Over the long haul the two series offer a compelling study of trends in residential real estate. Here is an overlay of the two series since the 1959 inception of the Starts data and the Permits data, which began being tracked a year later.
"Travel on all roads and streets changed by +8.3% (+21.0 billion vehicle miles) for August 2021 as compared with August 2020. Travel for the month is estimated to be 273.8 billion vehicle miles." The 12-month moving average was up 0.7% month-over-month and up 4.2% year-over-year. If we factor in population growth, the 12-month MA of the civilian population-adjusted data (age 16-and-over) was up 0.64% month-over-month and up 3.7% year-over-year.
As of October 18, the price of Regular and Premium were up six and five cents each, respectively, from the previous week. According to GasBuddy.com, California has the highest average price for Regular at $4.49 and Texas has the cheapest at $2.95. The WTIC end-of-day spot price closed at 81.69, up 1.5% from last week and up 72% from the beginning of the year. Both gas prices and WTIC are at their highest levels since 2014.
The U.S. Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development have now published their findings for September new residential housing starts. The latest reading of 1.555M was below the Investing.com forecast of 1.680M and a 1.6% decrease from the previous month's 1.580M.
The U.S. Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development have now published their findings for September new residential building permits. The latest reading of 1.589M was down 7.7% from the August reading and is below the Investing.com forecast of 1.680M.
Seven out of eight indexes on our world watch list posted gains through October 18, 2021. The top performer is India's BSE SENSEX with a gain of 29.35%, France's CAC 40 is in second is with a gain of 20.21%, and our own S&P 500 is in third with a gain of 19.45%. Coming in last is Hong Kong's Hang Seng with a loss of 6.69%.
Month-over-month nominal sales in September were up 0.74% and up 14% YoY. Real Retail Sales, calculated with the seasonally adjusted Consumer Price Index, increased by 0.32% and were up 8.1% YoY.
The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) Housing Market Index (HMI) is a gauge of builder opinion on the relative level of current and future single-family home sales. It is a diffusion index, which means that a reading above 50 indicates a favorable outlook on home sales; below 50 indicates a negative outlook. The latest reading of 80 is up 4 from last month's 76.
Today's report on Industrial Production for September shows a 1.29% decrease month-over-month, which was worse than the Investing.com consensus of 0.2%. The year-over-year change is 4.62%, down from last month's YoY increase.
We have announced our Venerated Voices™ awards for commentaries published in Q3 2021.
The S&P saw gains four out of five days this week and regained some of its losses from September. The index is up 19.04% YTD and is just 1.45% below its record close.
The yield on the 10-year note ended October 15, 2021, at 1.59%, the 2-year note ended at 0.41%, and the 30-year at 2.05%.
FINRA has released new data for margin debt, now available through September. The latest debt level is down 0.92% month-over-month.
This morning's late release of the publicly available data from ECRI puts the WLI at 154.7, up 1.2 from the previous week's revised figure. The WLIg is at 3.3, up from last week and the WLI YoY is at 10.06%, also up from last week.
The October Preliminary came in at 71.4, down 1.4 (1.9%) from the September Final. Investing.com had forecast 73.1. Since its beginning in 1978, consumer sentiment is 17 percent below the average reading (arithmetic mean) and 16.1 percent below the geometric mean.
The Census Bureau's Advance Retail Sales Report for September was released this morning. Headline sales came in at 0.74% month-over-month to two decimals and was above the Investing.com forecast of -0.2%. Core sales (ex Autos) came in at 0.78% MoM.
This morning we got the latest Empire State Manufacturing Survey. The diffusion index for General Business Conditions at 19.8 was a decrease of 14.5 from the previous month's 34.3 . The Investing.com forecast was for a reading of 27.
We've updated this series to include the September release of the Consumer Price Index as the deflator and the monthly employment update. The latest hypothetical real (inflation-adjusted) annual earnings are at $44,717, down 6.3% from 45-plus years ago. Hourly earnings are near their all-time high after adjusting for inflation.
The Consumer Price Index for Urban Consumers (CPI-U) released this week puts the year-over-year inflation rate at 5.39%. It is above the 3.76% average since the end of the Second World War and above its 10-year moving average, now at 1.80%.
With the Q2 GDP Third Estimate and the September close data, we now have an updated look at the popular "Buffett Indicator" -- the ratio of corporate equities to GDP. The current reading is 213.2%, up from 204.7% the previous quarter.
Note: This commentary has been updated with the latest numbers from the latest Employment Report for September. Consider: Today nearly one in three of the 65-69 cohort and one in five of the 70-74 cohort are in the labor force.
This morning's seasonally adjusted 293K new claims, down 36K from the previous week's revised figure, was below the Investing.com forecast of 319K.
