As the roller coaster ride of 2020 continues, this week began with positive signs of economic recovery. Retail chains, such as Nordstrom, Best Buy, Macy’s and Gap, have recently opened their doors to the public, after being closed for several months due to the coronavirus pandemic. Home buying activity in the U.S. is beginning to catch-up and sometimes even surpasses pre-pandemic levels.
U.S. retail sales (includes purchases at stores, restaurants, and online) rose 17.7% in May as more states and cities allowed restaurants and shopping centers to reopen. Clothing and accessory stores sales rose 188% in May and furniture/home furnishing stores and sporting good stores also saw an increase. This surge in retail sales recouped 63% of March and April’s decreases and gives hope of a quick economic recovery driven from consumer spending.
Seeing that more businesses are reopening and Americans are getting back to work, both buyers and sellers are returning to the housing market. Purchase activity has shown a 13% increase compared to the same period a year ago. The increase in demand for homes, has caused the builder sentiment to jump 21 points in June to 58 – the largest monthly increase ever in the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index.
Although this roller coaster ride is not over and there may be more bumps along the way, let’s take a moment to jump off and celebrate the start of summer and all of the fathers this weekend.
We hope you and your families stay safe and healthy.