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Taking the pulse: key metrics

February 13,2018-


Lumber prices nearly double

Screen Shot 2018-02-13 at 6.00.14 AMPrices for softwood lumber imports have skyrocketed 30% since Hurricane Harvey hit last summer, largely as a result of the tariffs imposed by the U.S. Commerce Department, says the National Association of Home Builders blog.

 

Automobile sales expected to fall

U.S. auto industry sales fell 2 percent in 2017 and are expected to drop further in 2018, due to rising interest rates and the growing number of late-model used cars available. CNBC

Natural gas prices fall on oversupply

Screen Shot 2018-02-13 at 6.10.52 AMEIA’s Annual Energy Outlook 2018 (AEO2018), released on February 6, projects U.S. dry natural gas production to generally increase through 2050. Fracking and horizontal drilling have made natural gas abundant as oil is extracted and has driven down the price. The industry hopes to export its way out of an oversupply situation.

 

California gas prices up 17 cents in past month

Oil dropped 10% this past week but California gas prices have barley budged from its high. The average price of gas in the state today is $3.34 according to AAA, down from $3.35 yesterday but up from $3.14 a month ago and up from $2.87 a year ago.
Central Valley home permits down from 2017

Single-family home permits are down through mid February compared to the same period in 2017. Through February 13 the four-county area permitted 335 new homes vs to 390 during the same time in 2017. Figures are from Construction Monitor.

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