Wednesday, July 12, 2017

"Mortgage Rates at 2-Week Lows"

by Bill McBride on 7/12/2017 05:48:00 PM

From Matthew Graham at Mortgage News Daily: Mortgage Rates at 2-Week Lows After Yellen

Mortgage rates had been holding in a narrow range near their highest levels in roughly 3 months over the past few days.  Despite some stability in underlying bond markets, lenders had hesitated to make meaningful adjustments to rate sheets (in their defense, there wasn't much to work with).  That all changed today after Fed Chair Yellen's congressional testimony.

In fact, it was the prepared remarks for the testimony, released at 8:30am ET this morning that did the trick for bond markets (which underlie interest rate movement).  Market participants were eager to see if Yellen would strike a similarly soft tone to some of the recent speeches from other members of the Fed.  Indeed, that was the case as Yellen said the Fed doesn't need to hike much more in order to reach a neutral Fed Funds Rate. [30YR FIXED - 4.125%]
Thursday:
• At 8:30 AM ET: The initial weekly unemployment claims report will be released. The consensus is for 245 thousand initial claims, down from 248 thousand the previous week.

• At 8:30 AM, The Producer Price Index for June from the BLS. The consensus is for no change in PPI, and a 0.2% increase in core PPI.

• At 10:00 AM, Testimony from Fed Chair Janet L. Yellen, Semiannual Monetary Policy Report to the Congress, Before the Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs, U.S. Senate, Washington, D.C.