The Census Bureau reports that December Housing Starts surged 17% from November to an annual rate of 1.608M units,the highest since December 2006, versus 1.380M expected as the sector continues to build momentum. It was the biggest percentage gain since October 2016. From December 2018 to December 2019, starts soared 40%. Single-family starts jumped 11.2% to 1.055M units, the highest level since June 2007. Building Permits edged lower, which is typical for December.
China reported upbeat economic data. This week's signing of the Phase One trade deal is likely to continue boosting optimism within the global economy. Corporate earnings have been on the positive side this week and have helped to boost stocks to record levels. Noted hedge fund guru David Tepper told CNBC this morning that he is 'long the market (stocks) and continues that way.' Mr.Tepper has been spot on calling the markets rise for the past 10 years. Tepper said, "I love riding a horse that's running." In addition, hedge fund titan Stanley Drunkenmiller is also bullish on U.S. stocks, at least in the immediate term. The above coupled with low inflation, low rates, solid consumer spending and an expanding economy bolsters the Goldilocks scenario. And yesterday, the Philadelphia Manufacturing Index tripled estimates, a good sign for the sector.