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Mortgage Market in Review – August 15, 2016

Market Comment

Mortgage bond prices finished the week higher which helped rates improve slightly.  Rates started higher Monday morning in carryover from the selling pressure from the recent strong payrolls data.  That trend reversed and rates generally fell throughout the rest of the week.  Productivity in Q2 fell 0.5% and unit labor costs rose 2%. Economists’ expectations were for productivity to rise 0.5% and unit labor costs to increase 1.7%.  Weekly jobless claims printed at 266K and continuing claims, a summation of all receiving benefits, at 2,155K. That data was near expectations.  Producer prices fell 0.4% and retail sales were unchanged.  Expectations were for PPI to rise 0.1% and sales to increase 0.4%.

Mortgage interest rates finished the week better by approximately 1/4 of a discount point.


LOOKING AHEAD

Economic
Indicator
Release
Date & Time
Consensus
Estimate

Analysis
NAHB Housing Index Monday, Aug. 15,
10:00 am, et
59.2 Moderately Important.  A measure of single family housing.  Weakness may lead to lower mortgage rates.
Consumer Price Index Tuesday, Aug. 16,
8:30 am, et
Up 0.2%,
Core up 0.2%
Important.  A measure of inflation at the consumer level.  Weaker figures may lead to lower rates.
Housing Starts Tuesday, Aug. 16,
8:30 am, et
1205K Important.  A measure of housing sector strength.  Weakness may lead to lower rates.
Industrial Production Tuesday, Aug. 16,
9:15 am, et
Up 0.2% Important.  A measure of manufacturing sector strength.  A lower than expected increase may lead to lower rates.
Capacity Utilization Tuesday, Aug. 16,
9:15 am, et
77.2% Important.  A figure above 85% is viewed as inflationary.  Weaker figure may lead to lower rates.
Fed Minutes Wednesday, Aug. 17,
2:00 pm, et
None Important.  Details of the last Fed meeting will be thoroughly analyzed.
Weekly Jobless Claims Thursday, Aug. 18,
8:30 am, et
266K Important.  An indication of employment.   Higher claims may result in lower rates.
Philadelphia Fed Survey Thursday, Aug. 18,
10:00 am, et
Down 0.8 Moderately important.  A survey of business conditions in the Northeast.  Weakness may lead to lower rates.
Leading Economic Indicators Thursday, Aug. 18,
10:00 am, et
Up 0.2% Important.  An indication of future economic activity.  A smaller increase may lead to lower rates.

Hurricane Season

The Federal Reserve is clear that weather plays a significant part in the overall economy.  Their last report on industrial production indicated, “The index for utilities rose 2.4 percent as a result of warmer weather than is typical for June boosting demand for air conditioning.”

 

The U.S. enters the heart of hurricane season and the weather is almost certain to make headlines in the months ahead.  The U.S. Energy Information Administration indicates that “during major disruptions such as hurricanes or power outages, the Department issues situation reports to provide information about a disruption’s effect on gasoline supply and other energy infrastructure and supply issues.”  While a specific area may have no threat of a hurricane the overall impact ripples through the entire economy.
Copyright 2016. All Rights Reserved. Mortgage Market Information Services, Inc. www.ratelink.com The information contained herein is believed to be accurate, however no representation or warranties are written or implied.