The recovery of the housing market continues at a slower-than-expected pace due to weak inventory, slowing demand, and rising prices, according to Auction.com’s Real Estate Nowcast for March 2015 released on Tuesday.March’s Real Estate Nowcast predicted that existing home sales for March would fall between 4.83 and 5.12 million on a seasonally adjusted annualized basis. The target number for existing home sales of 4.97 million is an increase of 1.9 percent month-over-month and 5.8 percent from March 2014.”The housing market is continuing to recover, but at a slower, more incremental pace than what most people had hoped for in 2015,” Auction.com EVP Rick Sharga said. “Three main problems continue to prevent more robust growth: extraordinarily limited inventory, especially at the entry level of the market; lower affordability, as home price increases have significantly outpaced wage growth; and tight credit for all but the most highly-qualified borrowers. This adds up to an especially difficult ecosystem for first-time homebuyers to navigate, and we continue to see less home sales to that segment of the market than what we’ve seen historically.”The report found that the target sales price for existing homes was $204,165 in March, a year-over-year increase of 3.8 percent. While home prices are increasing, their growth is decelerating, likely due to a realization of the recent weakness in sales, according to Auction.com.According to Auction.com’s chief economist, Peter Muoio, the deceleration of price growth could slow affordability deterioration, thus boosting home sales – especially if the predicted wage growth comes to pass.”Despite some recent softness in several economic indicators, the US economy – especially the labor market – appears to be on solid footing,” Muoio said. “Unemployment is descending, voluntary quits are increasing, and consumer confidence has breached the 100 index level mark, bringing it firmly back into ‘normal’ territory. These are all positives for future housing demand and we continue to expect the housing recovery, now in a winter-like dormancy, to show signs of growth as the year progresses.”Auction.com’s Real Estate Nowcast included findings similar to those in Fannie Mae’s March 2015 Economic and Housing Outlook released on Monday, which reported slower GDP growth in the first quarter due to “temporary factors,” among those being a weak inventory. Fannie Mae forecasted that wage growth would catch up to employment gains before the end of the year and that the economy would “drag housing upward.”Recent reports by the National Association of Realtors (NAR) also fall in line with the forecasts of Auction.com’s Real Estate Nowcast. February existing home sales were at 4.88 million, according to NAR, which falls in the rate of Auction.com’s revised range of 4.87 to 5.19 million for the month. NAR’s reported existing sales home price of $202,600 for February was close to Auction.com’s forecasted price of $201,077 for the month – a year-over-year increase of 7.5 percent.Click here to see a video of Auction.com EVP Rick Sharga discussing the latest Nowcast. Related Articles Servicers Navigate the Post-Pandemic World 2 days ago The Best Markets For Residential Property Investors 2 days ago Demand Propels Home Prices Upward 2 days ago The Best Markets For Residential Property Investors 2 days ago Print This Post Home / Daily Dose / Report: Weak Inventory, Lower Affordability, Tight Credit Hindering Housing Recovery Report: Weak Inventory, Lower Affordability, Tight Credit Hindering Housing Recovery Auction.com Existing Home Prices Existing Home Sales Housing Market 2015-03-24 Brian Honea March 24, 2015 1,219 Views Share Save Brian Honea’s writing and editing career spans nearly two decades across many forms of media. He served as sports editor for two suburban newspaper chains in the DFW area and has freelanced for such publications as the Yahoo! Contributor Network, Dallas Home Improvement magazine, and the Dallas Morning News. He has written four non-fiction sports books, the latest of which, The Life of Coach Chuck Curtis, was published by the TCU Press in December 2014. A lifelong Texan, Brian received his master’s degree from Amberton University in Garland. Demand Propels Home Prices Upward 2 days ago Data Provider Black Knight to Acquire Top of Mind 2 days ago Servicers Navigate the Post-Pandemic World 2 days ago About Author: Brian Honea Previous: Ocwen Announces $25 Billion MSR Sale to Nationstar Next: SecureView’s Distribution Network Expands to Nationwide Governmental Measures Target Expanded Access to Affordable Housing 2 days ago Subscribe in Daily Dose, Featured, Market Studies, News Data Provider Black Knight to Acquire Top of Mind 2 days ago Tagged with: Auction.com Existing Home Prices Existing Home Sales Housing Market Governmental Measures Target Expanded Access to Affordable Housing 2 days ago Sign up for DS News Daily The Week Ahead: Nearing the Forbearance Exit 2 days ago
The Kuumba Singers of Harvard College will host the 13th Annual Walter J. Leonard Black Arts Festival: “How It Feels to Be Colored Me,” March 3-5.The festival features several events, including a concert, a performing arts showcase, and panel discussions. All events are free except the Saturday (March 4) performing arts showcase. Tickets are $7 and are available at the Harvard Box Office or from any Kuumba board member.For more information on the weekend and its events.
