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Markets in a Minute

Markets in a Minute | April 20, 2018

 

The labor market continues to show strength, with unemployment of 4.1% nearing the Fed goal of 3.8%. Jobless claims this week were down to 232K.
Members of the Fed have expressed expectations that inflation will continue to rise this year. Higher inflation will likely contribute to higher mortgage rates.
After 3 months of declines, retail sales were up in March. The increase was fueled by auto sales and big-ticket household purchases.

 

March housing starts were up even more than expected. The increase included a rebound in multi-family home construction.
Although confidence among builders dropped slightly in April, the confidence index remains in solid territory. Buyer demand for new housing is still strong.
Spring has sprung for mortgage demand. Total mortgage applications were up 4.9% for the week, and purchase applications were up 10% over a year ago.

 

Today a man knocked on my door and asked for a small donation toward the local swimming pool. I gave him a glass of water.

 

Rate movements and volatility are based on published, aggregate national averages and measured from the previous to the most recent midweek daily reporting period. These rate trends can differ from our own and are subject to change at any time.

Markets in a Minute | April 13, 2018

 

 

 

 

Minutes released from last month’s FOMC meeting show the Fed still plans on 2 more rate hikes this year. Inflation is a concern, as is a trade war with China.
Consumer prices fell for the first time in 10 months in March, mainly due to cheaper gas prices. However, underlying inflation continued to increase.
A tightening labor market is also expected to contribute to higher inflation this year. Jobless claims fell once again last week, despite a slowdown in job growth.

 

Over 32% of consumers surveyed by Fannie Mae say it’s still a good time to buy a home. Almost 39% say it is a good time to sell a home.
CoreLogic recently found rising debt-to-income ratios among buyers. This could reflect confidence in the economy and comfort with higher monthly debt obligations.
Single-family homes were the fastest growing type of rental between 2007 and 2016. Their share of the rental market increased by 31% in the last decade.

 

Friggatriskaidekaphobia is the fear of Friday the 13th (named after Frigg, the Norse goddess after whom Friday is named in English).
What would make Friday the 13th even scarier? If it were on a Monday.

 

Rate movements and volatility are based on published, aggregate national averages and measured from the previous to the most recent midweek daily reporting period. These rate trends can differ from our own and are subject to change at any time.