2 Surprises in New Residential Construction Data from Census Bureau for March, 2020 – plus Manufactured Home Investing, Stock Updates

DowJones4.16.2020ManufacturedHomeStockUpdatesBroaderMarketSnapshotToday’s Census Bureau media release on housing data opens with this comment. “Statement Regarding COVID‐19 Impact: Due to recent events surrounding COVID‐19, many governments and businesses are operating on a limited capacity or have ceased operations completely. The Census Bureau has monitored response and data quality and determined estimates in this release meet publication standards. For more information on the compilation of this month’s report...”

Further below in our spotlighted in this evening’s “featured focus” will be the latest residential housing data. There is one item that would be expected, but there are two surprising areas in the new data.


Every Business Nightly – Headline and Graphical Insights-at-a-Glance.

Every weekday night that the stock markets are open, we provide headlines from left-of-center CNN followed by right-of-center Fox Business. It is sometimes surprising how much We share closing tickers and other related data courtesy of Yahoo Finance, and more. 5 to 10 minutes reading this MHProNews market report every business night could save you 30 minutes to an hour of similar reading or fact-gathering elsewhere.

Perhaps more important, you will get insights about the industry from experts that care, but also dare to challenge the routine narrative spun by some that arguably keeps manufactured housing underperforming during an affordable housing crisis.


The Whatever side of the left-right divide you are on, this quote by President Obama is quite right. That’s true in political news. But there is something similar with respect to manufactured housing news and reports. We sift through the facts and figures to provide insights found no where else in MHVille.



Understanding media bias is useful to sifting through possibly hidden agendas. We are mindful of the ancient and tested principle of separating the wheat from the chaff.


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Headlines from left-of-center CNN Business

  • Making a comeback
  • NEW YORK, March 25, 2020 — A man takes photos of the Wall Street Charging Bull in New York, the United States, March 24, 2020.
  • Wall Street expects stocks will have a V-shaped recovery. No one else does
  • Real estate: Coronavirus is crushing US homebuilding
  • Unemployment: 22 million people have filed for first-time jobless claims in the last four weeks
  • LIVE UPDATES US stocks close slightly higher
  • Watch: Unemployment benefits are a lifeline. They’re not easy to get
  • Julián Castro: Here’s how we can prevent the next housing crisis
  • On the front lines: More than half of retail and grocery workers can’t take paid sick leave
  • Travel: United says demand for travel is ‘essentially zero’ and signals layoffs
  • No more money: What small business owners need to know now that loan funds are tapped out
  • SOUTH PASADENA, CA – APRIL 07: A Starbucks employee serves a walk-up customer amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic on April 07, 2020 in South Pasadena, California. Starbucks yesterday began requiring all workers to wear face masks following recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that all Americans do so in public.
  • How Starbucks plans to reopen its cafes
  • Amazon is developing its own coronavirus test for workers
  • Facebook cancels large in-person events through June 2021
  • China is fighting the coronavirus with a digital QR code. Here’s how it works
  • Here are 4 free resources that small businesses can access right now
  • Student loans. Utility bills. How to get help if you can’t pay your bills
  • Farmers are chartering planes to bring in workers and save their crops
  • He was building rockets. Now he’s taking on America’s ventilator shortage
    Why dairy farmers across America are dumping their milk
  • Can’t find what you want in the grocery store? Here’s why
  • Meat plants are closing. But don’t panic shop just yet
  • One of the largest US pork processing plants closes
  • Meat plants are shutting down as workers get sick
  • The remains of a JC Penney department store is seen at an abandoned shopping mall on August 20, 2019 in Roanoke Rapids, North Carolina.
  • JCPenney misses debt payment amid reports of bankruptcy preparations
  • US retail sales record biggest drop ever
  • 4 stores that may not survive because of coronavirus
  • Fashion and luxury sales fall off a cliff
  • Retailers were struggling. Then came the pandemic
  • People line up outside the Utah Department of workforce Services Monday, April 13, 2020, in Salt Lake City. Congress, the Trump administration and the Federal Reserve have mounted the largest financial intervention in history a full-scale drive that includes mandating sick leave for some, distributing $1,200 checks to individuals, allocating rescue aid to employers and expanding unemployment benefits to try to help America survive the crisis. Yet those measures are only temporary. And for millions of newly unemployed, they may not be enough.
  • Unemployment benefits are a lifeline. They’re not easy to get.
  • These small business owners are doing whatever it takes to stay afloat
  • Surge in US unemployment claims cuases Governemnt servers to crash. A man wearing a protective mask walks past the New York State Department of Labor offices in the New York City borough of Brooklyn, NY, March 25, 2020.
  • What the bailout means for your bank account
  • The sun sets behind an idle pump jack near Karnes City, Texas, Wednesday, April 8, 2020. Demand for oil continues to fall due to the new coronavirus outbreak. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)
  • Global oil crisis: Bottom of the barrel is still unclear
  • Meet Apple’s new — and cheap — iPhone SE

