What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week – February 6, 2023

What's Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week - February 6, 2023Last week’s economic reporting included readings on home price growth from S&P Case-Shiller and the Federal Housing Finance Administration. Monthly reports on job growth and unemployment were released by the federal government and ADP. Weekly readings on mortgage rates and jobless claims were also released.

S&P Case-Shiller HPI: Home Prices Drop in November

S&P Case-Shiller Home Price Indices revealed that U.S. home prices fell for the fifth consecutive month in November. The National Home Price Index fell by -3.1 percent year over year in November as compared to a positive reading of 2.8 percent home price growth in October. Miami, Florida, Tampa, Florida, and Atlanta, Georgia held the top three places in the 20-City Home Price Index. Detroit, Michigan was the only city to post a positive reading for home price growth in November’s 20-City Home Price Index.

The Federal Housing Finance Agency, which oversees Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, reported that prices of homes owned or financed by the two government-sponsored enterprises fell by 0.10 percent in November. Analysts expect that home prices will continue to fall in the coming months.

Mortgage Rates and Jobless Claims

Average fixed mortgage rates fell last week. Freddie Mac reported that the rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages fell by four basis points to 6.09 percent. Rates for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages fell by three basis points to 5.14 percent.

183,000 first-time jobless claims were filed as compared to the expected reading of 195,000 new jobless claims and the previous week’s reading of 186,000 first-time jobless claims filed. 1.66 million continuing jobless claims were filed as compared to the previous week’s reading of 1.67 million ongoing jobless claims filed.

Public and Private Sector Job Growth

The federal government’s Non-Farm payrolls report for January posted 517,000 jobs added as compared to the expected reading of 187,000 jobs added and December’s reading of 260,000 jobs added.ADP reported 106,000 private-sector jobs added in January as compared to expectations of 190,000 jobs added and December’s reading of 253,000 private-sector jobs added.

The national unemployment rate for January was 3.4 percent; analysts expected an unemployment rate of 3.6 percent and December’s unemployment rate was 3.5 percent. 

What’s Ahead

This week’s scheduled economic news includes readings on consumer sentiment, inflation, and weekly readings on mortgage rates and jobless claims.

What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week – January 30, 2023

What's Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week - January 30, 2023Last week’s economic reporting included readings on new and pending home sales, inflation, and consumer sentiment. Weekly readings on mortgage rates and jobless claims were also released.

New home sales increase in December

The Commerce Department reported new home sales rose to a seasonally-adjusted annual pace of 616,000 sales in December as compared to the expected pace of 615,000  new homes sales and November’s revised reading of 602,000 annual sales. December was the third consecutive month that the pace of new home sales rose, but new home sales remained well below the 1.04 million sales peak reported in August 2020.

Pending home sales rose by 2.5 percent in December, which outpaced expectations of a one percent decrease in pending sales and November’s seasonally-adjusted annual decrease of  -2.6 percent in pending home sales. New home sales are 26.6 percent lower than they were one year ago.

Month-to-month inflation slows in December

The Commerce Department reported that month-to-month inflation rose by 0.1 percent in  December, which matched November’s month-to-month reading. Core inflation rose by 0.1 percent in December to 0.3 percent and matched analyst expectations. Core inflation readings exclude volatile food and fuel sectors that comprise major expenses for many U.S. households.

Year-over-year inflation rose by 5.0 percent in December as compared to November’s pace of 5.5 percent. Core inflation rose  4.4 percent in December, which matched analyst expectations, but fell short of November’s year-over-year reading of 4.7 percent for core inflation.

Mortgage rates, initial jobless claims fall

Freddie Mac reported lower average mortgage rates last week as the rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages fell by two basis points to 6.13 percent. The average rate for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages fell by 11 basis points to 5.17 percent.

First-time jobless claims fell to 186,000 filings as compared to the expected reading of 205,000 initial jobless claims and the previous week’s reading of 192,000 new jobless claims filed. Continuing jobless claims rose to 1.68 million ongoing claims as compared to the previous week’s reading of 1.66 million continuing jobless claims filed.

