AgentIndustry News

Economy allays fears of huge home-price declines

Mortgage market commentary

Mortgages are stuck in a happy place, near 6.5 percent for the low-fee deals, the 10-year T-note's decline to 4.79 percent not enough to move the mortgage market. At the moment, this whole six-week decline in rates rests on the assumption that the housing market is in a progressive collapse that will soon take the whole economy with it. The bond-betting housing bubblers have one big risk: the only bubble may be in the froth on their own Kool-Aid. Housing is slowing, steadily and a lot (sales of existing homes down another 4.1 percent in July, unsold inventories to a 7.3-month supply, last seen in 1993), but slowing in the real economy is undetectable. July orders for durable goods rose a modest .5 percent, but on the heels of a big upward revision to June -- so strong that second-quarter GDP growth may be revised from mid-2 percent to 3 percent. The leading indicator for employment is new claims for unemployment insurance, and there is not the slightest upward flicker. Yes, we're 17 F...

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