Tag Archive for ‘Federal Reserve’

Interest Rate Increases Drive Refinancing Declines

The latest Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) weekly application surveys shows a decline for refinancing and an increase in mortgage purchasing. The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage rate increased, averaging close to 3.2 percent for the month and was 3.16 percent in the latest week. In the latest week, total mortgage applications, as proxied by the MBA’s Market Composite Index, decreased by 2.8… Read More ›

Federal Reserve: Taper Begins

The Federal Reserve has supported the housing market during the virus crisis, the 2020 recession, and the subsequent, ongoing recovery via asset-backed purchases (among other tools), including $40 billion a month of mortgage-backed security (MBS) purchases. These MBS purchases have held interest rates lower than they otherwise would have been. Beginning in November, the Fed will reduce the monthly volume of… Read More ›

Federal Reserve and Housing: No Taper Talk Yet

Today’s Federal Open Market Committee announcement did not provide an explicit reference to an expected tapering of purchases of Treasury ($80 billion a month) and mortgage-backed ($40 billion a month) securities. In addition, as part of its ongoing accommodative policy stance, the Fed held its benchmark target rate near zero percent. In Chairman Powell’s press conference remarks, he stated, “The… Read More ›

Real Estate Market Values Surge in the First Quarter

The latest results from the Federal Reserve’s Z.1 Financial Accounts of the United States, i.e., the “Flow of Funds”, show that, in the first quarter of 2021, the aggregate market value of all owner-occupied real estate in the United States registered the largest numerical quarterly increase in the last 20 years’ worth of data. From $32.84 trillion in the fourth… Read More ›

Economic Well-Being of U.S. Households

The Federal Reserve Board recently released its Report on the Economic Well-Being of U.S. Households. The report provided results from the responses to the 2019 Survey of Household Economics and Decisionmaking (SHED), as well as from responses to a follow-up survey conducted in April 2020. Surveyed items included income, employment, dealing with expenses, banking and credit, housing, education, and retirement…. Read More ›

Refinancing Activity Soars

The Mortgage Bankers Association’s Weekly Application Survey shows a weekly increase in the Market Composite Index by 15.1% on a seasonally adjusted basis. The Refinance Index soared 26.0% from the previous week and the Purchase index decreased 2.7%. Looking at the Refinance series since its inception, the latest 10-week sprint of over 160% is the largest since January 2009 when… Read More ›

Household Balance Sheets: 3Q19

The third quarter 2019 Financial Accounts of the United States, the Federal Reserve’s flow of funds data, show the aggregate values of households’ assets and liabilities in the nation. Households’ real estate assets totaled $29.2 trillion and liabilities totaled $10.5 trillion, making homeowners’ equity $18.7 trillion or 64% of total household real estate. The data show a continuation of the… Read More ›

Fed Lowers Target Rate for Third Time in 2019

The Federal Reserve reduced the target range for the key, short-term federal funds rate by 25 basis points to a top rate of 1.75% at the conclusion of its October Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) meeting. This was the third cut in 2019, almost fully reversing a set of increases enacted in 2018. The FOMC views these enacted reductions as… Read More ›

Non-revolving Debt Fuels Consumer Credit in the Latest Quarter

The Federal Reserve’s latest G.19 Consumer Credit Report shows rising trends in consumer credit, excluding loans secured by real estate, through June 2019. As of June 30, 2019, consumer credit totaled $4.1 trillion on a seasonally adjusted basis, with $1.1 trillion in revolving debt1 and $3.0 trillion in nonrevolving debt2. This is an increase of $15 billion from the previous… Read More ›

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