January 27th, 2010 11:25 AM by Lehel S.
Wednesday's bond market has opened up slightly due to weaker than expected economic news and stock market losses. The Dow is showing a loss of 30 points while the Nasdaq has fallen 3 points. The bond market is currently up 3/32, which will likely improve this morning's mortgage rates by approximately .125 of a discount point.
Today's only factual economic data was the release of December's New Home Sales late this morning. The Commerce Department reported that sales of newly constructed homes fell 7.6% last month. That was a much larger decline than was expected and helps support the theory that the housing market still has some troubles to overcome. This is basically good news for bonds and mortgage rates but this data is not considered to be highly important, so its impact on this morning's rates has been minimal.
There is also a 5-year Note auction today that may influence bond trading and mortgage rates during afternoon hours. Results of t he sale will be posted at 1:00 PM ET. It doesn't directly impact mortgage rates, but it will gives us a measurement of investor interest in U.S. securities. If the demand for the sale was strong, the broader bond market will likely react positively, making an improvement to mortgage rates possible. However, a poor demand could lead to bond selling and higher mortgage rates this afternoon, particularly if the second afternoon event gives us any negative surprises.
Today also brings us the adjournment of the 2-day FOMC meeting that will end at 2:15 PM ET. It is expected to yield no change to short-term interest rates, but as is often the case, traders will be looking for any indication of the Fed's next move and when they may make it. I believe that there is little chance of indicating a possible rate hike in the near future, so I don't believe that this meeting will have the influence that the FOMC meetings usually do.
Look for an update to this repor t shortly after the markets have an opportunity to react to the afternoon events. There is relevant economic data scheduled for release tomorrow (December's Durable Goods Orders) along with the 7-year Note auction. But we will address those in today's afternoon update.
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 to be in the best interest of all/any other borrowers.