What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week – January 10, 2022

What's Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week - January 10, 2022

Last week’s economic reporting included readings on construction spending and labor sector readings on jobs and unemployment. Weekly reports on mortgage rates and jobless claims were also released.

Construction Spending Unchanged, Falls Short of Expectations

The Commerce Department reported that construction spending rose by 0.4 percent in November to a seasonally-adjusted annual pace of $1.63 trillion and  9.30 percent year-over-year, Residential construction spending drove spending higher; month-to-month spending rose by 0.90 percent in November and was 16 percent higher year-over-year. Analysts expected overall construction spending to rise by 0.70 percent from October to November.

High demand for homes continued to drive residential construction spending, but spending on office construction fell by 32.10 percent year-over-year. Work-from-home options increased as employers and workers faced covid-related challenges.

Mortgage Rates Rise; Jobs Data Mixed

Freddie Mac reported higher average mortgage rates last week as rates for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages rose 11basis points to 3.22 percent. The average rate for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages was 10 basis points higher at 2.43 percent. The average rate for 5/1 adjustable rate mortgages was unchanged at 2.41 percent. Discount points averaged 0.70 percent for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages and 0.60 percent for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages. Discount points for 5/1 adjustable rate mortgages averaged 0.50 percent.

First-time jobless claims rose by 207,000 claims filed as compared to the prior week’s reading of 200,000 initial claims filed. Analysts expected 195,000 new claim filings. Continuing jobless claims rose last week with 1.75 million ongoing claims filed; 1.72 million continuing jobless claims were filed in the prior week.

The government’s Non-Farm Payrolls report for December reported 199,000 public and private sector jobs added, which fell far short of the expected reading of 422,000 jobs added and November’s reading of 249,000 jobs added. Analysts said that the spread of the omicron variant of the covid virus slowed job searches and hiring.

ADP reported 807,000 private-sector jobs added in December, which surpassed expectations of 375,000 jobs added and November’s reading of 505,000 private-sector jobs added. The national unemployment rate fell to 3.90 percent as compared to the prior month’s reading of 4.20 percent. The unemployment rate is based on the number of unemployed workers actively seeking work and does not include workers who stopped looking for work.

What’s Ahead

This week’s scheduled economic reports include readings on inflation and retail sales and weekly reporting on mortgage rates and jobless claims.

What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week – January 3, 2022

What's Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week - January 3, 2022

Last week’s economic reporting included readings from S&P Case-Shiller Home Price Indices and the National Association of Realtors® released its monthly report on pending home sales. Weekly reports on mortgage rates and jobless claims were also released.

S&P Case-Shiller Reports Show Slower Gains in Home Prices

October home price readings from S&P Case-Shiller Home Price Indices showed slower home price growth in October than for September. Nationally, October home prices rose 19.10 percent year-over-year as compared to 19.70 percent year-over-year home price growth in September. October’s reading was the fourth highest since the inception of the National Home Price Index 34 years ago.

Case-Shiller’s 20-City Home Price Index reported 18.40 percent home price growth year-over-year, as compared to September’s reading of 19.10 percent year-over-year home price growth in September. Home prices for cities included in the 20-City Home Price Index rose by 0.80 percent between September and October. Phoenix, Arizona held on to first place in the 20-City Index with year-over-year home price growth of 32.30 percent; Tampa, Florida followed with year-over-year home price growth of 28.10 percent. Miami, Florida reported year-over-year home prices rose by 25.70 percent in October.

All 20 cities posted double-digit year-over-year gains in home prices. The two cities tied for the lowest year-over-year home price growth rate of 11.50 percent were Chicago, Illinois, and Minneapolis, Minnesota. Analysts said that while home price growth is slowing, prices will continue to rise in 2022.

In related news, pending home sales fell by 2.20 percent in November and were 2.70 percent lower year-over-year. The Midwest posted the largest year-over-year decline in pending home sales with a reading of -6.30 percent.

Mortgage Rates Rise, Jobless Claims Fall

Freddie Mac reported higher mortgage rates last week as rates for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages rose by six basis points to an average of 3.11 percent. Rates for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages rose by three basis points to an average rate of 2.33 percent. Rates for 5/1 adjustable rate mortgages averaged 2.41 percent and were four basis points higher.

