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Steady Inflation

Friday, Mar 29, 2019 By HomeLoan123.

It was a light week for economic news with few surprises, and mortgage rates ended nearly unchanged.

One big reason that mortgage rates have improved in recent weeks, and that the Fed has shifted toward looser monetary policy, is that inflation has held steady. Despite a very tight labor market by historical standards, wage growth has been moderate, and overall inflation levels in the economy have been constrained.

This trend continued in January, as the core PCE price …

Brexit Uncertainty Remains

Friday, Mar 15, 2019 By HomeLoan123.

Despite a series of Brexit votes in the UK this week, little progress was made, and the uncertainty was modestly favorable for mortgage rates. Weaker than expected inflation data also was positive, and rates ended the week lower.

During an otherwise routine week, investors were drawn to a series of events unfolding in the UK which could have a major impact on the region’s future. In a close vote way back in June 2016, the UK passed a referendum to end its membership …

GDP Beats Forecasts

Friday, Mar 1, 2019 By HomeLoan123.

Stronger than expected economic growth data was unfavorable for mortgage rates this week. Progress in the trade negotiations also was negative, and mortgage rates ended the week higher.

The report on gross domestic product (GDP), the broadest measure of economic growth, for the fourth quarter of 2018 was delayed quite a bit by the government shutdown, but it was worth the wait. GDP increased 2.6% during the fourth quarter, down from 3.4% in the third quarter, yet well …

Retail Sales Dive

Friday, Feb 15, 2019 By HomeLoan123.

Weaker than expected retail sales data was offset by progress on a government funding agreement this week, and mortgage rates ended nearly unchanged.

Consumer spending accounts for about 70% of all economic activity in the U.S., so the retail sales data is a key indicator of growth. The report for the important holiday shopping period was delayed by the government shutdown, but it finally was released on Thursday, and it was very disappointing. Since weaker growth reduces …

Quiet Week

Friday, Feb 8, 2019 By HomeLoan123.

Sandwiched between recent major economic events and several more later in the month, there was little significant economic news this week, and mortgage rates ended slightly lower.

Investors were mostly focused on bigger picture economic conditions this week, and their primary questions concerned the outlook for global growth. While the forecast for U.S. gross domestic product (GDP) growth in 2019 has held relatively steady around 2.5%, many other regions have been …

Fed and Labor Market

Friday, Feb 1, 2019 By HomeLoan123.

Major economic events made this a volatile week. Wednesday’s Fed meeting was strongly positive for mortgage rates, while Friday’s Employment report was modestly negative. The net result was a decline in rates for the week.

As expected, the Fed held the federal funds rate steady, but the tone of its statement was more dovish (in favor of looser monetary policy) than expected. In particular, the Fed now will be “patient” in deciding if additional rate …