Key Economic Indicators – August 25, 2014

  • July existing home sales increased 2.4% to an annualized rate of 5,150 thousand units, according to the National Association of Realtors. July sales were down 4.3% from a year ago. The median sales price of existing houses sold was $222.9 thousand, 4.9% above July 2013.
  • Housing starts surged 15.7% in July to an annualized pace of 1.093 million, while building permits rose 8.1% to an annualized rate of 1.052 million.
  • The results of Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey of August 21st showed average fixed mortgage rates decreasing. 30-year fixed mortgage rate averaged 4.10% for the week ending August 21, down from last week when it averaged 4.12%.
  • Mortgage applications increased 1.4% from a week earlier, according to data from Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Weekly Applications Survey for the week ending August 15th.
  • The advance figure for initial claims for unemployment insurance decreased 14 thousand to 298 thousand in the week ending August 16. The 4-week average was 300.75 thousand, an increase of 4.75 thousand from the previous week’s revised average of 296 thousand.
  • The consumer price index (headline index) rose 0.1% in July, following a 0.3% in the previous month. The core index also rose 0.1% in July. The consumer price index increased 2.0% for the 12-month period ending in July, while the core index rose 1.9%.
  • The Philadelphia FED business outlook survey for August reported accelerated growth in manufacturing activity.
  • The Conference Board index of leading economic indicators increased 0.9% in July, while the coincident index increased 0.2%.

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