Discount points averaged 0.70 percent for fixed-rate mortgages and 0.50 percent for 5/1 adjustable rate mortgages.

Initial jobless claims fell last week to 198,000 first-time claims filed; analysts expected 205,000 new claims filed based on the previous week’s reading of 206,000 initial claims filed. Continuing jobless claims also fell with1.72 million claims filed as compared to the prior week’s reading of 1.86 million ongoing jobless claims filed.

What’s Ahead

This week’s scheduled economic reporting includes readings on construction spending and labor sector readings on jobs growth and the national unemployment rate. Weekly reports on mortgage rates and jobless claims will also be released.

What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week – December 27, 2021

What's Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week - December 27, 2021Last week’s scheduled economic reporting included readings on sales of new and previously-owned homes along with weekly data on mortgage rates and jobless claims.

Home Sales Increase in November

Sales of new and previously-owned homes rose in November. The Commerce Department reported sales of new homes rose to 744,000 sales on a seasonally-adjusted annual basis. October sales of new homes were revised to a year-over-year reading of 662,000 new homes sold, which was the lowest reading since the worst stage of the pandemic in April 2020.  Analysts expected a year-over-year reading of 766,000 new homes sold for November. The median price of new homes sold in October reached a record high of $416,900.The number of homes for sale fell by 8.50 percent between October and November and represented a 6.50 month supply of new homes for sale.

Sales of previously-owned homes also rose in November with 6.46 million sales on a seasonally-adjusted annual basis. November’s reading fell short of the expected reading of 6.50 million sales of previously-owned homes but surpassed October’s reading of 6.34 million sales.

Rising numbers of mortgage applications indicated that demand for homes remains high, but mortgage rates are expected to rise in 2022. Given rising home prices, the additional challenge of higher mortgage rates will negatively impact affordability for some prospective home buyers.

Mortgage Rates Fall, Jobless Claims Data Mixed

Freddie Mac reported lower mortgage rates last week as the average rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages fell by seven basis points to 3.05 percent. Rates for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages averaged 2.30 percent and were four basis points lower than for the previous week. Rates for 5/1 adjustable rate mortgages averaged 2.37 percent and eight basis points lower. Discount points averaged 0.70 percent for fixed-rate mortgages and 0.40 percent for 5/1 adjustable rate mortgages.

Initial jobless claims held steady at 205,000 new claims filed last week. Analysts expected a reading of 206,000 first-time claims filed. Continuing jobless claims fell to 1.86 million ongoing claims from the previous week’s reading of 1.87 million continuing jobless claims filed.

The University of Michigan’s Consumer Sentiment Index rose to an index reading of 70.6 and exceeded the expected reading of 70.4, which matched November’s reading.

What’s Ahead

This week’s scheduled economic reporting includes S&P Case-Shiller Home Price Indices and data on pending home sales. Weekly readings on mortgage rates and jobless claims will also be released.

What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week – December 13. 2021

What's Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week - December 12, 2021Last week’s economic reporting included readings on job openings and quits, month-to-month and year-over-year readings on inflation,  and the University of Michigan’s preliminary consumer sentiment survey for December. Weekly readings on mortgage rates and jobless claims were also released

Job Openings Increase as Quits Decrease as Inflation Remains High

The U.S. Labor Department reported that workers quit their jobs at record levels in October as job openings rose to 11 million openings as compared to expectations of 10.6 million job vacancies, which matched September’s reading for job openings. Fewer people quit jobs in October as 4.2 million workers left their jobs as compared to 4.4 million quits reported in September. The Labor Department said that many quits were driven by workers leaving for better jobs and career opportunities.

Analysts said that if job quits continue at their current pace through the end of 2021, new records for job quits will be established.

The Consumer Price Index, which measures U.S. inflation, rose by 0.80 percent from October to November. Analysts expected a monthly increase of 0.70 percent based on October’s month-to-month reading of 0.90 percent. The year-over-year inflation rate rose to 6.80 percent in November and surpassed October’s reading of 6.20 percent and the expected reading of 6.70 percent.

