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Archive for the Economic News Category

Mortgage rates reach highest levels in seven years

Investors Concerned by ECB, Economic Data on Target Overview: Over the past week, mortgage rates reached their highest levels in seven years, mainly due to comments by a European Central Bank (ECB) official. The major U.S. economic data came in close to expectations and caused little reaction. On Monday, comments from an ECB official were viewed by investors as a little more hawkish than expected, meaning in favor of a faster pace of rate hikes. François Villeroy de Galhau, the governor of the Bank of France, said that the ECB might soon provide guidance about the timing of its first

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Home sales strengthen, rates rise

Stocks Drop, Rates Rise, Home Sales Strengthen Overview: The stock market dropped sharply over the past week. Normally, this would result in investors shifting assets to bonds, and the added demand would push yields lower. However, that was not the case this week, and mortgage rates ended at the highest levels in four years. Several big-picture factors negatively affected mortgage rates over the past week. Investor expectations for future inflation increased. Investors also raised their outlook for the pace of tightening by the Federal Reserve, meaning that they now view four rate hikes this year as more likely. The supply of

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Home builder confidence remains strong into the new year

Builder confidence for new, single-family homes fell slightly as 2018 began, but overall remains strong. The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) recently released the results of their monthly joint report with Wells Fargo, which support the continuing strength of the market for new homes. The NAHB/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index (HMI) dropped 2 points in January to 72 after reaching an 18-year high in December 2017.  So what’s behind the robust state of the newly built, single-family homes market? Proposed tax reform is one factor, along with steady demand for new housing as existing real estate inventory remains sparse. “Builders are

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