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Mortgage Market in Review – January 14, 2019

   

Market Comment

Mortgage bond prices were neutral for the week which kept rates steady.  We started on a positive note Monday morning amid stock weakness at the open.  This reversed during the day and we had had upward pressure on rates heading into Tuesday.  Weekly jobless claims printed at 216K and continuing claims, a summation of all receiving benefits, at 1,722K. Expectations were for claims at 225K and continuing claims at 1,740K.  All three US Treasury auctions were weaker than average.  Consumer prices fell 0.1% and core prices rose 0.2%.  Mortgage interest rates still finished the week unchanged to better by approximately 1/8 of a discount point.


LOOKING AHEAD

Economic
Indicator
Release
Date & Time
Consensus
Estimate

Analysis
Producer Price Index Tuesday, Jan. 15,
8:30 am, et
Up 0.1%,
Core up 0.2%
Important.  An indication of inflationary pressures at the producer level.  Weaker figures may lead to lower rates.
Retail Sales Wednesday, Jan. 16,
8:30 am, et
Up 0.4% Important.  A measure of consumer demand.  A smaller than expected increase may lead to lower mortgage rates.
NAHB Housing Index Wednesday, Jan. 16,
10:00 am, et
56 Moderately Important.  A measure of single family housing.  Weakness may lead to lower mortgage rates.
Fed “Beige Book” Wednesday, Jan. 16,
2:00 pm, et
None Important.  This Fed report details current economic conditions across the US.  Signs of weakness may lead to lower rates.
Housing Starts Thursday, Jan. 17,
8:30 am, et
1260K Important.  A measure of housing sector strength.  Weakness may lead to lower rates.
Weekly Jobless Claims Thursday, Jan. 17,
8:30 am, et
217K Important.  An indication of employment.   Higher claims may result in lower rates.
Philadelphia Fed Survey Thursday, Jan. 17,
10:00 am, et
10.4 Moderately important.  A survey of business conditions in the Northeast.  Weakness may lead to lower rates.
Industrial Production Friday, Jan. 18,
9:15 am, et
Up 0.5% Important.  A measure of manufacturing sector strength.  Weakness may lead to lower rates.
Capacity Utilization Friday, Jan. 18,
9:15 am, et
78.8% Important.  A figure above 85% is viewed as inflationary.  Weakness may lead to lower rates.
U of Michigan Consumer Sentiment Friday, Jan. 18,
10:00 am, et
98 Important.  An indication of consumers’ willingness to spend.  Weakness may lead to lower mortgage rates.

NAHB Index

The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) releases the Housing Market Index each month which provides an indication of single family housing market conditions.  The results are derived from a survey of NAHB members in which members are asked to rate current market conditions, future market conditions, and prospective buyer traffic.  The data is compiled and then a final number between 0 and 100 is released.  A reading over 50 is generally considered positive.  The data often correlates with the housing starts data.   The release this week may provide an early indicator to the housing starts figure Thursday.

 


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