AgentIndustry News

Housing is weak, but not collapsing

Mortgage market commentary

Learn the New Luxury Playbook at Luxury Connect | October 18-19 at the Beverly Hills Hotel

Long-term rates are moving up this morning, mortgages rising toward 6.25 percent, the definitive 10-year T-note to 4.61 percent, out of a three-week rest in the four-fifties. The bond market got so low in gleeful observation of a global stock-market dive, and stayed in anticipation of a slowdown in the U.S. economy. GDP guesses for the first quarter are weak, just as they were in several fleeting episodes of lower rates last fall. The rates-up turnaround clincher came today in news of a 3.9 percent February jump in sales of existing homes and stable inventories of unsold homes. Earlier in the week, bearish traders ignored a 9 percent rebound in new-home starts, instead seizing on a decline in new building permits. Shoulda known better: housing is weak, but not collapsing. Some small indicators are more useful than the traditional national aggregates. Example: tightening credit standards are supposed to shut out hundreds of thousands of buyers. However, the MBA's loan appl...