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Home mortgage rates and real estate news - CNNMoney.com

U.S. home sales to foreigners surge 49% to new record

Foreigners and recent immigrants spent $153 billion buying American homes over the course of the last year, according to the National Association of Realtors.

7 first-time homebuyer mistakes to avoid

It's tough being a first-time buyer in today's housing market. Don't make it even harder (or more expensive) for yourself by making these common mistakes.

What will your monthly mortgage payment be?

In the market for a new home? Or planning to refinance? Find out what your monthly payment will be.

4 costs you haven't factored into your homebuying budget

Out-of-pocket costs that crop up during the homebuying process, or even when you're moving in, can put an unexpected strain on your already-hurting bank account.

Home prices are sky high, but mortgages are still cheap

Home prices have reached another record high, and buyers are feeling the pressure. But there has been one saving grace for buyers: mortgage rates.

Was my home a good investment?

Calculate the return on your home and how it compares to returns on stocks, bonds and overall home prices.

Best cities for first-time homebuyers

A recent Zillow analysis on the best markets for first-time homebuyers finds that the best deals are in the Southeast and the Midwest.

Where should I stash my down payment savings?

If buying a house is on your short-term to-do list, experts say keep your down payment funds liquid. Looking to buy further down the road? You have some more options.

Thinking of buying a house? Here's where to start

Read full story for latest details.

Homebuying secrets from the real estate battlefield

In the middle of your house hunt and feeling a bit overwhelmed? We talked to recent home buyers to get their tips for navigating the market.

3 million first-time homebuyers have been shut out of the market

Over the past 10 years, three million first-time home buyers have been shut out of the housing market, according to a new report.

Here's how long it takes to save for a down payment

Saving for a down payment is often the biggest hurdle Millennials face when it comes to buying a home. And in some major cities, it will take at least a decade to save enough to put 20% down.

Why buying a condo at 29 was a financial windfall

Read full story for latest details.

These are the fastest-growing cities in the U.S.

Looking to make a move to a new city? Here are the 10 fastest growing large cities in the U.S., according to the Census Bureau.

First time home buyer? Here's what you need to know

Read full story for latest details.

4 things first-time homebuyers need to know

Read full story for latest details.

Good luck buying a home in this hot housing market

Read full story for latest details.

Life is good for U.S. home sellers

Read full story for latest details.

The Fed raised interest rates. Why are mortgages getting cheaper?

Despite the Federal Reserve increasing interest rates, mortgage rates have dropped to the lowest level this year.

WSJ.com: Real Estate

Gardens and Mountains in Australia

This luxury period-style home on more than 50,000 square feet of land has a national park out the back door and is just a 90-minute drive from Sydney.

The Challenges of Selling a Hollywood Home

In Los Angeles, an abode that has housed generations of Hollywood legends can be the ultimate status symbol, but there are complications when it is time to sell.

Ziff Family Florida Compound Is Seeking Almost $200 Million

Known as “Gemini,” the nearly 16-acre estate south of Palm Beach is one of the highest priced listings in the country

An Apple Manager's Headquarters for High Jinks

A creative director crafts a San Francisco home dedicated to daring, whimsy and fun.

Japan's Creative, Ephemeral Homes

Buyers value new, highly personalized houses—forget resales. This model has one happy side-effect: a flourishing of some of the world’s most wonderfully bizarre architecture.

Soho Penthouse Seeks $29.995 Million

The seller is Jon Venetos, the former head of Surveyor Capital, which is part of hedge-fund giant Citadel.

Developers Put on the Glitz for Busy Fall Selling Season

Increasingly, developers use a wide range of splashy affairs to promote luxury residential real-estate sales in autumn, the most important sales period after spring.

Microsoft Opens Flagship Store on Fifth Avenue

Microsoft will step onto one of the world’s biggest retail stages Monday when it opens its Fifth Avenue store in Manhattan as part of its strategy to boost direct contact with consumers.

A Resnick Scion Strikes Out on His Own

With a new Chelsea condominium that’s 80% sold, Scott Resnick shows he’s up to the challenge of developing residential projects on his own.

