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Good Start to 2015

Weaker than expected US economic data and concerns about the pace of global economic growth helped bonds and hurt stocks during New Years week. Mortgage rates ended the week a little lower, and they begin 2015 over 50 basis points below the levels seen at the start of 2014. The biggest economic report released this week was Friday's ISM National [...] Read more

Policy Change in China

The primary influence on mortgage rates this week was a reduction in the outlook for global economic growth, mainly due to a policy change in China. Stronger than expected US Retail Sales data offset some of the improvement, however. Mortgage rates ended the week lower, near the best levels of the year. On Monday, Chinese officials unexpectedly [...] Read more

US Strong, Japan Not So Much

This week, economic data outside the US had a greater influence on mortgage rates than relatively strong domestic data. Economic growth around the world continued to fall short, and this helped mortgage rates end the week a little lower. A big miss this week was reported in Japan. Third quarter Japanese GDP declined at an annualized rate of 1.6%, [...] Read more

Job Openings Remain High

The economic news this week contained few surprises. The major data, the US Retail Sales report and third quarter Eurozone Gross Domestic Product (GDP), came in very close to expectations. As a result, mortgage rates ended the week with little change. One other US report released this week has been gaining in prominence since Fed Chair Yellen said [...] Read more

Job Gains Remain Strong

The main story this week was the important monthly Employment report, which showed that wage inflation remains low. The European Central Bank (ECB) made no change in policy and had little impact on US markets. After a quiet four days, Friday's Employment data caused mortgage rates to improve and end the week a little lower. Against a consensus [...] Read more

Fed Ends Bond Purchases

The most closely watched economic news this week was Wednesday's Fed meeting. The FOMC statement was a little more upbeat about the economy than expected, as the Fed upgraded its assessment of the performance of the labor market. This was unfavorable for mortgage rates, but the reaction was small, and mortgage rates ended the week just a little [...] Read more

Mortgage Markets Calmer

After a couple of highly volatile weeks, there were few price swings in mortgage rates this week. With no major surprises in the economic data and little new information from central bank officials, mortgage rates ended nearly unchanged from last week. One reason that mortgage rates remain near the best levels of the year is low inflation. The [...] Read more

Week Marked by Volatility

It was a volatile week in the financial markets and wild swings in stock prices caused equally wild swings in MBS prices and mortgage rates. The net result was favorable for mortgage rates, which ended the week marginally lower once again, and they now stand at their lowest level since June 2013. Concern about economic weakness in Europe, China, [...] Read more

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