Morning Report – Homebuilder earnings 6/27/14

Vital Statistics:

 

Last Change Percent
S&P Futures 1944.2 -4.5 -0.23%
Eurostoxx Index 3230.7 -2.5 -0.08%
Oil (WTI) 106.1 0.2 0.23%
LIBOR 0.235 0.001 0.21%
US Dollar Index (DXY) 80.14 -0.081 -0.10%
10 Year Govt Bond Yield 2.52% -0.01%
Current Coupon Ginnie Mae TBA 106.6 0.0
Current Coupon Fannie Mae TBA 106.1 0.1
BankRate 30 Year Fixed Rate Mortgage 4.16

 

Stocks are lower this morning on no real news. Bonds and MBS are up.
KB Home reported second quarter earnings this morning. Revenues increased 8% on a 10% increase in average selling prices and a 2.5% decline in deliveries. Margins continued to expand. It will be interesting to see how long the builders can keep increasing the top line through price increases and volume decreases. The stock is up an eighth this morning.
Lennar also reported yesterday. Revenues increased 28% on a 12% increase in deliveries and a 14% increase in ASPs. Like KB, margins are increasing. Lennar is ready to launch a starter home product once first time homebuyers are able to get mortgages. (Gee, Lennar, don’t you have a mortgage origination arm?). The spring selling season was weaker than expected, but the homebuilding market is heating up. May was a great month, apparently.
The Kansas City Fed Manufacturing Index came out yesterday. It eased somewhat, but is still reasonably strong. Some companies mentioned that it is hard to find skilled workers, however once company said the problem was finding “workers who are reliable and possess a strong work ethic.” Overall, the comments seemed relatively bullish, with another company saying that “Compensation levels have been increased within all grades to compete with other employers. Production employees received 4-5.5% average wage increases this past year compared to 3% for all other areas of the company.” The missing piece to the inflation picture has been wage growth. If we are starting to see it, bond investors should start eyeing the exit.
Jack Lew spoke yesterday, and announced that the HAMP program would be extended through 2016. Also, the Administration will tap Treasury funds to push for more low-income rental housing. He also called on Congress to allow Ginnie Mae to securitize loans made under the FHA risk-sharing program. Treasury is also seeking public comments on what it can do to foster a more robust private-sector mortgage securitization market.

47 Responses

  1. OT: “Libertarians’ anti-government crusade: Now there’s an app for that
    Under the guise of the “sharing economy,” more and more start-ups are pushing hard for free-market fanatacism

    Andrew Leonard
    Friday, Jun 27, 2014 07:45 AM EST ”

    http://www.salon.com/2014/06/27/libertarians_anti_government_crusade_now_theres_an_app_for_that/

    To quote Mr Burns: “Excellent.”

    Like

  2. Smithers, soon I will have every Johnny Lunch Box in Springfield groveling for my parking space.

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  3. This is how we start winning the debate. through apps.

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  4. Well, here’s your first clue that will tell which end of the spectrum it falls on, anything that has a “Manifesto” is on the very hard left.

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  5. And the butt-hurt is delightful.

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  6. Vox argument that free parking is not in fact a public good.

    http://www.vox.com/2014/6/27/5849280/why-free-parking-is-bad-for-everyone

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    • jnc:

      Vox argument that free parking is not in fact a public good.

      That was exactly what I was thinking as I read your original link. The use of the term “public good” to mean “something provided by the government which I think is good” is a real corruption of the term.

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  7. makes sense to me.

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  8. Tony Blair essay on Iraq & Syria.

    http://www.tonyblairoffice.org/news/entry/iraq-syria-and-the-middle-east-an-essay-by-tony-blair/

    John Cassidy commentary on it:

    http://www.newyorker.com/online/blogs/johncassidy/2014/06/tony-blairs-new-call-to-arms.html#entry-more

    It seems to me that if in fact the #1 threat is Islamic extremism as Blair posits, then calling for regime change of ostensibly secular dictatorships is not the solution.

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    • The only Iraqis [and Syrians] worth our time are Kurds. As George says, they don’t need military intervention at all. But we can send them agricultural and engineering assistance and they will prosper and continue to look west. The Iraqi Kurds will help the Syrian Kurds so we can avoid Syria. The Turks are OK with the Iraqi Kurds. The oil in Kurdish lands comes west now and should continue to do so with minimum encouragement from us. Kurds hate Islamic extremists. They have been inclusive of other faiths and ethnicities since the Ottoman times.