Budget News, Press Release Harrisburg, PA – Governor Tom Wolf today announced he will monetize a major state asset to manage the state budget and ensure that payments can be made to schools, health and human services providers, and other governmental entities. As specified in the governor’s February budget, the commonwealth will begin accepting proposals to execute a lease-leaseback arrangement for the Pennsylvania Farm Show Complex & Expo Center. This arrangement would allow the commonwealth to retain control of the property, while also using its value to protect school districts and other entities that rely on funding from state government.“The failure to finalize and responsibly balance the budget means I must take action to make sure the Commonwealth can honor the commitments approved on June 30 by the General Assembly,” Governor Wolf said. “This further action will mean we can make our complete payments to local school districts and providers of human services, treatment programs, child care and other important services that Pennsylvanians rely on. Pennsylvanians, especially our kids and most vulnerable, should not bear the consequences of House Republicans’ inaction.“I continue to urge the House to pass a commonsense shale tax to address the structural deficit.”The commonwealth will retain ownership and control of the property. This plan will also continue the commonwealth’s commitment to the facility by dedicating additional funds to improve the property over the term of the agreement as the commonwealth continues to own and highlight the facility for Pennsylvanians and visitors from throughout the country.Under this arrangement, the commonwealth will lease the Farm Show to a private entity for 29 years for the fair market value of the property of approximately $200 million. At the same time, the private entity will lease back the facility to the commonwealth for the same term with annual rental payments based on a negotiated interest rate.The review process for proposals will involve multiple agencies, including the Department of Agriculture.This is the latest step by Governor Wolf to manage state finances and ensure the commonwealth can meet its commitments. This announcement follows his actions last Wednesday. SHARE Email Facebook Twitter October 09, 2017 Governor Wolf Announces More Action to Manage State Budget and Meet Commitments to Schools, Providers
KCCA FC’s Masiko celebrates his winning goal against Club Africain on Tuesday. All clubs in Group A have 3 points. PHOTO KCCA MEDIAKCCA FC rivals Rivers United of Nigeria bounce back in CAF Cup:Group A standing P W D L F A PtsFUS 2 1 0 1 3 1 3Africain 2 1 0 1 4 3 3Rivers 2 1 0 1 2 3 3KCCA 2 1 0 1 2 4 3Johannesburg, South Africa | AFP | Rivers United of Nigeria bounced back into contention for CAF Confederation Cup glory with a 1-0 victory over former title-holders FUS Rabat of Morocco Wednesday.Emeka Atuloma scored his second goal this season in the secondary African club competition with 19 minutes remaining to secure maximum points in southern city Port Harcourt.Rivers, the only survivors from a four-club Nigerian challenge for 2017 CAF titles, began their mini-league campaign with a 3-1 loss at Club Africain of Tunisia.FUS remain top of Group A, but only on goal difference from Club Africain, Rivers and Kampala Capital City Authority of Uganda with each club having three points.Kampala, the first Ugandan club to qualify for the group stage of a CAF competition, came from behind Tuesday to edge Club Africain 2-1 in the Ugandan capital.Ivorian Cheick Moukoro struck seven minutes from time to give Al Hilal Obeid of Sudan a 1-0 home victory over previously unbeaten Zesco United of Zambia in Group C. Zesco are among the favourites to win the