Consumer sentiment strengthens in January

The University of Michigan’s Consumer Sentiment Index rose to an index reading of 64.9 in January, which surpassed the expected reading of 64.6 and December’s final index reading of 64.6. Readings over 50 indicate that a majority of consumers surveyed have a positive outlook on the economy. Falling gasoline prices contributed to an improved consumer outlook, but grocery prices remained high.

What’s ahead

This week’s scheduled economic reporting includes readings on U.S. home prices, The Federal Reserve’s Federal Open Market Committee meeting, and Fed Chair Jerome Powell’s scheduled press conference. Labor-sector reports on job growth and the national unemployment rate will also be released.

What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week – January 23, 2023

What's Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week - January 23, 2023

Last week’s economic reporting included readings from the National Association of Home Builders on U.S. housing markets, and Commerce Department data on housing starts and building permits issued. The National Association of Realtors® reported sales of previously owned homes, and weekly readings on mortgage rates and jobless claims were also released.

NAHB: Homebuilder Sentiment Rises in December

The National Association of Home Builders reported increased homebuilder confidence in U.S. housing market conditions in December; this was the first time in 12 months that homebuilder confidence rose. Builder confidence in current housing market conditions rose by four points; builder confidence in home sales conditions over the next six months increased by two points. Builder confidence in prospective buyer traffic in new housing developments rose by three points.

Jerry Konter, a Georgia home builder and chairman of NAHB, said: “It appears that the low point for building sent in this cycle was registered in December, even as many builders continue to use a variety of incentives including price reductions to bolster sales.  The rise in builder sentiment also means that cycle lows for permits and starts are likely near, and a rebound for homebuilding could be underway later in 2023.”

Robert Dietz, the NAHB’s chief economist, predicted that single-family home building will increase as mortgage rates are expected to trend lower and boost housing affordability. Mr. Dietz said, “Improved housing affordability will increase housing demand as the nation grapples with a structural housing deficit of 1.5 million units.”

Mortgage Rates, New Jobless Claims Fall

Freddie Mac reported lower mortgage rates last week as the average rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages fell by 18 basis points to 6.15 percent. Rates for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages averaged 5.28 percent and were 24 basis points lower on average.

First-time jobless claims fell to 190,000 claims filed as compared to expectations of 215,000 initial claims filed and the previous week’s reading of 205,000 new jobless claims filed. Ongoing jobless claims increased to 1.65 million claims filed compared to the previous week’s reading of 1.63 million continuing jobless claims.

What’s Ahead

This week’s scheduled economic reporting includes readings on new and pending home sales, consumer sentiment, and predictions on inflation. Weekly readings on mortgage rates and jobless claims will also be published. 

What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week – January 9, 2023

What's Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week - January 9, 2023Last week’s economic reporting included readings on minutes of the most recent Federal Open Market Committee meeting and its customary post-meeting press conference, labor-sector data on public and private-sector jobs, and the national unemployment rate. Weekly readings on mortgage rates and jobless claims were also released.

FOMC Meeting: Policymakers seek a balance between high inflation and rising rates

The minutes of the Federal Open Market Committee meeting held on December 13 and 14 reflect committee members’ concern over controlling rapidly growing inflation while avoiding a recession. While committee members said that they made “significant progress” in raising rates to cut inflation, members said they needed to avoid raising rates too fast and creating a recession. Policymakers asked for “flexibility” from investors and consumers.

The Fed’s monetary policy actions depend on economic developments; if high inflation persists, policymakers will likely continue raising the Fed’s target interest rate range. If inflation eases, so will the Fed’s pace of raising its target interest rate range. The Fed re-asserted its goal of achieving two percent inflationary growth. The meeting minutes emphasized that the Committee’s decision to slow the pace of interest rate growth did not indicate any changes to the Fed’s goal of two percent inflation.

Mortgage rates rise, jobless claims fall

Freddie Mac reported higher mortgage rates last week as the average rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages rose by six basis points to 6.48 percent. The average rate for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages was five basis points higher at 5.73 percent.

204,000 new jobless claims were filed last week, which fell short of the expected reading of 223,000 initial claims filed and the previous week’s reading, also of 223,000 first-time claims filed. Continuing jobless claims fell to 1.69 million claims filed as compared to the previous week’s reading of 1.72 million ongoing claims filed.

The national unemployment rate fell to 3.5 percent in December as compared to 3.6 percent n November and the expected unemployment rate of 3.7 percent.

