August 12th, 2009 12:45 PM by Lehel Szucs
This week's FOMC meeting has adjourned with no change to key short-term interest rates. This was widely expected by market participants. The post-meeting statement really didn't give us any new insight to the Fed's next move. It did renew the same thoughts previously mentioned- that the economy is leveling off but to expect weak economic conditions for the immediate future. They also indicated that inflation is not an immediate concern to the economy.
The lack of a change to rates had no impact on trading as it was expected. The portion of the statement that indicated the spiraling economy is stabilizing can be considered somewhat negative for the bond market. However, the lack of concern about inflationary pressures offset any concerns that may have arisen from the reminder than the economic downturn is slowing.
Today's 10-year Treasury Note auction has caused some stress in bonds during after noon trading though. The sale was met with an average demand at best. The results were far from the worst we have seen but also nowhere near the recent levels of interest. This led to bond prices falling immediately after the 1:00 PM ET announcement and the FOMC meeting has done nothing to push them higher.
Overall, I am expecting to see a small upward revision to mortgage rates this afternoon. If your lender does not revise higher today, it will be built into tomorrow's pricing. Some lenders may opt to wait for tomorrow morning's key economic data to be posted before reflecting this change. If that is the case, keep in mind you already have a slight increase waiting from this afternoon's events.
This morning's only relevant economic data was June's Trade Balance report that revealed a $27.0 billion deficit. This was smaller than expected, but this data is not considered to be highly important to the markets so its impact on this morning's trading a nd mortgage rates was minimal.
Tomorrow morning's sole monthly report is July's Retail Sales data. This data is very important to the financial markets and mortgage rates because it helps us measure consumer spending. Since consumer spending makes up two-thirds of the U.S. economy, any data related to it can cause a fair amount of movement in the markets. A smaller than expected increase would indicate that consumers are spending less than previously thought, potentially slowing the economic recovery. This is good news for the bond market and mortgage rates as it eases inflation concerns and makes long-term securities such as mortgage-related bonds more attractive to investors. Current forecasts are calling for an increase of 0.7%.
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... Lock if my closing was taking place between 21 and 60 days... Lock 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.
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