The National Association of Realtors reports more than nine in ten Realtors say the market is recovering, as they embrace “technology and business practices to ensure the home buying process continued in a safe manner.”
And that recovery is V-shaped. Purchase mortgage applications are up year-over-year between 13% and 33% the past seven weeks, and up 54% for new homes, while pending homes sales rose 44% last month.
Home builders are joining the party too. Housing Starts jumped 17.3% in June to a 1.186 million annual rate. So it’s no surprise the National Association of Home Builders July confidence index tied its March pre-pandemic read!
REVIEW OF LAST WEEK
MOSTLY UP… Investors sent the Dow and S&P 500 higher on undeniable signs the economic recovery has begun, but they let the Nasdaq take a breather, as pandemic uncertainties kept their enthusiasm in check.
On top of the blow-out Housing Starts, Retail Sales shot up 7.5% in June and are now 1.1% ahead of a year ago, almost back to where they were in February. Initial Jobless Claims dropped for the 15th week in a row.
Industrial Production had its biggest monthly jump since 1959, led by manufacturing (excluding mining and utilities). With the worst economic quarter since World War II behind us, the question now is how soon can we get to full recovery.
The week ended with the Dow UP 2.3%, to 26,672; the S&P 500 UP 1.2%, to 3,225; and the Nasdaq DOWN 1.1%, to 10,503.
Bond price performances ranged from modest retreats to slim gains. The UMBS 3.0% went up 0.17, to $105.36. The national average 30-year fixed mortgage rate dropped again to a new all-time record low in Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey. Remember, mortgage rates can be extremely volatile, so check with your mortgage professional for up-to-the-minute information.
DID YOU KNOW?… Zillow reports 36% of Americans say because of the pandemic they’re more likely to buy a home entirely online and 43% say they’re more likely to sell one that way. When the outbreak ends, 30% would still likely buy and 33% would still likely sell a home entirely online.
THIS WEEK’S FORECAST
NEW AND EXISTING HOME SALES UP, JOBLESS CLAIMS DOWN…The V-shaped housing recovery should continue to develop, as both Existing Home Sales and New Home Sales are forecast up for June. Thankfully, Initial Jobless Claims are expected to keep dropping.
NOTE: Weaker economic data tends to send bond prices up and interest rates down, while positive data points to lower bond prices and higher loan rates.