Shopping Mall Developer Taubman Dies

A. Alfred Taubman, the self-made billionaire who cemented the enclosed shopping mall into American culture has died. He was 91.

Fannie, Freddie to Lower Fees

The Federal Housing Finance Agency is set to direct Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to reduce mortgage fees on some borrowers.

An App That Helps Glimpse the Future

Rokitt’s augmented-reality technology helps architects and residents see a skyline’s potential.

What's the Deal

A roundup of real-estate news in the tri-state region

New York's Institutional Building Spree

Projects by schools, hospitals and others more than tripled in the first half of this year compared with a year earlier.

Stonewall Inn, Historic Gay Site, May Become New York City Landmark

The city Landmarks Preservation Commission is scheduled to hold a hearing Tuesday on designating the Stonewall Inn as an individual landmark for its pivotal role in New York City’s social history.

Red Berries Are Coming Back to New Jersey

In a sign of the changing beverage market, a longtime plant and distribution facility of juice maker Ocean Spray Cranberries Inc. will soon be home to the company Bai Brands, which produces drinks made from the coffee fruit.

Rent Regulations Expire as Deal Eludes Lawmakers

New York City’s rent regulations expired at midnight Monday as Albany lawmakers couldn’t agree on how to renew a law that afforded protection to more than two million people.

A House Made for a Sailor

The Kroeses are selling their waterside home in Westbrook, Conn., designed to complement lives spent largely on sailboats. The nautically themed home is on the market for $1.975 million.

Group Wants Parking Lots Converted to Elderly Housing

A study by the advocacy group LiveOn NY has identified 39 parking lots in the five boroughs that it says are underused and would be better used as housing for seniors.

What's the Deal: News Digest

A round-up of commercial real-estate news in the Greater New York region.

Rent a Desk, or Bathroom, in New York City With an App

A slew of innovative app-based services help New Yorkers instantly book short stints at the smallest of city spaces—a bathroom, a living room, an office. Need a pit stop? Try Airpnp.

In Franklin Lakes, People Tend to Stay Awhile

The affluent New Jersey community, population 10,600, is about 25 miles from Manhattan. Residents are drawn by its well-regarded public schools, relatively low property taxes and bucolic atmosphere.

Avison Young Hires Big to Accelerate Growth in New York

A. Mitti Liebersohn has left his longtime brokerage team at JLL to join Avison Young’s New York office.

What's the Deal: News Digest

A roundup of real-estate news in the Greater New York area.

Designers Put Cork in It

Once dismissed as cheap and ugly, cork is becoming cool as top designers create pieces that are not only sustainable, but covetable.

Five Midcentury Homes for Interiors Inspiration

Take a tour of these classic residences, including Modernist designer Eileen Gray’s 1929 villa, now open to the public after years of restoration.

Design's Best-Kept Secret: Eames Radios

Collectors are tuning into radios designed by Charles and Ray Eames—a more accessible way to own an original by the midcentury masters.

Basic Home Essentials That Are Anything But Ordinary

Even if you aren’t ready for Marie Kondo’s life-changing magic, you can still embrace the beauty of simplicity by investing in items that are functional and stylish.

Five Fresh Spring Vases

Choose the perfect vase to display those long-awaited spring flowers at their best.

Ways to Give Your House Away

Anyone inspired to donate their home to charity should know that the tax rules are complicated.

Chita Rivera on the Leap That Launched Her Dance Career

The actress/dancer was a tomboy who grew up in a lively Washington, D.C., home.

Comedian Mike Myers Lists New York Duplex for $16.95 Million

The “Austin Powers” creator purchased the 4,200-square-foot penthouse in Soho for roughly $7.9 million in 2007

Philadelphia Penthouse Is Listing for a Record $17.6 Million

Under construction, the apartment has the highest asking price in the city.

Where Luxury Homes Sell the Fastest

An analysis of home listings over a two-month period identifies San Jose, Calif., as the place where home buyers need to act quickly.

Extreme Closet Makeover

A look inside the $85,000 closet renovation of a California doctor.

