There is one major housing report due out this morning, the Existing Home Sales report from the National Association of Realtors (NAR). Analysts had predicted that 5.6 million properties were sold in April, a drop from March's 5.71 million.
The actual numbers came in lower than expected, which is bad for the real estate industry but pretty nice for anyone floating a mortgage rate.Â Sales ofÂ existing condos, coops, and single-family homes fell by 2.3 percent to just 5.57 million.
Investors will also be carefully watching the 2 PM EDT release of the notes from the May 3, 2017 Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC). These could mean nothing, or they can be earth-shaking, depending on what the members have to say about the economy.
These notes often provide clues about when (if) the Fed plans to raise interest rates in the near future. Rates may not move much until these notes are released; market participants will be waiting for them before moving. Other data (see below rate table) may provide additional guidance.Click to see today's rates (Jul 20th, 2017)
|Conventional 30 yr Fixed||3.750||3.750||Unchanged|
|Conventional 15 yr Fixed||3.125||3.125||Unchanged|
|Conventional 5 yr ARM||3.000||3.629||Unchanged|
|30 year fixed FHA||3.250||4.218||Unchanged|
|15 year fixed FHA||2.750||3.652||+0.01%|
|5 year ARM FHA||2.875||3.996||+0.01%|
|30 year fixed VA||3.375||3.546||+0.01%|
|15 year fixed VA||3.000||3.284||+0.1%|
|5 year ARM VA||3.250||3.294||-0.01%|
This morning's data is not nearly as favorable for interest rates, however, and is likely to offset some of the good news from the housing market.
I expect mortgage rates to increase todayÂ unless something newsworthy breaks or the Fed drops a bombshell on us. If I like a rate, I'll probably lock. Your own goals and tolerance for risk may vary.
Mortgage interest rates depend on a great deal on the expectations of investors. Good economic news tends to be bad for interest rates, because an active economy raises concerns about inflation. Inflation causes fixed-income investments like bonds to lose value, and that causes their yields (another way of saying interest rates) to increase.
For example, suppose that two years ago, you bought a $1,000 bond payingÂ five percent interest ($50) each year. (This is called its â€ścoupon rate.") Thatâ€™s a pretty good rate today, so lots of investors want to buy it from you. You sell your $1,000 bond for $1,200.
The buyer gets the same $50 a year in interest that you were getting. However, because he paid more for the bond, his interest rate is not five percent.
TheÂ buyer gets an interest rate, or yield, of only 4.2 percent. And thatâ€™s why, when demand for bonds increases and bond prices go up, interest rates go down.
However, when the economy heats up, the potential for inflation makes bonds less appealing. With fewer people wanting to buy bonds, their prices decrease, and then interest rates go up.
Imagine that you have your $1,000 bond, but you can't sell it for $1,000, because unemployment has dropped and stock prices are soaring. You end up gettingÂ $700. The buyer gets the same $50 a year in interest, but the yield looks like this:
The information contained on The Mortgage Reports website is for informational purposes only and is not an advertisement for products offered by Full Beaker. The views and opinions expressed herein are those of the author and do not reflect the policy or position of Full Beaker, its officers, parent, or affiliates.
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2017 Conforming, FHA, & VA Loan Limits
Mortgage loan limits for every U.S. county, as published by Fannie Mae & Freddie Mac, the Federal Housing Administration (FHA), and the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA)