What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week – August 8, 2022

What's Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week - August 8, 2022

Last week’s economic reports included readings on construction spending, government reports on jobs, and the national unemployment rate. Weekly reports on mortgage rates and jobless claims were also released.

Commerce Department Reports Construction Spending Rose in May

The U.S. Commerce Department initially reported less construction spending in May but revised its reading of $1.780 trillion to show that spending rose by 0.10 percent in May to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of $1.782 trillion. Analysts expected construction spending to rise by 0.40 percent month-to-month as compared to April’s reading of  0.10 percent growth. Construction spending grew by 8.30 percent year-over-year. Concerns over high inflation and affordability of homes presented ongoing concerns for home builders,

Mortgage Rates Fall, Jobless Claims Rise

Freddie Mac reported lower average mortgage rates last week as the rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages fell by 31 basis points to 4.99 percent. Rates for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages averaged 32 basis points lower at 4.26 percent. 5/1 adjustable rate mortgages averaged 0.04 basis points lower at 4.25 percent. Discount points averaged 0.80 percent for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages and 0.6 percent for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages. Rates for 5/1 adjustable rate mortgages averaged 4.25 percent and were four basis points lower with discount points averaging 0.30 percent.

Initial jobless claims rose to 260,000 new claims as compared to the previous week’s reading of 254,000 first-time claims filed. Continuing jobless claims also rose with 1.42 million claims filed; 1.37 million ongoing claims were filed in the previous week.

Non-Farm Payrolls rose by 528,000 jobs in July, which was more than twice the predicted reading of 258,000 jobs added and more jobs added than in June, when 398,000 jobs were added. The national unemployment rate fell to 3.50 percent in July from June’s reading of 3.60 percent. While job growth suggested increasing economic stability, uncertainty over inflation and consumer concerns about high prices for housing, gas, and food kept optimism in check.

What’s Ahead

This week’s scheduled economic reporting includes readings on inflation and the University of Michigan’s preliminary monthly report on consumer sentiment along with weekly readings on mortgage rates and jobless claims.  

What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week – August 1, 2022

What's Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week - August 1, 2022Last week’s economic news included readings on home price growth, new and pending home sales, and inflation. Weekly reports on mortgage rates and jobless claims were also released.

S&P Case-Shiller: Home Price Growth Slows in May

Home prices rose at a slower pace in May according to the S&P Case-Shiller National Home Price Index. Year-over-year home prices rose by 19.70 percent in May as compared to April’s year-over-year reading of 20.60 percent in home price appreciation. Tampa, Florida led S&P Case-Shiller’s 20-City Home Price Index with 36.10 percent year-over-year home price growth. Miami, Florida followed with 34.00 percent home price appreciation. Dallas, Texas reported a 30.80 percent growth rate in home prices.

The Federal Housing Finance Agency, which oversees Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, reported 1.40 percent growth in home prices month-to-month and 18.30 percent growth year-over-year for May. FHFA data covers purchase-only transactions associated with home loans owned or backed by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Analysts said that slower growth in home prices signaled a cooling market after years of rapidly rising home prices.

The Commerce Department reported the lowest number of new home sales since the pandemic. New homes sold at a seasonally-adjusted annual pace of 590,000 sales in June as compared to May’s reading of 642,000 sales. Rising mortgage rates and high home prices eroded affordability for first-time and moderate-income home buyers.

Mortgage Rates and Jobless Claims Fall

Freddie Mac reported lower mortgage rates last week as rates for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages fell by 24 basis points to 5.30 percent; rates for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages averaged 4.58 percent and 17 basis points lower than for the previous week. Rates for 5/1 adjustable rate mortgages averaged 4.29 percent and were two basis points lower on average. Discount points averaged 0.80 percent for fixed-rate mortgages and 0.30 percent for 5/1 adjustable rate mortgages.

Fewer first-time jobless claims were filed last week with 256,000 claims filed as compared to the previous week’s reading of 261,000 initial claims filed. Analysts expected 249,000 first-time jobless claims to be filed last week.

