Market Update

By
Mortgage and Lending with Caliber Home Loans 176918

For the week of September 6, 2010 - Vol. 8, Issue 36

>> Market Update 

INFO THAT HITS US WHERE WE LIVE  Last Thursday, July Pending Home Sales came in UP 5.2%. This measure of signed contracts on existing homes indicates we should see an increase in Existing Home Sales for August and September. Some analysts feel it shows the start of positive market movement after the end of the tax credit, which pushed signed contracts forward into April. We now have a new batch of buyers looking to take advantage of today's affordable prices and historically low mortgage rates.

Speaking of prices, Standard & Poor's/Case-Shiller National Home Price Index reported home prices UP 1.0% from May to June in 20 major U.S. cities. This was the index's third straight gain, which many experts feel came from the increased demand due to the tax credits. So sellers still need to be flexible, since not as many eager buyers are now in the market. But prices do seem to be stabilizing, so buyers would do well to act on a property they like, rather than hold out for any significant price declines going forward.

National average mortgage rates have recently been at historic lows. But in their latest forecast, Mortgage Bankers Association economists see rates going up slightly in the last three months of the year, rising a bit above that for 2011, then perhaps up another percentage point by the end of 2012. More reason for buyers and refinancers to not drag their feet!

>> Review of Last Week

POSITIVE WITH NEGATIVES... The U.S. economy keeps delivering mixed signals, but this week investors on Wall Street let a positive vibe drive the proceedings. Stocks went up four days in a row, ending with a big rally Friday driven by an August Employment report that was by no means great, but better than the downbeat readings that were expected. All three major stock indexes ended up for the week with the Dow now up for the year.

There were notable negatives that continue to show the pace of recovery has slowed. The ISM Services Index came in below estimates indicating modest growth in the non-manufacturing sector. Consumer inflation was UP 0.2% in July and UP 1.5% over a year ago. This is still within the Fed's acceptable range, although some economists think inflation should start rising noticeably next year. Personal income was up 0.2% for July, but this was below what the consensus expected. Finally, final Q2 Productivity dropped to a 1.8% annual rate, a bigger dip than previously estimated.

Positive signs included the ISM Manufacturing index, reported up for July instead of down as expected. August Consumer Confidence also beat expectations. But the big news came with Friday's Employment Report. The U.S. economy lost 54,000 nonfarm jobs in August, far less than the 100,000+ job losses expected. The private sector added 67,000 jobs, while upward revisions to the two prior months took the net gain to 133,000 jobs. Average hourly earnings were UP 0.3% for the month and UP 1.9% this year. But unemployment ticked up to 9.6%, due to an increase in the work force. So even though the report played well on Wall Street, it didn't on Main Street. 

For the week, the Dow ended UP 2.9%, to 10447.93; the S&P 500 was UP 3.7%, to 1104.51; and the Nasdaq was UP 3.7%, to 2233.75.


Bond prices held up for most of the week, but Friday's jobs report surprise kept things in check. The FNMA 30-year 4.0% bond we watch ended UP 7 basis points for the week, closing at $102.27. Again, Freddie Mac's weekly survey showed national average fixed rates for conforming mortgages at historic low levels.

>> This Week's Forecast

TAKING A BREAK...This week truly is a break from the hectic pace of economic reports we've seen lately. The Fed's Beige Book on Wednesday will give us another take on the central bank's view of the economic recovery, as reported from Federal Reserve Districts across the country. Observers look to this survey for signs of where Fed policy decisions may be heading in the future. We will continue to watch Thursday's Initial and Continuing Jobless Claims, as experts are predicting a slow improvement there. Thursday's July Trade Balance is expected to be down slightly from the prior month, perhaps signaling more demand for our goods overseas.

>> The Week's Economic Indicator Calendar

Weaker than expected economic data tends to send bond prices up and interest rates down, while positive data points to lower bond prices and rising loan rates.

