The US is short on housing stock and remains short in August. While housing starts in August seems fantastic (12.8% MoM), the YoY growth in housing supply is down -0.1% as mortgage rates soar and The Fed removes monetary stimulus.
On a month-over-month (MoM) basis, 1-unit (single family detached) were up only 3.43% in August. 5+ unit (multifamly) starts were up 28.57% in August.
Since the Biden Administration has allowed over 2 million illegal to flow across the southern border, apartment space is in high demand.
According to RentCafe, the hottest rental markets in the USA are Miami, Orlando, SW Florida and … Harrisburg PA (the temporary home of uber-leftist PA Lt Governor John Fetterman). Perhaps Fetterman is letting illegal immigrants stay in his Harrisburg mansion, unlike President Obama on Martha’s Vineyard.
Why isn’t Biden letting illegal immigrants stay in his massive summer mansion in Reboboth Beach, DL?
In January 2020, just prior to the COVID outbreak in the US, the Case-Shiller national home price index was growing at 4% YoY, the Zilliow rent index (all homes) was growing at 2.92% YoY and REAL average hourly earnings were growing at 0.52% YoY.
Then COVID struck and the Federal government dumped trillions of dollars of stimulus into the economy and The Federal Reserve massively expanded its balance sheet. Now the US has home prices growing at a 18.8% rate, rents (for those who can’t afford to purchase a home) growing at 14.91% and REAL hourly earnings growing at -1.80%.
The site Apartment List has an even bleaker view of rent growth, with rents in January 2022 having grown by 18% YoY.
Now that COVID is fading, we see New York City rents growing at 33.5% YoY followed by Florida and Arizona cities at 29.3% and higher rates. Irvine CA is seventh at 28%. The slowest growing city is Oakland, CA is growing at only 0.5%.
The misery index is traditionally inflation rate plus U-3 unemployment rate. The RENTER misery index is the Zillow Rent Index YoY + U-3 unemployment rate to demonstrate the hardship of renters because of soaring home prices.
Notice that because of rising home prices, the Renter misery index has overwhelmed the improvement in unemployment.
As I typically do, I will now include The Fed’s balance sheet (as a proxy for Fed stimulus and supporting Federal government expenditures). Yes, you can see that The Fed and Federal government are responsible for our modern day “Grapes of Wrath.”
If we look at the TRADITIONAL misery index, we see that misery remains above 10 (it was below 6 prior to the COVID outbreak in early 2020).
Remember that the REAL average hourly earning growth of Americans is NEGATIVE. Gains in wage growth more than offset by inflation.
I won’t even mention how inflation is crushing retirees since Social Security and pension plans rarely adequately compensate retirees for inflation.
Now for the really bad news. 81-year old senior, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, has announced that she is running for Congress yet again from leftist-stronghold San Francisco. Although she has an expensive home in Georgetown and a beautiful vineyard in Napa Valley. Pelosi’s vineyard only sells grapes to other wine makers. Not bad for a career civil servant!
I really wanted Pelosi to produce a wine called “The Grapes of Wrath” in honor of her insider trading and massive wasteful spending of taxpayer money that has helped generate inflation, rampant government debt growth and hurting retirees and hourly workers.
Renters in the US are getting clobbered by inflation.
The US Zillow Rent Index All Homes YoY + CPI YoY is one measure of renter misery.
The classic misery index (CPI YoY + U-3 unemployment rate) is 10.80%.
Then there is inflation in food prices, gasoline, heating oil, natural gas, etc.
While Biden is releasing the Strategic Petroleum Reserves (SPR) in order to mitigate the problem that he created by terminating the energy pipelines and oil/natural gas drilling permits in the name of “Going Green!” But on the announcement of tapping the SPR, crude oil futures actually rose.