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Hovnanian Reports Q1 Results, Announces Exit From “Frothy” San Francisco Market

Hovnanian Enterprieses (HOV) reported 2016 fiscal first quarter results today, posting a 29 percent increase in revenues and a net loss of $16.2 million. That was just part of the story for Hovnanian Enterprises. The more important news is that Hovnanian said it has exited the markets of San Francisco, Minneapolis and Raleigh, with plans to wind down operations in Tampa, FL and the San Francisco Bay area.  As far as actual performance results, Hovnanian's cancellation rate jumped from 18 percent last year to 21 percent in this most recent quarter. Hovnanian reported a 15.3 [...]

Census: New Home Sales Decline 5 Percent YoY In January To 494,000 (SAAR)

The Census new home sales report came in lighter than expected today. New Residential Sales In January 2016 posted at a seasonally adjusted annual rate (SAAR) of 494,000. This was well shy of analysts estimates of 520,000 and 5.2 percent lower than January 2015. The median price of a new home in January 2016 was $278,800, a $13,200 drop from the median price last year. The average price of new home sold (contracted) in January was $365,700, a $9700 increase from the same time a year ago. The pricing mix of new homes in 2016 [...]

By | 2016-02-24T23:19:13+00:00 February 24th, 2016|Development, Markets, Mortgage Rates, New Home Sales, Real Estate|0 Comments

Toll Brothers Reports Fewer Deliveries, Lower Net Income In Q1 2016

Toll Brothers reported fiscal first quarter 2016 earnings this morning, and the results look like more stagnation for the luxury home builder. Deliveries were off 3 percent year-over-year while revenues climbed 9 percent on higher average prices. Toll saw signed contracts rise by 18 percent in the quarter, which is good considering that Toll's community count rose only slightly from 288 last year to 291 this year. What's not good is that both gross margins and income from operations fell during the quarter. Not surprisingly, Toll remains optimistic with their projections for the year. Toll [...]

By | 2016-02-23T16:51:33+00:00 February 23rd, 2016|Development, Economy, Markets, New Home Sales, Real Estate|0 Comments

Mortgage Rates Drop As “Recovery” Drowns In The Sea Of Central Bank Market Manipulations

"Anyone claiming that America's economy is in decline is peddling fiction." Barack Obama - SOTU January 2016 2016 has seen one of the worst starts to a year ever for major U.S. stock indices ever, and that means mortgage rates have continued to fall during the first two weeks of the year. For those who were rushing to lock in a sub-4 percent mortgage, there really was no need to rush. It is now easy to get a 3.75 percent fixed rate 30-year mortgage here in the Houston area. Mortgage rates are driven by demand [...]

By | 2017-02-03T23:27:53+00:00 January 16th, 2016|Economy, Housing Policy, Mortgage Rates, Real Estate, Spin Cycle|0 Comments

KB Home Q4 Earnings Lower Than Expected, Stock Hammered

KB Home reported fourth quarter earnings that were lighter than expected. KB's net income of $44 million in Q4 2015 was lower than analyst estimates, but not a surprise given the margin compression experienced by many home builders recently. KB delivered 2580 homes in the fourth quarter, up 16 percent from a year ago. Average selling prices rose 8 percent to $379,800. KB's numbers for the fourth quarter weren't bad considering the challenging environment and stagnant economy. That being said, investors are likely going to notice that KB's net new orders only grew 10% despite [...]

By | 2016-01-07T14:26:32+00:00 January 7th, 2016|Markets, New Home Sales, Real Estate, Spin Cycle|0 Comments

DR Horton Sees Higher Revenue And Home Orders In Fiscal Q4

D.R. Horton reported 2015 fiscal fourth quarter results this morning, and the Texas-based home builder bucked the trend of weak results from new home builders. D.R. Horton reported a 23 percent increase in closings for the quarter and a 19 percent increase in new orders. The company reported a 44 percent increase in net income for the quarter. Based on the sharp jump in share prices (DHI) today, investors were pleasantly surprised by the results. Even with D.R. Horton's solid results, it appears the average price of new home ordered in the quarter rose by only [...]

By | 2016-02-02T11:16:52+00:00 November 10th, 2015|Development, Economy, Markets, New Home Sales|0 Comments

Toll Brothers Discovers “Recovery” Is A Mirage, Stock Drops 7 Percent For The Day On Weak Q3 Results

Luxury home builder Toll Brothers announced FY 2015 third quarter quarter results today. Toll reported that Q3 net income was lower than a year ago with net income falling from $97.7 million to $66.7 million year-over-year. Toll's gross margins for the quarter fell from 22.7 percent last year to 19.8 percent this year. Amusingly, Toll's average price for a home in backlog was $829,000, the first time above $800,000. On a day when a market recovery looked quite possible, it was also interesting to see Toll's stock drop 7.8 percent today. Like many investors were finding [...]

By | 2015-08-26T00:25:56+00:00 August 25th, 2015|Development, Economy, Markets, New Home Sales, Spin Cycle, Video|0 Comments

August Crude Oil Drops 7.7 Percent To Settle At $52.53 Per Barrel

The contagion from the Greek referendum 'No' vote and the Shanghai shenanigans was mostly contained today in terms of U.S. equities, but the oil market was less than amused. August crude oil settled at $52.53 per barrel today, a fall of 7.7 percent. I think the Greater Houston Partnership may need to revise their already halved employment projections again pretty soon. It appears the premature bottom calls for oil were exactly that...premature. Crude oil is now down 9.5 percent during the last month. If sanctions are lifted on Iran any time soon, that would likely [...]

By | 2015-07-06T20:21:09+00:00 July 6th, 2015|Economy, Energy & Utilities, Markets, Spin Cycle|0 Comments

Margin Squeeze: Lennar Homes Reports Higher Revenues But Lower Prices In Houston TX

Lennar Homes reported fourth quarter earnings this morning, and it appears the margin squeeze story is going to be a recurring issue for home builders. Lennar reported home building revenues that were 32 percent higher for the quarter compared to 2013. The only problem is that their expenses for the quarter were 33 percent higher. Lennar reported that margins are going to be pressured going foward, and all you have to do is look at their Houston numbers to see why. Lennar Homes breaks Houston out as a separate division. Lennar delivered 768 homes for [...]

By | 2016-05-20T14:22:20+00:00 January 15th, 2015|Development, Economy, Markets, New Home Sales, Real Estate|0 Comments

What The Oil Market Can Tell Us About Fed-Driven Asset Bubbles

For all of the talk about deleveraging in America, it's interesting to see that both the national debt and total credit market instruments tell a rather different story. That's because the Federal Reserve has been goosing the markets to keep them afloat while they exercise their undisclosed and primary mandate which is to keep the market from tanking and keep their friends in a job. If last week's market action wasn't telling enough, Jim Grant offered a bit of perspective on what's really going on. The problem with Fed-driven asset bubbles is that they always [...]

By | 2016-02-02T12:26:08+00:00 December 21st, 2014|Economy, In the Press, Markets, Politics, Real Estate, Spin Cycle, Video|0 Comments