Retail and housing skyrocket

Retail sales, housing starts and stocks rocket higher

With the Federal Reserve indicating repeatedly that it will not raise lending rates to quell a spike in inflation, from the current rate of about 1.6% to its target rate of 2%, the U.S. economy is rocketing like never before.

Retail sales surged 9.8% in march 2021

March retail sales figures surged +9.8% higher than in February. It was a huge surprise! Wall Street analysts had been forecasting a +1.3% rise in retail sales. Surges of this magnitude were unprecedented, until the comeback from COVID-19 and government stimulus.

For the 12 months through the end of March, total retail sales shot +27.9% higher.

Retail sales comprise 30% of gross domestic product and are a key component of consumer spending. 

Housing starts boomed in March 2021

Meanwhile, on April 16th, the Census Bureau reported housing starts in March came in at 1,739,000, beating the 1,610,000 expected. This is +19.4% above the revised February estimate of 1,457,000 and +37% above the March 2020 rate of 1,269,000.

March housing construction permits, a forward-looking indicator of housing starts, came in at 1.766 million for March, suggesting the housing boom will continue.

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Updates from the NAIC SAPWG May 2021
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