What’s Ahead

This week’s scheduled economic reporting includes readings on month-to-month and year-over-year inflation and weekly readings on mortgage rates and jobless claims.

What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week – January 2, 2023

What's Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week - January 2, 2023Last week’s economic reporting included readings on U.S. housing markets, pending home sales, and weekly readings on mortgage rates and jobless claims.

S&P Case Shiller Home Price Indices:  Month-to-moth home prices fall in October

U.S. home prices fell in October for the fourth consecutive month. Wavering demand for homes was caused by rising mortgage rates and high home prices in many regional markets. The 20-City home price index showed the top three cities with the highest month-to-month home price declines were Miami. Florida with a -1.0 percent decline, Tampa, Florida where home prices declined by -0,8 percent, and Charlotte, North Carolina where home prices dropped by -0.9 percent month-to-month in October.

Year-over-year home prices rose by 21 percent in Miami, Florida; year-over-year home prices rose by 20.5 percent in Tampa, Florida. Charlotte, North Carolina reported a year-over-year home price gain of 15.0 percent as of October.

The Federal Housing Finance Agency reported that home price growth was flat from September to October as compared to a month-to-month gain of 0.10 percent in September. Analysts said that high home prices and mortgage rates have decreased demand for homes as would-be buyers face affordability issues and strict mortgage credit requirements.

Mortgage Rates Mixed, Jobless Claims Rise

Freddie Mac reported higher fixed mortgage rates last week as the average rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages rose by 15 basis points to 6.42 percent. Rates for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages fell by one basis point to an average of 5.68 percent.

New jobless claims rose last week to 225,000 initial claims filed as compared to 216,000 initial claims filed in the previous week. Analysts expected a reading of 223,000 first-time jobless claims filed. Ongoing jobless claims rose last week with 1.71 million continuing jobless claims filed as compared to 1.67 million continuing jobless claims filed in the previous week.

What’s Ahead

This week’s scheduled economic news includes readings on construction spending, minutes of the most recent Federal Open Market Committee meeting, and public and private-sector jobs data. Weekly reports on mortgage rates and jobless claims will also be released.

What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week – December 26, 2022

What's Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week - December 26, 2022Last week’s economic scheduled economic news included readings on sales of previously-owned homes, housing starts,  and building permits issued. Readings on the Consumer Price Index, which tracks inflation, were also released along with weekly readings on mortgage rates and jobless claims.

Sales of previously-owned homes fall in November

The National Association of Realtors® reported fewer sales of previously-owned homes in November than in October. 4.09 million previously-owned homes were sold year-over-year in November as compared to 4.43 million sales reported in October. This was the tenth consecutive month showing fewer sales of previously-owned homes. Although mortgage rates and home prices have eased recently, it will take additional time for would-be buyers to adjust their budgets during and after the winter holiday season.

The  Commerce Department reported 1.34 million building permits issued in November; analysts expected a reading of 1.48 million permits issued as compared to October’s reading of 1.51 million permits issued. The onset of winter weather typically impacts building permits issued and rising concerns about inflation and recession also sidelined home builders who took a “wait-and-see” position about current economic conditions.

Housing starts were unchanged in November with 1.43 million housing starts reported on a seasonally-adjusted annual basis. Analysts expected a reading of 1.40 million starts in November.

Mortgage Rates. Inflation, and Jobless Claims

Freddie Mac reported mixed readings for average mortgage rates last week as the average for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages fell by four basis points to 6.27 percent. The average rate for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages rose by 15 basis points to 5.69 percent.

Month-to-month inflation rose by 0.10 percent in November as compared to an increase of 0.40 percent in October. The average rate for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages rose by 15 basis points to 5.69 percent.

Core inflation, which excludes volatile food and fuel sectors, rose by 0.20 percent as compared to October’s month-to-month increase of 0.30 percent. Year-over-year inflation rose by 5.50 percent in November as compared to October’s year-over-year inflation rate of  6.10 percent.

216,000  first-time jobless claims were filed last week, which fell short of the expected reading of 220,000 initial claims filed but surpassed the prior week’s reading of  214,000 new jobless claims filed. The final consumer sentiment report for December showed an index reading of 59.7 as compared to the expected reading of 59.1 and November’s index reading of 59.1.

