ELLIOTT D. POLLACK
- Corporate net cash flows are up 0.6% from the 4th quarter but down 3.6% from a year ago as of the 1st quarter of 2016.
- New orders for manufactured durable goods in April increased 3.4% from March levels and are now 1.9% above year ago levels. Yet, non-defense goods excluding aircraft were down 0.8% for the month and 5.0% from a year ago.
- The University of Michigan consumer sentiment index increased to 94.7, up from 89.0 in April and 90.7 a year ago. May’s results were the best since June last year and among the strongest in this cycle.
- Sales of new single-family homes were up strongly in April. New home sales were up 16.6% from March and 23.8% from a year ago. The median sales price was $321,100, up from $292,700 a year ago. That’s a 9.7% increase.
- The National Association of Realtors pending home sales index rose to 116.3 in April. This is up 5.1% from March and 4.6% from a year ago.
- According to the Federal Housing Finance agency, national home prices reached record levels in March. The home price index rose to 233.1. This is up 6.1% from a year ago and compares to the 2007 peak of 226.6. The FHFA index measures homes insured by government agencies. This generally excludes higher priced homes.
- The index for Arizona also increased. It was up 7.4% to 264.1. Yet, in Arizona, homes with government insured mortgages are still way down from the 2006 peak of 320.9.
- In Greater Phoenix, the 1st quarter index was up 9.4% from a year earlier. But, the index, at 288.0, was still well below the previous peak of 342.2. In Greater Tucson, the index was up 5.7% from a year ago to 234.0. The previous peak in Tucson was 309.3. Thus, according to this index, mainly lesser expensive homes, Greater Phoenix is still 15.8% below its’s previous peak while Tucson is still 24.3% below the 2006 record.