Real Estate News for the week of September 8th, 2014

Welcome to the Real Estate Report for the week of September 8th.

The Mortgage Bankers Association said its seasonally adjusted composite index of mortgage applications for the week ending August 29 rose 0.2% from the previous week. Purchase volume fell 2%. Refinancing applications increased 1%.

Total construction spending rose 1.8% to $981.3 billion in July from the revised June estimate of $963.7 billion. Construction spending has risen 8.2% over last year.

Manufacturing activity rose to 59 in August nearly 2 points higher than July’s reading. It was the 15th consecutive month of expansion, and the overall economy grew for the 63rd consecutive month.

Factory orders rose $53.1 billion, or 10.5%, in July to a seasonally adjusted $558.3 billion. If we remove transportation sector numbers, new orders dropped 0.8% in July.

The trade deficit decreased from $40.8 billion in June to $40.5 billion in July. Exports rose nearly 2 billion dollars to $198 billion. Imports increased $1.6 billion to $238.6 billion.

Non-manufacturing activity rose to 59.6 in August, the highest level since August 2005. A reading above 50 signals expansion. It was the 55th straight month of expansion in the services sector.

Initial claims for unemployment benefits for the week ending August 30 rose by 4,000 to 302,000. Continuing claims for the week ending August 23 fell by 64,000 to 2.464 million, a new recovery low. The less volatile four-week average of claims for unemployment benefits was 302,750.

The unemployment rate fell from 6.2% in July to 6.1% in August. Employers added 142,000 jobs in August and revised the July figure of jobs gained from 209,000 to 212,000.

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