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For the week of December 11, 2017 — Vol. 15, Issue 50

In This Issue

Last Week in Review: New hires hung on to solid job creation while wages were weaker than expected.

Forecast for the Week: It’s all about the Fed meeting, plus key reports on retail spending and inflation.

View: Resist the urge to interrupt with these strategies.

Last Week in Review

“I got a job baby. I got work to do.” The Isley Brothers. New job creation exceeded expectations in November, but earnings disappointed.

Job growth remained solid in November after the brief hiccup in September due to Hurricanes Harvey and Irma. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that 228,000 new jobs were created last month, above the 190,000 expected. The Unemployment Rate also remained at 4.1 percent, which is considered full employment. Average hourly earnings disappointed, however, growing by 0.2 percent from October to November, below the 0.3 percent expected. Year over year, earnings rose 2.5 percent, again below the 2.7 percent expected. In 2017, average monthly job growth eased to 174,000 new jobs per month from 187,000 in 2016.

Home prices continued their winning ways and pushed higher in October due in part to a strengthening economy, an acute lack of home supply and low home loan rates. Data analytics firm CoreLogic reported that home prices, including distressed sales, surged 7 percent from October 2016 to October 2017 and were up 0.9 percent from September to October. Looking ahead, CoreLogic sees a slowing in prices. Expectations are for a rise of 4.2 percent from October 2017 to October 2018.

Although home prices continue to rise, home loan rates remain attractive.

If you or someone you know has questions about home financing or home loan rates please contact me. I’d be happy to help.

Forecast for the Week

The Fed meeting highlights a week that also brings news on inflation and retail sales.

  • Economic data kicks off on Tuesday with inflation numbers from the Producer Price Index followed by the Consumer Price Index on Wednesday.
  • Retail Sales and weekly Initial Jobless Claims will be delivered on Thursday.
  • On Friday, regional manufacturing data will be released in the Empire State Index.

Remember: Weak economic news normally causes money to flow out of Stocks and into Bonds, helping Bonds and home loan rates improve. In contrast, strong economic news normally has the opposite result. The chart below shows Mortgage Backed Securities (MBS), which are the type of Bond on which home loan rates are based.

When you see these Bond prices moving higher, it means home loan rates are improving. When Bond prices are moving lower, home loan rates are getting worse.

To go one step further, a red “candle” means that MBS worsened during the day, while a green “candle” means MBS improved during the day. Depending on how dramatic the changes are on any given day, this can cause rate changes throughout the day, as well as on the rate sheets we start with each morning.

As you can see in the chart below, Mortgage Bond prices have been volatile in recent days. Home loan rates remain attractive.

Chart: Fannie Mae 3.5% Mortgage Bond (Friday Dec 08, 2017)

The Mortgage Market Guide View…

Interruption Intervention

Whether you don’t want to forget what you have to say or you have special insight on a subject, you might be tempted to interrupt during a conversation. In most situations, however, interrupting is viewed negatively by others and can even be detrimental in business situations like selling or interviewing. So before you break in, break down and follow conversation etiquette:

Take two. When your conversation partners pause, it doesn’t necessarily mean they are done talking. Instead of jumping into the first gap in the conversation, allow them to take a breath, collect their thoughts or just pause for effect. A two-second count is enough time to determine if it’s your turn to speak.

Take notes. If you’re worried about forgetting an important point, let your partners know you’ll be taking notes during the conversation to make sure you don’t miss anything. People will appreciate your thoroughness and active listening approach; plus, you’ll be able to note anything important to circle back to later in the conversation. Just make sure you are jotting down a word or two and not feverishly writing a detailed response. This would indicate you are not listening.

Take care. If you realize you’ve interrupted, stop and apologize. Letting people know it’s a habit you’re working on breaking shows how much you care about what others have to say. If you must interrupt due to a time constraint, for example, do it politely. You could say, “I’m sorry to interrupt, but I have another appointment in 10 minutes. Can we continue this conversation at a later date?” Then, schedule a follow-up in person, on the phone or via email.

Not interrupting conversations will automatically transform you into a better listener, and these tips can help you quickly break the habit.

Sources: HubSpot, Adecco

Economic Calendar for the Week of December 11 – December 15

The material contained in this newsletter is provided by a third party to real estate, financial services and other professionals only for their use and the use of their clients. The material provided is for informational and educational purposes only and should not be construed as investment and/or mortgage advice. Although the material is deemed to be accurate and reliable, we do not make any representations as to its accuracy or completeness and as a result, there is no guarantee it is without errors.

As your mortgage professional, I am providing you the MMG WEEKLY because I am committed to keeping you updated on the economic events that impact interest rates and how they may affect you.

Vantage Production, LLC is the copyright owner or licensee of the content and/or information in this email, unless otherwise indicated. Vantage Production, LLC does not grant to you a license to any content, features or materials in this email. You may not distribute, download, or save a copy of any of the content or screens except as otherwise provided in our Terms and Conditions of Membership, for any purpose.


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