Westchester's Priciest House Is Listing For $29.5 Million

The 98-acre property in Mount Kisco, N.Y. was once owned by showman Billy Rose

Advantages of a One-of-a-Kind Home

Homes with a special feature that is no longer allowed under local building rules may give owners an edge when it’s time to sell.

The French Riviera at a Bargain

There are rare deals in glittering Cap d’Antibes, the onetime party spot of F. Scott and Zelda Fitzgerald.

Barcelona's Draw as 'Urban Resort'

Spain’s second city is luring new home buyers who like the city-and-surf lifestyle of the coastal metropolis.

After Foreclosures, Home Buyers Are Back

Many who lost their homes during the early part of the financial crisis are rebounding after credit-penalty phase.

Excuse Me, You're Blocking My Sun

Australia’s rapid embrace of rooftop panels—now installed on one in four homes in some areas—has collided with another hot spot of investment, construction of apartments and homes.

1031 Exchange Real Estate Tax Break Faces Extinction

A much-loved tax advantage in the commercial real-estate industry is on the chopping block even as chances dim for the passage of a broad federal tax overhaul this year.

Mall Tenants Play Hardball In Lease Negotiations

Retailers, food and beverage operators and department store chains looking to renew their leases have been asking for more allowances from mall owners.

Mall Project Denied on Former Shea Stadium Site

New York’s highest court on Tuesday blocked the development of a billion-dollar shopping mall on a Citi Field parking lot in Queens, affirming a ruling that the project needs legislative approval to proceed.

Mortgage News Daily

MBS RECAP: Markets Had ECB Almost Perfectly Pegged

Posted To: MBS Commentary

Talk about your anticlimactic conclusions! It's not that the European Central Bank (ECB) was likely to make any meaningful changes in its policy stance today, but it nonetheless served as an important opportunity to confirm or deny the notion that Draghi's late June comments were a step in the direction of a tapering announcement--perhaps later this year. Draghi essentially denied it--saying they hadn't even discussed the September meeting as a tapering announcement target, nor had they discussed it at all. That may or may not be factual. Certainly, we've seen newswires that suggest quite the opposite, such as this one from July 13th that did noticeable damage to bond markets: ECB COULD ANNOUNCE PLANS TO WIND DOWN QE AT ITS SEPT. 7 POLICY MEETING--ECB OFFICIALS Technically though...(read more)

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Mortgage Rates Hold 3-Week Lows After Central Bank Announcements

Posted To: Mortgage Rate Watch

Mortgage rates held relatively steady today, keeping them in line with the lowest levels in more than 3 weeks. There was relatively little market movement in response to the policy announcement from the European Central Bank (ECB). That's a good thing considering much of the recent gains in rates can be attributed to traders growing more optimistic about the ECB's stance. To put all this in plain English , the ECB buys bonds. This puts downward pressure on rates around the world (more so in Europe than in the US, but we still get some indirect benefit). There was some concern at the end of June that the ECB was getting closer to announcing it would buy fewer bonds. While that day will likely come eventually, today's announcement assures markets that it hasn't been discussed yet. The relatively...(read more)

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Single Security Praised by Urban Institute

Posted To: MND NewsWire

The single agency security toward which the GSEs, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and their regulator, the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA), have been working for several years, is not yet operative, but it just got a round of applause. Linda Goodman, Codirector of the Urban Institute's (UI's) Housing Finance Policy Center, and associates Bing Bai and Jim Parrot, writing in UI's Housing Wire blog say the new security will save taxpayers millions of dollars while making the market more responsive to borrowers and lenders. The GSE's have each issued their own mortgage-backed security for more than four decades but the securities issued by Freddie Mac have historically traded at a lower price than those issued by Fannie Mae. A subsidy was often required to equalize pricing so originators would...(read more)

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Vendor and Lender News/Updates; Academy Buys First Mortgage and Cunningham

