Trade Tensions rise as no solution is in sight, UK’s May resigns on June 7th having not been able to deliver Brexit, and the 10yr yield sees its lowest print this year.
Existing Home Sales
Existing home sales slowed in April, dropping -.4% to 5.19 million. Market expectations were for home sales to rise +2.7% so the number was way below consensus. Year-over-year, sales are now down -4.4%. By region, the Northeast fell -4.5%, the South down -.4%, the West increased +1.8%, while the Midwest was unchanged. The median existing home price for all housing types was up to $267,300, +3.6% year-over-year.
New Home Sales
April new home sales fell by -6.9% to a 673k unit selling rate vs. a revised 723k rate back in March (originally 692k).
This decline follows three straight monthly increases. Looking year-over-year, April new home sales are still up 7%, while the median new house price increased 8.8% from a year ago to $342,200, which is also the highest level since December 2017. There were 332k new homes on the market, which is down .9% from March. At April’s sales pace, we would be looking at 5.9 months of supply, up from 5.6 months in March. Regional breakouts see sales in South declined by -7.3%, the Midwest dropped by -7.4%, the West was down -8.3%, while the Northeast jumped up 11.5%
The Markit PMI composite pre-lim read for May fell to 50.9 from a prior 53 print, now the lowest level in roughly 3 years. A print of 50 marks a level within the report that breaks between contraction and expansion in the economy, and we now see the two biggest pieces hovering around that level (manufacturing fell to 50.6 from 52.6, while the service sector fell to 50.9, down from 53). The report noted that “the muted rise in output was attributed to softer demand and subdued growth of new orders.”
Minutes from the Apr30-May1 FOMC meeting reflected the same tone from the meeting headlines earlier this month, showing no signs that the Committee feels it necessary to make any changes to policy any time soon. For the remainder of the year, the Fed will continue to watch for hard proof that another rate hike is warranted.
Durable Goods Orders for April were down -2.1% following a down revision from +2.6% to 1.7% in March. Transportation drove down the headline (-5.9%), and if you exclude that, new orders were virtually unchanged. Core capital goods orders, which exclude defense and aircraft, fell by -.9% after rising +.3% in the past two months. Total orders are now the lowest in nine months.