Mortgage rates hit new lows!  The National Association of Home Builders reported builders' sentiment rose in May to its highest level in five years.

Ed Dorame

Loan Production Manager

Direct Line:  206-510-2118


If you, or anyone you know, are thinking of purchasing a new home or refinancing, please give me a call.  We offer excellent rates, outstanding service, and most importantly, we close your loan on time.  My business is built on happy client referrals. 


For the week of May 21, 2012 – Vol. 10, Issue 21

>> Market Update

QUOTE OF THE WEEK..."Do what you can, with what you have, where you are." --Theodore Roosevelt, 26th U.S. President

INFO THAT HITS US WHERE WE LIVE... Home builders are doing plenty with what they have, as Housing Starts rose 2.6% in April to a 717,000 annual rate. Single-family units were up 2.3% for the month and are up 18.8% from a year ago. Multi-family starts were up 3.2% for the month and are up a whopping 63.0% from a year ago. This reflects interest in the condo market, attractive to first time buyers and downsizers, as well as to investors in rental units. Building Permits were down 7.0% in April to a 715,000 annual rate, although permits for single-unit homes are up 18.5% versus a year ago.

Experts say housing starts have to hit a 1.5 million annual rate just to meet the need created by population growth and "scrappage" of older units. That probably won't happen until 2016, so the home building recovery is still very young. But the National Association of Home Builders reported builders' sentiment rose in May to its highest level in five years. At 29, it still has a long way to go before it's in positive territory above 50, last seen in April 2006.

BUSINESS TIP OF THE WEEK... A French proverb says, "People count up the faults of those who keep them waiting." So when a colleague needs your input or a client needs an answer, hustle!


>> Review of Last Week

BEARING DOWN... Wall Street's bears remained in control as the Dow and S&P 500 headed lower for the third week in a row, the S&P 500 posting its worst weekly performance since November. Investors worried about Greece leaving the euro zone. The country's politicians couldn't form a coalition government, so a fresh vote needs to be taken. Over here, the continuing saga of JP Morgan's big trading loss kept investors on edge, along with a big drop in the Philly Fed index that showed a manufacturing slowdown in that region.

Continuing the disappointments, April Retail Sales were up only half what was forecast and the Leading Economic Indicators (LEI) index surprised with a drop. But on the positive side, the CPI inflation reading came in without any shocks. Also, Industrial Production surged a better than expected 1.1% in April and the Empire State Manufacturing Index handily beat expectations for May, which dispelled factory sector concerns. Friday saw the frenzy around the IPO of social website Facebook, whose shares closed up a mere 0.6%.

For the week, theDow ended down 3.5%, at 12369; the S&P 500 closed down 4.3%,to 1295; and the Nasdaq sank 5.3%, to 2779.

As investors worried about Greece and swallowed hard on some disappointing economic data, they flocked to the safe haven of bonds. Mortgage-backed securities did well, with the FNMA 3.5% bond we watch finishing the week UP .15, to $104.16. Rising bond prices drove national average mortgage rates down deeper into record territory in Freddie Mac's weekly survey, although purchase loan demand dipped.

DID YOU KNOW?... The census reported the median size of a new home in 2010 was 2,169 square feet, down from the 2007 peak of 2,277 square feet.


>> This Week’s Forecast

APRIL HOME SALES, EXISTING AND NEW...The big economic news this week covers the full read on April home sales, starting with Existing Home Sales on Tuesday, expected UP to a 4.65 million annual rate. Wednesday we'll see New Home Sales for the month, also forecast up, but just by a small amount, to 340,000 units.

We will continue to monitor Initial Jobless Claims, looking for any improvements in the employment picture, so vital to the housing market's recovery. Unfortunately, no major changes for the better are predicted. Durable Goods Orders should inch into positive territory from the prior month's big drop, a good sign.


>> The Week’s Economic Indicator Calendar

Weaker than expected economic data tends to send bond prices up and interest rates down, while positive data points to lower bond prices and rising loan rates.

Economic Calendar for the Week of May 21 – May 25

Date Time (ET) Release For Consensus Prior Impact
May 22
10:00 Existing Home Sales Apr 4.65M 4.48M Moderate
May 23
10:00 New Home Sales Apr 340K 328K Moderate
May 23
10:30 Crude Inventories 05/19 NA 2.128M Moderate
May 24
08:30 Initial Unemployment Claims 05/19 365K 370K Moderate
May 24
08:30 Continuing Unemployment Claims 05/12 3.250M 3.265M Moderate
May 24
08:30 Durable Goods Orders Apr 0.3% -3.9% Moderate
May 25
09:55 Univ. of Michigan Consumer Sentiment May 77.5 77.8 Moderate

>> Federal Reserve Watch

Forecasting Federal Reserve policy changes in coming months... Virtually all economists believe the Fed will keep rates super low well into next year. Note: In the lower chart, a 1% probability of change is a 99% certainty the rate will stay the same.

Current Fed Funds Rate: 0%–0.25%

After FOMC meeting on: Consensus
Jun 20 0%–0.25%
Jul 31 0%–0.25%
Sep 12 0%–0.25%

Probability of change from current policy:

After FOMC meeting on: Consensus
Jun 20 <1%
Jul 31 <1%
Sep 12 <1%

This e-mail is an advertisement for Ed Dorame. The material provided is for informational and educational purposes only and should not be construed as investment and/or mortgage advice, or a commitment to lend. Although the material is deemed to be accurate and reliable, there is no guarantee of its accuracy. The material contained in the newsletter is the property of Guarantee Home Mortgage and cannot be reproduced for any use without prior written consent. The material does not represent the opinion of Guarantee Home Mortgage. MLO-57774; WA License CL850501; Guarantee Home Mortgage dba of Golden Empire Mortgage, Inc. NMLS #2427.

  • Ed Dorame / Guarantee Home Mortgage
    555 Dayton St. #A-1
    Edmonds, WA 98020
    Phone: 2065102118
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