Posted To: Pipeline Press

This morning we’ve had the usual Thursday initial jobless claims economic release. At the other end of the teeter totter, here’s an amazing stat to talk about at Happy Hour tonight. It is estimated that 50% of net business formation in the United States since the recession has happened in about half of 1% of U.S. counties. That’s 20 of the 3,100 U.S. counties . Vendor News No one has definitively proven that a lender's use of vendors has decreased the cost to produce a loan. Conversely no one has proven that they aren't affective in helping produce loans in compliant, efficient, cost-effective ways. It is good to see what they are up to and see what's new out there. Wells Fargo is already testing and preparing its own digital mortgage solution by 2018 . Small lenders are already...(read more)

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Ellie Mae Reports Few Changes in Loan Characteristics

Posted To: MND NewsWire

Refinancing held its ground in June, with that share of the mortgage market remaining at 32 percent. While that is a significant decline from the 47 percent share the first month of the year, it is little changed from the June 2016 share of 34 percent. Logically, purchase loans remained at prior levels as well, a 68 percent share. The June Origination Insight Report from Ellie Mae notes a shift between refinance and purchase shares within loan types. the percentage of both VA and Conventional purchase loans increased 2 percentage points from the previous month, to 75 percent and 63 percent respectively. FHA purchase loans decreased slightly to 81 percent. The distribution of all loans across lenders was largely unchanged as well. Ten percent of originations were VA loans , the same percentage...(read more)

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Low Rates Stoke Second Month of Prepayment Gains

Posted To: MND NewsWire

Black Knight Financial Services said on Thursday that continued low interest rates fostered another increase in prepayments . The national prepayment rate, considered a sign of refinance activity , rose 5.3 percent in June on top of a 23 percent jump in May. It now stands at 1.12 percent. Despite these gains, it still lags the rate last year by more than 22 percent. The company released the prepayment information as part of its "first look" at June loan performance data. More detailed analysis will be presented in its next issue of Mortgage Monitor which will be available on August 7. Black Knight said the national mortgage delinquency rate resisted typical seasonal pressures, held steady at 3.8 percent in June. Early delinquencies increased, pushing the non-current rate up by 3.0 percent,...(read more)

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MBS Day Ahead: Bonds Hoping Draghi Keeps Things Green

Posted To: MBS Commentary

Mario Draghi is the President of the European Central Bank (ECB). That's the EU's version of the Fed. Like the Fed in the past, the ECB is still adding new bond purchases to its balance sheet (the Fed tapered those new purchases beginning in Dec 2013 and markets went through the "taper tantrum" in the 6 months leading up to that). The ECB is understandably not interested in causing a European taper tantrum, but they also would like to extricate themselves from the role of world's biggest bond buyer. On June 27th, Draghi made comments that made investors think the ECB was gearing up for taper talk. The scheduled buying program runs through December of this year (an extension of a program originally scheduled to end in March). Investors figured the ECB was at least considering...(read more)

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MBS RECAP: Eerily Quiet Ahead of Central Bank Announcements

Posted To: MBS Commentary

Much has been made of tomorrow's European Central Bank (ECB) Announcement, mainly because of its proximity to ECB President Draghi's comments on June 27th. That's when Draghi said deflation was being replaced by reflation and that economic growth in the Eurozone has more upside risk than downside. Those are the words of a central banker who is sending up trial balloons for tapering. Bernanke sent up similar balloons in March 2013, but they were ignored due to an abrupt shift in economic data in April (and then suddenly recalled in alarming fashion when that data was heavily revised in May). Markets are much more alert about ECB tapering risks and they've reckoned it's not happening in any sort of sweeping fashion just yet. Draghi's late June comments threw traders for...(read more)

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Mortgage Rates at 3-Week Lows

Posted To: Mortgage Rate Watch

Mortgage rates moved lower today, despite slightly weaker underlying bond markets. This has been an ongoing phenomenon in recent days. Bonds improve, implying lower mortgage rates, but lenders wait to drop rates until bond market improvement is vetted. In the current case, yesterday's market gains remained relatively intact despite today's market losses, thus giving lenders the green light to pass the gains through to mortgage rate sheets. Although today's rates aren't appreciably lower than yesterday's, they're technically the best we've seen since June 28th. More lenders are quoting top tier conventional 30yr fixed rates of 4.0% instead of 4.125%, and some of the aggressive lenders are back down to 3.875%. If there's been an underlying reason for the hesitation on the part of lenders, the...(read more)