Mortgage Rates Lower, Jobless Claims Mixed

Freddie Mac reported slightly lower mortgage rates last week as the average rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages fell by one basis point to 3.01 percent. Rates for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages averaged 2.38 percent and one basis point lower than for the previous week. Mortgage rates for 5/1 adjustable rate mortgages averaged four basis points lower at  2.45 percent. Discount points averaged 0.70 percent for fixed-rate mortgages and 0.30 percent for 5/1 adjustable rate mortgages.

Initial jobless claims fell to 184,000 first-time claims filed as compared to 227,000 claims filed during the previous week. Analysts expected 211,000 initial jobless claims to be filed last week. Continuing jobless claims rose to 1.99 million ongoing claims filed.  Analysts expected 1.95 million continuing claims filings based on the prior week’s reading of 1.96 million ongoing jobless claims filed.

The University of Michigan reported rising consumer confidence in economic conditions for December with an index reading of 70.4. Analysts expected a reading of 68.0 based n November’s index reading of 67.4. Index readings above 50 indicate that most consumers are confident about current economic conditions.

What’s Ahead

This week’s scheduled economic reporting includes readings from the National Association of Home Builders on housing markets, The post-meeting statement from the Federal Reserve’s Federal Open Market Committee will be released and Fed Chair Jerome Powell will hold a press conference. The Commerce Department will release readings on housing starts and building permits issued. Weekly reports on mortgage rates and jobless claims will also be released.

What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week – December 6, 2021

What's Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week - December 6, 2021Last week’s economic reports included readings on home price trends, pending home sales, labor-sector readings on public and private-sector job growth. Weekly readings on mortgage rates and jobless claims were also released.

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

The pace of national home price growth slowed for the first time since May 2020 in September according to S&P Case-Shiller’s National Home Price Index. Year-over-year home price growth slowed by 0.30 percent to 19.50 percent from August’s year-over-year home price growth reading of 19.80 percent. Demand for homes typically slows during fall and winter; some buyers were also sidelined by affordability concerns.

The 20-City Home Price Index for September showed some changes as Phoenix, Arizona continued to hold its top spot in the index and reported a 33.10 percent gain in home prices year-over-year. Tampa, Florida held second place with a  year-over-year home price growth rate of 27.70 percent. Miami, Florida reported a year-over-year home price growth rate of 25.20 percent. Western states have recently dominated home price growth rates, but Florida cities have surpassed former second and third-place cities San Diego, California, and Seattle, Washington.

Pending home sales of previously owned homes rose by 7.50 percent in October as compared to the expected pace of 0.70 percent and September’s reading of  2.40 percent fewer sales of homes for which purchase contracts were signed but sales were not yet completed. The surge in pending home sales was attributed to homebuyers’ haste to avoid expected higher mortgage rates and rapidly rising rents. The National Association of Realtors® noted that sales activity was higher than usual for fall, but also cautioned that the emergence of a new variation of the covid-19 virus could slow sales activity.

Mortgage Rates Little Changed as New Jobless Claims Rise

Freddie Mac reported minimal activity for mortgage rates last week as the average rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages rose by one basis point to 3.11 percent. Rates for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages averaged 2.39 percent and were three basis points lower. Interest rates for 5/1 adjustable rate mortgages rose by two basis points to 2.40 percent on average. Discount points averaged 0.60 percent for fixed-rate mortgages and 0.30 percent for 5/1 adjustable rate mortgages.

Initial jobless claims rose to 222,000 claims filed and fell short of the expected reading of 240,000 new claims filed. 194,000 initial jobless claims were filed during the prior week. Continuing jobless claims fell to 1.96 million ongoing claims from the prior week’s reading of 2.06 million ongoing jobless claims filed.

What’s Ahead

This week’s scheduled economic reporting includes readings on job openings and quits and the University of Michigan’s preliminary Consumer Sentiment Index. Weekly readings on mortgage rates and jobless claims will also be released.

What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week – November 22, 2021

What's Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week - November 22, 2021Last week’s scheduled economic news included readings from the National Association of Home Builders on housing market conditions. Reporting on housing starts and building permits was released along with weekly reports on mortgage rates and jobless claims.

