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Mortgage Market in Review – January 18, 2016

Market Comment

Mortgage bond prices finished the week higher which helped rates improve. Prices started in neutral territory and gradually increased amid continued global economic uncertainty and continued declines in oil prices. The Fed Beige Book showed moderate economic growth and did not move the financial markets much. Weekly jobless claims were higher than expected which helped rates improve Thursday morning. The Treasury auctions showed solid foreign demand. Retail sales fell 0.1% versus the expected 0.1% increase. Producer prices and industrial production were lower than expected. Stocks tanked early Friday morning tied to the initial weak data. Mortgage interest rates finished the week better by approximately 1/2 to 5/8 of a discount point.


Date & Time

NAHB Housing Index Tuesday, Jan. 19,
10:00 am, et
61.5 Moderately Important.  A measure of single-family housing.  Weakness may lead to lower mortgage rates.
Consumer Price Index Wednesday, Jan. 20,
8:30 am, et
Up 0.1%,
Core up 0.2%
Important.  A measure of inflation at the consumer level.  Weaker figures may lead to lower rates.
Housing Starts Wednesday, Jan. 20,
8:30 am, et
1127K Important.  A measure of housing sector strength.  Weakness may lead to lower rates.
Weekly Jobless Claims Thursday, Jan. 21,
8:30 am, et
278K Important.  An indication of employment.   Higher claims may result in lower rates.
Philadelphia Fed Survey Thursday, Jan. 21,
10:00 am, et
3.9 Moderately important.  A survey of business conditions in the Northeast.  Weakness may lead to lower rates.
10-year Treasury TIPS Auction Thursday, Jan. 21,
1:15 pm, et
None Important.  TIPS will be auctioned.  Strong demand may lead to lower mortgage rates.
Existing Home Sales Friday, Jan. 22,
10:00 am, et
4.74M Low importance.  An indication of mortgage credit demand.  Significant weakness may lead to lower rates.
Leading Economic Indicators Friday, Jan. 22,
10:00 am, et
Up 0.4% Important.  An indication of future economic activity.  A smaller increase may lead to lower 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 Wednesday assuming the two reports are in line this month.  Mortgage interest rates remain historically favorable despite some recent volatility.  There are no guarantees these rates will last forever so a cautious approach to float and lock decisions is wise.

Copyright 2016. All Rights Reserved. Mortgage Market Information Services, Inc. The information contained herein is believed to be accurate, however no representation or warranties are written or implied.