Orlando should be a bigger player in esports game market

esports

may want to take a deeper dive into competitive video game tournaments, a spectator sport that’s drawing more fans than some pro teams.

Esports already surpassed both Major League Baseball and National Hockey League viewership. And by 2022, it may be on par with the National Football League, with more than 300 million viewers worldwide, an April report by New York-based investment firm Goldman Sachs Inc. (NYSE: GS) and Amsterdam-based market research firm NewZoo LLC showed.

That growth is helping the industry boom. Last year, esports’ global revenue was $655 million. It’s projected to hit $906 million by year’s end and $1.6 million by 2021.

On the home front, Orlando last year hosted its first Call of Duty World League Championship — considered the Super Bowl of video game events — at the Amway Center. The event attracted thousands of attendees and showed off Orlando as a viable place for future esports tournaments, said Central Sports Commission CEO Jason Siegel.

Esports events also can be a springboard for Redwood City, Calif.-based video game-making giant Electronic Arts Inc. (Nasdaq: EA).

The firm saw huge engagement and growth in its Madden League — based on the franchise Madden series that’s produced at its Orlando studio, EA CEO Andrew Wilson said during the firm’s fiscal fourth-quarter 2018 earnings call in May. “We have an entire competitive gaming group pushing to grow that and really think about its ongoing evolution.”

  • 2016: 160M, 121M
  • 2017: 192M, 143M
  • 2018: 215M, 165M
  • 2021: 307M, 250M

A breakdown of 2018 enthusiasts by country

  • Asia-Pacific: 53%
  • European Union: 18%
  • North America: 15%
  • Rest of the world: 14%

By the numbers

  • $137.9B
  • 2018 total spending worldwide
  • 28%
  • Percentage of consumer spending on games from China
  • $70.3B
  • The estimated amount of mobile games will generate in 2018

Global games market forecast per segment toward 2021

(listed by year for smartphones, tablets, consoles, browser PCs, boxed/downloaded PCs)

  • 2017: 36%, 10%, 27%, 4%, 23%; $121B total
  • 2018: 41%, 10% 25%, 3%, 21%; $137B total
  • 2019: 44%, 10%, 24%, 2%, 20%; $151B total
  • 2020: 47%, 10%, 22%, 2%, 19%; $165B total
  • 2021: 49%, 10%, 22%, 1%, 18%; $180B total

s Home Affordability at Breaking Point?

 

 

 

 

The combination of steadily increasing home prices and rising interest rates has impacted home by pushing up the monthly mortgage payment on median-priced by $150/month in just the first five months of 2018, according to the latest Mortgage Monitor Report released by Black Knight on Monday.

The monthly report, which looks at a variety of issues related to the mortgage finance and housing industry looked at the share of median income required to buy a median-priced home, while also exploring potential scenarios of home price appreciation, interest rate movement, and income growth to calculate their impact on home affordability over the next five years.

It found that even with incomes growing at a stronger-than-average rate, they haven’t been able to keep up with rising home prices and interest rates. Of all the states examined by the report, seven were less affordable than others and another 12 were heading up on the unaffordability index, the report said.

The seven states included Washington, D.C. that required 7 percent more of median income to make a monthly mortgage payment. Second on the list was California with a 6 percent increase, followed by Hawaii (5 percent); Oregon (3.5 percent); Maine (2.4 percent); Washington (0.7 percent); and Colorado (0.1 percent). It found that led by Washington, D.C., 14 states had a payment-to-income ratio higher than the national average of 23 percent.

“Though much of the country remains more affordable than long-term norms, the current trajectory would change that sooner rather than later,” said Ben Graboske, EVP of Black Knight’s Data & Analytics division. “We’ve modeled out multiple economic scenarios, some more conservative than others, and even with historically strong income growth, the current combination of home price and interest rate increases isn’t sustainable.”

