Massachusetts mortgage rate lock

by Brian Cavanaugh, Senior Mortgage Banker, RMS Mortgage and SmarterBorrowing.com

Overall, despite being a fairly light week in terms of economic releases and relate events, it is still relatively crucial for the mortgage market. We saw the yield on the benchmark 10-year Treasury Note spike higher Friday as a result of the stronger than expected employment data. Stocks rallied as a result of that data, extending the 2012 stock rally that has pushed the Dow up over 5% and the Nasdaq up 11% year-to-date. Both indexes are at their highest levels since May 2008 and December 2000 respectively. This has me believing we are due to see a pullback in stocks fairly soon. If/when this happens, we should see funds shift back into bonds for safety, leading to lower mortgage rates. Keep in mind that this is more or less just speculation, but I am expecting to move to a less conservative approach regarding short-term mortgage rates in the near future.

If I were considering financing/refinancing a home, I would….

LOCK if my closing was taking place within 7 days…

LOCK if my closing was taking place between 8 and 20 days…

FLOAT if my closing was taking place between 21 and 60 days…

FLOAT if my closing was taking place over 60 days from now…

This is only my opinion of what I would do if I were financing a home. It is only an opinion and cannot be guaranteed

There are only two pieces of monthly economic data scheduled for release this week. Neither of them is considered to be highly important, so we don’t have much to pin our hopes on or to be concerned with this week. There are two Treasury auctions on the calendar that may influence mortgage rates the middle part of the week and the second part of Fed Chairman Bernanke’s testimony to Congress, but no important economic data.

Nothing of concern is due tomorrow, so look for the stock markets and news from Europe- particularly Greece, to drive the markets tomorrow. Fed Chairman Bernanke will speak to the Senate Budget Committee at 10:00 AM Tuesday. I don’t expect him to say anything different than he said last week to the House Budget Committee, but the Q&A portion of his appearance could lead to something new. It is worth watching, but it will probably not lead to a noticeable change in the markets or mortgage rates.

Treasury Auctions Ahead

The two important Treasury auctions come Wednesday and Thursday when 10-year Notes and 30-year Bonds are sold. The 10-year sale is the more important one as it will give us a better indication of demand of mortgage-related securities. If the sales are met with a strong demand from investors, we should see the bond market move higher during afternoon trading the days of the auctions. But a lackluster interest from buyers, particularly international investors, would indicate a waning appetite for longer-term U.S. securities and lead to broader bond selling. The selling in bonds would likely result in upward afternoon revisions to mortgage rates.

Unemployment Numbers

With little monthly and no quarterly economic reports being posted, Thursday’s weekly release of unemployment figures may end up moving the markets and mortgage rates more than it traditionally does. The Labor Department is expected to announce that 370,000 new claims for unemployment benefits were filed last week, rising slightly from the previous week’s total. The higher the number of new claims for benefits, the better the news for the bond market and mortgage pricing as it would indicate weakness in the employment sector.

The first monthly report comes early Friday morning when December’s Goods and Services Trade Balance data will be posted. This report measures the U.S. trade deficit and can affect the value of the U.S. dollar versus other currencies, but it usually does not cause enough movement in bond prices to affect mortgage rates. It is expected to show a $48.2 billion trade deficit.

Consumer Sentiment

February’s preliminary reading to the University of Michigan’s Index of Consumer Sentiment will be released late Friday morning. This index measures consumer willingness to spend and usually has a moderate impact on the financial markets. If it shows an increase in consumer confidence, the stock markets may move higher and bond prices could fall. It is currently expected to come in at 74.0, down from January’s final reading of 75.0. That would indicate consumers were less optimistic about their own financial situations than last month and are less likely to make large purchases in the near future. Since consumer spending makes up over two-thirds of the U.S. economy, this would be considered good news for bonds and mortgage pricing.

