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Flat home prices perfect for economic shock

Mortgage market commentary

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After a pause early this week, long-term rates have resumed a quick run to the highest levels since last summer. Mortgages have departed 6.5 percent for higher ground, taken by the 10-year T-note almost reaching 5 percent at one point this morning, up from 4.6 percent trading only three weeks ago. This sharp rise is overdue for a pause, but sometimes sharp is right. Several forces acting in concert have caused this one, and it could easily have another .25 percent to go, quickly. In rough order of magnitude, the orchestra: a red-hot global economy is pulling rates up everywhere; the Fed has no tilt to ease; the U.S. economy is not in pre-recession condition (yet); global markets are floating on a biblical ocean of cash; and inflation is still on a troublesome edge. The rate rise resumed today on news that May payrolls exceeded already-strong expectations, up by 157,000 jobs, unemployment still a dead-low 4.5 percent; and the purchasing managers' index of manufacturing co...