222,000 new jobs were created in June as hiring accelerated in the spring, the largest increase in four months and second biggest haul of the year. Hiring was also stronger in May and April than previously reported, according to the government. The unemployment rate, meanwhile, rose to 4.4 percent from 4.3 percent as more people entered the labor force in search of work. The jobless rate had fallen to a 16-year low in May.
“There is both good and bad news here for the housing and mortgage industries,” says The Collingwood Group Managing Director Tom Booker. “The good news is that more people seeking work are finding it. Unfortunately, wages were less bullish, suggesting there are still more people seeking full-time work. As a result, the housing market will continue to be tight but recessionary fears may be overblown.”
Hourly pay rose a moderate 0.2 percent to $26.25 an hour in June, the government said. Wages have advanced a modest 2.5 percent in the past 12 months, up slightly from the prior month but still well below the usual gains at this late stage of an expansion. Companies continue to find ways to restrain labor costs.
Two-Thirds of Jobs in this City Could be Automated by 2035
We are walking down the strip in Las Vegas in the year 2035.
The lights are glaringly flashing, music is pounding your ears, the usual nine Elvis look-alikes try to pose with you for a few dollars. A few robots are crisscrossing between the legs of passersby, offering ticket services, information and to be their guide. Self-driving vehicles bring gamblers from casino to casino. A robot group performs a break dance, and you can compete against Robo-MJ in basketball.
Vegas is still Vegas, so nothing has really changed. Or has it?
Maybe it won’t be visible to the eye, but robots may have taken the place where people currently toil to keep the Vegas machine humming. About 65% of all jobs in Vegas are susceptible to automation by 2035 — a bigger share than in any other part of the country. Across the U.S., 55% (or more) of jobs in almost all metropolitan areas face this same scenario.
Scientists are heatedly debating whether robots and artificial intelligence (AI) will appear as colossally in our lives as some studies predict. Will we really see mass adoption of robots and AI gadgets?
The reality is both technologies already have seen mass adoption and it is foolish not to expect it to accelerate. Every smartphone already is essentially an AI device, and 1.5 billion of those were shipped in 2016. Some 1.6 million industrial robots operated worldwide in 2015, a total that’s expected to increase to 2.6 million by 2019.
Research shows that if all these 1 million additional robots worldwide are merely as productive as those that already exist, each robot would on average replace the work done by 5.7 U.S. workers, or 5.7 million workers in all.
read more: MarketWatch
Home Prices Climb Higher & Higher…
CoreLogic reports home prices are up strongly both year over year and month over month.
Home prices nationally increased year over year by 6.6 percent from May 2016 to May 2017, and on a month-over-month basis, home prices increased by 1.2 percent in May 2017 compared with April 2017, according to the CoreLogic Home Price Index.
Looking ahead, the CoreLogic HPI Forecast indicates that home prices will increase by 5.3 percent on a year-over-year basis from May 2017 to May 2018, and on a month-over-month basis home prices are expected to increase by 0.9 percent from May 2017 to June 2017. The CoreLogic HPI Forecast is a projection of home prices using the CoreLogic HPI and other economic variables. Values are derived from state-level forecasts by weighting indices according to the number of owner-occupied households for each state.
“The market remained robust with home sales and prices continuing to increase steadily in May,” said Frank Nothaft, chief economist for CoreLogic. “While the market is consistently generating home price growth, sales activity is being hindered by a lack of inventory across many markets. This tight inventory is also impacting the rental market where overall single-family rent inflation was 3.1 percent on a year-over-year basis in May of this year compared with May of last year. Rents in the affordable single-family rental segment (defined as properties with rents less than 75 percent of the regional median rent) increased 4.7 percent over the same time, well above the pace of overall inflation.”
“For current homeowners, the strong run-up in prices has boosted home equity and, in some cases, spending,” said Frank Martell, president and CEO of CoreLogic. “For renters and potential first-time homebuyers, it is not such a pretty picture. With price appreciation and rental inflation outstripping income growth, affordability is destined to become a bigger issue in most markets.”