competition having made a big impact in Africa last year by reaching the CAF Champions League semi-finals against the odds.Smouha of Egypt defeated Recreativo Libolo of Angola 2-0 in Alexandria in the same group to go top on goal difference in another section where all four clubs have three points.After Ahmed Raouf scored on 12 minutes in the ancient Mediterranean city, Smouha had to wait until stoppage time before clinching victory through an Islam Mohareb goal.Title-holders TP Mazembe from the Democratic Republic of Congo fought back to draw 1-1 with Horoya of Guinea in a Conakry clash between clubs who have experienced African glory.Cameroonian Jean Francis Ebele Dipita gave Horoya a first-half lead they held until 11 minutes from time when Ben Malango equalised in the west African city.Mazembe are the second most successful club in CAF competitions with 10 titles — nine less than Al Ahly of Egypt — while Horoya won the now defunct African Cup Winners Cup in 1978.South African outfit SuperSport United lead Group D on goals scored with Mazembe second. Each club has four points, two more than Horoya, while CF Mounana of Gabon are pointless.Matchday 3 is scheduled for June 2-4. Share on: WhatsApp
“We played a friendly in Switzerland not a long time ago and De Ligt was stopping Ronaldo as well. It’s not only Van Dijk who can stop Ronaldo,” said Koeman.“But Ronaldo is good enough to create even against really good defenders and that’s the nicest part of football. You can’t do everything because his quality is such a high level that it is difficult.”The Netherlands failed to even qualify for each of the past two major tournaments, but have taken massive strides forward in just over a year since Koeman took charge.World champions France and Germany were beaten in the Nations League group stages, while the Dutch thoroughly deserved their 3-1 win over England in Thursday’s semi-final despite having to go to extra-time.“It is just confirmation that we are moving in the right direction,” added Koeman.“If we go back when we saw the draw of this tournament, the group of France and Germany, nobody expected Holland to be the winner of the group. Now we are in the final.“It is a pleasure to play in the final and it is not pressure.”Share on: WhatsApp Virgil van Dijk. PHOTO via @VirgilvDijkPorto, Portugal | AFP | Virgil van Dijk deserves to win the Ballon d’Or should the Netherlands beat hosts Portugal to lift the first ever Nations League on Sunday, according to his club and international teammate Georginio Wijnaldum.Van Dijk was named man of the match as Liverpool claimed the Champions League last weekend.The centre-back also won the PFA’s Premier League Player of the Year award and could become the first defender in 13 years to win the prize for the world’s best player.But Van Dijk faces the ultimate test in Porto on Sunday against five-time Ballon d’Or winner Cristiano Ronaldo.“He already had a good season, he is trying to stop everyone, that’s the way he’s playing,” said Wijnaldum on Saturday.“For us he’s the best defender in the world. If you look at his season, he definitely deserves the Ballon d’Or but it’s not up to us to decide.”Ronaldo ensured Portugal did not miss out on the final on home soil by scoring his 53rd career hat-trick to mask a disjointed performance by the European champions in a 3-1 win over Switzerland on Wednesday.The Netherlands can also count on another of the world’s best centre-backs in Ajax captain Matthijs de Ligt, who has been linked with a huge move to a host of top European clubs after his role in knocking Ronaldo’s Juventus out of the Champions League this season.However, Dutch coach Ronald Koeman said even his two towering centre-backs cannot guarantee shutting down Ronaldo.