Economic Calendar for the Week of September 6 - September 10

 Date

Time (ET)

Release

For

Consensus

Prior

Impact

W
Sep 8

10:30

Crude Inventories

9/4

NA

3.42M

Moderate

W
Sep 8

14:00

Fed's Beige Book

Sep

NA

NA

Moderate

Th
Sep 9

08:30

Initial Unemployment Claims

9/4

470K

472K

Moderate

Th
Sep 9

08:30

Continuing Unemployment Claims

8/28

4.445M

4.456M

Moderate

Th
Sep 9

08:30

Trade Balance

Jul

-$47.2B

-$49.9B

Moderate

 

>> Federal Reserve Watch   

Forecasting Federal Reserve policy changes in coming months  Economists believe the Fed will keep rates low well into next year unless we get a boost in inflation or the recovery. Virtually no one expects either of those things just yet. Note: In the lower chart, a 1% probability of change is a 99% certainty the rate will stay the same.

Current Fed Funds Rate: 0%-0.25%

After FOMC meeting on:

Consensus

Sep 21

0%-0.25%

Nov 3

0%-0.25%

Dec 14

0%-0.25%


Probability of change from current policy:

After FOMC meeting on:

Consensus

Sep 21

     <1%

Nov 3

     <1%

Dec 14

     <1%

 

This e-mail is an advertisement for April Diehl. The material provided is for informational and educational purposes only and should not be construed as investment and/or mortgage advice, or a commitment to lend. Although the material is deemed to be accurate and reliable, there is no guarantee of its accuracy. The material contained in the newsletter is the property ofPrimeLending, A PlainsCapital Company and cannot be reproduced for any use without prior written consent. It is designed for real estate and other financial professionals only. It is not intended for consumer distribution. The material does not represent the opinion of PrimeLending, A PlainsCapital Company. © 2010 PrimeLending, A PlainsCapital Company. Trade/service marks are the property of PlainsCapital Corporation, PlainsCapital Bank, or their respective affiliates and/or subsidiaries. Some products may not be available in all states. This is not a commitment to lend. Restrictions apply. All rights reserved. PrimeLending, A PlainsCapital Company (NMLS no: 13649) is a wholly-owned subsidiary of a state-chartered bank and is an exempt lender in the following states: AK, AR, CO, DE, FL, GA, HI, ID, IA, KS, KY, LA, MN, MS, MO, MT, NE, NV, NY, NC, OH, OK, OR, PA, SC, SD, TN, TX, UT, VA, WV, WI, WY. Licensed by: AL State Banking Dept.- consumer credit lic no. MC21004; AZ Dept. of Financial Institutions- mortgage banker lic no. BK 0907334; CA Dept. of Corporations- lender lic no. 4130996; CT Dept. of Banking- lender lic no. ML-13649; D.C. Dept. of Insurance, Securities and Banking- dual authority lic no. MLO13649; IL Dept. of Financial and Professional Regulation- lender lic no. MB.6760635; IN Dept. of Financial Institutions- sub lien lender lic no. 11169; ME Dept. of Professional & Financial Regulation- supervised lender lic no. SLM8285; MD Dept. of Labor, Licensing & Regulation- lender lic no. 11058; Massachusetts Division of Banking- lender & broker license nos. MC5404, MC5406, MC5414, MC5450, MC5405; MI Dept. of Labor & Economic Growth- broker/lender lic nos. FR 0010163 and SR 0012527; NH Banking Department- lender lic no. 14553-MB; NJ Dept. of Banking and Insurance-lender lic no. 0803658; NM Regulation and Licensing Dept. Financial Institutions Division- lender license no. 01890; ND Dept. of Financial Institutions- money broker lic no. MB101786; RI Division of Banking- lender lic no. 20102678LL and broker lic no. 20102677LB; TX OCCC Reg. Loan License- lic no. 7293; VT Dept. of Banking, Insurance, Securities and Health Care Administration- lender lic no. 6127 and broker lic no. 0964MB; WA Dept. of Financial Institutions-consumer lender lic no. 520-CL-49075. PrimeLending, A PlainsCapital Company is an Equal Housing Opportunity Lender. NMLS# 176918

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