Mortgage Rate Lock Advsiory for New York and Florida Mortgage Rates For The Week Of August 20, 2012

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 If you are considering locking in an interest rate for a New York mortgage or a Florida mortgage, read this post.

 This week brings us the release of only three pieces of monthly economic data in addition to the minutes from the last FOMC meeting. There is nothing of relevance to mortgage rates scheduled for release today or Tuesday, so look for the stock markets to drive bond trading and mortgage rates until we get to midweek.

 The first piece of data will be July's Existing Home Sales report late Wednesday morning. The National Association of Realtors will release this report, giving us a measurement of housing sector strength. It covers a very high percentage of all home sales in the U.S., but usually does not have a major influence on bond trading and mortgage rates unless it varies greatly from analysts' forecasts. It is expected to show an increase from June's sales, meaning the housing sector strengthened last month. This would generally be bad news for the bond market and mortgage rates because a strengthening housing sector makes a broader economic recovery a little easier. But unless the increase is much larger than current forecasts, the report will likely have a minimal impact on Wednesday’s mortgage pricing.

 Also Wednesday, we will get the minutes from the last FOMC meeting. There is a pretty good possibility of the markets reacting to them following their 2:00 PM ET release, especially if they show some divisiveness by its members. It will be interesting to see some of the Fed member's views on the economy and inflation and if they will hint what the Fed's next move may be, particularly about the need for more economic stimulus. But this is one of those events that can cause significant movement in rates after its release or be a non factor. I suspect that this particular release will cause movement in bond prices, but not enough to significantly affect mortgage pricing.

 July's New Home Sales data will be released at 10:00 AM ET Thursday morning. This report is the least important release of the week. It will give us another indication of housing sector strength and mortgage credit demand, but only tracks a small portion of all home sales. It usually doesn't have a major impact on bond prices or mortgage rates unless it varies greatly from forecasts. Current forecasts are calling for an increase in sales of newly constructed homes from June to July.

 The final economic report of the week will come from the Commerce Department, who will post July's Durable Goods Orders early Friday morning. This report will give us an important measure of manufacturing sector strength. It data tracks orders at U.S. factories for big ticket items, or products that are expected to last three or more years. A much weaker reading than the expected 2.5% rise that is expected would indicate that the manufacturing sector is not as strong as thought. This would be good news for bonds, but this data is known to be quite volatile from month-to-month. Therefore, it will take a large variance from forecasts for this report to have a noticeable impact on Friday's mortgage rates.

 Overall, I suspect that Wednesday or Friday will likely be the most active days for mortgage rates with today or Tuesday being the calmest. I am expecting to see much less movement in rates this week than we saw last week. Still, you should maintain contact with your mortgage professional if still floating an interest rate as the markets can defy logic at any time, as we saw during last week’s activities.

 If I were considering financing/refinancing a home, I would.... Lock if my closing was taking place within 7 days... Lock if my closing was taking place between 8 and 20 days... Float if my closing was taking place between 21 and 60 days... Float if my closing was taking place over 60 days from now... This is only my opinion of what I would do if I were financing a home. It is only an opinion and cannot be guaranteed to be in the best interest of all/any other borrowers.

 Empire Home Mortgage Inc. is a registered Mortgage Broker with the New York and Florida State Banking Departments and our loans are arranged through third party providers.