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The Fed’s Beige Book comes out today, though I don’t expect any surprises.  Speaking of the Fed, I anticipate that they won’t touch rates until at least October of this year.  The Empire Manufacturing report, which was expected to show a reading of 7.3, came in at a -1.2 this morning.  This index only tracks the manufacturing segment within the state of New York.

A more important measure of our industry, the Housing Market Index, beat expectations by one point with a 56.  The Housing Market Index measures builders’ gauge of the housing market throughout the country.  Remember that the higher the number the better, and with the HMI, 50 is the baseline for positivity.  Though we’ve been floundering near that level for some time, I would anticipate this index to skyrocket over the next few months as the inventory of existing homes for sale continues to decline.