Black Knight looked at multiple potential economic scenarios to get a sense of where affordability could be heading over the next five years and found that at the current pace of increases, affordability was an unsustainable prospect.

In the first scenario, Black Knight assumed that incomes continued to see strong growth, home prices kept rising at the current rate and interest rates rose by 50 basis points/year. With these numbers, the study found that in five years, home affordability would hit an all-time low.

For the second scenario, it was assumed that incomes remained strong, rates rose by 50 basis points/year, and home price growth decelerated to its 25-year average of 3.75 percent/year. Even with slower home price increase, Black Knight found that in five years it would take 30 percent of median income to make the monthly mortgage payment.

However, in the third scenario where home price appreciation slowed to 3.75 percent, interest rate increases were capped at 25 basis points/year and incomes remained strong, Black Knight found a more sustainable scenario emerging over the long run with national home affordability levels gradually rising to long-term averages in five years.

Lake Nona-area plaza, tenants for future

A plaza near Lake Nona, a fast-growing community in southeast Orlando, is expanding and gaining medical and retail tenants.

The Narcoossee Retail Center, developed by Reich Properties Inc. at 865 N. Narcoossee Road in St. Cloud, will have two urgent care centers as tenants for its planned 10,800-square-foot second phase. A building that size may cost roughly $1 million to build, based on industry standards.

Nemours Children’s Primary Care, an urgent care center for children, will occupy 4,200 square feet. In addition, the St. Cloud Regional Medical Center will have a 2,000-square-foot urgent care center, Reich Properties President John Reich told Orlando Journal. “St. Cloud Regional Medical Center and Nemours both decided Narcoossee Road is a good place to be — it’s where St. Cloud meets .”

Medical City is a life sciences hub in that includes Nemours Children’s Hospital, the University of Central medical school, the Orlando VA Medical Center and more.

Nearly 5,000 square feet of the second phase remains available for tenants.

Reich Properties spokeswoman Coleen Taylor said the $2 million second phase is nearing constriction and will be delivered in first-quarter 2019.

Orlando-based Jordan & Associates Consulting Inc. is the engineering consultant for the project.

Plans for a third phase will bring an additional 11,000 square feet or more to the plaza. No timeline was given for that phase.

The first phase of Narcoossee Retail Center is complete and fully occupied by Building Brains Academy Language Immersion Preschool, Domino’s Pizza Bakery, All Flooring USA and The Nail Lounge & Spa.

Reich said the growing residential development in the area is driving demand for more commercial space. “Osceola County is a somewhat rural lifestyle, and you have to go to Osceola for that lifestyle. That’s why there are so many rooftops going up. There are enough rooftops now to support developing commercial,” Reich said.

He envisions the plaza’s second and third phases being fully occupied by health care providers such as dentists and orthopedics, along with restaurants.

Massive solar project for Central Florida

Good morning, !

OUC and 11 municipal utilities from across the state are teaming up to build three massive solar farms.

The groundbreaking agreement allows for 900,000 solar panels that will provide energy for as many as 45,000 . The three solar sites on 1,200 acres in rural Orange and Osceola counties will provide 223.5 megawatts. OUC will be the largest tenant, purchasing 108.5 megawatts of solar energy, or enough for more than 20,000 residential customers.

“OUC could have done this on its own, but by partnering with other municipal utilities, we can make a dramatic difference not just in Central , but really throughout the entire state,” said Clint Bullock, OUC’s general manager, and CEO. “We can leverage the economies of scale to bring the price of solar down to a point where a dozen municipal utilities can afford to sign on.”

The solar farms are expected to be completed by 2020, and exact locations in Orange and Osceola are still being finalized through a permitting process.

Luxury apartments in the pipeline for I-Drive-area project

A 64-acre mixed-use development near International Drive is gearing up to tackle its multifamily component. The whole mixed-use project will cost more than $350 million to develop and should be completed by 2019. More here.