What’s Ahead

This week’s scheduled economic reporting includes readings on U.S. housing markets, pending home sales, and weekly readings on mortgage rates and jobless claims. 

What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week – December 19, 2202

What's Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week - December 19, 2202Last week’s economic reporting included readings on inflation, retail sales, and the Federal Reserve’s Federal Open Market Committee meeting.  Fed Chair Jerome  Powell held his scheduled post-meeting press conference and weekly readings on mortgage rates and jobless claims were also released.

Federal Reserve Raises Target Interest Rate Range

The Federal Reserve’s Federal Open Market Committee announced its decision to raise the Fed’s target interest rate range to 4.25 to 4.50 percent from its previous range of 3.75 to 4.00 percent.

Fed Chair Jerome Powell said in remarks made during his scheduled press conference, “We’re going into next year with higher inflation than we thought.” Seven Fed officials predicted rising interest rates with the Fed’s interest rate range potentially reaching 5.75 percent. Analysts said that the Fed’s position of controlling inflation at any cost could result in a recession. Chair Powell said it was impossible to predict if a recession would occur and how deep it might go and how long it could last. He repeated the Fed’s commitment to controlling high inflation.

Mortgage Rates, Jobless Claims  Fall

Freddie Mac reported lower fixed mortgage rates last week as the average rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages dropped by two basis points to 6.31 percent. The average rate for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages dropped by 13 basis points to 5.54 percent.

Initial jobless claims fell to 211,000 first-time claims filed as compared to the prior week’s reading of 231,000 new jobless claims filed. Continuing jobless claims were reported as unchanged from the prior week with 167,000 ongoing unemployment claims filed.

The Commerce Department reported lower retail sales in November than in October. Retail sales decreased by -0.6 percent in November, which surpassed analysts’ estimates of -0.3 percent. Lower retail sales could suggest an impending recession as consumers hold back on paying rapidly rising prices for non-essential goods and services.

What’s Ahead

This week’s scheduled economic reporting includes readings from the National Association of Home Builders on U.S. housing markets and Commerce Department data on building permits issued and housing starts. Reports on sales of new and previously-owned homes and weekly readings on mortgage rates and jobless claims will also be released.

What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week – December 12, 2022

What's Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week - December 12, 2022Last week’s scheduled economic reports included preliminary monthly readings on inflation and consumer sentiment along with weekly reporting on mortgage rates and jobless claims.

University of Michigan Reports Slower Inflationary Growth

The University of Michigan predicted lower inflationary growth as December’s year-over-year reading for inflation fell to 4.6 percent from November’s year-over-year reading of 4.9 percent. This was the lowest inflation reading since September 2021. Analysts credited lower gasoline prices for slowing rapid inflation rates seen in recent months.

Falling gas prices also contributed to higher consumer sentiment levels reported in December’s edition of the University of Michigan’s Consumer Sentiment Index. Consumer sentiment rose to an index reading of 59.1 in December as compared to November’s reading of 56.8 and analysts’ expected reading of 56.5.

Component readings for current consumer sentiment data included consumer sentiment regarding current economic conditions and consumer views about economic conditions within the next six months. December’s index reading for consumer views of current economic conditions rose to 60.2  from November’s index reading of 58.8. The index reading for consumer views of economic conditions within the next six months rose to 58.4 from November’s reading of 55.6.

Mortgage Rates Fall, Jobless Claims Rise

Freddie Mac reported lower average mortgage rates last week as the average rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages fell by 16 basis points to 6.33 percent. The average rate for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages fell by nine basis points to 5.67 percent.

First-time jobless claims rose to 230,000 claims from the previous week’s reading of 225,000 initial claims filed. Ongoing jobless claims also increased last week with 1.67 million continuing claims filed as compared to the previous week’s reading of 1.61 million ongoing jobless claims filed.

What’s Ahead

This week’s scheduled economic events include reports on inflation, the post-meeting statement of the Fed’s Federal Open Market Committee, and Fed Chair Jerome Powell’s press conference after the FOMC statement.

What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week – December 5, 2022

What's Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week - December 5, 2022Last week’s economic news included readings on home prices, inflation, and data on public and private-sector jobs. Weekly readings on mortgage rates and jobless claims were also released.

