Monday Morning Coffee 11-29-2010

Real Estate Agent with Frank G. Silveria Real Estate | Keller Williams Realty 01306251

Last Week in the News

Retail sales fell 0.6% for the week ending November 20, according to the ICSC-Goldman Sachs index. On a year-over-year basis, retailers saw sales increase 2.8%.

Gross domestic product — the total output of goods and services produced in the U.S. — increased at an annual rate of 2.5% in the third quarter of 2010. This follows a 1.7% pace of growth in the second quarter of 2010.

Existing home sales fell 2.2% in October to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.43 million units from 4.53 million units in September. The inventory of unsold homes on the market declined 3.4% to 3.86 million, a 10.5-month supply at the current sales pace, down from a revised 10.6-month supply in September.

The Mortgage Bankers Association said its seasonally adjusted composite index of mortgage applications for the week ending November 19 rose 2.1%. Refinancing applications decreased 1%. Purchase volume rose 14.4%.

Orders for durable goods — items expected to last three or more years — fell 3.3% in October after increasing an upwardly revised 5% in September. Excluding volatile transportation-related goods, orders posted a monthly decrease of 2.7%.

New home sales fell 8.1% in October to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 283,000 units from a rate of 307,000 units in September. Economists had expected a pace of 314,000 units.

Initial claims for unemployment benefits fell by 34,000 to 407,000 for the week ending November 20. That's the lowest level since July 2008. Continuing claims for the week ending November 13 fell by 142,000 to 4.18 million.

Upcoming on the economic calendar are reports on the housing price index on November 30, construction spending on December 1 and pending home sales on December 2.