Here's Bespoke Investment Group's summary of yesterday's data release:
- Turning to housing, today the Census updated Q4 results for homeownership and vacancy of the housing stock.
- We cannot understate this: these statistics are consistent only with a strong housing market.
- The homeownership rate ticked up to a new cycle high, driven by solid household formation (despite large outflows from rental housing occupancy).
- The rental vacancy rate is now the lowest since Q2 1985 after our seasonal adjustment, while the homeowner vacancy rate is the lowest since Q3 1994; there is little available housing inventory.
- Vacant unit counts continue to fall, with the South, Midwest, and Northeast recording the lowest number of vacant units since pre-crisis years.
- Total occupied housing units are rising at a pace of almost 2.5% annualized, thanks to the strongest gains in the growth of owned housing units since the pre-crisis boom.
- Simply put, this is not data that makes sense in a weak housing market.