S&P Case-Shiller Posts Lower Home Prices in September

September home prices fell in all cities tracked by Case-Shiller’s 20-City Home Price Index. Home prices were – 8.7 percent lower year-over-year in September than August’s reading of -10.40 percent. Home price declines showed signs of increasing after a period of rapidly rising home prices sidelined would-be home buyers.

The Federal Housing Finance Agency Home Price Index rose by 0.90 percent in September as compared to home price depreciation of -7.50 percent posted in August. Home prices rose in all 50 states and the District of Columbia between Q3 2021 and Q3 2022. States with the highest year-over-year home price growth were Florida with 22.7 percent home price growth, South Carolina with 18.4 percent home price growth, and Tennessee, where home prices rose by 17.9 percent growth. North Carolina experienced 17.4  percent growth in home prices and Georgia completed the top 5 states with the highest home price growth with 16.7 percent home price growth.

Home prices decreased in two metro areas in California; the San Francisco-San Mateo-Redwood City metro area posted a -4.3 percent decrease in home prices and the Oakland-Berkeley-Livermore metro area where home prices decreased by -0.60 percent.

Mortgage Rates, Jobless Claims

Freddie Mac reported lower mortgage rates last week as the average rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages decreased by nine basis points to 6.49 percent. The average rate for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages fell by 14 basis points to 5.76 percent.

225,000 new jobless claims were filed last week as compared to an expected reading of 235,000 first-time claims filed and the previous week’s reading of 241,000 new jobless claims filed. 1.61 million continuing jobless claims were filed last week as compared to 1.55 million ongoing claims filed in the previous week.

The federal government’s Non-Farm Payrolls report for November showed 263,000 public and private-sector jobs added in November; analysts expected 200,000 jobs added based on October’s reading of 284,000 jobs added. ADP reported 127,000 private-sector jobs added in November as compared to analysts’ expectations of 190,000 private–sector jobs added and September’s reading of  239,000 private-sector jobs added. The national unemployment rate was unchanged from the previous week at 3.7 percent.

What’s Ahead

This week’s scheduled economic reports include readings from the University of Michigan on consumer sentiment and consumer expectations for inflation in the next five years. Weekly readings on mortgage rates and jobless claims will also be published.

What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week – November 28, 2022

What's Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week - November 28, 2022

Last week’s economic reporting included readings on new home sales and consumer sentiment. Weekly readings on mortgage rates and jobless claims were also published. No economic data was published Thursday or Friday due to the Thanksgiving holiday.

New Home Sales Surpass Expectations in October

The Commerce Department reported higher-than-expected sales of new homes during October. New homes sold at a seasonally-adjusted annual pace of 632,000 homes sold.  Analysts expected new homes to sell at an annual pace of 570,000 sales as compared to the revised annual pace of 588,000 new home sales in September. The supply of available new homes rose by 1.50 percent between September and October and approached a nine-month supply of new homes for sale. Rising mortgage rates affected affordability for first-time and moderate-income home buyers, but average mortgage rates fell last week.

Mortgage Rates Fall, Jobless Claims Rise

Freddie Mac reported lower average mortgage rates last week as the average rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages fell by three basis points to 6.58 percent and the average rate for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages fell by eight basis points to 5.90 percent. Homebuilders reported rising costs and slowing home sales; some builders added or increased buyer incentives including mortgage rate buydowns and paying buyers’ closing costs.

Last week’s first-time jobless claims were higher than expected with 240,000 new claims filed as compared to the expected reading of 225,000 initial claims filed and the previous week’s reading of  223,000 new jobless claims filed.

Consumer sentiment fell to an index reading of 56.8 in November according to the University of Michigan’s consumer sentiment survey. November’s reading reflected consumer concerns about inflation and a potential recession and was markedly lower than October’s index reading of 59.9 and the October 2021 reading of 73.6. Consumer sentiment about economic conditions in the next six months was also lower at an index reading of  55.6. Readings over 50 indicate that most consumers have a positive view of economic conditions.

What’s Ahead

This week’s scheduled economic news includes readings on home prices, pending home sales, and inflation. Weekly readings on mortgage rates and jobless claims will also be released.