Mortgage markets improved last week in low-volume trading.
Between Monday to Thursday, Wall Street focused on the upcoming jobs reports and mortgage markets gained while traders jockeyed for position. Mortgage rates drifted lower through Thursday afternoon. But, then, after a better-than-expected Non-Farm Payrolls report Friday morning, mortgage markets — and mortgage rates — reversed.
Overall, mortgage rates dropped last week, but only by a small margin. Rates were best Thursday afternoon.
It was the second consecutive week in which mortgage rates fell.
Last week was also interesting in that both stock markets and bond markets improved, proving that rates don’t always rise when stock prices do. 455 of the S&P 500 companies posted gains last week.
If you’re shopping for a home or a refinance, though, don’t rest on your laurels. After Friday’s big sell-off, this week opens into a major headwind and, plus, the Federal Reserve’s support for mortgage markets ends in just 3 weeks.
This week, without much data to influence traders, the upward momentum in rates may have little cause to temper. We’ll see the Consumer Confidence numbers on Tuesday and Retail Sales on Friday. Beyond that, there’s not much else.
After last week’s performance, conforming mortgage rates may be poised to rise rather sharply. If you’re waiting for the right time to lock your rate, it may have been this past Thursday. Consider locking your rate early this week to protect against further rate hikes.