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Mortgage Update for this week

August 29th, 2014 2:04 PM by Jonathan White


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Jonathan White

President and CEO
Mortgage Broker | NMLS ID: 3443

Blue Door Mortgage, LLC

Co. NMLS MB2218

Call: 781.235.2583 (BLUE)

20 Walnut Street

Suite 12

Wellesley, MA 02481



European Weakness Drives Rates


The US economic data released this week struggled to elicit a reaction in the market. Instead, investors focused on increased expectations for asset purchases by the European Central Bank (ECB). This news was favorable for US mortgage rates, which ended near the lowest levels of the year.


The ECB has a reputation for being tougher on inflation than the Fed, and monetary policy has been tighter in the euro zone than in the US. Recent comments suggest that the ECB is headed in the opposite direction, though. While an improving US economy has caused the Fed to wind down its bond purchase program, ECB officials have expressed growing support to implement an asset purchase program to counter weak euro zone economic growth. Investors have added European bonds to their portfolios ahead of this expected added demand from the ECB, pushing their yields lower. This has made global bond yields in other regions relatively more attractive, including US mortgage-backed securities (MBS). The extra demand for MBS has helped push down mortgage rates.


Recent data on the US housing market has been mixed. The Existing Home Sales report released last week showed nice improvement, while this week's New Home Sales data revealed a slight decline. The July Pending Home Sales report, which is a leading indicator of future activity, rose to 105.9, the highest level since September 2013. The National Association of Realtors (NAR), which issues the report, defines a reading of 100 as an "average level of contract activity".



Looking ahead, there will be a summit on Saturday between EU officials and Ukrainian officials. This may lead to additional sanctions against Russia. In the US, the important monthly Employment report will be released on Friday. As usual, this data on the number of jobs, the Unemployment Rate, and wage inflation will be the most highly anticipated economic data of the month. Before that, ISM Manufacturing will be released on Tuesday. The ADP Employment Change will come out on Wednesday. Productivity and ISM Services will be released on Thursday. Mortgage markets will be closed on Monday in observance of Labor Day.



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Posted in:General
Posted by Jonathan White on August 29th, 2014 2:04 PM


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