Good weather causes housing starts to crash in California!

Our Talking Heads have been pretending bad economic news is due to all that danged cold weather. Yet Housing Permits and Housing Starts last month were much stronger in the Northeast than in the West! Hmmm.  The spinmeisters need to find new, more believable lies.

Jan Permits by Region

Exhibit A: the all important housing permits, which predate starts by 2-3 months, broken down by region. If indeed the weather was to blame, it would be the region that was hit the worst by the polar vortex, i.e., the Northeast, which would have been most impacted. Instead, we find that the one region where the ‘weather impact” was double that of the Northeast, was the West, i.e., California, where balmy weather resulted in a seasonally adjusted permits crash of 26%!

Mortgage applications just dropped off a cliff, to their lowest rate in 19 years. But don’t worry, be happy, all of this is just due to the weather or to data that just needs a bit of re-jiggering before it is magically corrected to show even more growth.