The Federal Reserve moved to slow inflation by raising its target interest rate range from 1.50 percent to 1.75 percent to 2.25 to 2.50 percent. Interest rates are expected to rise for consumer loans, credit cards, and variable-rate education loans. The Commerce Department’s personal consumption price index rose by one percent in June, which was the fastest month-to-month growth rate in 40 years. Analysts expected inflation to increase by 0.90 percent.  

What’s Ahead

This week’s scheduled economic reporting includes readings on construction spending and job growth; weekly readings on mortgage rates and jobless claims will also be released. 

What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week – July 25, 2022

What's Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week - July 25, 2022Last week’s economic news included readings from the National Association of Home Builders on home prices, Commerce Department readings on building permits issued, and housing starts.  The National Association of Realtors® reported on sales of previously-owned homes; weekly reports on mortgage rates and jobless claims were also released.

NAHB Housing Market Index Posts Lowest Reading Since May 2020

The housing market is cooling off according to July’s NAHB Housing Market Index, which declined to an index reading of 55 as compared to June’s reading of 67 and the expected reading of 66. July’s reading was the second lowest posted since the start of the index and was the seventh consecutive monthly decline in home prices.

Component readings for the Housing Market Index were also lower. Homebuilder confidence in sales conditions over the next six months lost 11 points for an index reading of 50 points. Homebuilders surveyed were less certain about expected buyer traffic in new housing developments as July’s reading decreased by 11 points to 37.

Regional results were also lower as builder confidence in the Northeastern region slipped by five points to an index reading of 57. Home builder confidence in the Midwestern regions fell by six points to 49. The Southern region’s reading was 15 points lower in July with an index reading of 60; home builder confidence in current market conditions in the Western region declined from June’s reading of 64 to 48 in July. Coastal metro areas that enjoyed rapidly rising home values saw declines in home values as affordability and demand for high-priced homes shrank amid economic uncertainty.

June Sales of Previously-Owned Homes Fall as Mortgage Rates Rise

Sales of previously-owned homes fell in June with 5.12 million sales completed on a seasonally-adjusted annual basis. Analysts expected a reading of 5.36 million sales; 5.41 million sales of previously-owned homes were reported in May. Rapidly rising mortgage rates and inflation sidelined prospective home buyers concerned about higher closing costs and rising day-to-day living expenses.

Freddie Mac reported higher fixed mortgage rates last week as rates for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages averaged 5.54 percent and three basis points higher. 15-year fixed-rate mortgages averaged 4.75 percent and were eight basis points higher. Rates for 5/1 adjustable-rate mortgages averaged  4.31 percent and four basis points lower than in the previous week. Discount points averaged 0.80 percent for fixed-rate mortgages and 0.30 percent for 5/1 adjustable-rate mortgages.

Initial jobless claims rose to 251,000 new claims filed as compared to the prior week’s reading of 244,000 new jobless claims filed and the expected reading of 240,000 first-time claims filed. 1.38 million ongoing jobless claims were filed last week as compared to the prior week’s reading of 1.33 million continuing claims filed.

What’s Ahead

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

What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week – July 18, 2022

What's Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week - July 18, 2022Inflation dominated last week’s economic readings and predictions as it hit a year-over-year growth rate of  9.10 percent in July. Inflation reached its highest year-over-year growth rate since 1981. Gasoline prices eased somewhat, but not enough to provide relief against a backdrop of high housing and food prices. Low and moderate-income consumers were disproportionately impacted as rents rose beyond near-record inflation and home prices remained out of reach for many would-be home buyers.

Inflation Causing Hardship for Moderate-Income Consumers

Consumers faced with rapidly growing expenses turned to credit cards for purchasing food and household items; this trend suggests that as interest rates rise, more households could experience increasing financial stress as paying off consumer debt becomes more difficult.

The Consumer Price Index rose by 1.3 percent in June on a month-to-month basis; analysts expected a month-to-month reading of 1.1 percent inflationary growth based on May’s reading of 1.0 percent growth. The core Consumer Price Index, which excludes volatile food and fuel sectors, rose by 0.70 percent in June and exceeded analysts’ expected reading of 0.50 percent growth and May’s month-to-month reading of 0.60 percent growth.

