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Data & Analysis

Business Contacts Surveys - September 2011

Construction and Real Estate Survey Results

Reports from southeastern brokers and builders indicated that home sales growth in July rebounded modestly.

The majority of Southeast brokers and builders reported that home inventory levels remained below the year-ago level.

Southeastern contacts continued to report downward pressure on home prices; just over half reported that home prices in July were below the year-ago level.

Southeast brokers and builders reported that growth in buyer traffic was little changed in July from the previous month.

The outlook for sales growth among southeastern residential brokers and builders declined sharply in July.

The majority of southeastern homebuilders reported that home construction activity was flat to slightly up in July compared with a year earlier while the outlook remained slightly positive.

Note: The poll results are based on responses from 78 residential brokers and 39 builders. Responses were collected August 1–10.

The housing survey's diffusion indexes are calculated as the percentage of total respondents reporting increases minus the percentage reporting declines. Positive values in the index indicate increased activity; negative values indicate decreased activity.



Retail Survey Results

The District Retail Survey showed decelerating activity in July, and the outlook among retailers became less optimistic.

  • The District Retail Survey showed that retail activity stumbled in July. Sales and store traffic dropped to year-ago levels, following a very positive June. Respondents noted that political and economic uncertainty are still impacting sales.
  • Firms were less optimistic about the coming three months. Some 52% of survey respondents expect an increase in sales over the next three months, decreasing from 62% in June. Despite the decline in July, firms are more positive about the outlook than they were in May.
  • The majority of survey participants reported that inventory levels were up slightly in July. One retailer in the survey noted that the supply disruptions from Japan are mostly over.
  • Sales tax collections in the sixth district increased relative to the same period last year. Average sales tax revenue for the past three months (May through July) was 4.6 percent higher than the same three months in 2010. The growth of sales tax revenue has slowed in recent months for half the states in the district.

Note: +1 = Increase 0 = No change –1 = Decrease

Note: July survey results are based on responses from 27 retailers and were collected August 1–10.

The retail survey's diffusion index is calculated as the percentage of total respondents reporting increases minus the percentage reporting declines. Positive values in the index indicate increased activity while negative values indicate decreased activity.


  • Southeast Home Sales vs. a Year Earlier

Southeast Home Sales vs. a Year Earlier

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