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Starting from March 2024, optimism among homebuilders has improved, with the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) reporting a positive sentiment for the first time since July 2023. The sentiment index reached 51 in March, indicating a favorable outlook among single-family housing developers, driven by easing mortgage rates and increased demand for new homes.

NAHB’s sentiment gauge, reflecting business conditions, has risen for four consecutive months, with expectations that buyer interest will strengthen if mortgage rates decline further. However, challenges like limited available land, labor shortages, and regulatory hurdles are driving up construction costs. Anticipated Federal Reserve rate cuts could lower financing costs, potentially boosting buyer market entry, though this might also increase material costs due to higher demand.

In the retail sector, U.S. companies reported a 10% profit increase in the last quarter of 2023 compared to the previous quarter, with a significant 62% year-over-year growth. Retail sales remained stable, though profit margins are under pressure as consumers prioritize essential spending.

Population trends in 2023 revealed that 60% of U.S. counties experienced growth, with notable increases in the South and improved figures in the Northeast and Midwest, reversing previous declines. The Census Bureau observed changing domestic migration patterns, with slowed growth in Western states and moderated population losses in the Northeast. Southern counties, especially in Texas, showed robust growth rates, indicating shifting demographic dynamics across the country.

Source link: https://product.costar.com/home/news/1705903588?tag=17

Source Name: Costar

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