Economic Center Blog
Welcome to the First American Economic Center Blog, a top source for the latest housing market research and analysis driven by Chief Economist Mark Fleming.

Why The Yield Curve May Have Fooled Some Experts

By Mark Fleming on April 5, 2019

April Fools’ may be over, but that hasn’t dampened recession fears from generating headlines. Broadly speaking, the U.S. economy is performing well. Wages are increasing and we’re near full employment. So, why are some experts raising recession concerns?

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Topics: Interest Rates, Federal Reserve

What Drives Increases In Income-Related Loan Application Defects?

By Mark Fleming on March 29, 2019

Throughout much of 2018, home prices were high, demand was rising and bidding wars were the new normal. As a result of the competitive market, buyers were under more pressure to seek qualification for larger loans. Fraud can come in many forms, but income falsification remains one of the most likely misrepresentations. By December 2018,...

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Topics: Fraud, Loan Application Defect Index

Interview On CNBC: Discussing The Impact Of Declining Mortgage Rates And Limited Supply On The Housing Market

By FirstAm Editor on March 27, 2019

First American Chief Economist Mark Fleming was interviewed on CNBC on Tuesday and discussed how the decline in mortgage rates over the last few months and continued tight housing supply are likely to impact the housing market.

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Topics: Housing, New Home Buying, In The News, Interest Rates, Affordability

Three Reasons Home Buyers Have More Power This Spring

By Mark Fleming on March 25, 2019

While 2018 was largely characterized by declining affordability, ending the year with a five percent yearly decline in house-buying power, this trend reversed sharply in early 2019. Moderating home prices, in conjunction with gains in household income and declining mortgage rates, boosted affordability for potential home buyers.

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Topics: Interest Rates, Real House Price Index, Affordability, Insider

Why The Stage Is Set For A Stronger Spring Home-Buying Season

By Mark Fleming on March 21, 2019

In February 2019, the housing market continued to underperform its potential, but showed signs of promise leading into the spring home-buying season. Actual existing-home sales are 2.5 percent below the market’s potential, according to our Potential Home Sales model. That means the market has the potential to support 127,000 more home sales at...

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Topics: Interest Rates, Federal Reserve, Insider, homeownership, Potential Home Sales

How Homebodies Hold Down Home Sales

By Odeta Kushi on March 19, 2019

First American’s most recent Potential Home Sales model for January 2019 found a 5.7 percent decline in the market potential for existing home sales, compared to the previous year. Increasing tenure length (the length of time a homeowner stays in their home before moving) was the most prominent factor leading to this decline.

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Topics: homeownership, Potential Home Sales, tenure

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