Market News 2-27-2020
Mortgage Market Update
Concerns about the global economic fallout of a spreading coronavirus continue to cause stocks to plummet and bond yields to drop, helping keep mortgage rates low. The economy grew moderately in the 4th qtr, but slower than initially reported. Consumer spending, which makes up about 2/3rds of the economy, was revised lower. Factory orders for durable goods like cars, auto parts and home appliances dipped in January. However, economists had expected a bigger drop overall.
The Federal Housing Finance Agency reported home price gains of 5.1% in Q4, the 34th consecutive quarter of increases. Low mortgage rates helped. Pending home sales jumped more than expected in January, up 5.2% for the month and 5.7% annually. Growth occurred despite the lowest inventory of homes for sale since 1999. Sales of new homes surged to a 12.5-yr high in January. Housing market strength could help keep the economy growing and blunt any hit from the coronavirus.