brought results for the FHFA House Price Index and the Case-Shiller Price Index (the gold standard of the industry). House prices fell 0.3% and 0.6% respectively from June to July, but the biggest news was the appreciation over last year – 15.8% and 16.2% respectively . Home value gains are slowing, but remain strong year over year.

Workers take center stage

Two reports will dominate the second half of this week: the new ADP jobs report and unemployment insurance claims. We’ll get a look at payrolls and unemployment, two numbers that are likely to fall as months of Fed rate hikes begin to latch on. Recent reports have remained strong, but weaker numbers this week could support struggling mortgage bonds, perhaps helping interest rates ease.

Ryan Casey Stephens FPQP® is a Mortgage Banker at Watermark Capital. You can reach him at [email protected]