Fun Spot debuts new Orlando ride

Fun Spot America, which opened a new Orlando ride called HeadRush 360 on May 1, now plans to spend $2 million to add a new multi-level go-kart track dubbed Samson Monster Track at its Atlanta property. More here.

Here’s how Orlando ranks for diversity

With immigration policy remaining a hot-button issue in 2018’s political landscape, WalletHub released its report on 2018’s Most Diverse Cities in America. To determine the cities with the most mixed demographics, WalletHub compared more than 500 of the largest cities across five major diversity categories: socio-economic, cultural, economic, household and religious. Orlando came in at No. 68.

Cruises from Port Canaveral to Cuba start Monday

The Norwegian Sun embarks on the first regularly scheduled cruise from Port Canaveral to Cuba on Monday, Florida Today reports. The cruises, which will depart from the port every Monday this summer, will include stops in Havana, as well as in Key West.

After weeks of jumping, mortgages rates take a modest dip

U.S. mortgage rates fell last week after rising to their highest level in four years, according to Freddie Mac. The 30-year fixed mortgage averaged 4.55% for the week ending May 3, down from 4.58% the previous week. Favorable mortgage rates have helped drive U.S. home sales, as well as the refinance market.

Now Is the Best Time to Sell … or Is it?

 

 

Rising home prices and a squeeze on inventory has more millennial homebuyers and potential sellers looking at upgrading their home admitting to being obsessed with timing the market to increase their gains, according to a recent study by ValueInsured.

The study found that among all homeowners surveyed who were interested in selling their home 69 percent said that they were concerned with trying to time the market, an increase of 13 percentage points from 56 percent during the same period last year.

Among those wishing to buy a home this season, the study found that 60 percent said they were concerned with trying to time the market, again reflecting a 13 percentage points increase over last year.

The pressure to time the market was most acute among millennials with 65 percent potential millennial homebuyers admitting that they were more market-timing conscious, up from 45 percent last year. Among millennial homeowners too, ValueInsured’s study found 73 percent millennial homeowners who wished to upgrade but were waiting for better prices admitting that timing the market was key to a better deal.

The study revealed that an eroding preference for owning over renting was one of the many factors that coincided with rising concerns over timing the market due to home prices and rising rates. “Americans, homeowners and non-owners, far prefer owning to renting if given a choice. However, that preference is sliding steadily, even among homeowners,” the ValueInsured study said.

While 68 percent non-homeowners believed that owning a home was better than renting, the data revealed that this was still a 4-point drop from 72 percent expressing the same sentiment last year. The percentage dropped among homeowners too, with 87 percent homeowners believing that it was better to own than rent, compared with 90 percent during the same period last year.

The study found that non-homeowning millennials were more confident that the housing market was moving in a direction that was more favorable to renters than owners, with nearly three in four (72 percent) millennial homeowners surveyed now believing that the housing market favored renting over buying.

 

Federal Open Market Committee Examines Economic Outlook

The Federal Reserve announced that interest rates remained unchanged after the end of the two-day policy meeting of the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC). The Fed had last increased rates in March. The committee voted unanimously to keep the rates unchanged and said that it would monitor labor market conditions and the movement of inflation before announcing further rate hikes.

“In view of realized and expected labor market conditions and inflation, the Committee decided to maintain the target range for the federal funds rate at 1-1/2 to 1-3/4 percent,” the Fed said in a statement after the meeting. “The stance of monetary policy remains accommodative, thereby supporting strong labor market conditions and a sustained return to 2 percent inflation.”

The Central Bank had stated that it was targeting an inflation rate of 2 percent at the beginning of the year, and after the meeting, it said: “On a 12-month basis, both overall inflation and inflation for items other than food and energy have moved close to 2 percent.”

The stability in rates this month will bring some respite to homebuyers who have been challenged by rising mortgage rates after the hike in overall interest rates by the Fed in March. Mortgage rates climbed to their highest level in over four years last week with the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage increasing for the third consecutive week to 4.58 percent. This according to the Freddie Mac Primary Mortgage Market survey that showed average mortgage rates had continued their upward march, continuing a trend seen since the beginning of 2018.