Headlines from right-of-center Fox Business

  • America’s restaurants warn they might not weather the storm as coroanvirus ravages
  • To start, the industry says a major program aimed to provide a lifeline to small businesses isn’t doing much to help.
  • T-Mobile wins final approval for closed merger with Sprint
  • Stocks rise as Trump prepares reopening of America details
  • Trump celebrates America’s truck drivers
  • Opinion: Real risks from aggressive lockdowns
  • NYC pools closed for summer; $7B tax loss
  • Coronavirus check common glitches
  • Oil near 18-year low amid OPEC drama
  • Experts on president’s reelection chances
  • Why Facebook may get in touch with you
  • Job market’s stunning collapse due to coronavirus reaches historic milestone
  • Some states handing out extra $600 in aid
  • Starbucks preparing to reopen stores
  • Virus strikes oil rigs in Gulf of Mexico
  • Witherspoon donates to teacher aid fund after dress giveaway backfires
  • IRS depositing some coronavirus checks into wrong accounts
  • Fed’s Bostic: US small biz may need up to $500 billion monthly in support
  • Morgan Stanley warns of more pain ahead as coronavirus bites profits
  • Brad Pitt guest star role gives HGTV show ratings boost
  • US Tennis Association to unveil $50M relief package
  • 7-Eleven made big claims on pandemic relief. Now franchisees push back
  • Study reveals how pandemic lock down changes America’s eating habits
  • Award-winning actor dead at 81
  • 1938-2020
  • Coronavirus expert Fauci honored by Georgia brewery with new themed beer
  • Stephanopoulos, Cuomo spur coronavirus social distancing concerns
  • Colleges preparing for possibility that fall semester will be postponed
  • PGA Tour announces June restart plan despite coronavirus outbreak
  • NBA, Microsoft developing streaming service for transformed game broadcasts
  • Small business loan program runs out of money, no longer accepting applications
  • National movement against extending coronavirus lockdown expands
  • Gold targets ‘higher highs’ as coronavirus fight saps US dollar strength
  • Big banks should prepare for coronavirus downturn by raising $200B in capital: Fed’s Kashkari
  • ‘Cheers’ star John Ratzenberger offers coronavirus-hit businesses relief through free marketing
  • ESPN fast tracks Michael Jordan, Chicago Bulls doc due to lack of live programming
  • Rubio: China will be ‘held accountable’ if coronavirus outbreak originated from Wuhan lab
  • CDC taking action as string of virus-struck pork plants forced to shut down
  • How much money farmers can expect to receive from the Trump admin
  • Amazon considers coronavirus tests for all employees, including those with no symptoms
  • Chinese officials deny virus came from Wuhan lab, point to WHO finding
  • Judge makes ruling on permit for Keystone XL pipeline from Canada
  • The most popular apps people are using to stay connected from a distance
  • Morgan Stanley profit sinks 30% under coronavirus pressure
  • com offering big perk to seniors during coronavirus pandemic
  • Reopening after coronavirus could require thousands more public health workers
  • Virus hammers construction as home-building activity collapses in March
  • Varney: China’s coronavirus secrets have been exposed
  • Hall of Famer on drugs, doing stunts before deadly plane crash, NTSB says
  • Widespread lockdowns should be great for Amazon — here’s why it’s struggling
  • Why experts say you should avoid dipping into retirement funds during pandemic
  • Hertz seeking coronavirus bailout, bracing for budget shortfalls