Year-over-year inflation reached 9.10 percent in June and surpassed analysts’ expectations of 8.80 percent- year-over-year-inflationary growth and May’s year-over-year reading of 8.60 percent growth. Core inflation rose by 5.90 percent year-over-year in June and fell short of analysts’ forecasts of 5.7 percent year-over-year growth. May’s year-over-year reading for inflationary growth was 6.0 percent and could suggest that inflation has peaked.

Mortgage Rates Rise After Fed Raises Key Interest Rate Range

Although the Federal Reserve raised its key interest rate range in an attempt to slow inflation, mortgage rates also rose last week. Freddie Mac reported that rates for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages rose by 21 basis points to 5.51 percent on average. Rates for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages averaged 22 basis points higher at 4.67 percent. The average rate for 5/1 adjustable rate mortgages was 16 basis points higher at 4.35 percent; discount points averaged 0.80 percent for fixed-rate mortgages and 0.20 percent for 5/1 adjustable rate mortgages.

New jobless claims rose last week with 244,000 first-time claims filed as compared to the previous week’s reading of 235,000 initial jobless claims filed. Fewer ongoing jobless claims were filed last week with 1.33 million continuing claims filed as compared to the prior week’s reading of 1.37 million ongoing jobless claims filed.

Consumer concerns over inflation eased in July with a preliminary reading of 51.1 reported in the University of Michigan’s preliminary consumer confidence index. Any reading over 50 indicates that most consumers surveyed were confident about current economic conditions.

What’s Ahead

This week’s scheduled economic reporting includes readings on home prices, building permits issued, and housing starts. Data on sales of previously-owned homes will be released along with weekly readings on mortgage rates and jobless claims.  

 

What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week – June 21, 2022

What's Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week - June 20, 2022Last week’s economic news included reporting on home builder confidence in national and regional housing markets, a post-meeting statement from the Federal Reserve’s Federal Open Market Committee, and Fed Chair Jerome Powell’s news conference. The National Association of Home Builders released its national and regional housing market indices. Weekly readings on mortgage rates and jobless claims were also published.

NAHB Housing Market Indices Reflect Slowing Growth in Housing Markets

June readings from the National Association of Home Builders showed slower growth in builder confidence in current and future U.S. housing markets. The NAHB reported the lowest reading in two years for June’s housing market indices as builder confidence fell for the sixth consecutive month. June’s index reading for the National Housing Market index fell two points to 67 and matched analysts’ forecasts. Readings over 50 indicate a majority of home builders are positive about housing market conditions.

NAHB chair Jerry Konter said, “Six consecutive monthly declines in home builder confidence is a clear sign of a slowing housing market in a high inflation, slow growth economic environment.” Mr. Konter also noted the impact of rising mortgage rates on entry-level and moderate-income home buyers: “Entry-level markets were particularly affected by declines in housing affordability…builders are adopting a more cautious stance as demand softens with higher mortgage rates.” Rising mortgage rates added to builders’ ongoing concerns with high materials costs and shortages of skilled workers.

NAHB’s regional homebuilder indices also declined with homebuilder sentiment in the West falling by nine points; the Midwestern regional index dropped by six points. Home builder sentiment decreased by two points in the South and by one point in the Northeast.

On Wednesday, the Federal Open Market Committee of the Federal Reserve announced that it would raise its benchmark interest rate range by 0.75 percent in its attempts to slow inflation. The Federal Reserve has a dual mandate of maintaining inflation at or near two percent and achieving maximum employment. The Fed is expected to raise its key rate range into 2024 in its efforts to ease inflation.

Mortgage Rates Rise, Jobless Claims Fall

Freddie Mac reported a jump in average mortgage rates last week after the Fed announced its decision to raise its benchmark interest rate range to 0.75 to 1.00 percent. This was the highest federal funds range increase since 1981. The average rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages rose by 55 basis points to 5.78 percent; the average rate for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages rose by 43 basis points to 4.81 percent. The average rate for 5/1 adjustable rate mortgages rose by 21 basis points to 4.33 percent. Discount points averaged 0.90 percent for fixed-rate mortgages and 0.30 percent for 5/1 adjustable rate mortgages.

