Morning Briefing: New homes sales up in August

by Steve Randall25 Sep 2015
New homes sales up in August
Sales of newly built homes increased by 5.7 per cent in August compared to July. The seasonally-adjusted annual rate of sales reached 552,000 units. The Northeast (24.1 per cent), West (5.4) and South (7.4) saw increases while the West declined by 9.1 per cent.

"Today's report indicates the release of pent-up housing demand as the overall economy strengthens, consumer confidence grows and mortgage interest rates remain low," said NAHB Chief Economist David Crowe. "The housing market should continue to move forward at a modest but more persistent pace throughout the rest of 2015."

The inventory of new homes for sale was 216,000 units in August, a 4.7-month supply at the current sales pace.
Mortgage rates lower this week
The weekly survey of mortgage rates from Freddie Mac shows that they have moved lower in the 7 days to Sept. 24. The rate for 30-year FRM’s averaged 3.86 per cent, down from 3.91 per cent a week earlier; 15-year FRM’s averaged 3.08 per cent, down from 3.11 per cent; 5-year ARM’s averaged 2.91 per cent, down from 2.92 per cent; and 1-year ARM’s averaged 2.53 per cent, down from 2.56 per cent.
US commercial property stays strong says report
A report by the surveyors’ body RICS shows that the US commercial real estate market it still strong with New York leading the pack. Based on a sentiment survey and interviews with industry leaders the report indicates that occupier demand grew across all sectors in the second quarter of 2015, with the industrial sector showing an especially sharp increase.

New York is booming but there are signs that it may start levelling off. At 83 per cent the city had the highest percentage of respondents of any city in the world who believe market valuations are currently “expensive” according to a RICS poll. Furthermore, across the top markets, respondents believe the property cycle may be close to reaching its peak.
Banker uses real estate for a bit of revenge
A former Goldman Sachs banker who was passed over for promotion has used real estate to score a win over his former boss. David Tepper, who has become a billionaire since leaving the bank and setting up his own hedge fund, bought the Long Island home of former boss Jon Corzine for $43.5 million. He then tore down the home and built one twice as big. Tepper bought the original home from his ex-boss’ ex-wife in 2010 and the extent of his ‘revenge’ has been revealed 5 years on.  



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