10 Market Indicator Closing Summaries – Yahoo Finance Closing Tickers on MHProNews…


Featured Focus – Where Business, Politics and Investing Can Meet


April 16, 2020 ‐ The U.S. Census Bureau and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development jointly announced the following new residential construction statistics for March 2020:


Building Permits

Privately‐owned housing units authorized by building permits in March were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1,353,000. This is 6.8 percent (±1.1 percent) below the revised February rate of 1,452,000, but is 5.0 percent (±2.4 percent) above the March 2019 rate of 1,288,000. Single‐family authorizations in March were at a rate of 884,000; this is 12.0 percent (±1.9 percent) below the revised February figure of 1,005,000. Authorizations of units in buildings with five units or more were at a rate of 423,000 in March.


Housing Starts

Privately‐owned housing starts in March were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1,216,000. This is 22.3 percent (±12.2 percent) below the revised February estimate of 1,564,000, but is 1.4 percent (±12.7 percent)* above the March 2019 rate of 1,199,000. Single‐family housing starts in March were at a rate of 856,000; this is 17.5 percent (±13.1 percent) below the revised February figure of 1,037,000. The March rate for units in buildings with five units or more was 347,000.

Housing Completions

Privately‐owned housing completions in March were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1,227,000. This is 6.1 percent (±12.0 percent)* below the revised February estimate of 1,307,000 and is 9.0 percent (±12.4 percent)* below the March 2019 rate of 1,348,000. Single‐family housing completions in March were at a rate of 863,000; this is 15.0 percent (±11.6 percent) below the revised February rate of 1,015,000. The March rate for units in buildings with five units or more was 357,000.


As CNN Business noted the data has a surprise; “authorizations of multi-unit buildings rose by 5% from the February pace.” That will be a data point worth following. It may signal that there is an expectation for ‘affordable’ rental housing, given the pandemic which was picking up speed in March.

The same source said that “Privately-owned housing starts declined last month to an annualized rate of 1.2 million, the US Census Bureau said Thursday. That represents a 22% decline from the pace in February.”

  • All four geographical segments in the United States were down, led by a 43% plunge in the Northeast, which is getting hit hardest by the health crisis.
  • 22 million Americans have filed for unemployment benefits in the last four weeks
  • Unprecedented economic uncertainty and mandatory distancing guidelines squashed homebuyer demand and builders’ ability to confidently invest in new housing projects,” Zillow economist Matthew Speakman wrote in an email Thursday.

Another surprise – Despite the sharp month-over-month drop, housing starts were still up from a year ago.”

  • Many construction projects have been classified as essential work, meaning they could continue despite stay-at-home orders across the country. Yet social distancing requirements can slow that work and mounting job losses gave homebuilders pause.
  • US homebuilder confidence for single-family homes plunged in April by a record 42 points, according to a National Association of Homebuilders index released Wednesday.
  • The unfolding nightmare in the labor market has removed large numbers of potential homebuyers from the pool,” Ian Shepherdson, chief economist at Pantheon Macroeconomics, wrote in a report Wednesday.
  • The government is attempting to avoid a wave of foreclosures caused by the mass layoffs by allowing homeowners hurt by the coronavirus pandemic to postpone payments.
  • Everything will get revalued. If the stock market is lower, that has massive wealth effects,” said Peter Boockvar, chief investment officer at Bleakley Advisory Group.
  • Yet others argue that historically-low borrowing costs and a limited amount of supply of homes will insulate the real estate market.
  • I don’t expect a collapse in prices,” said David Kelly, chief global strategist at JPMorgan Asset Management. “There’s no reasons to sell your home at a loss this year if you can get a better price next year.”
The data is per MHARR, the arrows and logos are added by MHProNews for illustration, credit and related purposes.