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Upcoming Events; Disaster Updates; Yield Curve Flattening

Posted To: Pipeline Press

In a broad generalization, when people have money to invest they usually think about stocks, bonds, or real estate. (Yes, I know there are other assets, like precious metals, restaurants, your sister-in-law’s nail salon…) Looking at real estate, if a home builder is going to spend large sums on land, labor, and permits, they want to be able to charge a lot. Sure enough, even though there's been a slight push back to entry level, builders are still focusing on higher priced homes . "In 2009, 19 companies of the 200 companies on the BUILDER 100 reported that 50% or more of their closings came in the affordable sector. By last year, that number had fallen to just two." Lenders Reacting to Disasters On 7/14/2017, FEMA announced NR-51 , amending DR-4317 and providing individual assistance...(read more)

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Housing Starts/Permits Convincingly End Recent Slump

Posted To: MND NewsWire

Housing permits and starts both reversed their respective two-month slides in June, and both did so convincingly , far outpacing analysts' expectations. Activity was especially strong in the Midwest. The U.S. Census Bureau and the Department of Housing and Urban Development said building permits were issued at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1,254,000 units. This is a 7.4 percent jump from the May rate of 1,168,000. June permits were issued at a 5.1 percent higher pace than a year earlier. The permitting number left analysts in the dust. Those polled by Econoday had expected the number to come in between 1.170 million and 1.225 million, with a consensus of 1.206 million. Single family permits were issued at a rate of 811,000, a 4.1 percent month-over-month gain from the May estimate of...(read more)

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MBS Day Ahead: Trust The Technicals?

Posted To: MBS Commentary

This commentary will begin it's life as the "day ahead" entry for July 19th, 2017, but it may as well be a "knowledge base" entry for the validity of technical analysis. There are already several knowledge base articles designed to help people understand technical analysis on MBS Live. These include: Basic Concepts of Technical Analysis (And Some Jargon Definitions) Technical Analysis 101, Trends and Trend-Lines Max Support/Resistance Pivot Points (inflection points, floors, ceilings, etc.) Today's addition has to do with how much faith we should put in any given technical study. Are some studies better than others? When multiple studies are saying the same thing, should we put more stock in the conclusion? If the technicals can be reconciled with fundamental developments...(read more)

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Mortgage Apps Bounce Back After Holiday Losses

Posted To: MND NewsWire

Mortgage application volume bounced back during the week ended July 14, following a sharp downturn a week earlier. That week had been shortened by the Independence Day holiday. The Mortgage Bankers Association said its Market Composite Index, a measure of that volume, rose 6.3 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis compared to the prior week, and was up 33 percent on an unadjusted basis. The previous week's numbers were adjusted to account for the holiday. The Refinance Index increased 13 percent from the previous week, the same percentage by which it declined the week before. The refinance share of activity rose to 44.7 percent from 42.1 percent. The seasonally adjusted Purchase Index gained 1 percent week-over-week and was up 27 percent on an unadjusted basis. The unadjusted version was 7...(read more)

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MBS RECAP: Best Day For Bonds Since Late June

Posted To: MBS Commentary

If there is one thematic event at the heart of the past 4 weeks, it was a series of comments from European Central Bank (ECB) President Mario Draghi back on June 27th, essentially foreshadowing a winding-down of asset purchases. In other words, markets quickly began entertaining the idea of a European taper tantrum. The taper tantrum brought important lessons though--especially for central bankers who might be a bit too eager or forceful when the time came to make a shift. There's no material reason for the ECB to begin tapering immediately or to maintain a fast pace of reductions once it commits. The ECB can learn from the Fed's mistakes and take a much more measured approach. Intentional or not, Draghi's June 27th comments were a trial balloon for the market's mood with respect...(read more)

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Mortgage Rates Moderately Lower

