It’s a phrase used by many, and last week was an important one to be in the know, as Bonds and home loan rates were affected by many big newsmakers and market shakers. Bonds and home loan rates found some improvement in the early part of the week, leading into the Fed’s big announcement on Wednesday of another .25% cut to the Fed Funds Rate. Typically, Bonds and home loan rates react poorly to Fed cuts, due to the increase in economic activity that lower Fed rates can cause, which turns into higher inflation. However, the Fed’s Policy Statement hinted that the present rate-cutting cycle may be nearing an end. As a result, Bonds and home loan rates reacted favorably to the Fed’s action.
However, speaking of inflation, the Fed’s most favored measure of it – the Core Personal Consumption Expenditure Index – arrived on Thursday, showing core inflation at 2.1%, just a whisker above the Fed’s desired range for inflation of 1 to 2%. This read wasn’t great news for inflation-sensitive Bonds…but the resulting market action was nothing, compared to what happened when the Jobs Report arrived on Friday morning.
Talk about a real mover and shaker…the Jobs Report brought word of 20,000 jobs lost in April, which was better than market expectations of 75,000 jobs lost. Initially, Stocks rallied higher and Bonds worsened dramatically, as the headlines were so much better than had been anticipated. But when the details of the report were unpacked, showing prior months worsening revisions – as well as a sobering realization that 20,000 jobs lost is still lousy news – the markets quickly reversed direction, helping Bonds and home loan rates improve once again. Another ultra volatile week – and when the dust settled, home loan rates improved by about .125% overall.
DID YOU KNOW THAT IN PARTS OF THE COUNTRY WHERE HOUSING VALUES HAVE REACHED A PLATEAU OR DECLINED…HOMEOWNERS MAY BE PAYING TOO MUCH IN PROPERTY TAXES? KNOWLEDGE COULD SAVE YOU HUNDREDS – OR EVEN THOUSANDS – OF DOLLARS A YEAR!