Real Estate News for the week of July 7th, 2014

Hello and welcome to the Real Estate Report for the week of July 7th.

The Mortgage Bankers Association reported a loss for the week ending June 27th with the seasonally adjusted composite index for mortgage applications falling 0.2% from the previous week. The volume of home purchases decreased 1% but refinance Applications saw a small increase of 0.1%.

Home sales based on signed contracts jumped 6.1% in May, which follows an April increase of 0.4%. Current home sales were down 5.2% this year, compared to April 2013.

Total construction spending for May increased 0.1% to $956.1 billion from the revised estimate of $955.1 billion for April. Construction spending has risen 6.6% when compared to last year.
In June, Activity linked to manufacturing fell to 55.3, after a May reading of 55.4. Anything above 50 indicates growth. This marks the 13th consecutive month of expansion, and the 61st consecutive month of growth for the overall economy.

Activity in the non-manufacturing sector also decreased to a reading of 56 in June, from 56.3 in May. For the service sector, this was the 53rd straight month of growth.

Factories saw orders fall 0.5%, or $2.6 billion, in May to a seasonally adjusted $497.7 billion. This is on the heels of an April increase of 0.8%. Now if we exclude the transportation sector in May, new orders decreased only 0.1%.

The trade deficit shrunk by $2.6 billion from April to May, and totaled $44.4 billion. Imports saw a decrease of $700 million, which brought it to $239.8 billion. And exports rose $2 billion to $195.5 billion.

The unemployment rate for June came in at 6.1%, a 0.2% drop from May. Employers added 288,000 jobs in June and adjusted the May figures up to 224,000 from 217,000.

Initial unemployment benefit claims came in at 315,000, an increase of 2,000 for the week ending June 28th. Continuing claims rose to 2,579,000, an increase of 11,000 for the week ending June 21st. Unemployment benefit claims for the less volatile four-week average also came in at 315,000.

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