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Market Comment - Week of November 23rd, 2009
Mortgage bond prices rose last week pushing mortgage interest rates lower. Mixed data resulted in up and down trading but within a relatively narrow range. Things were going well the first part of the week with rates improving until Wednesday when the consumer price index and the core came in higher than expected. Inflation, real or perceived, erodes the value of fixed income investments causing prices to fall and rates to rise. We saw some of that mid-week. Despite this, interest rates finished the week improved by about 1/8 to 1/4 of a discount point.
The US Treasury will continue the record Treasury auctions with a $44 billion 2-year note auction Monday, $42 billion 5-year note auction Tuesday, and a $45 billion 7-year note auction Wednesday. The bond market will be closed Thursday for Thanksgiving and will have a shortened trading session Friday.
Economic Factors Economic Indicator Release Date Time Consensus Estimate Analysis Existing Home Sales Monday, Nov. 23, 2009 Down 0.5% Low importance. An indication of mortgage credit demand. A significant decrease may lead to lower rates. Preliminary 3Q GDP Tuesday, Nov. 24, 2009 Up 3.0% Very important. The aggregate measure of US economic production. Weakness may lead to lower rates. Consumer Confidence Tuesday, Nov. 24, 2009 47.5 Important. An indication of consumers' willingness to spend. Weakness may lead to lower mortgage rates. Personal Income and Outlays Wednesday, Nov. 25, 2009 Up 0.2%, Up 0.5% Important. A measure of consumers' ability to spend. Weakness may lead to lower mortgage rates. PCE Core Inflation Wednesday, Nov. 25, 2009 Up 0.1% Important. A measure of price increases for all domestic personal consumption. Weakness may help rates improve. Durable Goods Orders Wednesday, Nov. 25, 2009 Up 0.5% Important. An indication of the demand for "big ticket" items. Weakness may lead to lower rates. U of Michigan Consumer Sentiment Wednesday, Nov. 25, 2009 66.5 Important. An indication of consumers' willingness to spend. Weakness may lead to lower mortgage rates. New Home Sales Wednesday, Nov. 25, 2009 Up 2.9% Important. An indication of economic strength and credit demand. Weakness may lead to lower rates.
The Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is one the most important reports during any given quarter. GDP is a measure of US economic output and spending. The report is significant in that it provides investors, analysts, traders, and economists with a comprehensive report of the direction of the economy. In addition, it also influences the decisions of Federal Reserve policy makers, Congressional budget employees, and corporate financial planners.
GDP is the sum total of goods and services produced by the United States. The initial report is often based on incomplete data. Therefore, additional revisions are released over the following two months. There are often substantial differences between the initial release and the revisions. The mortgage-backed security market generally responds favorably to weaker GDP growth. The preliminary third quarter gross domestic product data this week has the potential to move mortgage interest rates. Be cautious.
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