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MIG Market Watch, March 25th, 2019

MIG Market Watch, March 25th, 2019


MIG Market Watch, March 25th, 2019

MARKET COMMENT
Mortgage bond prices finished the week higher which put downward pressure on rates. Most of the movement was positive and within a narrow range. Rates were steady Monday as the NAHB housing data was exactly as expected. The Fed left rates unchanged and indicated they see no rate hikes this year. Comments from the Fed Chair painted a lower assessment of the economy. Weekly jobless claims were in line with estimates at 221K. The only strength in the data this week came from the Philadelphia Fed business conditions index which was a solid 13.7 compared to the expected 6 reading. Leading economic indicators were exactly as expected. Existing home sales were 5.1M units. Mortgage interest rates finished the week with discount points better by 1/4.

LOOKING AHEAD

Economic Indicator Release Date & Time Consensus Estimate Analysis
Housing Starts Tuesday, March 26,
8:30 am, et
1235K Important.  A measure of housing sector strength.  Weakness may lead to lower rates.
FHFA House Price Index Tuesday, March 26,
10:00 am, et
Up 0.4% Moderately Important.  A measure of single family house prices.  Weakness may lead to lower rates.
Consumer Confidence Tuesday, March 26,
10:00 am, et
131 Important.  An indication of consumers’ willingness to spend.  Weakness may lead to lower mortgage rates.
Trade Data Wednesday, March 27,
8:30 am, et
$58B deficit Important.  Affects the value of the dollar.  A falling deficit may strengthen the dollar and lead to lower rates.
Weekly Jobless Claims Thursday, March 28,
8:30 am, et
227K Important.  An indication of employment.   Higher claims may result in lower rates.
Q4 GDP Thursday, March 28,
8:30 am, et
Up 2.5% Very important.  The aggregate measure of US economic production. Weakness may lead to lower rates.
Personal Income and Outlays Friday, March 29,
8:30 am, et
Up 0.1%,
Up 0.1%
Important.  A measure of consumers’ ability to spend.  Weakness may lead to lower mortgage rates.
PCE Core Inflation Friday, March 29,
8:30 am, et
Up 0.1% Important.  A measure of price increases for all domestic personal consumption.  Weaker figure may help rates improve.
New Home Sales Friday, March 29,
10:00 am, et
715K Important.  An indication of economic strength and credit demand. Weakness may lead to lower rates.
U of Michigan Consumer Sentiment Friday, March 29,
10:00 am, et
97.4 Important.  An indication of consumers’ willingness to spend.  Weakness may lead to lower mortgage rates.

BREXIT DELAY
Britain was scheduled to exit the European Union this week in an uncontrolled manner. This had many economists worried about the global consequences. British lawmakers have recently rejected exit deals. EU leaders gave Britain an extension last Thursday to come up with a solution. The timeframe now pushes the date to the second week of April. A deal would have Britain leave the EU in May. If no deal is agreed upon they will face the same scenario they did this week. This is important because global events can move rates domestically.

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