Home Industry News A Common Indicator of Residential Improvements is Broken

A Common Indicator of Residential Improvements is Broken


The series is produced by the Bureau of Economic Analysis and provided on a quarterly basis. The source data for this concept comes from the C30 report and the Federal Reserve’s Survey of Consumer Finances. This data is tabulated in detail on an annual basis and then the series is distributed on a quarterly basis using statistical techniques.

To be sure, this indicator is far from perfect. Our ideal residential improvements indicator would come from a detailed survey of US households and would also incorporate information from sellers of building materials. It would be published on a monthly basis and it would comport with the information that we observe in the product markets.

Sadly, that indicator does not exist so we have chosen to use the least flawed indicator we could find—residential improvements from the Underlying Detail tables of the National Income and Product Accounts. We welcome suggestions from the industry on how we can improve our analysis of the residential improvements end use category.

This article by Brendan K. Lowney, a principal of Forest Economic Advisors (FEA), was excerpted by permission from FEA’s “Spotlights.” To learn more, visit getfea.com