Tag Archive for ‘macroeconomics’

Mortgage Rates Rise

The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) reported that contract mortgage rates rose by four basis points to 4.05 percent in January 2018. After falling to 3.93 percent following its February 2017 peak of 4.18 percent, rates on purchases of newly built homes have risen 12 basis points over two months to 4.05 percent. At this level, mortgage rates remain below… Read More ›

Solid Fourth Quarter Economic Growth Confirmed

In its second estimate, the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) reported that the nation’s economy, measured by real gross domestic product (GDP), grew by 2.5 percent in the fourth quarter of 2017 on a seasonally adjusted annual rate basis. The second estimate is 0.1 percent point less than the 2.6 percent growth rate recorded in the first or “advance” estimate…. Read More ›

Inflation Steady with Growth in January

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that a measure of inflation, its Consumer Price Index – Urban Consumer (CPI), rose by 2.1 percent over the past 12 months, similar to the 12-month rate of growth recorded in December. Meanwhile, core inflation, which excludes the more volatile energy and food prices, rose by 1.8 percent, also matching its growth rate in… Read More ›

Fed Survey Confirms Broader Economic Improvement, But Concerns Exist

Information provided by the Federal Reserve Board in its January 2018 release of the Senior Loan Officer Opinion Survey (SLOOS) indicates that lending standards on commercial and industrial (C&I) loans to large and medium-sized firms continue to ease on net. The continued easing in standards on C&I loans increase the stock of loans, which in turns fuels job creation. However,… Read More ›

Interest Rates Rise

According to the Mortgage Interest Rate Survey produced by the Federal Housing Finance Agency, contract rates on 30-Year fixed rate mortgages ticked up one basis point in December 2017 to 4.01 percent. Information provided by Freddie Mac, a more commonly used series, showed a similar trend over the month of December with its contract rate on the 30-Year fixed rate… Read More ›

Fed Stands Pat at Chair Yellen’s Final FOMC Meeting

In Janet Yellen’s final meeting as Chair, the Federal Open Markets Committee (FOMC or Committee) voted unanimously to maintain the federal funds rate, its short-term policy rate, at a range of 1.25 percent and 1.50 percent, a level it deems “accommodative”. According to estimates of financial markets expectations, this decision was widely expected. Calculations of the appropriate level for the… Read More ›

Economy Grows for 8th Consecutive Year

According to a release from the Bureau of Economic Analysis, the nation’s real gross domestic product (GDP) slowed to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 2.4 percent in the fourth quarter of 2017. Despite the slowdown, GDP growth over all of 2017 accelerated to 2.3 percent, faster than the 1.5 percent rate of growth in 2016. The annual increase in… Read More ›

Mortgages Rates Rise in 2017 But Remain Low

Information provided by the Federal Housing Financing Agency (FHFA) indicates that mortgage rates on purchases of newly built homes rose 7 basis points in November to 4.00 percent. At this level, rates remain below the 4.18 cycle peak level recorded in February. Meanwhile, a more commonly used rate reported by Freddie Mac indicates that mortgage rates rose by 2 basis… Read More ›

Core Inflation Remains Steady

Consumer prices, measured by the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ (BLS) Consumer Price Index – Urban Consumer (CPI), rose by 2.1 percent on an unadjusted basis over the 12 months of 2017, and has broadly accelerated from the 1.63 percent reading in June 2017. Energy prices contributed to the increase in the headline measure of consumer inflation, climbing 6.9 percent over… Read More ›

Economy Grows in Q3, Exceeding Potential

The Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) reported that the economy, as measured by growth in real gross domestic product (GDP), rose by 3.2 percent in the third quarter of 2017. The third estimate of third quarter 2017 GDP growth is slightly less than the 3.3 percent growth rate recorded in the second estimate, but faster than the “advance”, or initial,… Read More ›