… But NYC Home Prices Dip
Manhattan homebuyers found deals they couldn’t refuse in the second quarter, driving up sales of previously owned properties by the most in more than two years.
Purchases of resale homes jumped 16 percent from a year earlier to 2,597, according to a report Thursday by appraiser Miller Samuel Inc. and brokerage Douglas Elliman Real Estate. Buyer interest was fueled by average price cuts of 6.1 percent across all property types. The last time the average discount was larger was the third quarter of 2012, when it was 7.2 percent.
Sellers of luxury apartments took the whittling further, cutting prices by an average of 10 percent, the most since the end of 2010 and the second-biggest discounts in more than 16 years of record-keeping.
“The sellers definitely got it,” said Diane Ramirez, chief executive officer of brokerage Halstead Real Estate, which released its own report Thursday saying there was a 28 percent jump in resales in the second quarter. “They said, ‘We’ve got buyers out there who are serious but that are not moving forward, so let’s give them a reason to move forward.’”
read more: Bloomberg
Mortgage Rates Jump
30-year mortgages saw their biggest jump last week, since March.
Freddie Mac reports:
- 30-year fixed-rate mortgage (FRM) averaged 3.96 percent with an average 0.6 point for the week ending July 6, 2017, up from last week when it averaged 3.88 percent. A year ago at this time, the 30-year FRM averaged 3.41 percent.
- 15-year FRM this week averaged 3.22 percent with an average 0.5 point, up from last week when it averaged 3.17 percent. A year ago at this time, the 15-year FRM averaged 2.74 percent.
- 5-year Treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) averaged 3.21 percent this week with an average 0.5 point, up from last week when it averaged 3.17 percent. A year ago at this time, the 5-year ARM averaged 2.68 percent.
“Global interest rates turned up sharply over the last week,” says Sean Becketti, chief economist, Freddie Mac. “The 10-year Treasury yield was no exception, increasing 10 basis points in a holiday-shortened week. The 30-year mortgage rate followed suit, rising 8 basis points to 3.96 percent.”
On the Fast Track to Skyrocketing Real Estate Prices: The New Public-Transit Effect
New York City homeowner Tina Larsson watched for nearly a decade as a new subway station was built right across the street from her brick midcentury co-op on Manhattan’s Upper East Side. The excavation blasts shook her walls and sent dust spewing into the air; the noise and disruption choked off business to once-busy restaurants and shops.
It was, in short, a terrible mess.
Then in January, the heavy construction machinery suddenly disappeared, the sidewalk scaffolding was taken down, and the endless clutter seemed to vanish overnight. After nearly a century of starts and stops, the $4.5 billion Second Avenue subway — one of the nation’s most notoriously delayed large-scale transit projects — was finally open for business. It was sleek, modern, and even festooned with original Chuck Close portraits. Now, Larsson, 51, and many of her longtime neighbors, are finally ready to reap the real estate rewards.
Prices in Larsson’s building have shot up about 60% over the last three years — a bonus for existing owners and a burden for local renters, who may soon be priced out of the market. Larsson attributes the appreciation to her building’s proximity to one of the three new stations on the subway, which now connects the far east side of Manhattan to the rest of the city.
“The people who are buying [here now], not only in this building, are very well off,” says Larsson, CEO of the FolSon Group, a consulting firm that advises co-ops and condo associations on efficiency and management. “The people who bought [years ago], I doubt they could buy now.”
New York City’s Second Avenue line isn’t the only high-profile public transit initiative with the potential to fundamentally transform its local real estate market — in ways both good and bad. Home and rental prices are on the rise near the New York City line as well as in cities across the nation, like Los Angeles, Charlotte, NC, and Phoenix, where long-anticipated mass transit lines or extensions have opened or are in the works.
read more: Realtor.com
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