by Malik Vincent For New Pittsburgh Courier The winner of eight out of 19 varsity boys and girls championships in the City League last year will graduate its 95th and final class next spring. This has come with the 2008 decision to permanently close the now Schenley High School facility at 129 Denniston Ave. in the city’s East End.“It’s been a difficult situation,” Schenley’s principal Sophia Facaros said. SCHENLEY HEAD FOOTBALL COACH JASON BELL Currently, there are four different high schools that compile the school’s athletic teams: (Pittsburgh Obama 6-12, University Prep 6-12 at Milliones, Pittsburgh Science and Technology Academy 6-12, and Pittsburgh Schenley 12).“It’s safe to say that we have at least one kid from all of Pittsburgh’s neighborhoods in the mix here,” said Facaros. “It’s gone well though. Everyone just comes and plays for Schenley. It’s a common bond.”Schenley’s director of athletics, Ken Saybel, expressed his uncertainty for the way that things will turn out in the future as the board continues to make changes.“I’m honestly not sure of how everything is going to play out,” Saybel said. “Right now we know that this is the last year for Schenley athletics. As far as who is going to play what and for whom, also, where they’re going to play is not figured out yet and may not be for a while. If everything works out according to plan, we should have an idea by early fall, (for the 2011-12 school year).”Also, according to Saybel, the largest percentage of the current Schenley athletic program are coming from the only two schools that are a part of this who share the same building, Obama and Schenley.“Most every team that we have right now are mostly kids from Obama and Schenley, except for our golf team that is made up mostly from kids who attend Pittsburgh Science and Technology,” Saybel said.One thing that’s proposed but not confirmed is that the Obama kids who now attend the old Reizenstein building with Schenley will move a few minutes away to what is now Peabody High School.“Nothing (additional) is board approved,” said the director of the Pittsburgh Board of Education’s Athletic Department, Mike Gavlik. “We’ll be reviewing the facts and figures throughout the school year. Coaches will submit rosters and we’ll survey the amount of participation and interest, as well as locations, venue sizes, and overall feasibility—all in compliance and cooperation with the PIAA’s (Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Association) and its standards.”“It’s my gut feeling, and I’m unsure, is that Obama will have enough students to independently handle their own athletics,” added Saybel. As far as everyone else who is involved, I’m really not sure.”As for the other two schools, these notions are not so projectable.“We’d like to give UPrep and Sci-Tech the same opportunities that Obama may have, if possible,” said Gavlik. “I stress that none of this is approved by the board, however, there are some thoughts that are being pushed around about how each sport will play out when we get the information that is needed to make these final decisions. It will strictly depend on what is gathered.”“There are many theories and ideas that are floating around about the future of the students that attend here,” said Facaros. “But really, the students have handled the situation as best as they could. It may not happen like that again, we’ve been very lucky. The student-athletes are just interested in exceeding what was accomplished last year when we experienced extreme success. They are focused on going out on top.” Schenley is currently practicing at Milliones School.(Malik Vincent can be reached at [email protected])
Democrat To Focus On EconomyBy John BurtonMIDDLETOWN – It’s about a year-and-a-half away before New Jersey residents cast a vote for their next governor and probably quite a while before voters start thinking seriously about that election. But it isn’t too early to campaign and announce one’s candidacy, believes Monmouth County’s own Philip D. Murphy, who has thrown his hat into that ring.Businessman and former U.S. ambassador to Germany, Murphy, 58, a Middletown resident, and Democrat, who at the time of his announcement last week was the first declared Democratic candidate for the 2017 gubernatorial contest, a race to determine who will succeed two-term Republican Chris Christie.Despite the fact that the race is a long way away–and probably most people, if they’re thinking about politics at all, have their attention fixed on the presidential race escapades—Murphy and his family decided it was the opportune time to break out of the starting gate.“If we can in a small way get to a better debate, get the state back on its feet sooner rather than later,” Murphy said in an interview with The Two River Times this week about his announcement, “I want to be part of that.”Murphy has had a successful career in business, having worked for about 20 years for Goldman Sachs multinational investment banking firm, holding a number of positions with the company. Before ending his full-time career with the company’s management in 2003, Murphy headed up the company’s Frankfurt, Germany, operations as well as other high-placed spots level positions. He has also been active on a number of philanthropic and civic fronts, establishing with his wife, Tammy, a teen helpline called 2nd Floor, for 180 Turning Lives Around, an organization that assists victims of domestic and sexual violence and their families, and working with other charitable organizations over the years; Murphy had been for a period the organization’s board president. He has also co-chaired Renewing Our