Entries by Wolf Richter

The Most Splendid Housing Bubbles in America: “House-Price Inflation” in all its Glory. March Update

Estimated Reading Time: 2 minutes

Dollar’s Purchasing Power Swoons, but CPI ignores house price inflation. House prices rose by 11.2% from a year ago, the biggest increase since the peak of Housing Bubble 1 in 2006, according to today’s National Case-Shiller Home Price Index for January. The index is a good measure of “house-price inflation” because it’s based on the “sales pairs” […]

FHA Mortgage Delinquencies Hit 17.5%. In 30 Metros, over 20%: On the Other Side of a Red-Hot Housing Market

Estimated Reading Time: 2 minutes

Everything is on ice. But when forbearance ends, forced sellers or lenders will put millions of these homes on the market. On the other side of the red-hot housing market, a historic delinquency problem has been fermenting since last spring, largely put on ice and on hold by forbearance programs, waiting to be dealt with. […]

Just Don’t Expect “Pent-up Demand” from Consumers. Here’s Why

Estimated Reading Time: 2 minutes

Editor’s Note: Many argue that current stock market action is discounting a huge post-pandemic surge in spending.  This report casts doubt on this assumption. Free money whipped consumers into a rollicking eight-month splurge on goods. There’s nothing “pent up.” And services are not a shoo-in for “pent-up demand.” Give Americans some free money, and tell […]

Dollar’s Purchasing Power Drops to Record Low Despite Aggressive “Hedonic Quality Adjustments”

Estimated Reading Time: 2 minutes

Spiking prices for new and used vehicles under the microscope. The “Purchasing Power of the Consumer Dollar” – part of the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Consumer Price Index data released today – is the politically incorrect mirror image of inflation in consumer prices, as measured by the Consumer Price Index (CPI). By wanting to increase consumer […]

Inflation Pressures Heat Up Even in Services

Estimated Reading Time: < 1 minute

There is still the theme that some of it is just temporary. Big parts of the services sector – such as restaurants, entertainment, lodging, and travel – have been hit hard during this crisis. Other parts of the services industries – such as real estate, services related to eCommerce, transportation services, video games, streaming services, […]