      Meanwhile, in my continuing fascination with maps:

      TX young; FL old

      I was surprised at how young CA is. In 2012 the median voter in CA was 60. OK – 1-17.99 YOs don’t vote. So there are either a lot of young adults who don’t vote or huge numbers of juveniles or both.

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  9. Too good not to post:

    Comment from a Reason article on WWI

    http://reason.com/blog/2014/06/27/on-the-100th-anniversary-of-wwi-consider#comment_4601634

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  10. Senate Democrats literally vote to abolish core freedoms of the First Amendment, and political freedom itself.

    http://washingtonexaminer.com/dems-struggle-to-show-anti-koch-amendment-is-reasonable/article/2550250?custom_click=rss&utm_source=twitterfeed&utm_medium=twitter

    I propose to rename them the Anti-American Fascist Party.

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  11. QB: They can’t be serious. And I mean that literally: I don’t think they are serious. Otherwise they wouldn’t be pushing this forward as a constitutional amendment, but would be trying some other strategy. The chances of there being a 28th amendment in our lifetime are slim. The chances of them passing this are about as good as George H.W. Bush’s stupid but significantly less horrible Anti-Flag-Burning amendment. We didn’t get the Equal Rights Amendment, we didn’t get the Anti-Flag-Burning Amendment, and we aren’t going to get this one.

    They cannot possibly believe that they’ll get 38 states to ratify.

    Also, the Democrats will never agree to call themselves Anti-American (they own real estate here; also the American government pays all their bills) or Fascist, as fascists believes in a strong military, and are passionately militaristic.

    While I would argue that that this amendment wouldn’t abolish political freedom, it certainly seems to constitute an unreasonable restriction on free speech. The thing is, they are fooling themselves into thinking that the only reason America doesn’t elect Democrats in perpetuity is that we are fooled by rich fat-cats who pay lots of money to dazzle us with political ads. This is incorrect. I don’t think such control over political spending would change their political fates at all, but certainly not for the positive.

    The Koch’s don’t buy elections. The spend a ton of money getting a certain segment of the based revved up. That is all. Pass an amendment that seems to target conservatives and successful businessmen, I think that would probably get the right revved up and ready to vote the bums out, as well.

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    • Kevin, they are 100% serious. They might not really think it will pass, but it is only a small part of what they would do to us if they could.

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  12. Kevin, it’s a “shiny object” for the rubes in their base.

    Like

  13. I love this line

    Sen. Charles Schumer (N.Y.), the third-ranking Democrat in the upper chamber, said Boehner and other Republican critics of Obama’s executive actions have “a very good antidote” for their fears: “Put a bill on the floor.”

    Submit or, er, submit.

    http://thehill.com/homenews/house/210734-dems-no-bluff-obama-will-go-it-alone-on-immigration#.U63JP4Sqza8.twitter

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  14. @qb: “Kevin, they are 100% serious. They might not really think it will pass, but it is only a small part of what they would do to us if they could.”

    Yeah, but this would be an entirely different world if I was in charge of it, too. “What the would do to us if they could” is not meaningful when they can’t. If I could, there would be very specific “Offender’s of Kevin” dungeons, where unspeakable things would happen, and laws that would involve a requirement that every attractive, young, nubile young lady prove her loyalty to the United States of Kevin. “If they could” is very broad . . .

    Of course, if they could, they’d just get rid of everyone who disagrees with them, or reprogram them so they agreed with them, because they are clearly right and the only thing holding up Utopia is dumbasses who don’t agree with them about everything. You can’t tell me that if you could wipe away leftism with a wave of a magic wand, you wouldn’t find yourself just a little bit tempted. 😉

    I think they are serious about wanting to control campaign donations (I think 90% of incumbents want to control campaign contributions to prevent the funding of challengers, which is what I think most of this is about: incumbents don’t want to be threatened by wealthy outsiders when they do a crappy job). But they just can’t be serious about passing an amendment. There’s like a 2% chance of that happening.

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    • Kevin:

      You are being far too flippant. Given the chance, would you seriously imprison people who offend you and force young women to pleasure you against their will? I am doubtful. But I have no doubt that the likes of Reid and Durbin really would eliminate first amendment protections if they could. They may understand that they have little chance of success in getting such an amendment passed, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t really serious about wanting it, as you are plainly unserious about what you would do if you could.

