The most bullish housing chart we’ve seen all year doesn’t have anything to do with houses.
It’s this one from the AAR’s latest Rail-Time Indicators report, showing year-over-year shipments of lumber.
Other than that weird spike in December 2010 (we’re not sure what the deal is, exactly there), this is one of the biggest-year-over-year jumps we’ve seen in a long time.
The housing connection is fairly obvious, as lumber is connected to new home building, renovations, etc.
What’s more, there’s a good argument to be made that lumber is a better leading indicator than copper, which basically behaves concurrently to stocks these days.