- JOLTS – There were 4.173 million job openings on the last business day of February, up from January at 3.874 million. The hires rate (3.3%) and separations rate (3.2%) were unchanged in February.
- FOMC Minutes – Most FOMC participants saw a pickup in GDP growth after bad weather in the first quarter. Still, staff economists saw non-weather factors weighing down growth.
- Jobless Claims – The week in which Easter falls may be at play in a stunning 32,000 drop to 300,000 in initial jobless claims. This is the largest drop in more than 10 years.
- Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index – Americans’ ratings of their personal finances slipped to their lowest in five months, possibly reflecting the impact of rising gasoline prices.
- Consumer Sentiment – The weather is warming and consumer sentiment also jumped up to 82.6 for mid-April vs 80.0 in final March.
According to the Primary Mortgage Market Survey released by Freddie Mac, average mortgage rates decreased slightly heading into the spring home buying season.
30-year fixed-rate mortgages (FRMs) averaged 4.34% with an average 0.7 point for the week ending April 10, 2014, down from last week when they averaged 4.41%. A year ago at this time, 30-year FRMs averaged 3.43 percent.
15-year FRMs this week averaged 3.38% with an average 0.6 point, down from last week when they averaged 3.47%. A year ago at this time, 15-year FRMs averaged 2.65%.
5-year Treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgages (ARMs) averaged 3.09% this week with an average 0.5 point, down from last week when they averaged 3.12%. A year ago, 5-year ARMs averaged 2.62%.
1-year Treasury-indexed ARMs averaged 2.41% this week with an average 0.5 point, down from last week when they averaged 2.45%. At this time last year, 1-year ARMs averaged 2.62%.
It was a rough week for stocks, particularly the NASDAQ, which fell more than 1.3%. The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 143 points, while the S&P 500 finished the week down 1%.
The Week Ahead
Monday, April 14
Retail Sales (8:30 a.m. ET) – Retail sales measure the total receipts at stores that sell merchandise and related services to final consumers. Sales are by retail and food service stores.
Tuesday, April 15
Consumer Price Index (8:30 a.m. ET) – The Consumer Price Index is a measure of the change in the average price level of a fixed basket of goods and services purchased by consumers.
Housing Market Index (10 a.m. ET) – The National Association of Home Builders produces a housing market index based on a survey in which respondents from this organization are asked to rate the general economy and housing market conditions. The housing market index is a weighted average of present sales of new homes, sale of new homes expected in the next six months, and traffic of prospective buyers in new homes.
Wednesday, April 16
Housing Starts (8:30 a.m. ET) – A housing start is registered at the start of construction (excavation) of a new building intended primarily as a residential building.
Thursday, April 17
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.
Visit the Quicken Loans Zing Blog for updated information on economic releases that will affect your wallet.