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      • “The U.S. military’s racial slur
        Simon Waxman

        Calling our helicopters Apache is just as offensive as calling a football team Redskins.”

        NO IT IS NOT. How do I know this? I spoke to an Apache.

        But the tribes need the O’Bannon lawyers to collect for the trade name rights.

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        • Mark:

          NO IT IS NOT.

          YES IT IS….which is to say it is not offensive at all. How do I know this? Because of this.

          While the U.S. Patent Office has canceled the Washington Redskins trademark registrations, there’s another organization in Washington state that’s decided to stand firm that their sports teams will remain the Redskins — the Wellpinit High School Redskins to be exact, whose school is located in the town of the same name on the Spokane Indian Reservation in Stevens County.

          Wednesday night the school board got together and decided, despite a push to get the mascot changed at the high school, they won’t be pursuing a re-branding from the Redskins.

          “To me it’s a proud name and any school that uses Redskins as their mascot makes me feel proud,” Wellpinit resident Celia Stearns said.

          Like

        • Scott, “redskin” as a description of American Indians is insulting to 1/3 of American Indians according to the polls of American Indians. Celia Stearns is irrelevant to the discussion absent her tribal affiliation.

          However, the reason that TM ruling will not stand is their citation of the 1/3 number. Insufficient evidence.

          Are you part Amerind, Callahan? Have you a voice on the Native American Council, or whatever the tribal lobby is called?

          And you think Durbin-Reid and Ds are the only pols who ever attacked a 1st A. right to shut up an opponent?
          KW is right. Pols of all stripes have tried to shut down other voices. The 50s were marked by speech suppression by some Rs of anyone they branded “leftist”. They are all capable of being short sighted and fuckheaded about maintaining their own power. These people are not typically thinking out problems for the same reason you or I or KW would. They are plotting to get reelected and saying what they think will get them that. W-B was intensely better than ACA because it had 2000 fewer pages of trying to touch every constituency [carriers, pharma, income redistribution, AMA] in the pocketbook. It was almost as if Wyden and Bennett didn’t count how it would affect their next election.

          This POTUS has continued the now routine abuse of the executive branch’s authority, but D pols don’t criticize him for it. R pols didn’t criticize GWB for it. But we are freaking citizens. We should nail it every time, after we have had time to digest it. We should not get overly caught up in how corruption and overreach is bad in our political opponents, we should understand that it just plain sucks and is part of human nature.

          While I am rambling on in damning all of them, the TX Rs at their convention put a plank in their platform favoring the conversions of homosexuals to heterosexuals by “therapy”. Then the TX Ds at their convention pretty well made it Tejano night and proclaimed Tejas for Tejanos.

          Frigging idiots, all.

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        • Mark:

          Scott, “redskin” as a description of American Indians is insulting to 1/3 of American Indians according to the polls of American Indians.

          Which is to say that it is an entirely subjective determination based solely on the internal sensitivities of the listener. Who cares whether the speaker was using it as an insult, right? There is a difference between being insulted and feeling insulted. No one is being insulted when the crowd sings “Hail To the Redskins” no matter how many AI’s may “feel” insulted. We have become an overly sensitive nation of victims searching for a reason to be outraged. I say enough is enough.

          Are you part Amerind, Callahan?

          Yes. Does that mean my opinion now has more moral authority than yours? What about the 1/3 that disagree with me? Frankly I think its rather racist itself to think that the value of an opinion is determined by the race of the person holding it.

          And you think Durbin-Reid and Ds are the only pols who ever attacked a 1st A. right to shut up an opponent?

          Must run. More on this later.

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        • Does that mean my opinion now has more moral authority than yours?

          Not “more moral authority”, but more reason to be heeded, simply as a matter of social grace or manners. It does matter if Pakistani-Americans think “Paki” is an insult even if I only mean it as an abbreviation. If substantially all of you Amerinds think “redskins” is an insult, than it is. We don’t need to gratuitously insult folks. I would never have known “Mick”, derived from “Mc”, was an insult, if my Irish-American friends hadn’t told me it was, in 7th grade. My Italian-American friends used to call The Untouchables “cops and wops”, but I could not, without a fight.

          That is just how we maneuver through life. Some of us, anyway.

          That 2/3 of you Amerinds are unbothered by “redskins” is why this particular “controversy” is BS. I doubt the word will ever be as bothersome to as many Amerinds as “wops” is to my friends whose names end in vowels, including my wife and my in-laws.

