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Economic News
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Kenton Becker
Loan Officer
Office: (206) 423-2552
NMLS #123961 ,
Washington #MLO-123961

Events Last Week:

Retail Sales Higher
Housing Starts Fell
Leading Indicators Up
Manufacturing Down

Events This Week:

Wed 5/22
Fed Minutes
Existing Sales

Thur 5/23
New Home Sales
Jobless Claims

Fri 5/24
Durable Orders

 

 

 

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Mixed Economic Data

Mortgage rates have been highly sensitive to the economic data in recent weeks. Daily volatility has been high even from reports which usually produce a limited reaction. The balance of the data released last week was stronger than expected, which caused mortgage rates to end a little higher.

Following a much improved Employment report on May 3, mortgage rates have been in an upward trend for most of this month. The trend continued to start the week when the April Retail Sales report was stronger than expected. While the consensus was for a small decline, a slight increase was reported. Mortgage rates finally received some relief on Thursday, primarily due to the Jobless Claims report. Weekly Jobless Claims jumped to 360K, far above the consensus of 330K. After three weeks with readings below 350K, investors were disappointed by the results, which called into question the recent strength in the labor market.

The housing market data released last week was mostly positive. While April Housing Starts declined from the multi-year highs seen in March, mostly due to multi-family units, Building Permits jumped to the highest level since June 2008. Building Permits are a leading indicator of future building activity. In another positive sign, the May NAHB Home Builders confidence index increased significantly.

Also Notable:
  • Core CPI inflation was 1.7% higher than one year ago
  • Consumer Sentiment rose to the highest level since June 2007
  • First quarter GDP in the euro zone declined 0.1%
  • The Japanese Nikkei stock index rose above 15,000 for the first time since Jan. 2008

graph

 
Average 30 yr fixed rate:
Last week: +0.10%
This week: +0.08%
Stocks (weekly):
Dow: 15,300 +200
NASDAQ: 3,480 +60
 

This Week

The big story will be Wednesday's release of the FOMC Minutes from the May 1 Fed meeting. These detailed Minutes provide additional insight into the debate between Fed officials. Investors will be looking for hints about when the Fed will begin to scale back its bond buying program. The first economic data will be the Existing Home Sales report on Wednesday. New Home Sales will come out on Thursday. Durable Orders, an important indicator of economic growth, will be released on Friday. Mortgage markets will close early on Friday ahead of the Memorial Day holiday.

©2013 MBSQuoteline

landhome
Equal Housing Opportunity Lender. Rates, Program, Fees, and Guidelines are subject to change without notice. Not a commitment to lend. Land Home only conducts business in states we are approved to. Land Home Financial Services, 22525 SE 64th Place, Suite 220, Issaquah, WA 98027. Washington Consumer Loan License #CL-89331. NMLS ID # 89331. Kenton Becker Licenses: NMLS #123961; Washington #MLO-123961. You are receiving this communication because of an existing and/or past business relationship, or because you have consented to receive communications from Land Home. 05-20-13  

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