Existing Home Sales & Manufacturing Down, Jobless Claims Up

Rates are up slightly today, which is counterintuitive since economic news is mostly weaker today. It’s all summarized below.

Existing Home Sales (June 2012)
– Existing Home Sales (Seasonally Adjusted Annualized Rate) 4,370,000 

– Down 5.4% from May’s upwardly revised 4,620,000

– Up 4.5% from June 2011’s 4,180,000

– Median price: $189,400, up 7.9% from June 2011

– Distressed sales were 25% of June sales (13% foreclosures, 12% short sales), unchanged from May but down from 30 percent in June 2011. Foreclosures sold for an average discount of 18% below market value in June, while short sales were discounted 15%.

– First-time buyers were 32% of purchasers in June

– All-cash sales edged up to 29% of transactions in June from 28 percent in May; they were 29 percent in June 2011

– Investors, who account for the bulk of cash sales, purchased 19% of homes in June, up from 17% in May; they were 19% in June 2011

Full NAR Report

Good WSJ recap

Philadelphia Fed Manufacturing Survey (July 2012)
– Index Level -12.9. 
– Better than last month -16.6, but still the third consecutive decline
– Zero is the dividing line between expansion and contraction
– This measures manufacturing activity in Eastern Pennsylvania, Southern New Jersey, Delaware
Full report

Jobless Claims (week ended 7/14/2012)
– Initial Claims up 34,000 to 386,000 
– Largest one-week increase since April 2011
– Previous (revised) was 352,000
– 4-week Moving Average 375,500
More comments/charts from Bespoke Investment Group

Some of the week’s pop in claims is due to auto assembly retooling, a seasonal thing.  Nonetheless, there is no joy here for the economy.

Leading Economic Indicators (June 2012)
– Leading Indicators Month/Month -0.3%.  This index has, as of late, not been a good indicator of where the economy is going because accommodative monetary policy has not produced the desired goals.

by Julian Hebron & Dick Lepre