NAHB: Home Builder Confidence Grows as Demand for Homes Increases


November’s national reading for home builder confidence in housing market conditions for single-family homes rose three points to an index reading of 83 and the expected reading of 80. Component readings for the national index were mixed. Builder confidence in home sales for the next six months was unchanged at an index reading of 84. Builder confidence in potential buyer traffic in new housing developments rose three points to an index reading of 68. Readings over 50 indicate that a majority of home builders were confident about housing market conditions.

 

High demand for homes continued, but builders faced ongoing obstacles including shortages of lots and labor. Robert Dietz, the chief economist at the National Association of Home Builders, said: “ Lot availability is at multi-decade lows and the construction industry currently has more than 330,000 open positions.” Mr. Dietz urged policymakers to address these issues to enable builders to better meet the high demand for single-family homes.

 

Three of four regional readings for builder confidence in housing market conditions rose, while the Northeast’s reading fell to 69 in November from October’s reading of 73. The Midwest reading rose to 75 in November from October’s reading of 72. Homebuilder confidence in the South also rose three points to 87 in November. The Western region posted a two-point gain in builder confidence for an index reading of 87.

 

Housing starts fell by one million starts in October to 1.52 million starts on a seasonally-adjusted annual basis. Building permits issued in October rose to a pace of 1.65 million permits issued on a seasonally-adjusted annual basis. Housing starts and building permits issued do not always reflect builder confidence readings.

 

Mortgage Rates Rise as Jobless Claims Fall


Freddie Mac reported higher fixed mortgage rates last week as the average rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages rose  12 basis points to 3.10 percent. Rates for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages also rose 12 basis points and averaged 2.39 percent; the average rate for 5/1 adjustable rate mortgages fell four basis points to an average rate of 2.49 percent. Discount points averaged 0.70 percent for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages and 0.60 percent for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages. Discount points for 5/1 adjustable rate mortgages averaged 0.30 percent. 

 

Initial jobless claims rose to 286,000 new claims filed from the prior week’s reading of 269,000 first-time claims filed. Ongoing jobless claims fell to 2.08 million claims filed from the prior week’s reading of 2.20 continuing jobless claims filed. 

 

What’s Ahead

This week’s scheduled economic readings include sales of new and previously-owned homes, reporting on inflation and consumer sentiment are also scheduled. Weekly readings on mortgage rates and jobless claims will be released in advance of the Thanksgiving holidays on Thursday and Friday. 

 

What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week – November 15, 2021

What's Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week - November 15, 2021Last week’s scheduled economic reporting included readings on inflation and a preliminary report on consumer sentiment. Weekly reports on mortgage rates and jobless claims were also released.

Inflationary Growth Exceeds Expectations, Creates Consumer Challenges

October’s inflation rate rose to its highest year-over-year pace in 31 years last week with a reading of 6.20 percent growth as compared to September’s year-over-year growth rate of 5.40 percent. Inflation rose by 0.90 percent month-to-month in October as compared to September’s reading of 0.40 percent growth. Consumers paid more for essential goods including food, fuel, and transportation. October’s inflationary growth rate surpassed the Federal Reserve’s inflationary goal of 2.00 percent year-over-year.

Pandemic-related conditions continued to delay supply chains and further limited goods and services available to consumers. Auto prices were higher due to lower production and falling inventories. Slim supplies and high demand caused rising prices in many economic sectors. Rising prices currently outstrip income growth, which renders current inflationary conditions unsustainable for many consumers.

Core inflation, which excludes volatile food and fuel sectors, rose by 0.60 percent in October and exceeded predictions of an 0.40 percent increase based on September’s reading of 0.20 percent month-to-month core inflation.

The Federal Reserve recently described ongoing high inflation as “transitory,” but it appears to be going nowhere anytime soon.

Mortgage Rates Fall; Jobless Claims Mixed

Freddie Mac reported lower average mortgage rates last week as the rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages fell by 11 basis points to 2.98 percent. Rates for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages averaged 2.27 percent and were eight basis points lower. Rates for 5/1 adjustable rate mortgages averaged 2.53 percent and one basis point lower. Discount points averaged 0.70 percent for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages, 0.60 percent for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages, and 0.40 percent for 5/1 adjustable rate mortgages.

Last week’s new jobless claims fell to 267,000 initial claims filed as compared to the previous week’s reading of 271,000 first-time claims filed. Continuing jobless claims rose to 2.16 million claims filed as compared to the reading of 2.10 million ongoing claims filed in the prior week.

