Mortgage Market Weekly – Update Mar 9, 2015

In This Issue…

Last Week in Review: February’s Jobs Report was better than expected, while home price gains are at sustainable levels.

Forecast for the Week: Look for news on wholesale inflation, consumer sentiment and retail sales.

View: Spring clean your office space with these easy tips. [Read more…]

Mortgage Market Weekly – Update Mar 2, 2015

In This Issue…

Last Week in Review: Recent housing reports have disappointed, but sales of new and existing homes are up from this time a year ago.

Forecast for the Week: The Jobs Report for February is a must-watch. Also look for news on inflation, personal income and spending, and manufacturing.

View: Boost new ideas and creative thinking with these four tips.

[Read more…]

Mortgage Market Weekly – Update Feb 23, 2015

In This Issue…

Last Week in Review: Recent housing reports were disappointing, while inflation remains low.

Forecast for the Week: February ends on a busy note, with key reports on housing, consumer attitudes, U.S. economic growth and inflation.

View: Protect yourself from identity theft with these important tips.

Last Week in Review

“I knew the record would stand until it was broken.” Yogi Berra. Record low temperatures have hit much of the nation, but that’s not the only chill in the air. [Read more…]

Mortgage Market Weekly – Update Feb 9, 2015

In This Issue

Last Week in Review: The Jobs Report for January was a “big” surprise, while home price appreciation continues to stabilize at normal levels.Forecast for the Week: Economic data doesn’t begin until Thursday, with just a handful of reports to end the week.View: The flu is nothing to sneeze at. Stay healthy this season with four easy tips.

Last Week in Review

“Yet, through all the gloom, I can see the rays of ravishing light and glory.” John Adams. The gloom of recent years seems to be gone from the labor sector, as it is a bright spot in our economy at the start of this year. The January Jobs Report showed that 257,000 jobs were created, above the 235,000 expected, as the sector continues to produce robust gains. In addition, job creations for November and December were revised sharply higher by 147,000. The last three months have averaged 336,000 new hires, the best three-month period in the last 17 years. January marked the 11th straight month of job gains above 200,000, the longest streak since 1994.Also of note, the Unemployment Rate ticked up slightly to 5.7 percent from 5.6 percent, while hourly earnings came in above expectations. It will be important to monitor future hourly earnings readings, as growth in this area could cause an increase in inflation. Since inflation is the kryptonite for fixed investments like Mortgage Bonds, it can also be bad news for home loan rates (which are tied to Mortgage Bonds).

Over in housing, research firm CoreLogic reported that home prices, including distressed sales, rose by 5 percent from December 2013 to December 2014. Home price gains continue to stabilize at more normal levels from the double digit gains seen in the past few years. While the 5 percent gain is the 34th month of consecutive year-over-year increases in home prices nationally, prices are still 13.4 percent below their April 2006 peak.

The bottom line is that now is a great time to consider a home purchase or refinance. Let me know if I can answer any questions at all for you or your clients.

[Read more…]

Mortgage Market Weekly – Update Jan 19, 2015

In This Issue…

Last Week in Review: Retail sales plummeted, inflation remains tame, and home loan rates are hovering near record lows.Forecast for the Week: It’s a holiday-shortened week, with housing reports dominating the headlines.View: These five podcasts are great tools to help you succeed this year.
Last Week in Review 
Shop or drop. Fewer people than expected opened their wallets in December, as the latest Retail Sales numbers declined. But with home loan rates hovering near historic lows, not all of last week’s headlines were disappointing. Retail Sales plunged by 0.9 percent in December, the biggest decline in nearly a year as lower gas prices didn’t have the desired impact on consumer spending during the busy shopping season. November’s numbers were also revised lower. This news was a bit of a surprise, and not the best sign for our overall economic recovery. But one number doesn’t make a trend, so this will be an important report to watch in the coming months.On the inflation front, inflation at the wholesale level remained tamed in December while the Consumer Price Index showed its smallest gain in five years, mainly due to plunging oil prices. We are beginning to see disinflationary pressures, which is a slower rate of inflation over a shorter time period. While low inflation is Bond-friendly news (and also good for home loan rates, since they are tied to Mortgage Bonds), outright deflation is a sustained fall in prices. That is something we do not want to see because deflation also brings increased unemployment. Inflation is another key item to monitor as we move ahead into 2015.

Also of note, the World Bank cut its forecast for global growth, warning that the world economy remains overly reliant on the “single engine” of the U.S. recovery. If negative news from overseas continues, we could see safe haven trading into our Bond market, helping Mortgage Bonds and home loan rates in the process.

The bottom line is that home loan rates remain near historic lows, and now is a great time to consider a home purchase or refinance. Let me know if I can answer any questions at all for you or your clients.