February 2020, Latest National Manufactured Housing Production Data, MHI and MHARR Comparisons

The CNN Business’ insights should be viewed through the lens of the fascinating insights provided by Marcus and Millichap to MHProNews in the first of the two related reports, below.

Related Reports:

MMI Exec Michael Glass’ Exclusive Analysis on COVID19 Impact on Manufactured Home Communities; Latest 2020 “Parks” Data & Trends

Special COVID19 Economic Data, Report and Projections from Marcus & Millichap, plus Manufactured Home Stock, Investing Updates

CFPB Issues Key Ruling on CARES Act – Affordable, Manufactured and Modular Housing Industry Significance

Communities, Assoc Exposé – Whistleblower “Leaks” – Lesli Gooch Manufactured Housing Institute (MHI) CEO and Sheila S. Dey, Executive Director Western Manufactured Housing Communities Association (WMA)

Legacy Housing’s “Kenny and Curt” COVID19 Document Leak, “World Class “Shuckers-and-Jivers”- Skyline Champion Revelation

MHARR Warns-Not Just Factories, Retailers Need “Essential” Business Designation, plus Manufactured Home Stock, Investing Updates

Legacy Housing’s “Warren Buffett Type Moat” and COVID19 Response Plan Assailed by Company Whistleblowers

Wrongful Death COVID19 Case Alert to Landlords, Producers; News Tips, AG Barr Warns Christian Rights Violations on Easter – Sunday Headlines Review 4.5 to 4.12.2020


Manufactured Housing Industry Investments Connected Closing Equities Tickers
Some of these firms invest in manufactured housing, or are otherwise connected, but may do other forms of investing or business activities too.

              • NOTE: The chart below includes the Canadian stock, ECN, which purchased Triad Financial Services, a manufactured home industry lender
              • NOTE: Drew changed its name and trading symbol at the end of 2016 to Lippert (LCII).

Spring 2020
Berkshire Hathaway is the parent company to Clayton Homes, 21st Mortgage, Vanderbilt Mortgage and other factory built housing industry suppliers.
· LCI Industries, Patrick, UFPI, and LP each are suppliers to the manufactured housing industry, among others.
· AMG, CG, and TAVFX have investments in manufactured housing related businesses. For insights from third-parties and clients about our publisher, click here.
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Disclosure. MHProNews holds no positions in the stocks in this report.

2019 Year-End Totals Reveals Decline in New HUD Code Manufactured Home Production, Shipments vs. 2018

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That’s a wrap on this installment of “News Through the Lens of Manufactured Homes and Factory-Built Housing” © where “We Provide, You Decide.” © (Affordable housing, manufactured homes, stock, investing, data, metrics, reports, fact-checks, analysis, and commentary. Third-party images or content are provided under fair use guidelines for media.) (See Related Reports, further below. Text/image boxes often are hot-linked to other reports that can be access by clicking on them.)

MHProNews traveled to Washington, D.C. on the week of 12.2.2019 so Tony could present to the FHFA Listening Session and meet with others in the Capitol during the week regarding industry issues.

By L.A. “Tony” Kovach – for MHLivingNews.com.
Tony earned a journalism scholarship and earned numerous awards in history and in manufactured housing. For example, he earned the prestigious Lottinville Award in history from the University of Oklahoma, where he studied history and business management. He’s a managing member and co-founder of LifeStyle Factory Homes, LLC, the parent company to MHProNews, and MHLivingNews.com. This article reflects the LLC’s and/or the writer’s position, and may or may not reflect the views of sponsors or supporters.

Connect on LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/in/latonykovach


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