Freddie Mac has released its Primary Mortgage Market Survey (PMMS) for the week ending May 27, 2021. The PMMS reports that 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 2.99% with an average 0.6 point, up from last week when it averaged 2.95%. A year ago at this time, the 30-year FRM averaged 3.18%.
According to the latest data analysis from the 2019 American Community Survey, the average median age of an owner-occupied home is now 39 years old. In 2005, the median age was 31 years. Clearly, the U.S. owner-occupied housing stock is aging gradually.
According to Statistics Canada (StatsCan), the total value of building permits in April 2021 were down -0.5% to $11.1 billion, following a record setting March. The minor setback reflects declines in the residential sector in British Columbia and Quebec, which outweighed national gains in the non-residential sector.
According to the latest released (6-3-21), Job-Cut Report from Challenger, Gray & Christmas (CG&C), Inc — a global outplacement and business and executive coaching firm — U.S. based companies announced planned job cuts announced by U.S.-based employers rose 7% in May to 24,586 from the 22,913 announced in April. Last month’s total is down 93.8% from May 2020, when employers announced 397,016 cuts.
According to the April ADP® National Employment Report™, nonfarm private sector employment private sector employment increased by 978,00 jobs from April to May. The ADP National Employment Report is produced by the ADP Research Institute® in collaboration with Moody’s Analytics.
The U.S. Department of Labor is reporting that an additional 385,000 Americans made their initial filing for unemployment benefits during the week ending on Saturday, May 29, 2021 — a decrease of 20,000 from the previous week’s unrevised level. This is the lowest level for this average of initial claims since March 14, 2020, when it was 256,000.
According to people familiar with the matter, Katerra, the six-year-old startup construction company, told its employees in a video call on Tuesday (6-1-21) that it plans to shut down. The executive on the video said the effects of COVID-19, as well as rising costs of labor and construction materials contributed to the company’s latest cash crunch.
The British Columbia provincial government is promising to boost Indigenous engagement in forestry as it sets out on the largest series of policy updates for the sector since the early 2000’s. According to the strategy plan unveiled on Tuesday (6-1-21). there would be a near doubling in the amount of replaceable forest tenure held by Indigenous nations from the current levels of 10%.
According to a leader of the Bigstone Cree Nation, just as lumber prices hit record highs, a drive to increase Alberta’s forest harvest is allowing members of a northern First Nation to become resource owners, as well as timber-gathering contractors.
The British Columbia provincial government on Tuesday (6-1-21) released a paper that lays out far-ranging “policy intentions”, including diversifying the ownership of forest tenures, or harvesting rights, and establishing a framework of compensation in the event those rights are redistributed. The series of B.C. goals and an initial yearlong timeline will work towards modernizing the province’s regulation of the forest sector.