Initial jobless claims fell to 229,000 first-time claims filed last week as compared to the prior week’s reading of 232,000 first-time claims filed and the expected reading of 220,000 new jobless claims filed. Last week’s reading for continuing jobless claims was unchanged with 1.31 million ongoing claims filed.

What’s Ahead

This week’s scheduled economic news includes readings on sales of previously owned homes and testimony by Fed chair Jerome Powell to the Senate Banking Committee and the House Financial Services Committee. The University of Michigan will release its monthly index reading on consumer sentiment and weekly readings on mortgage rates and jobless claims will also be released. 

What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week – June 13, 2022

What's Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week - June 13, 2022

Last week’s economic reporting was highly focused on inflation, which grew at its fastest pace since 1981. Rising fuel and food prices boosted inflation in the U.S. and abroad; Analysts said the Ukraine War and supply chain problems continued to drive inflation. Weekly readings on mortgage rates and jobless claims were also released.

Inflation Hits Highest Level in 41 Years

The government’s Consumer Price Index, which tracks inflation, rose at a month-to-month pace of 1.0 percent in May compared to the expected reading of 0.70 percent and April’s reading of 0.30 percent growth. May’s Core Consumer Price Index, which excludes food and fuel sectors, rose by 0.60 percent month-to-month.

Year-over-year readings for inflation also increased in May as inflation rose by 8.60 percent compared to an expected reading of 

8.30 percent growth that matched April’s reading for year-over-year inflation. The year-over-year core Consumer Price Index rose by 6.0 percent in May compared to expectations of 5.90 percent and April’s year-over-year reading of 6.20 percent growth in consumer prices. Consumers felt the most pain paying higher rents and dealing with rising food and fuel prices. These categories represent a significant portion of household expenses and there was no immediate relief in sight. The Federal Reserve plans to raise its key interest rate range every month as it attempts to slow rapid inflation.

Mortgage Rates, Jobless Claims Rise

Freddie Mac reported higher average mortgage rates last week as rates for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages rose by 14 basis points to 5.23 percent; rates for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages averaged six basis points higher at 4.38 percent. Rates for 5/1 adjustable rate mortgages loans were eight basis points higher at 4.12 percent. Discount points for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages averaged 0.90 percent and 0.80 percent for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages. Discount points for 5/1 adjustable rate mortgages averaged 0.30 percent. Ongoing shortages of available homes and rising materials costs continued boosting home prices and eroding affordability for first-time and moderate-income home buyers.

Initial jobless claims increased last week with 229,000 first-time claims filed compared to the prior week’s reading of 202,000 initial claims filed. Continuing jobless claims were unchanged last week with 1.31 million ongoing claims filed.

What’s Ahead

This week’s scheduled economic reports include readings on housing markets, building permits issued, and housing starts. The Federal Reserve’s Federal Open Market Committee will release its post-meeting statement and Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell will give a post-meeting press conference. Weekly readings on mortgage rates and jobless claims will also be released.

What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week – June 6, 2022

What's Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week - June 6, 2022Last week’s economic reporting included readings from S&P Case-Shiller Home Price Indices, The Federal Housing Finance Agency on home prices for homes owned or financed by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, and reporting on Construction spending. Weekly readings on mortgage rates and jobless claims were also released.

S&P Case-Shiller: Home Prices Rise in March, but Affordability May Slow Future Gains

National home prices grew at a year-over-year pace of 20.60 percent in March according to S&P Case-Shiller’s National Home Price Index. The 20-City and 10-City Composite Indices also showed continuing growth in home prices, but analysts cautioned that rising home prices and mortgage rates would soon slow gains in home prices.

