Today, Friday (11/27/15): The 10 Year Treasury Yield dropped slightly to 2.22%, meaning generally lower mortgage rates than Wednesday.
There are no U.S. Economic Releases today. The financial markets will be primarily focused on holiday shopping readings for signs of consumer spending, which could affect the Fed’s outlook on U.S. economic growth and any future interest rate hikes.
Here are the U.S. Market Data / Releases for next week that could drive treasury yields / mortgage rates up or down:
Monday (11/30/15): Pending Home Sales, Chicago PMI Manufacturing Index
Tuesday (12/01/15): ISM Manufacturing Index, Construction Spending, Motor Vehicles Sales
Wednesday (12/02/15): ADP Employment Change Report, Productivity, Fed Beige Book
Thursday (12/03/15): Weekly Jobless Claims, Challenger Job Cuts, Factory Orders, ISM Services Index
Friday (12/04/15): Employment Report, U.S. Trade Balance / Deficit
Here is a recap of the major economic and political data / reports from the prior week (a lower 10 Year Treasury Yield means generally lower mortgage rates and vice-versa):
Thursday (11/26/15): The 10 Year Treasury Yield remained even at 2.23%.
– There were no U.S. Economic Releases today due to the Thanksgiving Holiday.
Wednesday (11/25/15): The 10 Year Treasury Yield dropped to 2.23%.
– U.S. Weekly Jobless Claims dropped to a 260K reading this week (272K during the previous week), coming in lower than market expectations (272K). In addition, the less volatile, four week moving address for jobless claims remained unchanged at a 271K level. Overall, this week’s continued low level of jobless claims shows a continued decline in Americans filing for unemployment insurance, which again is a very positive indicator for continuing recovery of the U.S. Labor Market.
– October 2015 U.S Personal Income increased by 0.4% (previous month increased by 0.2%), meeting market expectations (0.4% increase). In addition, October 2015 U.S. Personal Spending increased by 0.1% (previous month also increased by 0.1%), coming in below market expectations (0.3% increase). This drop in consumer spending was driven mostly by a decrease in spending as people put a portion of the added income towards savings. However, a continued rise in wages could eventually be a positive indicator for future U.S. consumption and economic growth, if personal spending picks back up.
– The October 2015 PCE (Personal Income and Consumption) Index remained unchanged from last month (previous month increased by 0.2%), coming in lower than market expectations (0.2% increase). This drop in PCE inflation shows that consumer prices are starting to slow down again, which could make the Fed possibly push back any upcoming rate hikes (since higher rates could lead to an even greater downward pull on inflation).
– The September 2015 U.S. FHFA (Federal Housing Finance Agency) Housing Price Index based on Fannie Mae / Freddie Mac single-family purchase mortgages) rose by 0.8% (0.3% increase during the previous month), coming in much greater than market expectations (increase of 0.4%). This rise in overall single family housing prices could be a positive future sign for the U.S. single-family housing market.
– October 2015 U.S. New Home Sales rose to a seasonally adjusted 495K (447K during the previous month); however, it came in slightly worse than market expectations (504K). This slower than expected rise in new home sale activity, mostly due to a continued drop in supply available homes for sale that is starting to spur more home construction, could be a negative indicator going forward for the U.S. new home market.
– October 2015 U.S. Durable Orders (demand for goods with lifespan over three years, such as electronic products and machinery) increased by 3.0% (0.8% decrease during the previous month), coming in much greater than market expectations (1.5% increase). The major reason for this month’s huge rise in durable orders was due to a big spike in demand for new non-defense aircraft orders. In addition, the non-transportation, core-capital portion of durable goods also increased, by 1.3%, which shows a possible pick-up in business investment spending, which could be a positive sign for future U.S. economic growth.
– The final reading of the November 2015 U.S. Michigan Consumer Confidence Sentiment decreased to an Index Level of 91.3 (Index Level of 93.1 during the previous month), coming in lower than market expectations (Index Level of 93.1). This month’s slight rise in consumer confidence (from October’s 90.0 Index Level) is mostly due to a rise in the current condition component of consumer sentiment that more than offset a slowdown in the expectations component of consumer sentiment, which is a mixed indicator for future U.S. consumer spending and economic growth.
Tuesday (11/24/15): The 10 Year Treasury Yield dropped to 2.24%.
– The 2nd Estimate of 3rd Quarter 2015 U.S. GDP (Gross Domestic Product – all of the nation’s total economic output) rose by 2.1% (2nd Quarter 2015 U.S. GDP increased by an annualized 3.9% rate), coming in slightly greater than market expectations of a 2.0% annualized increase. The major reasons for this rise in U.S. 3rd Quarter 2015 GDP was due to an increase in inventories and consumer spending that offset slower growth in non-residential fixed investment spending and net exports (possibly due to the stronger U.S. dollar). Overall, this report shows that 3rd Quarter U.S. GDP reading still remains positive, which could keep the Fed on pace for an interest rate hike in the near term.
– The September 2015 U.S. S&P / Case-Shiller Home Price Index showed that house prices (for 20 major cities in the U.S.) increased by 5.5% from September 2014 (5.1% increase during the previous month), coming in greater than market expectations (5.2% increase). This reading shows that U.S. housing price appreciation surprisingly picked back up in the largest U.S. cities, which could be a positive indicator going forward for the U.S. housing market.
– The November 2015 U.S. Consumer Confidence Report decreased to an Index Level of 90.4 (99.1 Index Level during the previous month), coming in much lower than market expectations (Index Level 99.6). This month’s drop in consumer confidence was due to declines in both the expectations sentiment portion and the current sentiment portion of this report, mostly due to a more negative consumer outlook for the U.S. jobs market. Overall, this decline in U.S. consumer confidence could be a negative indicator for future consumer-driven economic growth, since approximately 70% of U.S. economic activity is derived from consumer spending.
Monday (11/23/15): The 10 Year Treasury Yield dropped to 2.25%.
– October 2015 U.S. Existing Home Sales dropped to a 5.36 Million Annual Rate (5.55 Million Annual Rate during the previous month), coming in lower than market expectations (5.50 Million Annual Rate). This drop in existing home sales, mostly due to a lack of available homes for sale, could be a negative sign for U.S. housing market growth going into the winter months, since approximately 90% of home sales are for existing homes.