Industry NewsMortgage

Fed gets it: Credit crisis trumps inflation

Commentary: Economic troubles can't wait until election

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Mortgage rates improved again this week, slightly, to 6.375 percent and the 10-year T-note trading often just under 3.8 percent, a resistance level since spring. The improvement anticipates a weakening economy, but a further decline in rates will depend on the fact of weakness. A test comes quickly, in the first August data due next week. This week's data had more headline than authentic strength, but there was some: In the second quarter export sales rocketed 13.9 percent, the long-delayed benefit of a weaker dollar. Exchange-rate cycles and their effects tend to be very long-wave, several-year affairs: Even though the dollar has begun a turn to sensible levels, and foreign economies are entering slowdowns that will reduce their appetite for our exports, our export sales will help our economy for quite a while. Overall gross domestic product popped 3.3 percent in the second quarter, but undermeasured inflation made the GDP leap rather like the guy in the falling elevator...