The average rate for a 30-year fixed rate mortgage nearly doubled year-over-year from 2.75 percent last fall to approximately 5.25 percent currently. Ongoing high demand for homes continues to drive prices up as buyers compete for short supplies of available homes. This continues to create obstacles for first-time and moderate-income home buyers who cannot compete in bidding wars or qualify for mortgages needed to finance inflated home prices.

The 20-City Home Price Index saw Phoenix, Arizona lose its long-held first-place position to Tampa, Florida, which reported a  year-over-year gain of 34.80 percent; Phoenix, Arizona reported year-over-year home price growth of  32.40 percent, and home prices in Miami Florida rose by 32.00 percent.

Craig Lazzara, a Managing Director at S&P Dow Jones Indices, said, “Those of us who have been anticipating a deceleration in the growth of U.S home prices will have to wait at least a month longer.” Analysts expect affordability to slow rapid home price growth as high home prices and mortgage rates erode affordability, but Mr. Lazzara said that there was no way to know exactly when home price growth would start to slow down.

The Federal Housing Finance Agency, which oversees Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, reported that home prices for single-family homes owned or financed by the two government-sponsored enterprises rose by 19.00 percent year-over-year.

Mortgage Rates Hold Steady, Jobless Claims Decline

Freddie Mac reported little change in mortgage rates last week. Rates for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages averaged 5.09 percent and were one basis point lower; the average rate for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages rose by one basis point to 4.32 percent. Rates for 5/1 adjustable rate mortgages dropped by 16 basis points to 4.40 percent. Discount points averaged 0.80 percent for fixed-rate mortgages and 0.30 percent for 5/1 adjustable rate mortgages.

New jobless claims fell last week to 200,000 initial claims filed; 211,000 first-time claims were filed in the previous week. Fewer continuing jobless claims were filed last week with 1.31 million ongoing claims filed as compared to the previous week’s reading of 1.34 million continuing jobless claims filed.

The Commerce Department reported slower construction spending in April, with month-to-month growth of 0.20 percent as compared to the March reading of 0.30 percent and the expected reading of 0.50 percent growth.

What’s Ahead

This week’s scheduled economic reporting includes several readings on consumer price inflation and the University of Michigan’s reading on consumer sentiment. Weekly readings on mortgage rates and jobless claims will also be released.

What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week – May 31, 2022

What's Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week - May 31, 2021Last week’s economic reporting included readings on new and pending home sales, minutes from the Federal Reserve’s recent Federal Open Market Committee meeting, and data on inflation. Weekly readings on mortgage rates and jobless claims were also released.

New and Pending Home Sales Fall

The annual pace of new home sales fell in April according to the Commerce Department. Year-over-year sales of new homes fell to a pace of 591,000 sales as compared to the March reading of 709,000 sales of new homes. Analysts expected a year-over-year pace of 750,000 new home sales in April. Rising home prices and mortgage rates challenged first-time and moderate-income home buyers, which caused falling sales.

Readings for pending home sales fell by -3.90 percent in April; analysts expected a reading of -2.00 percent based on the March reading of -1.60 percent. High home prices and recently rising mortgage rates cooled prospective buyers’ interest as concerns over rising inflation and economic conditions sidelined low and moderate-income home buyers. Lawrence Yun, the chief economist for the National Association of Realtors®, said that rising mortgage rates have increased monthly mortgage payments by as much as $500. A secondary effect of fewer home sales is fewer sales of goods and services associated with home ownership.

The Federal Reserve’s Federal Open Market Committee minutes documented the Fed’s decision to raise its key interest rate range to 0.75 to 1.00 percent. FOMC members expect ongoing rate range increases as the Fed continues its efforts to control inflation.

Mortgage Rates, New Jobless Claims Fall

Freddie Mac reported lower average mortgage rates for the second consecutive week. Rates for 30year fixed rate mortgages fell by 15 basis points to 5.10 percent and rates for 15-year fixed rate mortgages fell by 12 basis points to 4.31 percent.  The average rate for 5/1 adjustable rate mortgages rose by 12 basis points to 4.20 percent. Discount points averaged 0.90 percent for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages and 0.80 percent for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages. Discount points for 5/1 adjustable rate mortgage rates averaged 0.30 percent.