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        • Mark:

          If substantially all of you Amerinds think “redskins” is an insult, than it is.

          On this we disagree. An insult derives from intent, not subjective feelings. Feelings of offense can be, and often are, wholly unjustified.

          We don’t need to gratuitously insult folks.

          Agreed. But folks don’t need to gratuitously feel insulted, either. To whatever extent the term was ever used to disparage, it has long since ceased to be, and is now used pretty much exclusively as an indicator of all the nobel attributes that we want associated with a sports team…strength, pride, bravery, etc. Nothing insulting about that at all.

          And we as a society ought to stop crumbling before every special interest group that claims victimhood. This is the hobby horse of a tiny group of people. I don’t think there is any reason for sensible people to join in. (Except for politicians looking to distract us from their own incompetence. I totally understand why the likes of Harry Reid would grab on to this issue. And for that we should ignore him, not take him seriously.)

          That is just how we maneuver through life. Some of us, anyway.

          I think there is a difference between the manners we might follow in a particular social situation and what is tolerable as a society. If I was at a dinner party talking about football and someone asked me to please not use the word Redskin because it offended them, I would probably stop doing so just for the sake of comity. As you say, social graciousness. But that doesn’t mean I think their particular oversensitivity is sensible or ought to be foisted on society at a large and the term banned from public usage. What I do think is that they need to get over themselves.

          That 2/3 of you Amerinds are unbothered by “redskins” is why this particular “controversy” is BS.

          We agree that it is a BS issue.

          (BTW, I have no idea whether or not I am part AI. I said yes to make a point. There is a vague story about the heritage of one of my grandfathers that no one really knows about for sure. I am skeptical. Probably just a family legend, to be honest.)

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  15. @ScottC: “You are being far too flippant. Given the chance, would you seriously imprison people who offend you and force young women to pleasure you against their will?”

    When you put the question that way, I feel compelled to take the 5th.

    Let’s just say it would be a bad idea to give me God-like absolute power over everything.*

    I think quite a lot of politicians on both sides would do just about anything to shore up their personal fiefdoms. Which is not a new thought, thus why our constitution was constructed the way it was, and why they attempted, with moderate success, to create a system of checks and balances.

    *Perhaps I was channeling my 15 year old self in the previous comment. But I would say, at 15 years old, that totally would have been the United States of Kevin.

    Like

    • I took an idiotic Pew test today that said I was a political skeptic, a moderate who truly distrusted pols.

      I think quite a lot of politicians on both sides would do just about anything to shore up their personal fiefdoms. Which is not a new thought, thus why our constitution was constructed the way it was, and why they attempted, with moderate success, to create a system of checks and balances.

      A thousand times yes.

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    • Kevin:

      I think quite a lot of politicians on both sides would do just about anything to shore up their personal fiefdoms.

      How would gutting the first amendment “shore up” the personal fiefdoms of Reid and Durbin in a way that wouldn’t also shore up the fiefdoms those politicians who are opposed to this amendment? In other words, if the above cynicism explains this proposal, why are some for it and some against it?

      I can be plenty cynical about politicians in general, but I think it is a bit blind to dismiss the role that ideology plays with the far too simple explanation “everybody does it”.

      Like

  16. @Markinaustin: “Calling our helicopters Apache is just as offensive as calling a football team Redskins.””

    And “tomahawk” missiles. I want to rebrand the missiles as Amercian Bullets, or “Huge American Penises” and the helicopters we can just call “Reagan Decimators” or “Ronaldus Magnus Sky Destroyers”.

    Like

  17. I think we’re gonna need Fauxahontas to weigh in on this. She’s 1/8 fake Cherokee.

    On her mother’s side.

    Like

    • This week’s quotation, in honor of Independence Day, is my fave and I have been waiting to post it all year.

      Like

  18. Worth a read:

    “The IPO is dying. Marc Andreessen explains why.
    by Timothy B. Lee on June 26, 2014”

    http://www.vox.com/2014/6/26/5837638/the-ipo-is-dying-marc-andreessen-explains-why

    Like

  19. Mark, I answered your question by email. Firm information about details like my law school is still only known to (a few) ATiMers.