So should the market expect another hike in June? The committee said that the committee would assess realized and expected economic conditions relative to its objectives of maximum employment and 2 percent inflation. “This assessment will take into account a wide range of information, including measures of labor market conditions, indicators of inflation pressures and inflation expectations, and readings on financial and international developments,” the Committee said in its statement.

Worries Climb Over Rising Home Prices

U.S. home sales have slowed to a crawl this quarter, mostly due to an entrenched combination of low inventory and consistently rising prices. The latter was true again in March, according to the latest Home Price Index report from CoreLogic. The HPI for March found that over the last year, home prices nationally rose 7 percent.

From February, prices were up 1.4 percent, but in year-over-year comparisons, CoreLogic found that all 50 states saw prices escalate since March of 2017.

“Home prices grew briskly in the first quarter of 2018,” said Frank Nothaft, Chief Economist at CoreLogic. “High demand and limited supply have pushed home prices above where they were in early 2006. New construction still lags historically normal levels, keeping upward pressure on prices.”

The largest annual gains happened in Washington and Nevada, where, CoreLogic found, home prices grew by 12.6 percent since last March. What’s more, CoreLogic expects prices to keep climbing and expects U.S. home prices to be 5.2 percent higher by next March. Prices are expected to rise 0.1 percent in April.

Of the 100 largest metropolitan areas, based on housing stock, 37 have an overvalued as of March, the report stated.

“Additionally, as of March 2018, 28 percent of the top 100 metropolitan areas were undervalued and 35 percent were at value” it stated.

When looking at the top 50 markets, CoreLogic found that half were overvalued. Seven were undervalued and 18 were at value.”

CoreLogic president and CEO  Frank Martell called this dynamic a clearly “unsustainable condition that can only be remedied by aggressive and coordinated public/private sector actions.”

According to Martell, rising home prices would remain a sober reality facing a lot of would-be buyers until it was “straightened out.”

“The dream of homeownership continues to fade away for the average prospective buyer,” he said. “Lower-priced are appreciating much faster than higher-priced properties, making the crisis progressively worse.”

Limited Options Holding Homebuyers Back

Inventory is still holding sales back, according to the latest pending home sales data from the National Association of Realtors (NAR). The Pending Home Sales Index by NAR indicates that despite a 0.4 percent increase in pending home sales in March, numbers still aren’t as high as they were last year. With the increased activity in March, pending home sales are still down three percent year over year.

“Healthy economic conditions are creating considerable demand for purchasing a home, but not all buyers are able to sign contracts because of the lack of choices in inventory,” said NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun. “Steady price growth and the swift pace listings are coming off the market are proof that more supply is needed to fully satisfy demand. What continues to hold back sales is the fact that prospective buyers are increasingly having difficulty finding an affordable home to buy.”

Danielle Hale, Chief Economist at Realtor.com agreed: “The slight increase in March is still not enough to push the pending index above year-ago levels. It marks the third consecutive year-over-year decline suggesting that unless more come to the market , we’re unlikely to see a major breakout above the 5.5 million sales pace that has dominated since mid-2015.”

Yun also noted that winter storms during the “unseasonably cold” winter in the north contributed in part to the decline in contract signings. Additionally, Yun stated that increasing prices coupled with decreasing incomes would push some people out of the market, as mortgage rates hit a four-year high.

“Much of the country is enjoying a thriving job market, but buying a home is becoming more expensive,” said Yun. “That is why it is an absolute necessity for there to be a large increase in new and existing homes available for sale in coming months to moderate home price growth. Otherwise, sales will remain stuck in this holding pattern and a growing share of would-be buyers—especially first-time buyers—will be left on the sidelines.”