The University of Michigan released its preliminary reading for November’s Consumer Sentiment Index and reported a November index reading of 66.8, which was lower than the expected reading of 72.0 and October’s index reading of 71.7. Consumer concerns over growing inflation and higher costs caused consumer sentiment about current economic conditions to dip.

What’s Ahead

This week’s scheduled economic reporting includes readings from the National Association of Home Builders’ Housing Market Index, along with readings on housing starts and building permits issued. Weekly readings on mortgage rates and jobless claims will also be released.

FOMC Statement: Fed Policymakers Discuss Easing Accommodations as Economy Improves

FOMC Statement: Fed Policymakers Discuss Easing Accommodations as Economy ImprovesThe Federal Reserve’s Federal Open Market Committee considered easing monetary accommodations implemented in response to stronger economic conditions according to its post-meeting statement issued November 3. The Fed started making trillions in monthly bond purchases when the pandemic started but slowed its purchasing pace to $120 billion per month in June 2020. The Fed will soon reduce its monthly bond purchases to $105 billion monthly.

The Fed said it will continue to purchase bonds until the economy makes “substantial progress” toward its legally mandated goals of achieving two percent inflation and maximum employment. Supply shortages and high demand for goods caused by the pandemic have impacted the overall economy, but labor markets have suffered disproportionately. Pandemic-driven quits and retirements have left many job openings that remain unfilled.  Service-related jobs in hospitality and travel have been especially hard-hit as consumers continued to stay home.

Fed Calls High Inflation “Transitory”

Federal Reserve policymakers continued to call current higher-than-expected inflation “transitory,” but did not explain how long high inflation is expected to last. Supply-chain logjams continued to negatively impact supply and demand for goods and services; in some cases, high demand and short supplies drove inflation higher: “Inflation is elevated, largely reflecting factors that are expected to be transitory. Supply and demand imbalances related to the pandemic and the reopening of the economy have contributed to sizable price increases in some sectors.”

FOMC members did not raise the current benchmark interest rate range of 0.00 to 0.25 percent, but financial markets expect two or more rate hikes in 2022.

Fed Chair Expects Inflation to Remain High into Mid-2022

Fed Chair Jerome Powell commented on high inflation during a press conference given after the FOMC post-meeting statement: “Our baseline expectation is that supply chain bottlenecks and shortages will persist well into next year and elevated inflation as well.” Chair Powell continued: “As the pandemic eases, supply chain issues will abate and growth will move up. As that happens, inflation will decline from today’s elevated levels.”

Mr. Powell further commented that he expected labor markets to strengthen as the delta variant of the covid virus continues to decline. 

What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week – November 1, 2021

What's Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week - November 1, 2021Last week’s economic reports included readings on home price growth from S&P Case-Shiller Home Price Indices, data on new home sales, and the University of Michigan’s Consumer Sentiment Index. Weekly readings on mortgage rates and jobless claims were also published. 

Case-Shiller: Home Price Growth Slower, but Prices Aren’t Falling

National home prices rose by a seasonally-adjusted annual pace of 19.80 percent in August, which was incrementally lower than July’s year-over-year home price growth rate. Analysts said that rising mortgage rates caused some buyers to leave the market and eased demand in areas where bidding wars drove home prices beyond market value in some areas.

The S&P Case-Shiller 20-City Home Price Index reported a seasonally-adjusted annual pace of  19.70 percent growth for August home prices in metro areas included in the index. Home price growth was slower than July’s year-over-year reading of 20.00 percent. Phoenix, Arizona held the top position with year-over-year home price growth of 33.30 percent. San Diego, California maintained second place with year-over-year home price growth of 26.20 percent. Tampa, Florida displaced previous holders of third place with its home price growth rate of 25.90 percent.

Craig J. Lazzara, managing director and global head of index investment strategy at  S&P Dow Jones Indices, said: “Every one of our city and composite indices stands at its all-time high, and year-over-year price growth continues to be very strong, although moderating somewhat from last month’s levels.”

The Federal Housing Finance Administration, which oversees Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, published similar results for home price growth in August. Lynn Fisher, deputy director for research and statistics at FHFA, said, “Annual house price gains remained extremely high in August, but the pace of month-over-month gains continues to decelerate…This suggests we may have seen the peak in annual home price  gains for the time being.”