  • Are you a possible Massachusetts First Time Homebuyer?
  • Do you have a Real Estate client inquiring about current Mortgage Rates?
  • Do you have any Refinancing questions?
  • Should you be thinking about Refinancing out of your ARM (Adjustable Rate Mortgage)?
  • Have your Real Estate clients been Pre Approved?

bc@smarterborrowing.com  617.771.5021

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Mortgage Guy Brian Cav has been riding the Massachusetts mortgage rate roller coaster this week! Seems like the Fed’s new Quantitative Easing II policy has got the market jumping all over the place. Well, here’s the lowdown from BC:

Brian Cav

Wow, I am at a lack of words for what has happened over the past week with Mortgage Rates. Rates have changed up to 5 times per day since last Wednesday. We are just now starting to see some stabilization after a week of bad mortgage market losses.

Most Lenders are offering 4.25% with 1 point of origination for a 30 year fixed with standard costs. The same can be said at 3.75% for a 15 year fixed. You must have a 740 FICO credit score or better and enough equity in your home to refinance or standard down payment requirements on a purchase. Jumbo 30 year and 15 year fixed along with 5/1 ARMs are very near all-time lows as of today. Jumbo Mortgage financing requires a 80% loan to value or a 20% down payment on purchases.

Inquire within for current Mortgage Rates or guidelines at bc@SmarterBorrowing.com 617.771.5021

Economic Data

Wednesday’s bond market has opened in positive territory following the release of favorable economic data and a relatively flat open in stocks. The stock markets don’t appear ready to rebound from yesterday’s selling with the Dow up and the Nasdaq up. The bond market is currently up 5/32, which with yesterday’s afternoon strength should improve this morning’s mortgage rates by approximately .25  of a discount point over yesterday’s morning pricing.

There were two reports posted this morning. The first was October’s Consumer Price Index (CPI) that showed weaker than expected inflation readings. The Labor Department said that the overall CPI reading rose 0.2% and that the core data was unchanged from September’s level. Both of these readings were just shy of forecasts, meaning inflationary pressures were not as strong at the consumer level of the economy as many had thought. That is good news for the bond market and mortgage rates, but did not come as too much of a surprise after yesterday’s PPI numbers.

The Commerce Department gave us today’s second piece of data. They announced that construction starts of new homes fell 11.7% last month, falling to their lowest level in the past year and a half. This is favorable data for the bond market and mortgage rates since it indicates housing sector weakness. Unfortunately, the data is not considered to be highly important, preventing it from influencing this morning’s mortgage rates by much.

The final monthly report of the week will come from the Conference Board late tomorrow morning when they release their Leading Economic Indicators (LEI) for October. This is a moderately important report that attempts to predict economic activity over the next three to six months. It is expected to show a 0.6% increase, meaning economic activity will rise fairly rapidly over the next couple of months. Generally speaking, this would be bad news for bonds. However, since this data is considered only moderately important, its results need to vary by a wide margin from forecasts for it to affect mortgage rates.

Also tomorrow, the Labor Department will give us last week’s unemployment figures. They are expected to announce that 442,000 new claims for unemployment benefits were filed last week. This would be an increase from the previous week and considered good news for the bond market. However, since this is only a week’s worth of new claims data, its impact on tomorrow’s mortgage rates will likely be minimal. The larger the number of new claims filed, the better the news for the bond market and rates.

FLOAT or  LOCK

If I was closing on a Home Mortgage in the next 0 to 15 Days – FLOAT

If I was closing on a Home Mortgage in the next 15 to 30 Days – FLOAT

If I was closing on a Home Mortgage in the next 30 to 60 Days – FLOAT

If I was closing on a Home Mortgage in the next 60+ FLOAT

This is only my opinion of what I would do if I were financing a home. It is only an opinion and cannot be guaranteed to be in the best interest of all/any other borrowers.

  • Are you a possible Massachusetts First Time Home Buyer?
  • Do you have a Real Estate client inquiring about current Mortgage Rates?
  • Do you have any Refinancing questions?
  • Should you be thinking about Refinancing out of your ARM (Adjustable Rate Mortgage)?
  • Have your Real Estate clients been Pre Approved?

bc@SmarterBorrowing.com 617.771.5021

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