Housing, Gas Prices

January 19, 2016

Tuesday – January 19

Fannie Mae reports that the housing recovery will march on as several factors affecting the ability of households to purchase a home continue to improve. Fannie expects that further labor market tightening will lead to a pickup in compensation and increased job security. In addition, a recent lenders survey shows that lenders expect to continue to ease lending standards and expand consumers’ access to mortgage credit this year.

The National Association of Home Builders reported on Monday that its Housing Market Index held steady at 60 in January after the 60 recorded in December. Any number over 50 indicates that more builders view conditions as good rather than poor. “January’s HMI reading is right in line with our forecast of modest growth for housing,” said NAHB Chief Economist David Crowe. “The economic outlook remains promising, as consumers regain confidence and home values increase, which will help the housing market move forward.”

Gas prices at the pumps continued to edge lower in the latest survey as oil prices decline due to a glut of oil flowing through global pipelines. The national average price for a regular gallon of gasoline is at $1.88, down from $2 a month ago. In addition to the large supply of oil, Iran has stated that they intend to boost production, which is weighing on prices. In Houghton Lake, Michigan, the price was seen at $0.47 cents due to pricing wars at local gas stations.