Treasuries and mortgage bonds are slightly lower this morning after negotiations over the debt ceiling stalled. The Treasury is scheduled to sell $35 billion of five-year debt today, the second of three auctions this week.
Initial jobless claims fell to 338,000 in the week ending December 21, from a revised 380,000 in the previous week. The Labor Department is stating that difficulty in adjusting data during the holiday season is the likely reason for volatility in claims for the last two months of the year.
The amount of new home construction rose to its highest level in more than 30 years. Long-term rates continue to be low and job market is still stable. Both are fueling the housing market to remain strong and steady.