Business Contacts Surveys - October 2011
Construction and Real Estate Survey Results
Reports from southeastern brokers and builders indicated that home sales growth in August remained slightly ahead of a year earlier.
More than half of Southeast builders reported that home inventories were below the year earlier level in August while close to half of brokers reported declines.
Just over half of Southeast builders reported declining home prices in August. Fewer brokers reported declines than in recent months.
Southeast brokers and builders reported that growth in buyer traffic softened on a year-over-year basis.
The outlook for sales growth among southeastern residential brokers and builders improved slightly compared with weak sales levels last year.
Nearly half of Southeast builders reported construction activity gains compared with a year earlier, while the outlook for construction among most builders was flat to slightly up.
Note: The poll results are based on responses from 82 residential brokers and 44 builders. Responses were collected September 6–14.
The housing survey's diffusion indexes are calculated as the percentage of total respondents reporting increases minus the percentage reporting declines. Positive values in the index indicate increased activity; negative values indicate decreased activity.
The District Retail Survey reflected mixed signals about retail activity in August.
- The District Retail Survey reflected mixed signals about retail activity in August. Sales were higher year over year, including a report of more positive back to school sales, but store traffic was lower.
- Firms' optimism about the coming three months was mostly unchanged. Half of survey respondents expect an increase in sales over the next three months, while 35 percent anticipate no change. Most district retailers anticipate a stronger holiday season.
- The majority of survey participants reported that inventory levels were up slightly or unchanged in August. One retailer in the survey noted that the supply disruptions from Japan should be over by year-end.
- Evidence of slight upward price pressure remains; more than half of respondents said that prices are slightly higher than this time last year.
Note: +1 = Increase 0 = No change –1 = Decrease
Note: August survey results are based on responses from 27 retailers and were collected September 5–15.
The retail survey's diffusion index is calculated as the percentage of total respondents reporting increases minus the percentage reporting declines. Positive values in the index indicate increased activity while negative values indicate decreased activity.
Southeast Home Sales vs. a Year Earlierchart:survey_1110a.jpg showOnHome