I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving! My Detroit Lions lost, but the food was great. Unfortunately, someone who shall remain nameless passed me more than the stuffing, so I’m a little under the weather this morning. Nothing stops a Cyber Monday Market Update, though.
Speaking of Cyber Monday, we’ve got a little online deal of our own going today if you’re in the market for a mortgage. Today only, if you lock your rate through Rocket Mortgage® by Quicken Loans on a refinance, you’ll receive a half point off your closing costs.*
Turning to economic data, it was a bit of a lighter week given the holiday, but we got some housing numbers and durable goods orders, among other items.
Existing Home Sales
Existing home sales came in stronger than expected in October, up 2.0% to a seasonally adjusted annualized rate of 5.480 million. Still, this is down 0.9% from last year’s pace.
Single-family home resales were up 2.1% to 4.870 million, while condo sales increased 1.7% to 610,000. Sales prices were down 0.2% on the month to $247,000, but that’s still 5.5% higher than the average price at this time last year. Supply was down 3.2% to 1.800 million homes. Relative to sales, there are 3.9 months left of supply on the market as opposed to 4.2 months in September.
There were gains in all regions, with sales up 4.2% in the Northeast. This was followed by a 2.4% sales increase in the West, a 1.8% increase in the South and a 0.8% uptick in the Midwest.
MBA Mortgage Applications
Mortgage applications were up 0.1% overall last week. A 5.0% gain in purchase applications was almost totally offset by a 5.0% decrease in applications in an increasingly rate-sensitive refinance market.
The average rate on a 30-year fixed conforming mortgage was up two basis points to 4.20%, according to this data.
Durable Goods Orders
It wasn’t a good month in terms of new orders for durable goods, which were down 1.2%. They’ve still risen 1.0% on the year. A big piece of this October drop seems to be a 33% decrease in the number of commercial aircraft orders. When transportation was taken out of the equation, orders are up 0.4% and 7.4% annually. Finally, shipments of core capital goods were down 0.5% but have gone up 8.1% on the year.
The good news is there were upward revisions in every major category for September. There was also a 1.7% increase in vehicle orders and a 1.5% uptick in automobile production.
Initial unemployment claims fell 13,000 last week to 239,000. This is extremely low. That said, the four-week average did rise slightly, up 1,250 to come in at 239,750.
Continuing claims rose 36,000 last week to 1.904 million. The four-week average also ticked up a bit, rising 1,000 to come in at 1.890 million.
Consumer sentiment readings rose slightly in the final reading of November, up 0.8 points to 98.5. It’s still down slightly in comparison to October.
Consumers are very confident about gains for employment and income. However, of particular concern for the Federal Reserve is the fact that consumers expect inflation to remain very low. The outlook is 2.5% over the next year and 2.4% over the next five years.
As mentioned above, both current conditions and expectations are down slightly from where they were in October at 113.5 and 88.9, respectively.
Mortgage rate movements were a mixed bag last week. With that said, they’re still very low. If you’re in the market for a mortgage, qualifying loans are eligible for a 0.5 point off closing costs if you lock your rate today during our Cyber Monday pricing special.
First, average rates on 30-year-fixed mortgages with 0.5 fees in points were down three basis points in the week to 3.92% in last week’s Freddie Mac data. Last year at this time, the average rate was 3.81%.
On the shorter-term side, the average rate on a 15-year fixed mortgage with 0.4 points was up a basis point to 3.32%. At the same time last year, the average rate was 3.39%.
Finally, the average rate on a 5-year treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable rate mortgage (ARM) with 0.4 points was up one basis point to 3.22%. A year ago, this rate was 3.32%.
Investors are expecting a strong holiday shopping season, and those expectations led to big stock gains – the S&P 500 closed at a new record high.
The Dow Jones industrial average finished the week at 23,557.99, up 31.81 points Friday and 0.86% on the week. The S&P 500 gained 5.34 points and 0.91% on the week on its way to a finish at 2,602.42 Friday. Rounding things out, the Nasdaq was up 1.57% on the week after rising 21.80 points on the day to finish at 6,889.16.
The Week Ahead
Monday, November 27
New Home Sales (10:00 a.m. ET) – This measures the number of newly constructed homes with a committed sale during the month.
Tuesday, November 28
International Trade in Goods (8:30 a.m. ET) – The Bureau of Economic Analysis has begun breaking out the goods from the remaining international trade numbers to get an idea of import and export estimates for GDP calculations.
FHFA House Price Index (9:00 a.m. ET) – The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) House Price Index (HPI) covers single-family housing using data provided by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. The HPI is derived from transactions involving conforming conventional mortgages purchased or securitized by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac.
S&P Case-Shiller HPI (9:00 a.m. ET) – The S&P Case-Shiller Home Pricing Index tracks monthly changes in the value of residential real estate in 20 metropolitan regions across the U.S.
Consumer Confidence (10:00 a.m. ET) – The Conference Board compiles a survey of consumer attitudes on the economy. The Consumer Confidence Index is based on consumer perceptions of current business and employment conditions, as well as their expectations when considering business conditions, employment and income.
Wednesday, November 29
MBA Mortgage Applications (7:00 a.m. ET) – The mortgage applications index measures applications to mortgage lenders. This is a leading indicator for single-family home sales and housing construction.
Gross Domestic Product (GDP) (8:30 a.m. ET) – This measures the monetary value of all final goods and services produced within the U.S. This report is released on a quarterly basis.
Pending Home Sales Index (10:00 a.m. ET) – The National Association of REALTORS developed the Pending Home Sales Index as a leading indicator of housing activity. Specifically, it’s a leading indicator of existing home sales, not new home sales.
Thursday, November 30
Jobless Claims (8:30 a.m. ET) – New unemployment claims are compiled weekly to show the number of individuals filing for unemployment insurance for the first time. An increasing trend suggests a deteriorating labor market. The four-week moving average of new claims smooths out weekly volatility.
Personal Income and Outlays (8:30 AM ET) – This is a measurement of how much consumers are taking in as well as their corresponding spending. This also gives insight into how much is being saved.
Friday, December 1
ISM Manufacturing Index (10:00 a.m.) – This index measures the general direction of manufacturing within the U.S. The qualitative survey of purchasing managers looks at production, new orders, order backlogs, inventories and supplier deliveries, among other factors.
There’s a fair amount of economic data coming this week. We’ll have it all covered for you next Monday in Market Update.
If this mortgage and economics stuff isn’t enough to awaken you after the long weekend, we have plenty of home, money and lifestyle content to share with you if you subscribe to the Zing Blog below. Thanksgiving may just be ending, but it will soon be time to think about all those random gift exchanges. With that in mind, here are some awesome items you can get for under $25. Have a great week!
*Client will receive an additional 0.5 discount points. Offer is valid on Rocket Mortgage applications received between 12:01AM ET and 11:59PM ET on 11/27/2017. This offer is only available to clients who complete the “Lock My Interest Rate” step of the application process on the Rocket Mortgage website. Applies to refinance loans in the amount of $100,000 or greater only. Offer does not apply to jumbo loans. Additional restrictions/conditions may apply. Not valid with any other discount or promotion.
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