1/5: MetroIntelligence Economic Update by P. DUFFY

MetroIntelligence Economic Update by P. DUFFY


Construction spending up 0.9 percent in November and 3.8 percent year-on-year

Construction spending during November 2020 was estimated at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $1,459.4 billion, up both 0.9 percent from October and 3.8 percent year-on-year.  During the first eleven months of this year, construction spending amounted to $1,314.1 billion, 4.4 percent higher than the same period in 2019.



December global economic index indicates continued growth, but supply chains stretched

The December J.P.Morgan Global Manufacturing Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) was unchanged from November’s 33-month high of 53.8. The headline PMI has remained above the neutral 50.0 mark for six successive months.  However, world supply chains stayed severely stretched, leading to marked delays and disruption to raw material deliveries, production schedules and distribution timetables.



Initial unemployment claims dip another 2.4 percent to 787,000

In the week ending December 26, initial unemployment claims were 787,000, a decrease of 19,000, or 2.4 percent, from the previous week’s revised level. Continuing claims during the week ending December 19 were 5,219,000, a decrease of 103,000, or 19 percent, from the previous week’s revised level. The total number of continued weeks claimed for benefits in all programs for the week ending December 12 was 19,563,905, a decrease of 799,841, or 3.9 percent, from the previous week.



Apartment rents down 0.4 percent in December and 1.5 percent year-on-year

This December, rents fell by 0.4 percent month-over-month, consistent with the patterns of years past. The national rent index is now down 1.5 percent year-over-year, and has fallen for four consecutive months.  Expensive coastal cities such as San Francisco, Seattle, and New York City are continuing to see rents fall rapidly, while traditionally affordable mid-sized cities such as Boise have actually become more expensive over the course of the pandemic.