Commercial Real Estate & Business News – March 27, 2015

Americans in their 20s and early 30s are getting a nudge toward homeownership a decade after sales peaked during the housing bubble. It’s not their nagging parents. It’s rents. They’ve risen so much that buying is making more sense… Read more »
Inflation is about as dangerous as an after-dinner mint these days, which casts some doubt on commercial real estate’s traditional role as a hedge against inflation. The most recent numbers from the Bureau of Labor Statistics are the latest in a long line of flaccid readings. According to the BLS, its Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers increased 0.2 percent in February, and not only because of gasoline’s dead-cat bounce in prices. The small increase was actually broad-based, with increases in shelter, energy and food all contributing. However, the all items index was unchanged over the past 12 months, after showing a 0.1 percent decline for the 12 months ending January. The annual readings generally involved the large drop in the price of gas balancing the small increases in the prices of most everything else… Read more »
New-home sales rose to the highest level in seven years in February, a sign of strong demand that could help boost the broader U.S. housing market. Sales of newly built single-family homes increased 7.8% from a month earlier to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 539,000, the Commerce Department said Tuesday. That is the highest level since February 2008… Read more »
Maricopa County had the second-largest population increase in the nation last year, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. The 74,000 new residents in the county was topped only by 89,000 in Harris County (Houston), Texas. The 1.8 percent population gain, however, was less than half pre-recession levels for the county. Maricopa County is closing in on 4.1 million people… Read more »
Arizona’s unemployment rate dropped a tenth of a percent to 6.5 percent adding 29,600 new jobs during the month of February. The increase – a gain of 2.1 percent over last year and 1.1 percent from January – was led by increased governmental hiring… Read more »