Shortages Are Getting Worse
U.S. equity markets declined for the second-straight week as ongoing geopolitical tensions in Eastern Europe and jitters over rising rates offset a solid slate of earnings reports and housing data.
Following a similar pattern as the prior week with early-week gains offset by a two-day skid, the S&P 500 finished lower by 1.4% and is now 9.1% below its highs.
Real estate equities were mixed amid a busy slate of earnings results and dividend hikes as the Equity REIT Index finished lower by 1.2% with 9-of-19 property sectors in positive-territory.
Shortages persist everywhere: the BLS reported this week that Producer Prices soared at a 9.7% annual rate in February - significantly hotter than expected - and just a tick below setting fresh record highs.
No shortage is more persistent and long-lasting than the shortage of housing in the United States. Despite new historic lows in inventory, Existing Home Sales in the U.S. were stronger-than-expected in January as housing demand remains resilient.