Posted To: Mortgage Rate Watch

Mortgage rates fell today, but continue lagging behind the movements seen in underlying bond markets. Part of that has to do with the timing of bond market swings over the past few days, but lenders also simply want to see markets pick a theme and stick with it. Simply put: trading levels in bonds ultimately dictate rates, and today's trading levels suggest the lowest rates of the month. Given that today's rates are still generally in line with last Friday's, it would be fair to conclude that we'll see more improvement on lender rate sheets, even if bond markets merely hold flat tomorrow. Although we can't ever know what bond markets will do tomorrow, the fact that mortgage rates are heading into the day with a small advantage is useful knowledge. It means there's comparatively less risk involved...(read more)

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Foreign Homebuyers Surge into U.S. Market

Posted To: MND NewsWire

Our neighbors to the north seem to think the grass is pretty green on this side of the fence. The National Association of Realtors® (NAR) says that foreign investment in the U.S. residential market skyrocketed to a new high during the 12 months that ended in March. Those sales were fueled by a substantial increase from Canadian buyers. NAR released results from its 2017 survey of international residential buyers on Tuesday. It shows buyers from each of the top five home countries increased their activity from 2016, and that nearly half of all foreign sales were in Florida, California and Texas. Between April 2016 and March 2017, foreign buyers and recent immigrants purchased $153.0 billion of residential property. This is 49 percent more than was indicated in the 2016 survey ($102.6 billion...(read more)

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Price Concerns Constrain Builder Confidence

Posted To: MND NewsWire

Home builder confidence continues backing down from its post-crisis peak earlier this year, although the National Association of Realtors (NAHB) calls results of its July survey "solid." The NAHB/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index (HMI) dropped 2 points to 64, its lowest reading since last November . The June composite index was also revised down, from an original reading of 67. NAHB attributes the slippage to concerns over the costs of construction. "Our members are telling us they are growing increasingly concerned over rising material prices, particularly lumber," said NAHB Chairman Granger MacDonald. "This is hurting housing affordability even as consumer interest in the new-home market remains strong." "The HMI measure of current sales conditions has been at 70 or higher for eight straight...(read more)

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Current Lending Environment; FHA, VA News; HELOC Resets Doing Well

Posted To: Pipeline Press

How much would you pay to keep your job, or find a new one? Political analysts forecast that two wealthy contenders for the 2018 Illinois governor spot (yes, that Illinois, with its financial difficulties) will spend more than $300 million trying to be elected. Fiscal intelligence? What's the environment like out there? Jeff Babcock , who heads up STRATMOR's M&A effort, writes, "In conversations with various lenders, I'm detecting a growing degree of pessimism about mortgage origination performance for the full year 2017. It seems that even the best-managed lenders are maintaining volumes at 2016 levels, but with lower margins. The average performers' volume is down 10% to maybe even 20%. While 2nd Quarter production accelerated after a slow 1st Quarter, several executives expressed concern...(read more)

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MBS Day Ahead: Bonds Thinking About a "Lead-Off" Ahead of Thursday

Posted To: MBS Commentary

It remains the case that Thursday is the focal point of the week, with European Central Bank (ECB) President Mario Draghi set to tell reporters how far away we are from a tapering announcement. Tapering is understandably a highly-charged topic, given how it played out in the US in 2013. Draghi is aware of the damage to financial markets and financial markets are aware that Draghi's aware. As such, they aren't expecting him to carelessly obliterate global bond markets. In fact, they're not expecting him to make much of a firm indication about what's going to happen in the future just yet--at least not in terms of actual dates or dollar (Euro amounts). In other words, he's increasingly seen as threading the needle that keeps tapering on the table, but that causes minimal panic...(read more)

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Mortgage Rates Higher Despite Friendly Market Movement

Posted To: Mortgage Rate Watch

Mortgage rates are largely dictated by movements in bond markets--specifically mortgage-backed securities (MBS). When bonds improve, prices rise and investors are willing to pay more to buy loans. This results in rates moving lower. In other words, bond market improvement = lower rates. With all of that in mind, today is a bit of a paradox as the average lender is quoting slightly higher rates today, despite general improvements in bond markets. Nothing too terribly mysterious is at work here though. The inconsistency has more to do with the timing of Friday's market movements and the generally narrow range over the past four days. Specifically, bonds weakened progressively into Friday afternoon and most lenders never fully adjusted rate sheets to account for that weakness. This left the average...(read more)

