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Tag Archives: Economy

Report: Home Sales Down, Prices Up For August

Despite the currently slower environment, RE/MAX CEO Margaret Kelly is keeping a positive view on recent figures, noting that August sales were still more than 10 percent higher than in 2012 and 17.8 percent higher than in 2008, when the company began reporting on monthly activity.

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Report: Consumer Sentiment Highest in 14 Months

The increase in the headline index was driven by a more than four-point improvement in the gauge of consumer expectations, which rose to 75.6. On the other hand, the Current Conditions Index fell more a point to 98.5. According to Paul Diggle, U.S. economist for Capital Economics, the small decline "could reflect the weaker pace of payroll growth in August or even the slowdown in some measures of housing market activity."

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Fed: Wealth Share of Richest Families Increasing

A report released recently by the Federal Reserve Board provided evidence that the gap between the richest American families and all others is getting wider. The Survey of Consumer Finances, conducted by the Federal Reserve Board every three years, reported last week that the wealth share held by the top 3 percent totaled 54.4 percent in 2013, a number that has climbed from 51.8 percent in 2007 (before the recession) and from 44.8 percent in 1989.

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Housing Recovery Will Continue Into 2015 [Fannie Mae]

Improvements in the labor market in 2014 have not translated to widespread housing market recovery this year, according to the Fannie Mae August 2014 National Housing Survey. Instead, data in the survey indicated that recovery for the housing market will be slow heading into 2015. The number of people in the survey who said they believed now is a good time to sell a home fell six percentage points to 64 percent, an all-time low since the monthly survey began in June 2010. The number of people who said now is a good time to buy a home also declined to 38 percent.

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Lending Increases, Mortgage Growth Lags at Credit Unions for Q2

Lending was up all-around, ranging from year-over-year growth of 27.5 percent in smaller short-term loans in the year's first half to 9.9 percent in first mortgage loans in just the second quarter. The association also recorded improvements across other metrics, including credit union membership, which grew by more than 900,000 in the second quarter to surpass 98 million.

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Late August Finds Consumer Sentiment On Rebound

Indeed, 59 percent of households with incomes in the top tier reported being better off now than they were before, while only 36 percent of those in the lower tiers said the same. At the same time, 34 percent of the top-income households reported net income gains, while there were no net gains reported in the bottom two-thirds.

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Economy Moving Closer to Normal

After half a year of failed predictions and slow starts, the U.S. economy actually appears to be closing in on normal, at least according to Freddie Mac. Freddie Mac's latest Economic and Housing Market Outlook shows that the agency expects to see the U.S. housing market driven once again by fundamentals—jobs, household formations, and affordability—rather than economic upheaval.

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GDP Growth Healthy in Q2

The U.S. economy experienced a sharp turnaround from the first quarter to the second, fueling hopes of a rebound as the rest of the year plays out. Real gross domestic product (GDP) increased at an annual rate of 4.0 percent in the second quarter of the year, according to an advance estimate released by the Commerce Department. Growth came in at the high end of a survey of economists, with the consensus forecast calling for an increase of 3.1 percent.

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