Recent home price growth was driven by high demand for homes and limited supplies of new and pre-owned homes for sale, but rapidly rising home prices and mortgage rates sidelined some buyers.

Mortgage Rates Rise as Jobless Claims Fall

Freddie Mac reported higher average mortgage rates last week as the rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages rose five basis points to 3.14 percent. Rates for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages rose four basis points and averaged 2.37 percent. The average rate for a  5/1 adjustable-rate mortgage rose two basis points to 2.56 percent. Discount points averaged 0.70 percent for fixed-rate mortgages and 0.30 percent for 5/1 adjustable-rate mortgages.

Initial jobless claims fell to 281,000 first-time claims filed as compared to the prior week’s reading of 291,000 new claims filed. Ongoing jobless claims filed also decreased with 2.24 million continuing claims filed as compared to 2.48 million continuing jobless claims filed during the prior week.

The University of Michigan’s Consumer Sentiment Index for October rose to an index reading of 71.7 as compared to September’s reading of 71.4. Analysts expected a reading of 71.9 for October.

What’s Ahead

This week’s scheduled economic news includes readings on construction spending, the post-meeting statement, and a press conference from the Fed’s Federal Open Market Committee and Fed Chair Jerome Powell. Data on public and private-sector jobs will be released along with the national unemployment rate. Weekly readings on mortgage rates and jobless claims will also be published.

What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week – October 25, 2021

What's Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week - October 25, 2021Last week’s economic reporting included the National Association of Home Builders’ Housing Market Index reports on building permits issued and housing starts, The National Association of Realtors® reported on sales of previously owned homes, and weekly readings on mortgage rates and jobless claims were also published.

NAHB: Builder Confidence Improves in September

The National Association of Home Builders reported an index reading of 80 for its September Housing Market Index. Analysts expected September’s index reading to match August’s reading of 76. Builders continued to face supply chain challenges and labor shortages amid growing concerns over rising home prices and affordability for would-be home buyers.

Component readings for the Housing Market Index also showed rising builder confidence. The index for current housing market conditions rose five points to an index reading of 87; builder confidence in housing market conditions over the next six months rose three points to 84. The gauge for buyer traffic in new single-family housing developments rose four points to an index reading of 65.

Robert Dietz, the chief economist for the NAHB, said “Policymakers must focus on fixing the broken supply chain. This will spur more construction and help ease upward pressure on home prices.”

Continuing supply chain problems caused some builders to limit building due to concerns over materials costs and availability. Shortages of small and medium homes would cause home prices to rise just as interest rates are expected to rise. These conditions add to concerns over affordability for first-time and modest-income home buyers.

NAHB HMI readings over 50 indicate that most builders surveyed have a positive outlook on housing market conditions.

September sales of previously-owned homes rose to 6.29 million homes sold on a seasonally-adjusted annual basis as compared to August’s reading of 5.88 million previously-owned homes sold and expectations of 6.10 million previously-owned homes sold. Increasing sales of pre-owned homes indicated that severe shortages of available homes during the pandemic were easing.

Mortgage Rates Rise, Jobless Claims Fall

Freddie Mac reported higher average mortgage rates last week as rates for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage rose four basis points to 3.09 percent; rates for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages averaged three basis points higher at 2.33 percent. Rates for 5/1 adjustable rate mortgages fell one basis point to an average rate of 2.54 percent. Discount points averaged 0.70 percent for fixed-rate mortgages and 0.30 percent for 5/1 adjustable rate mortgages.

Initial jobless claims fell to 290,000 claims filed from the previous week’s reading of 296,000 first-time claims filed. Analysts expected 300,000 first-time claims to be filed. Fewer continuing jobless claims were filed last week; 2.48 million ongoing jobless claims were filed as compared to 2.60 million ongoing jobless claims filed in the previous week.

What’s Ahead

This week’s scheduled economic reporting includes readings from S&P Case-Shiller Home Price Indices, reports on sales of new and previously-owned homes, and the University of  Michigan’s Consumer Sentiment Index. Weekly readings on mortgage rates and jobless claims will also be published.