Beige Book Reports Moderate Growth In Residential, Commercial Real Estate

The Federal Reserve's Beige Book shows that residential and commercial real estate activity grew at a moderate to strong pace in all 12 districts in June.

Monitors in Boston, New York, Minneapolis, Kansas City, Dallas and San Francisco reported strong growth in their respective residential real estate markets, according to the July 17 report.

Boston, New York, Richmond, Atlanta, Minneapolis, Kansas City and Dallas noted low or declining home inventories and upward pressures on home prices in some areas.

Residential construction activity also improved moderately across the districts, with monitors in New York, Philadelphia, Chicago, Minneapolis, Dallas and San Francisco reporting increased growth in multifamily construction. June sales of single-family homes in Cleveland were down compared to the spring, but were up from last year, according to the report.

All districts reported increased activity in the commercial real estate market. Dallas reported strong growth in leasing activity for office and industrial space. Philadelphia, Atlanta and Richmond reported that commercial construction was flat to slightly up, while Cleveland, Chicago, St. Louis, Minneapolis and Dallas noted improvements in commercial construction. Boston and Richmond reported that commercial real estate conditions were holding steady or improving, depending on location.

Non-residential construction activity was stable or increased across all 12 districts.
New York, Philadelphia, Cleveland, Atlanta, Chicago, St. Louis, Minneapolis and San Francisco reported modest to moderate improvements in non-residential real estate activity.

Banking conditions were generally positive across all 12 districts. Overall loan demand increased modestly. New York district bankers reported mixed but generally steady loan demand.

Some bankers in the Cleveland, Chicago and Dallas districts noted competitive pressures to reduce loan pricing. Bankers in the Philadelphia, Richmond, Cleveland, Atlanta and Chicago districts noted a shift toward new home mortgages and away from refinancing (led, in part, by increases in interest rates).

Reports on credit quality indicated slight to moderate improvements. New York, Philadelphia, Kansas City and Dallas all reported improvements in credit availability.

Credit standards remained largely unchanged, although some bankers in the Atlanta and Philadelphia districts noted increased competition to ease credit standards.

Published eight times a year by the United States Federal Reserve Board, typically in advance of meetings of the Federal Open Market Committee, the Beige Book reports changes in economic conditions in the top 12 largest U.S. metro markets in a general way, without using numbers. It also reports on conditions in consumer spending, manufacturing, employment, wages and prices.

To view the report, click here.


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