Headline News from Last Week
- Pending Home Sales – With a much higher than expected 3.4% surge in March, Pending Home Sales ended 9 straight months of decline.
- S&P Case-Shiller HPI – Home-Price Appreciation was strong in February with a 0.8% increase.
- Consumer Confidence – Despite slight decreases in April, Consumer Confidence remained over the key 80 level.
- FOMC Meeting Announcement – As expected, bond purchases will be reduced in May by $10 billion per month.
- Jobless Claims – Extreme volatility continued to be the story for claims, which have seen lows of 301,000 at the beginning of the month, to highs of 344,000 last week.
- Employment Situation – Total nonfarm payroll jobs increased 288,000 in April, far exceeding the prediction of 215,000.
According to the Primary Mortgage Market Survey released by Freddie Mac, average fixed-rate mortgage rates decreased slightly following the release of the real GDP estimates for the first quarter.
30-year fixed-rate mortgages (FRMs) averaged 4.29% with an average 0.7 point for the week ending May 1, 2014, down from last week when they averaged 4.33%. A year ago at this time, 30-year FRMs averaged 3.35%.
15-year FRMs this week averaged 3.38% with an average 0.6 point, down from last week when they averaged 3.39%. A year ago at this time, 15-year FRMs averaged 2.56%.
5-year Treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgages (ARMs) averaged 3.05% this week with an average 0.4 point, up from last week when they averaged 3.03%. A year ago, 5-year ARMs averaged 2.56%.
1-year Treasury-indexed ARMs averaged 2.45% this week with an average 0.5 point, up from last week when they averaged 2.44%. At this time last year, 1-year ARMs averaged 2.56%.
The major indexes (Dow Jones Industrial Average, S&P 500, NASDAQ) started the week on a positive note before losing momentum Thursday and Friday. Despite the late-week decline, all three ended the week gaining nearly 1%.
The Week Ahead
Wednesday, May 7
Consumer Credit (3:00 p.m. ET) – Changes in consumer credit indicate the state of consumer finances and foreshadow future spending patterns.
Thursday, May 8
Jobless Claims (8:30 a.m. ET) – New unemployment claims are compiled weekly to show the number of individuals who filed for unemployment insurance for the first time.
Bloomberg Consumer Comfort (9:45 a.m. ET) – The Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index is a weekly, random-sample survey that tracks Americans’ views on the condition of the U.S. economy, their personal finances and the buying climate.
Visit the Quicken Loans Zing Blog for updated information on important economic releases that affect your wallet.