[Read more…]

Mortgage Market Weekly – Update Jan 12, 2015

This Issue…

Last Week in Review: The labor sector continues to improve, while home price gains are stabilizing at more normal levels.Forecast for the Week: Look for key reports on inflation, manufacturing and retail sales.

View: Navigate tax time with ease thanks to the overview below.

Last Week in Review

Take this job and love it. That’s exactly what more people are doing these days, as job growth in 2014 was the strongest in fifteen years and our economy continues to improve.corelogic-home-price-index-2015-01-12 The December Jobs Report showed that 252,000 jobs were created, a touch above expectations. In addition, upward revisions to October and November added another 50,000-plus jobs to what was originally reported for those months. Employers added 2.95 million new jobs in 2014, with an average of 246,000 per month, above the 194,000 per month average in 2013.

Another positive in the report is that the Unemployment Rate came in at 5.6 percent. The head scratcher was a -0.2 percent hourly earnings figure. Hourly earnings are not growing and that is keeping inflation persistently low. One positive about low inflation is that it should benefit Bonds for the foreseeable future, as high or growing inflation can cause fixed assets like Bonds to worsen. Since home loan rates are tied to Mortgage Bonds, low inflation should also help keep home loan rates low for now.

In housing news, CoreLogic reported that its Home Price Index, including distressed sales, rose by 5.5 percent annually in November. After a near 12 percent annual increase back in January 2014, prices have been decelerating, but have stabilized to a more normal 5 to 6 percent growth rate for the last four months.

The bottom line is that home loan rates remain near historic lows, and now is a great time to consider a home purchase or refinance. Let me know if I can answer any questions at all for you or your clients.

[Read more…]

Mortgage Market Weekly – Update Jan 5, 2015

In This Issue…

Last Week in Review: The U.S. economy had a strong third quarter, while recent housing reports show signs of slowing in that sector.

Forecast for the Week: On Friday, the Jobs Report for December could be a market mover.

View: If you received new electronics over the holidays, see the tips below for selling, recycling or donating your old gadgets.

Last Week in Review 

“It’s a new dawn, it’s a new day…and I’m feeling good.” Nina Simone. The new year is here, and with home loan rates still near historic lows, 2015 rang in with plenty for consumers to feel good about. Here are some other highlights from the end of 2014.

existing-home-sales-2015-01-05 The final reading for Gross Domestic Product (GDP) for the third quarter of 2014 came in at a blistering 5.0 percent, the fastest pace of economic growth since the third quarter of 2003. The big gains were led by a surge in both consumer and business spending. GDP is considered the broadest measure of economic activity, so this is a strong sign for our economy heading into the new year.

In housing news, the October S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Index came in at an annual rate of 4.5 percent, down from the 4.8 percent recorded in September. The October reading was the eleventh straight month of decelerating price gains. It was also the smallest annual gain since October 2012, as price gains return to more normal levels. Also of note, sales of new and existing homes fell in November as well. The housing market continues to remain in a somewhat choppy trend, despite an improving economy and job market.

As we look ahead into 2015, the uncertainty in Europe will continue to rear its head over time. The European Union (EU) is fighting deflation, recessionary pressures, a Greece exit from the EU, and limited political capital required for the necessary fixes. This could lead to safe haven trading in our bond market, helping Mortgage Bonds and home loan rates (which are tied to Mortgage Bonds) in the process.

The bottom line is that home loan rates remain near historic lows, and now is a great time to consider a home purchase or refinance. Let me know if I can answer any questions at all for you or your clients.

[Read more…]

Mortgage Market Weekly – Update Nov 24, 2014

In This Issue…

Last Week in Review: The housing sector continues to improve, as home loan rates remain near annual lows.

Forecast for the Week: Look for news on housing, inflation, consumer confidence and the state of our economy—all ahead of the Thanksgiving holiday.

View: Get more from your lunch hour with these great tips.

Last Week in Review

Time is on our side. Time continues to be on the side of potential homebuyers, as home loan rates remain near 18-month lows. But could a hint of inflation be creeping into our economy – and if so, could higher home loan rates be on the horizon? [Read more…]

Mortgage Market Weekly – Update Nov 17, 2014

In This Issue…

Last Week in Review: The Bond markets were closed Tuesday in honor of Veterans Day, while the rest of the week was quiet with only a handful of economic reports on the calendar.

Forecast for the Week: The Fed minutes could cause volatility. Plus, key housing reports, and is inflation still tame?

View: Check out these five tips that can help yield more productive and meaningful work relationships.

[Read more…]

Mortgage Market Weekly – Update Nov 10, 2014

In This Issue…

Last Week in Review: The October Jobs Report was mixed, while housing price gains continue to move lower after the highs seen in 2013.

Forecast for the Week: With a quiet economic report calendar ahead, the Stock and Bond markets may play off of each other for direction.

View: Want to make LinkedIn a more effective resource for your business? Check out the tips below.

