After posting their 39th consecutive month of year-over-year price gains, home prices in 33 states and the District of Columbia are at or within 10 percent of record highs, according to a report issued today by CoreLogic.
Home prices increased 6.3 percent year-over-year in May, and 1.7 percent month-over-month. Relatively low mortgage rates have helped fuel the price gains. In cities like San Francisco, where there is limited supply and high demand, prices are growing at a double-digit clip.
Prices are so high in certain areas that some economists are starting to worry about localized bubbles. The number of homes on the market is increasing slightly. Total housing inventory at the end of may reached 2.29 million houses, 1.8 percent more than this time last year, according to the National Association of Realtors. That’s a 5.1-month supply, giving sellers a slight edge in today’s market. (A six-month supply is considered a healthy market.)
South Carolina saw the biggest price gains, with homes showing annual appreciation of 10.3 percent. Other states showing big gains were Colorado (9.8 percent) and Washington (8.8 percent), CoreLogic reports.
High prices have also spurred builders to start constructing new single-family homes, sales of which increased 23 percent year-over-year in May.
While most states have seen price gains, five states (Massachusetts, Connecticut, Maryland, Mississippi, and Louisiana) saw local home prices fall in May.
CoreLogic economists expect prices to increase 5.1 percent year-over-year in June and 0.8 percent month to month.
From Gallup: “A record 25% of Americans say they or a family member put off treatment for a serious medical condition in the past year because of the cost, up from 19% a year ago and the highest in Gallup's trend. Another 8% said they or a family member put off treatment for a less serious condition, bringing the total percentage of households delaying care due to costs to 33%, tying the high from 2014.”
That’s how much the private debt collection program at the IRS collected in the 2019 fiscal year. In the black for the second year in a row, the program cleared nearly $148 million after commissions and administrative costs.
The controversial program, which empowers private firms to go after delinquent taxpayers, began in 2004 and ran for five years before the IRS ended it following a review. It was restarted in 2015 and ran at a loss for the next two years.
Senate Finance Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-IA), who played a central role in establishing the program, said Monday that the net proceeds are currently being used to hire 200 special compliance personnel at the IRS.
The federal budget deficit for October and November was $342 billion, up $36 billion or 12% from the same period last year, the Congressional Budget Office estimated on Monday. Revenues were up 3% while outlays rose by 6%, CBO said.
As expected, groups representing hospitals sued the Trump administration Wednesday to stop a new regulation would require them to make public the prices for services they negotiate with insurers. Claiming the rule “is unlawful, several times over,” the industry groups, which include the American Hospital Association, say the rule violates their First Amendment rights, among other issues.
"The burden of compliance with the rule is enormous, and way out of line with any projected benefits associated with the rule," the suit says. In response, a spokesperson for the Department of Health and Human Services said that hospitals “should be ashamed that they aren’t willing to provide American patients the cost of a service before they purchase it.”
Between December 2017 and July 2019, enrollment in Medicaid and the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP) fell by 1.9 million, or 2.6%. The Kaiser Family Foundation provided an analysis of that drop Monday, saying that while some of it was likely caused by enrollees finding jobs that offer private insurance, a significant portion is related to enrollees losing health insurance of any kind. “Experiences in some states suggest that some eligible people may be losing coverage due to barriers maintaining coverage associated with renewal processes and periodic eligibility checks,” Kaiser said.