This morning's release of the September Producer Price Index (PPI) for Finished Goods was at 0.5% month-over-month seasonally adjusted, down from a 0.6% increase last month. It is at 8.6% year-over-year, up from 8.3% last month, on a non-seasonally adjusted basis. Core Final Demand (less food and energy) came in at 0.2% MoM, down from the 0.5% previous month and is up 6.8% YoY NSA. Investing.com MoM consensus forecasts were for 0.6% headline and 0.5% core. The September PPI for Final Demand was at 0.5% month-over-month seasonally adjusted, down from a 0.7% increase last month.
Here's the latest on the largest cryptocurrencies by market share.
The latest full set UIG for September is 4.03% while the prices-only measure is 4.01%. Current Headline CPI is now 5.39% and Core CPI is 4.03%.
Here is a table showing the annualized change in Headline and Core CPI, not seasonally adjusted, for each of the past six months. Also included are the eight components of Headline CPI and a separate entry for Energy, which is a collection of sub-indexes in Housing and Transportation. We can make some inferences about how inflation is impacting our personal expenses depending on our relative exposure to the individual components.
Let's do some analysis of the Consumer Price Index, the best-known measure of inflation. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) divides all expenditures into eight categories and assigns a relative size to each. The pie chart illustrates the components of the Consumer Price Index for Urban Consumers, the CPI-U.
The 20th century Baby Boom was one of the most powerful demographic events in the history of the United States. We've created a series of charts to show seven age cohorts of the employed population from 1948 to the present.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics released the September Consumer Price Index data this morning. The year-over-year non-seasonally adjusted Headline CPI came in at 5.39%, up from 5.25% the previous month. Year-over-year Core CPI (ex Food and Energy) came in at 4.03%, mostly unchanged from 4.00% the previous month and is above the Fed's 2% PCE target.
The Labor Force Participation Rate (LFPR) is a simple computation: You take the Civilian Labor Force (people age 16 and over employed or seeking employment) and divide it by the Civilian Noninstitutional Population (those 16 and over not in the military and or committed to an institution).
We've updated our monthly workforce analysis to include the latest Employment Report for September. The unemployment rate dropped to 4.8%, and the number of new nonfarm jobs (a relatively volatile number subject to extensive revisions) came in at 194K.
What does the ratio of unemployment claims tell us about where we are in the business cycle and recession risk?
The latest JOLTS report (Job Openings and Labor Turnover Summary), with data through August, is now available.
The headline number for September came in at 99.1, down 1.0 from the previous month. The index is at the 44th percentile in this series.
At present, multiple jobholders account for 4.6 percent of civilian employment. The survey captures data for four subcategories of the multi-job workforce, the current relative sizes of which we've illustrated in a pie chart.
Let's take a closer look at Friday's employment report numbers on Full and Part-Time Employment.
The latest monthly employment report showed a gain of 194K nonfarm jobs, which consists of a gain of 142K service-providing jobs and a gain of 52K goods-producing jobs.
This commentary has been updated to include this morning's release of Nonfarm Employment. September's 194K increase in total nonfarm payrolls had revisions that resulted in 169K more jobs than previously reported. The Investing.com consensus was for 500K jobs gained and the unemployment rate to fall to 5.1%.
This morning's employment report for September showed a 194K increase in total nonfarm payrolls, which was below the Investing.com forecast of 500K jobs added.
Here's an interesting set of charts that will especially resonate with those of us who follow economic and market cycles. Imagine that five years ago you invested $10,000 in the S&P 500. How much would it be worth today, with dividends reinvested but adjusted for inflation? The purchasing power of your investment has increased to $20,803 for an annualized real return of 14.7%.
Here is a summary of the four market valuation indicators we update on a monthly basis.
Take a look at real (inflation-adjusted) charts of the S&P 500, Dow 30, and Nasdaq Composite since 2000. We've updated this through the September 30, 2021 close.
Our monthly market valuation updates have long had the same conclusion: US stock indexes are significantly overvalued, which suggests cautious expectations on investment returns.
In yesterday morning's ADP employment report we got the September estimate of 568K nonfarm private employment jobs gained, an increase over August's revised 340K. The popular spin on this indicator is as a preview to the monthly jobs report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Note: This update includes September close data.
In response to a standing request, here is an updated comparison of four major secular bear markets. The numbers are through the September 30 close.
Was the March 2009 low the end of a secular bear market and the beginning of a secular bull?
This morning we have the ADP September estimate of 568K nonfarm private employment jobs gained, an increase over the ADP revised August figure of 340K.
Here is the latest update of a popular market valuation method using the most recent Standard & Poor's "as reported" earnings and earnings estimates and the index monthly average of daily closes for the past month.
The Institute of Supply Management (ISM) has now released the September Services Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI). The headline Composite Index is at percent 61.9, up 0.2 from 61.7 last month. Today's number came in above the Investing.com forecast of 60.0 percent.