“While many buyers will be able to successfully adjust to higher mortgage rates, first-timers with a lot of debt and little cash are more likely to get tripped up,” Hale said.

Overall, existing home sales are still expected to increase year over year. Yun predicts existing home sales to be around 5.61 million in 2018, over 5.51 million in 2017.

Home Price Index February 2018

February 2018 National Home Prices

Home prices nationwide, including distressed sales, increased year over year by 6.7 percent in February 2018 compared with February 2017 and increased month over month by 1 percent in February 2018 compared with January 2018 (revisions to public records data are standard, and to ensure accuracy, CoreLogic incorporates the newly released public data to provide updated results).

 

Forecast Prices Nationally

The CoreLogic HPI Forecast indicates that home prices will increase by 4.7 percent on a year-over-year basis from February 2018 to February 2019, and on month-over-month basis home prices are expected to be flat from February 2018 to March 2018.

 

The CoreLogic HPI Forecast is a projection of home prices using the CoreLogic HPI and other economic variables. Values are derived from state-level forecasts by weighting indices according to the number of owner-occupied households for each state.

In an analysis of the country’s 100 largest metropolitan areas based on housing stock, 34 percent of cities have an overvalued housing stock as of February 2018, according to CoreLogic Market Conditions Indicators (MCI) data. The MCI analysis categorizes home prices in individual markets as undervalued, at a value or overvalued by comparing home prices to their long-run, sustainable levels, which are supported by local market fundamentals such as disposable income. Also, as of February, 30

Home Prices rise again

 

 

U.S. home prices in February were up 0.6 percent from the previous month nationwide, according to the Federal Housing Finance Agency’s latest House Price Index. Prices for sales guaranteed by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were up 7.2 percent compared to last February, according to this report.

The month-to-month numbers from FHFA were slightly higher than those reported in the latest S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller Home Price Index, released on Tuesday, which said that February prices were up 0.4 percent from January; they were up 6.3 percent from a year earlier.

“Home prices continue to rise across the country,” said David Blitzer, managing director and chairman of the Index Committee at S&P Dow Jones Indices while commenting on the S&P Case-Shiller HPI. “Year-over-year prices measured by the National index have increased continuously for the past 70 months.”

That’s since May of 2012. In that time, Blitzer said, prices have averaged a growth rate of 6 percent a year.

At nearly 13 percent, Seattle saw the largest growth in the past year in major markets. Home prices were also up by double digits in Las Vegas and San Francisco on the S&P Indices. Washington, D.C., and Chicago saw the lowest growth rate over the past 12 months, each less than 3 percent.

“In San Francisco and Los Angeles, home price gains ranked much higher than what would be expected from their employment increases, indicating that California home prices continued to rise faster than might be expected,” Blitzer said. “In contrast, Miami home prices experienced some of the smaller increases despite better than average employment gains.”

Despite rising prices, Realtor.com data shows in these markets are going fast,” said Danielle Hale, Chief Economist at Realtor.com. “In February, time on market for the typical property in Seattle was 29 days, Las Vegas 42 days, and San Francisco 21 days vs. 83 days nationally.”

Days on market sped up seasonally in March with properties disappearing after only 23 days in Seattle, 39 days in Las Vegas, and 22 days in San Francisco, Hale said.

“Potential sellers, aware of local market conditions, are listing homes priced accordingly. Realtor.com listing prices in March were up 16 percent in Seattle, 11 percent in Las Vegas, and 6 percent in San Francisco, suggesting that high prices will continue to be the norm this spring,” she said.

According to FHFA, home price growth was uneven across different sectors of the country in February. While prices remained flat in the West North Central division, they went up 1.6 percent in the East South Central division.

Year-over-year, home prices grew in every section of the country, ranging from 4.8 percent growth in the Middle Atlantic to 10.3 percent growth in the Pacific.

FHFA also revised it’s previous January totals. Prices that month were up 0.9 percent from December, as opposed to the previously reported 0.8 percent.