Schools, Securing Our Future, a national task force studying public education; and Richard Codey, while serving as acting governor in 2005, selected Murphy to head up a task force looking at public service pensions and health benefits.Murphy hasn’t held elected office but has dabbled in national politics. He served as national finance chair for the Democratic National Committee under then-chairman Howard Dean (who, Murphy said, he considers a friend) from 2006 to 2009. According to his bio provided by the campaign, Murphy raised in the neighborhood of $300 million over that period for the national political party.Following his tenure with the DNC, President Barack Obama nominated Murphy to be the Ambassador to the Federal Republic of Germany, and with the U.S. Senate’s approval, Murphy served in that posting from 2009 until 2013.Going forward with the campaign Murphy said, “The economy is ‘job one’ in this state.”He pointed out New Jersey’s unemployment rate remains high compared to the rest of the region (and higher as the national percentage); employment hasn’t recouped yet from 2007, prior to the “Great Recession”; New Jersey has one of the highest percentage of long term unemployed (more than six months) of any state; and, Murphy said, we lead the nation in “zombie foreclosures”—where homeowners have walked away from their properties.“Those are just the facts. I wish they weren’t but they are,” he said.With a background in the private sector, in international economies, of “What works, what doesn’t,” as well as an appreciation for the public sector’s ability, Murphy maintained he has the right stuff to create jobs and right the New Jersey ship after eight years of Christie.The next governor, Murphy is convinced, needs to be “prepared to make decisions based upon what’s best for the next generation,” as opposed to “what’s best for his or her next election.”“Too many, it seems on both sides of the aisle, just kick the can down the road, borrowing from our kids’ future to make up for the lack of discipline today,” he added. “We need a leader who says enough, stop, we’re not doing that anymore.”Murphy is the youngest of four kids, growing up in a working class family outside of Boston, Massachusetts. His family were loyal Democrats, where John and Robert Kennedy were revered. Those were his roots, the commitment to hard work and the belief that the Democratic Party is dedicated to helping all, especially the middle class improve their lives, which they believe benefits the whole country, Murphy maintained. “No matter how much success I’ve had in the private and public sector,” he said, “nothing has taken me off of that set.“That’s where I started and that’s where I remain.”The campaign is just getting under way but Murphy has begun the process of reaching out, attending events, working the phones to raise money and heighten his visibility.With no incumbent, before too much longer he’ll undoubtedly have announced competition for the party’s nomination. Other names purportedly considering testing the political waters are political warhorses state Senate President Stephen Sweeney, from Gloucester County; Union County’s Senator Raymond Lesniak (whose announcement he wouldn’t be running for re-election to the Senate is seen as precipitating his run for the governor’s office) and Assemblyman John Wisniewski, from Middlesex County. Also considering joining the fray on the Democratic side is Jersey City Mayor Steve Fulop, who had also previously worked for Goldman Sachs.On the GOP side, Evesham Township Mayor Randy Brown, in Burlington County, has expressed an interest in running, while Ocean County businessman Joseph Rudy Rullo has begun campaigning, establishing a Facebook page. And there is incumbent Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno, apparently considering a bid for her boss’s job, as is state Senator Tom Kean Jr., who represents the 21st Legislative District in Morris County and is the son of Gov. Tom Kean.
Opener Tyrone Theophile fell cheaply to Beaton for one, with the score on 16, but Smith and Robinson then posted 120 for the second wicket to put Volcanoes in the driver’s seat. Smith stroked 11 fours off 190 deliveries in nearly 33/4 hours while Robinson faced 82 balls in 143 minutes and struck nine fours and a six. Their enterprise allowed Volcanoes to head to lunch at 68 for one, with Smith on exactly 50 and Robinson on 13. They added a further 68 after the break before being separated when Robinson was caught at slip by captain Leon Johnson off left-arm seamer Raymon Reifer. Smith added another 28 for the third wicket with Dalton Polius (9), but once Polius was bowled by leg-spinner Devendra Bishoo at 164 for three, the last seven wickets went down for just 48 runs. GROS ISLET, St Lucia, (CMC): Fast bowler Ronsford Beaton snared his first-ever five-wicket haul in first-class cricket to engineer a Windward Islands Volcanoes collapse on the opening day of their eighth-round contest yesterday. The 23-year-old, in his 32nd first-class game, finished with five for 43 as Volcanoes, sent in at the Beausejour Cricket Stadium, were dismissed for 216 in the final session. Leaders and title-holders Guyana Jaguars then cruised to 34 without loss, but lost two quick wickets near the close to end on 44 for two. Opener Tagenarine Chanderpaul was unbeaten on 20. Veteran opener Devon Smith had earlier gathered his 51st first-class half-century when he top-scored with 87, while rookie Jerlani Robinson chipped in with 57. The pair were the only batsmen to get into the 20s, however, and it told the latter half of the Volcanoes innings. 120-run partnership