Global Politics, Inflation ticks up slightly,Millennial homebuyers targeted with new product from Zillow
March 31, 2017
Today marks the end of a strong first quarter that started with all major Stock indexes posting new record highs on the promise of tax, healthcare and other regulatory reforms. While the day is starting out in the red, the end of the day will wrap up a great kick off to 2017 nonetheless. Volatility will likely mark the second quarter as Britain enters into negotiation with the EU on its exit from the union, the French head to the polls to elect a new president, and here at home we continue to watch what unfolds in Washington D.C. No doubt, politics will fuel volatility as we head into April.
In economic news, inflation remained in check in February and just below the Fed’s target range of 2 percent. Core Personal Consumption Expenditures, the Fed’s favorite inflation gauge, rose 1.8 percent year-over-year in February from 1.7 percent in January. The Fed would like Core PCE, which strips out volatile food and energy prices, to stay above 2 percent, something it has not done in 9 years. If inflation stalls at current levels, it will be tough for the Fed to justify hiking interest rates this year as rate hikes are designed to stave off inflation. February Personal Income rose 0.4 percent, which was in line with estimates, while spending Personal Spending was up 0.1 percent versus the 0.2 percent expected.
Zillow Group is targeting services to millennial homebuyers with its new website set to launch in May 2017: RealEstate.com. According to HousingWire, the website will pull from multiple listings services, real estate brokerages and franchisors. Zillow conducted a study showing 70% of millennials report using a real estate agent, find their real estate agent online and evaluate agents using online reviews. Zillow will announce more details when it launches. The new URL was acquired as part of Zillow’s acquisition of Trulia. The domain name currently redirects to Trulia.com but will redirect in May.