• Summary for Week ending April 15th
• First Look at 2012 Cost-Of-Living Adjustments and Maximum Contribution Base
Three key housing reports will be released this week: April homebuilder confidence on Monday, March housing starts on Tuesday, and March existing home sales on Wednesday.
----- Monday, April 18th -----
8:00 AM ET: Citigroup First Quarter 2011 Results (included for possible comments on foreclosures)
10 AM: The April NAHB homebuilder survey. The consensus is for a reading of 17, unchanged from March. Any number below 50 indicates that more builders view sales conditions as poor than good. This index has been below 25 for forty five consecutive months (almost 4 years).
----- Tuesday, April 19th -----
8:00 AM ET: Goldman Sachs First Quarter 2011 Results
8:30 AM: Housing Starts for March. After collapsing following the housing bubble, housing starts have mostly moved sideways at a very depressed level for over two years.
Click on graph for larger image in graph gallery.
This graph shows total and single unit starts since 1968.
Total housing starts were at 479 thousand (SAAR) in February, down 22.5% from the revised January rate of 618 thousand, and barely up from the all time record low in April 2009 of 477 thousand (the lowest level since the Census Bureau began tracking housing starts in 1959). Single-family starts decreased 11.8% to 375 thousand in February - the lowest level since early 2009.
The consensus is for an increase to 525,000 (SAAR) in March.
10:00 AM: Regional and State Employment and Unemployment for March 2011
----- Wednesday, April 20th -----
This graph shows the Architecture Billings Index since 1996. The index showed billings were slightly higher in February (at 50.6).
This index usually leads investment in non-residential structures (hotels, malls, office) by 9 to 12 months.
7:00 AM: The Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) will release the mortgage purchase applications index. This index has been very weak over the last couple months suggesting weak home sales through May 2011.
8:00 AM: Wells Fargo First Quarter 2011.
10:00 AM: Existing Home Sales for March from the National Association of Realtors (NAR). The consensus is for sales of 5.0 million at a Seasonally Adjusted Annual Rate (SAAR) in March, up about 2.5% from the 4.88 million SAAR in February. Economist Tom Lawler is projecting sales of 5.08 million in March.
This graph shows existing home sales, on a Seasonally Adjusted Annual Rate (SAAR) basis since 1993. Sales in February 2011 (4.88 million SAAR) were 9.6% lower than last month, and were 2.8% lower than February 2010.
In addition to sales, the level of inventory and months-of-supply will be very important (since months-of-supply impacts prices).
----- Thursday, April 21st -----
7:30 AM: Morgan Stanley First Quarter 2011
8:30 AM: The initial weekly unemployment claims report will be released. The number of initial claims increased last week to 412,000, but the trend has been down over the last few months. The consensus is for a decrease to 390,000 from 412,000 last week.
10:00 AM: Philly Fed Survey for April. This survey was at the highest level since 1984 in March. The consensus is for a strong reading of 36.8, down from the very high 43.4 in last month.
10:00 AM: Conference Board Leading Indicators for March. The consensus is for a 0.3% increase for this index.
10:00 AM: FHFA House Price Index for February. This is based on GSE repeat sales and is no longer as closely followed as Case-Shiller (or CoreLogic).
----- Friday, April 22nd -----
All US markets will be closed for Good Friday.
After 4:00 PM: The FDIC might be working Friday afternoon ...
Best Wishes to All!
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