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MBS RECAP: Super Calm Summertime Monday

Posted To: MBS Commentary

Today was an exceptionally light day in terms of news, volume, participation, and everything else we normally care about when it comes to market movement. For all intents and purposes, it was another "unofficial 3rd day of the weekend." This happens from time to time during summer months--typically on Mondays and less frequently on Fridays. It wasn't necessarily destined to happen today, but we knew in advance that the week's biggest-ticket events wouldn't hit until Thursday. With that in mind, we might even wonder how big Thursday's European Central Bank announcement can really be, given that insiders peg the September meeting for a more formal comment on tapering. While that's a possibility, there's always a risk that investors are simply hungry for clues...(read more)

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June Pull-back of New Home Mortgages Apps Called Seasonal

Posted To: MND NewsWire

Applications for mortgages to purchase newly constructed homes posted what was termed a seasonal decline in June. The Mortgage Bankers Association said its Builder Application Survey (BAS), which is conducted among mortgage subsidiaries of home building companies, decreased in June, but remains 10 percent higher than a year earlier. MBA uses application and market coverage data to project sales of newly constructed homes. It estimates that, on a non-adjusted basis, there were 55,000 new home sales in June 2017, a decrease of 3.5 percent from 57,000 new home sales in May. Their seasonally adjusted annual estimate of 628,000 units for June is an increase of 3.8 percent from the May pace of 605,000 units and is up 18 percent year-over-year. "We are at the part of the season where housing market...(read more)

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Fannie Mae Sees Growth Slowing, Housing Restrained by Inventories

Posted To: MND NewsWire

Fannie Mae said it is sticking with its forecast for 2.0 percent economic growth in 2017, a projection it first made in February. The estimate of 2.1 percent growth in the first half of the year is expected by the company's economists to slow to 1.9 percent in the second half. Further, they say while housing won't drag on the economy this year, it won't make a huge contribution either, as inventories remain a problem. The global outlook has improved and this helped to move Treasury yields higher; the 10-year rose about 25 basis points during the first few weeks of July. Improving growth abroad along with the 4 percent decline in the dollar so far this year, should help improve U.S. manufacturing and exports. Fannie Mae's economic staff says the June Federal Reserve Open Market Committee (FOMC...(read more)

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Investor Updates/News; OCC's Risk List; Training and Events

Posted To: Pipeline Press

There’s plenty of talk about real estate agents, appraisers, and loan officers being replaced by artificial intelligence or robots. In legal news, JPMorgan unleashed artificial intelligence to automate its legal work and save over 360,000 hours of work each year by lawyers and loan officers. Given personnel costs, that's a lot of doubloons. More bank news below. Bank news Several banks reported 2nd quarter earnings on Friday with results that generally topped analyst's expectations. But residential mortgage banking was poor. At JPMorgan Chase mortgage revenues fell 26% compared to a year ago, fell 52% at Citigroup Inc., and was down 19% at Wells Fargo to $1.15 billion. The results reflect what most lenders already know: even though home purchase activity has increased throughout 2017...(read more)

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MBS Day Ahead: Slow Week Leaves Focus on Central Banks

Posted To: MBS Commentary

It's the middle of summertime, the middle of a month, and there's a light economic and event calendar in the US. These are prime conditions for traders to tune out and for markets to engage cruise control until there are more compelling reasons to tune in. Well, almost prime conditions... There are the small matters of major policy announcements from The European Central Bank (ECB) and the Bank of Japan (BOJ) both taking place this Thursday. In terms of underlying market movement motivation that the average citizen will never hear about, foreign central bank policy is about as big as it gets. The ECB, especially, has been a driving force behind rates being "that much lower" over the past 3 years (their final countdown to full QE began in the spring of 2014, even though bond...(read more)

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