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No New ECB Stimulus

After spending the last couple of weeks at or near the lowest levels of the year, mortgage rates rose this week. The cause came from investor disappointment with Thursday's European Central Bank (ECB) meeting. The U.S. economic data contained few significant surprises and had little effect. At its last meeting in March, the ECB announced [...] Read more

Inflation Declines

While the U.S. economic data released over the past week generally was a bit weaker than expected, it was offset to some degree by stronger than expected data in China. The net effect was small, and mortgage rates ended the week just a little higher, up from the lowest levels of the year. While explaining why the Fed plans to move gradually to [...] Read more

Central Banks See Continued Support

Mortgage rates improved again this week and are now near their best levels of the year. Again the improvement resulted from statements by central bankers. The economic data had little effect. Statements by the heads of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), the European Central Bank (ECB), and the U.S. Fed shared the same sentiment, the global [...] Read more

Dovish Speech from Yellen

Despite the release of a wide range of major economic data, a speech from Fed Chair Yellen had the biggest influence on mortgage rates over the past week. Her comments were favorable for both stocks and bonds, and mortgage rates ended the week lower. Since the March 16 Fed meeting, several Fed officials have expressed support for tightening [...] Read more

Fed Officials Split

Ahead of the holiday weekend, this week's economic data contained few surprises, and the attacks in Brussels had little impact on U.S. financial markets. As a result, mortgage rates ended the week with little change. At the Fed meeting on March 16, nine Fed officials voted in favor of holding the federal funds rate steady and just one supported a [...] Read more

Fed Changes Guidance

Wednesday's Fed meeting resulted in positive news for mortgage rates. Mixed economic data released over the past week was roughly neutral. Mortgage rates ended the week lower. As expected, the Fed did not change the federal funds rate. However, the statement contained guidance which reduced the expected number of rate hikes in 2016 from four to [...] Read more

ECB Adds Stimulus

The big event over the past week was Thursday's ECB meeting. The stimulus measures announced by the ECB made investors more willing to own riskier assets such as stocks, which was negative for safer assets such as bonds. The small amount of U.S. economic data released over the past week had little impact. As a result, mortgage rates ended the week [...] Read more

Strong Job Gains

A wide range of major U.S. economic data was released over the past week covering the labor market, manufacturing, services, and housing. Overall, the data suggested that U.S. economic growth and inflation were a little stronger than expected. As a result, mortgage rates ended the week higher. Friday's Employment report showed that job gains [...] Read more

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