    Like

  20. Interesting Andreesen interview.

    The overregulation of public companies directly promotes concentration of the lesser growth it allows. That’s progressivism for you: our policies inhibit growth, but don’t worry, it will also be more concentrated. That way we can write books decrying the evils of free enterprise economics.

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  21. @novahockey: “The rising enrollment — the overall student body has surged by more than 22,000 since 2004 — is not sustainable at the current funding level, schools officials said”

    This seems unlikely. This may be true, until they hit the Title I threshold, then they’ll get Title I dollars. There are other federal programs that will help fund ESL.

    But even without the extra federal dollars, I have a hard time seeing how this can be true. State funding is determined by attendance. It takes serious money to build new schools, and maybe this is what they are talking about (here, I know, it was insanely expensive to build a new school, but we had to buy off the county council every time there was a bond issue by doubling the bond issue and giving half the money to them for, you know, being awesome). As far as money for the basics, each student gives them an additional tens-of-thousands of dollars, almost certainly state and federal, too, so they just be angling for more money or a new tax for extra things the school districts want. They can always use new administrative buildings, new teacher laptops, a district wide iPad deployment, that kind of thing. But if they are a public school, they should be getting and extra $50 million to $100 million a year to help them educate those kids.

    They hint that county tax payers aren’t happy, and they probably aren’t. But they seem to gloss over the part where the school system gets money for each new student, no matter what, and that there are federal dollars for impoverished schools and ESL students, and others.

    I should complain sometime about the trend towards forcing school districts to pay for care for students who don’t live in their districts. A student has a condition that requires rare and unavailable around-the-clock care, maybe they move to Florida so the student can be housed in a facility that can accommodate their unique needs, and our SPED department here in Tennessee has to fund it. We pay out millions for both the education and daily healthcare of students who do not live in our district. Or even our state. But did when they filed the lawsuit. 😉

    (This is, as I understand it, under the ADA: not paying to house them in specialized facilities in other states is discrimination against the disabled, apparently).

    Like

  22. I’m all for huge privately held companies. A positive outcome, in my estimation. 😉

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  23. @markinaustin: “While I am rambling on in damning all of them, the TX Rs at their convention put a plank in their platform favoring the conversions of homosexuals to heterosexuals by “therapy”.”

    My party is full of idjits. Just goes to show you how bad the Democrats are that I wouldn’t even imagine changing it. If I can register as a Whig is some future time, or a Federalist, I might do that. But I think I’ll go with being a Republican who mostly votes for unelectable Libertarians. Speaking of folks who had no idea how to touch on every constituency to built their personal political fiefdoms.

    Like

  24. @ScottC: “Supremes rule in favor of Hobby Lobby, against O-care.”

    Really? Well, that is good news. It seems liked such a slam dunk for O-Care, too, based in the PR. “Hobby Lobby is opposed to Birth Control!”

    … the whole thing of why the government should be telling Hobby Lobby what products it should buy or what they should ask from those products not withstanding. Next step, Hobby Lobby would need to be ordered to carry Birth Control. In case somebody wanted to stop by and get some BC with their scrapbooking supplies.

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  25. @ScottC: “How would gutting the first amendment “shore up” the personal fiefdoms of Reid and Durbin in a way that wouldn’t also shore up the fiefdoms those politicians who are opposed to this amendment?”

    Well, primarily because it has no hope of passing, but will make them heroes of their base for even trying.

    Secondarily, if it did happen, it will be used to protect incumbents, when presumably they envision themselves being permanently, until retirement. (Meaning that it’s too bad it shores up those who oppose them, but it’s worth it to shore up their own).

    Thirdly, presently, Democrats seem to feel that the MSM is on their side, and can given them all the free coverage they could want, so reducing campaign spending benefits them against politicians who do not routinely get positive MSM and Daily Show and Colbert Report coverage, so they will get fawned over by Comedy Central and actors and entertainers and NBC and ABC and CBS and all Republicans will be left with is Fox News.

    But I think most of the CFR folks, including the Republicans who support McCain-Feingold (not the least of whom was McCain himself) see the incumbency protection outweighing the loss of PAC money. For incumbents.

    Those in opposition may be opposing it out of principle, because it’s nuts, or because opposition often offers an opportunity to throw red meat to the base and go on record as fighting the good fight, which is great for future elections or future career paths. And may offer them a lot more , especially in the eyes of the base, than trying to advocate for an incumbency protection amendment that will never pass, thus offer them no future protection should they support it against the will of their voters.

    Like

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