Last Week in Review

“Every day you may make progress.” Winston Churchill. The labor market has made great strides this year, as the economy has averaged 229,000 new jobs per month in 2014, the fastest pace since 1999. However, key details in the latest report show more progress is needed.

corelogic-home-price-index-nov10The October Jobs Report showed that 214,000 jobs were created, below the 235,000 expected. Of importance to note: a big percentage of the gains were concentrated in retailers, restaurants and bar,  all of which typically increase ahead of the holidays.

On the surface, there was good news as the Unemployment Rate fell to 5.8 percent from 5.9 percent, reaching its lowest rate since July 2008. However, wage growth remains tepid, as hourly earnings rose by only 3 cents, with the year-over-year increase at just 2 percent. And the Labor Force Participation Rate (LFPR) came in at 62.8 percent, still near the lows last seen in 1978. The LFPR measures the proportion of working-age Americans who have a job or are looking for one, and it should be moving higher in a recovery.

In housing news, research firm CoreLogic reported that home prices, including distressed sales, rose at an annual pace of 5.6 percent in September. This was the slowest annual rate since August 2012, and well below the 11.8 percent gain recorded this past February. Housing price gains are definitely trending lower after their meteoric highs last year.

The bottom line is that home loan rates remain near some of their best levels of the year, and now is a great time to consider a home purchase or refinance. Let me know if I can answer any questions at all for you or your clients.

Forecast for the Week

The economic calendar is quiet this week, but the second half of the week features several key reports.

  • Economic news doesn’t begin until Thursday with Weekly Initial Jobless Claims, which have been below 300,000 for eight straight weeks.
  • On Friday, Retail Sales will be released along with the Consumer Sentiment Index.

Remember: Weak economic news normally causes money to flow out of Stocks and into Bonds, helping Bonds and home loan rates improve, while strong economic news normally has the opposite result. The chart below shows Mortgage Backed Securities (MBS), which are the type of Bond on which home loan rates are based.

When you see these Bond prices moving higher, it means home loan rates are improving—and when they are moving lower, home loan rates are getting worse.

To go one step further, a red “candle” means that MBS worsened during the day, while a green “candle” means MBS improved during the day. Depending on how dramatic the changes were on any given day, this can cause rate changes throughout the day, as well as on the rate sheets we start with each morning.

As you can see in the chart below, Mortgage Bonds improved after the October Jobs Report was released. Home loan rates remain near historic lows and I will continue to monitor their movement.

Chart: Fannie Mae 3.5% Mortgage Bond (Friday Nov 07, 2014)

nov10-bonds-chart

The Mortgage Market Guide View…

Why Are You Using LinkedIn?

By David Ackert, AckertAdvisory.com

Being on LinkedIn is all well and good, but unless you know why, you can easily get stuck in an unproductive web of meaningless connections.

For your consideration, here are four LinkedIn goals, along with recommendations on how to achieve them:

  1. Target: LinkedIn is a great way to target potential prospects and allies. Given that targeting relies on introductions from your existing connections, make sure you only accept invitations from people who know you well enough to broker an introduction for you. Targeting someone who’s not in your network? Consider upgrading to a Business Premium or Sales Navigator account.
  2. Attract: If you have a unique practice or specialty that is likely to be sought out, you don’t have to limit your connections in the way a “targeter” would. Accept invitations from anyone who could have access to relevant business opportunities. Join groups that align with your areas of interest and expertise. Statistically, participation in groups is at least three times more likely to drive relevant traffic to your profile.
  3. Broadcast: Trying to make a name for yourself? Connect with anyone whose opinion matters to you. Post content such as articles, blogs and announcements to your feed on a regular basis so that the people in your network become more aware of you. When you post to a discussion group, ask a provocative question that will engage your audience.
  4. Service: If your goal is to use your LinkedIn connections to add value to your clients, make sure you are connected to your clients. Ask them regularly about their problems so you can marry content and connections to their needs. This is a good way to let them know that you are focused on their problems.

Chances are you want to get something out of LinkedIn (besides spam), so decide on your intended outcome and start linking accordingly.

Source: The Ackert Advisory

econ-calendar-2014-1110

The material contained in this newsletter is provided by a third party to real estate, financial services and other professionals only for their use and the use of their clients. The material provided is for informational and educational purposes only and should not be construed as investment and/or mortgage advice. Although the material is deemed to be accurate and reliable, we do not make any representations as to its accuracy or completeness and as a result, there is no guarantee it is without errors.

As your mortgage professional, I am committed to keeping you updated on the economic events that impact interest rates and how they may affect you.

Don Parsons
Commerce Mortgage – NMLS 2105
450 Newport Center Drive Suite 350
Newport Beach, CA 92660
2130 Main Street Suite 260
Huntington Beach, CA 92648