What a two weeks it has been! We have basically seen 30 year mortgage rates jump 1% in a short two week period. In my world that is a tough two weeks! There are many opinions as to why rates have increased.....
- the recent economic data has shown some small signs of improvement
- concern about inflation due to the substantial amount of debt the U.S government has issued / continues to issue
- and lastly, the big concern which is not heavily publicized....foreign investment or the lack there of.
Did you realize that foreign investors, namely China and Japan purchase up to 40% of our debt (U.S. Treasuries). One of the major fears the past few weeks is that foreign investors stop buying our debt. As of yesterday we are starting to see some stabilization in the interest rate market which is helping rates ease back down. Current 30 year rates are averaging 5.625% and 15 year 5.125%. I am willing to go out on a limb and say we should see an additional .50% improvement in the coming weeks/months.
For my readers who are realtors you may want to check with the lenders on your deals to confirm the rate lock. If closing dates are missed (which I have heard some buzz it is happening more often) it is possible locks will expire AND rates will be adjusted up to current levels. Don't get me wrong, current levels are still historically outstanding just not the 4.50 - 4.875% that many may have locked into.
Strong Demand for Treasury Auctions
After rising significantly over the last couple of weeks, mortgage rates moved higher again this week, but at a much slower pace. Strong demand for this week's large Treasury auctions helped keep mortgage rates relatively stable. At current yields, both foreign and domestic investors showed above average interest in adding bonds to their portfolios.
Behind the recent rise in mortgage rates has been an improved economic outlook and concerns about the enormous supply of new debt needed to pay for government programs. This leaves the Fed in a difficult position. Fed officials would like to keep mortgage rates low to lift the economy. To accomplish this, however, the Fed would have to significantly increase its purchases of mortgage-backed securities (MBS), requiring it to issue even more debt and adding to inflation concerns.
Most analysts believe that the Fed is unlikely to expand its MBS purchase program. At the June 24th meeting, they instead expect the Fed to discuss an eventual exit strategy for the program, which might include stretching out their time frame for purchasing MBS. Reducing the weekly purchases would allow the Fed to gradually scale back its involvement in the market. The MBS purchase program has helped bring mortgage rates down since it was announced in November, but the Fed cannot continue to intervene in MBS markets indefinitely. Slowly reducing their MBS purchases may be the best way to minimize the impact on the market as they make their exit.
The most significant economic data next week will be the monthly inflation reports. The Producer Price Index (PPI) focuses on the increase in prices of "intermediate" goods used by companies to produce finished products and will come out on Tuesday. The Consumer Price Index (CPI), the most closely watched monthly inflation report, will come out on Wednesday. CPI looks at the price change for those finished goods which are sold to consumers. In addition, Industrial Production and Housing Starts will be released on Tuesday. The Empire State and Philadelphia Fed regional manufacturing indexes will round out the schedule.
Weekly Mortgage Update Courtesy Of:
Darrin L. Kresevic, Sr. V.P., Loan Officer, LPO Manager
First Place Bank 440 349 7550
6150 Enterprise Parkway - Solon Ohio 44139
Assistant - Janice Zabish Direct - 440 349 7562
Lending seventeen years of Mortgage Banking experience
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