Home borrowing costs inched lower this week and remain at historically low levels. Freddie Mac reports that the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage fell to 2.93% this week from 2.99% last week with 0.7 in points and fees. A year ago at this time, the rate was 3.13%. It is up from 2.65% on January 7 of this year. Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s Chief Economist said, “While mortgage rates are low, purchase demand has weakened over the last couple of months, primarily due to affordability constraints stemming from high home prices. With inventory tight, the slowdown in demand has yet to impact prices, meaning the summer will likely remain a strong seller’s market.”
First-time unemployment claims rose last week for the first time in seven weeks as the labor market continues to get back to full strength. Weekly Initial Jobless Claims rose to 412,000 for the week ended June 12, 2021, from 375,000 in the previous week. To put it into perspective, the week of April 4, 2020 claims were over 6 million as the shutdowns took hold. Continuing claims, or those receiving benefits for at least two weeks straight, were at 3.518 million from 3.517 million. With all U.S. having reopened their economies, many unemployed Americans should be able to go back to work with nine million jobs available across the nation.