New jobless claims fell to 210,000 claims filed from the prior week’s reading of 218,000 initial claims filed. Analysts expected 215,000 new jobless claims. Continuing jobless claims rose to 1.35 million ongoing claims filed as compared to 1.32 million ongoing claims filed.

The University of Michigan’s Consumer Sentiment Index fell to an index reading of 58.40 in May as compared to April’s reading of 59.10. Readings over 50 are considered positive.

What’s Ahead

This week’s scheduled economic reports include readings on home prices and construction spending along with labor sector readings on job growth and the national unemployment rate.

What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week – May 16, 2022

What's Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week - May 16, 2022Last week’s economic reporting included readings and forecasts on inflation and the University of Michigan’s preliminary consumer sentiment survey. Weekly readings on mortgage rates and jobless claims were also released.

Inflation Reports: Mixed Results for April

Commerce Department readings on consumer inflation showed mixed results in April; the Consumer Price Index dropped to 0.30 percent growth from the March reading of 1.20 percent inflation. Analysts expected 0.30 percent growth from March to April. The Core Consumer Price Index, which excludes volatile food and fuel sectors, rose by 0.60 percent in April as compared to the March reading of 0.30 percent growth. Analysts expected April’s reading for the Core Consumer Price Index to rise by 0.40 percent.

Year-over-year inflation dipped to 8.30 percent in April as compared to the March reading of 8.50 percent. This was the first decline in eight months and was caused by lower fuel prices. Analysts expected a year-over-year inflation rate of 8.10 percent for April. The year-over-year reading for the Core CPI, which excludes food and fuel sectors, showed  6.20 percent growth as compared to the March reading of 6.40 percent. The University of Michigan forecasted an inflation rate of 3.00 percent in the next five years.

Mortgage Rates, Jobless Claims Mixed

Freddie Mac reported higher average mortgage rates last week as the rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages rose by three basis points to 5.30 percent; the average rate for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages fell by four basis points to 4.48 percent. The average rate for 5/1 adjustable-rate mortgages rose by two basis points to 3.98 percent. Discount points averaged 0.90  percent for fixed-rate mortgages and 0.30 percent for 5/1 adjustable-rate mortgages.

First-time jobless claims rose to 203,000 new claims filed last week as compared to 202,000 initial claims filed in the prior week. Continuing jobless claims were lower last week with 1.34 million ongoing claims filed; 1.39 million claims were filed during the prior week.

The University of Michigan released the preliminary edition of its Consumer Sentiment Index for May; consumer sentiment dropped to an index reading of 59.10 percent for May as compared to April’s reading of 65.20 percent. The war in Ukraine and high fuel prices continued to contribute to consumer skepticism about current economic conditions.

What’s Ahead

This week’s scheduled economic reports include homebuilder readings on housing market conditions, Commerce Department reports on building permits issued and housing starts are also scheduled. The National Association of Realtors® will release data on sales of previously-owned single-family homes. Weekly readings on mortgage rates and jobless claims will also be released.

