Tulips in the sun in front of house

Daily Rate Update: March 16th-20th

posted in: Uncategorized | 0

Friday – March 20, 2020

The National Association of REALTORS reports that Existing Home Sales rose 6.5% in February from January and was the strongest reading since February 2007. Sales rose 7.2% from a year ago. The median price was $272,100, up 8% from February 2019. Inventories are at a low 3.1 months, well below 6 months that is seen as normal. First-time buyers were responsible for 32% of sales in February.

Due to the fallout from the coronavirus that has sent many Americans to the unemployment lines there are several measures that are currently being undertaken to help struggling homeowners. The Bank of America will be allowing mortgage holders and equity customers to request to defer payments while the virus crisis with the deferred payment being added to the end of the loan. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac will suspend foreclosures and evictions for at least 60 days. In addition, New York State will let some residents skip three months of mortgage payments as the coronavirus spreads.

Courtesy of Mortgage Market Guide

-CHECK US OUT ON SOCIAL-

Facebook

Twitter

YouTube

LinkedIn

Yelp


Thursday – March 19, 2020

Mortgage rates surged this week as lenders increased prices to help manage skyrocketing refinance demand, reports Freddie Mac. The 30-year fixed-0rate mortgage rose to 3.65% from 3.36% last week. A year at this time, the rate was 4.28%. This is expected to be a short-term phenomenon as lenders work through their backlog,” said Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s Chief Economist. “On the purchase front, daily loan purchase applications were rising as of mid-February but started to decline last Friday.”

The first sign of the coronavirus fallout hit the labor market this morning as Weekly Initial Jobless Claims spiked 70,000 to 281,000 for the week ended March 14. Many states across the country are reporting big first time claims and that will continue for the foreseeable future given that many businesses have shut down or are seeing little activity. Claims could rise further as the virus concerns hit employers’ bottom line.

Coronavirus update: Here in the U.S., there are 9,474 cases, a spike of near 40% overnight virus that includes 218 new cases with 155 total deaths. There are 227,086 cases of the virus reported worldwide, 9,285 deaths while 85,961 having recovered from the virus. Italy continues to be on total lock down. Current risk assessment from the CDC: The immediate risk of being exposed to this virus is still low for most Americans, but as the outbreak expands, that risk will increase. Cases of COVID-19 and instances of community spread are being reported in a growing number of states.

Courtesy of Mortgage Market Guide

-CHECK US OUT ON SOCIAL-

Facebook

Twitter

YouTube

LinkedIn

Yelp


Wednesday – March 18, 2020

The Commerce Department reports that construction of new homes edged lower in February from January due in part to a big decline in multi-family dwellings. Housing Starts fell 1.5% to an annual rate of 1,599,000, down 1.5% from January while starts surged 39% year over year. Single-family starts rose 6.7% monthly and were up 35% year over year. Multi-family dwelling fell by 17% month over month. Building Permits, a sign of future construction, fell 5.5% to an annual rate of 1,464,000.

Mortgage rates surged in the latest week but still remain just above all-time lows, reports the Mortgage Bankers Association. The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage rose to 3.74% from 3.47% for the week ending March 13, 2020. The Refinance Index fell 10% while the Purchase Index fell 1%. “The ongoing situation around the coronavirus led to further stress in the financial markets late last week, with unprecedented volatility and widening spreads. This drove mortgage rates back up to their highest levels since mid-February and led to a 10 percent decrease in refinance applications.

Courtesy of Mortgage Market Guide

-CHECK US OUT ON SOCIAL-

Facebook

Twitter

YouTube

LinkedIn

Yelp


Tuesday – March 17, 2020

Home builder confidence remained strong in March though the index dipped from February. The NAHB Housing Marker Index fell two points to 72. Any number over 50 indicates that more builders view conditions as good than poor. Looking ahead six months, sales expectations fell modestly. “Builder confidence remains solid, although sales expectations for the next six months dropped four points on economic uncertainty stemming from the coronavirus,” said NAHB Chairman Dean Mon, a home builder and developer from Shrewsbury, N.J. “Interest rates remain low, and a lack of inventory creates market opportunities for single-family builders.”

Consumer spending dipped in February as fears of the coronavirus set in late in the month. Retail Sales fell by 0.5% after the 0.6% gain in January and was the largest decline in a year. The March numbers will more accurately reflect if the consumer shutdown but there was a run on grocery stores as Americans hoarded essentials to run their households. There will be hits to those businesses such as bars, restaurants, conferences and sporting events.

Coronavirus update: Here in the U.S., there are 4,744 cases of the virus that includes 81 new cases with 93 total deaths. There are 187,787 cases of the virus reported worldwide, 7,478 deaths while 80,848 having recovered from the virus. Italy continues to be on total lock down. Current risk assessment from the CDC: The immediate risk of being exposed to this virus is still low for most Americans, but as the outbreak expands, that risk will increase. Cases of COVID-19 and instances of community spread are being reported in a growing number of states.

Courtesy of Mortgage Market Guide

-CHECK US OUT ON SOCIAL-

Facebook

Twitter

YouTube

LinkedIn

Yelp


Monday – March 16, 2020

In an emergency move, the Fed cut the benchmark Fed Funds Rate by a full point to zero last night. They also embarked on a new QE program, committing a massive $700B buying program of Treasuries ($500B) and Mortgage-Backed Securities ($200B) saying, “Global financial conditions have been significantly affected” (by the coronavirus). Stocks are reacting very negatively and essentially pricing in a recessions due to the coronavirus economic impact. Oil prices continue to plunge on demand fears and oversupply – WTI oil at $29.23/barrel, -$2.51.

From last night’s Fed statement: “The coronavirus outbreak has harmed communities and disrupted economic activity in many countries, including the United States. Global financial conditions have also been significantly affected. Available economic data show that the U.S. economy came into this challenging period on a strong footing.”In addition, “The Federal Reserve is prepared to use its full range of tools to support the flow of credit to households and businesses and thereby promote its maximum employment and price stability goals.” Last night’s announcement will replace this week’s Fed meeting on Tuesday and Wednesday.

Courtesy of Mortgage Market Guide

-CHECK US OUT ON SOCIAL-

Facebook

Twitter

YouTube

LinkedIn

Yelp