What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week – May 2, 2022

Last week’s economic reporting included readings from S&P Case-Shiller Home Price Indices, the Federal Housing Finance Agency House Price Index, and the Commerce Department on sales of new homes. Weekly readings on mortgage rates and jobless claims were also reported. S&P Case-Shiller, FHFA Report Near-Record Home Price Growth February home prices continued their rapid growth, but analysts hinted at a coming slowdown in-home price growth as would-be buyers were faced with rising mortgage rates and affordability concerns. S&P Case-Shiller’s National Home Price Index reported year-over-year home price growth of 19.80 percent as compared to January’s national home price growth rate of 19.10 percent. The 20-City Home Price Index reported the top three cities for year-over-year home price growth were Phoenix, Arizona with 32.90 percent growth, Tampa, Florida reported 32.60 percent growth in home prices, and Miami, Florida reported year-over-year home price growth of 29.70 percent. All cities reported in the 20-City Home Price Index had double-digit growth in February and the pace of home price growth was faster for all 20 cities than in January. In related news, the Federal Housing Finance Administration reported that home prices for homes owned by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac rose by 19.40 percent year-over-year and were 2.10 percent higher month-to-month.  Pending home sales were lower in March by -1.20 percent, as compared to the expected reading of -1,80 percent and February’s reading of -4.00 percent. Rising inflation and home prices created affordability concerns for first-time and moderate-income homebuyers. Mortgage Rates Mixed, Jobless Claims Fall Freddie Mac reported a lower average rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages dropped by one basis point to 5.10 percent; rates for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages averaged 4.40 percent and were two basis points higher. Rates for 5/1 adjustable rate mortgages averaged 3.78 percent and three basis points higher. Discount points averaged 0.80 percent for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages and 0.90 percent for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages. Points for 5/1 adjustable rate mortgages averaged 0.30 percent. New jobless claims fell last week with 180,000 initial claims filed as compared to 185,000 first-time claims filed in the previous week. Continuing jobless claims held steady with 1.41 million ongoing claims filed and matched the prior week’s reading.  The University of Michigan’s Consumer Sentiment Index fell by one-half point in April with an index reading of 65.2. The expected reading of 65.7 matched the March reading. Concerns over rising inflation, fuel prices, and the war in Ukraine contributed to lower consumer sentiment.  What’s Ahead This week’s scheduled economic news includes readings on public and private-sector jobs growth, the national unemployment rate, and a news conference by Fed Chair Jerome Powell. Weekly readings on mortgage rates and jobless claims will also be published.Last week’s economic reporting included readings from S&P Case-Shiller Home Price Indices, the Federal Housing Finance Agency House Price Index, and the Commerce Department on sales of new homes. Weekly readings on mortgage rates and jobless claims were also reported.

S&P Case-Shiller, FHFA Report Near-Record Home Price Growth

February home prices continued their rapid growth, but analysts hinted at a coming slowdown in-home price growth as would-be buyers were faced with rising mortgage rates and affordability concerns. S&P Case-Shiller’s National Home Price Index reported year-over-year home price growth of 19.80 percent as compared to January’s national home price growth rate of 19.10 percent. The 20-City Home Price Index reported the top three cities for year-over-year home price growth were Phoenix, Arizona with 32.90 percent growth, Tampa, Florida reported 32.60 percent growth in home prices, and Miami, Florida reported year-over-year home price growth of 29.70 percent. All cities reported in the 20-City Home Price Index had double-digit growth in February and the pace of home price growth was faster for all 20 cities than in January.

In related news, the Federal Housing Finance Administration reported that home prices for homes owned by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac rose by 19.40 percent year-over-year and were 2.10 percent higher month-to-month. 

Pending home sales were lower in March by -1.20 percent, as compared to the expected reading of -1,80 percent and February’s reading of -4.00 percent. Rising inflation and home prices created affordability concerns for first-time and moderate-income homebuyers.

Mortgage Rates Mixed, Jobless Claims Fall

Freddie Mac reported a lower average rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages dropped by one basis point to 5.10 percent; rates for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages averaged 4.40 percent and were two basis points higher. Rates for 5/1 adjustable rate mortgages averaged 3.78 percent and three basis points higher. Discount points averaged  0.80 percent for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages and 0.90 percent for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages. Points for 5/1 adjustable rate mortgages averaged 0.30 percent.

New jobless claims fell last week with 180,000 initial claims filed as compared to 185,000 first-time claims filed in the previous week. Continuing jobless claims held steady with 1.41 million ongoing claims filed and matched the prior week’s reading.

The University of Michigan’s Consumer Sentiment Index fell by one-half point in April with an index reading of 65.2. The expected reading of  65.7 matched the March reading. Concerns over rising inflation, fuel prices, and the war in Ukraine contributed to lower consumer sentiment.

What’s Ahead

This week’s scheduled economic news includes readings on public and private-sector jobs growth, the national unemployment rate, and a news conference by Fed Chair Jerome Powell. Weekly readings on mortgage rates and jobless claims will also be published.