Posts Tagged ‘interest rate’

Beige Book: Slower Growth, Less Optimism

Posted on June 09, 2017 by Laura Lam

Economic growth slowed across parts of the U.S. in recent weeks, and some firms have become a bit less optimistic about the future, according to a new report from the Federal Reserve.  “A majority of districts reported that firms expressed positive near-term outlooks; however, optimism waned somewhat in a few districts,” the Fed said in its latest Beige Book report. Broadly, the Fed said economic growth was modest in 7 districts, moderate in 4 districts and “flattened out” in the New York Fed district. The prior beige book said activity expanded in all 12 regions with the pace equally split…

Housing Confidence Dips in March

Posted on April 25, 2017 by Laura Lam

Americans came down off their confidence high in March as fewer say now is a good time to buy a home, according to Fannie Mae’s Home Purchase Sentiment Index.  The index decreased 3.8 percentage points to 84.5 in March, down from February’s survey high. “Home purchase sentiment gave back some of the gains accumulated over the prior two months that sent the index to its survey high in February,” said Doug Duncan, Fannie Mae senior vice president and chief economist. “Strong home price appreciation has turned into a double-edged sword for the housing market as it boosted the net share…

Homebuilder Confidence Slips in April

Posted on April 19, 2017 by Laura Lam

Confidence among homebuilders cooled in April after jumping a month earlier to the highest level since mid-2005, according to data from the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo.  Builder sentiment eased to 68 in April from a reading of 71 in March that was the strongest since June 2005. The median forecast in a Bloomberg survey was for 70; readings greater than 50 indicate more respondents reported good market conditions. The measure of the 6-month sales outlook fell to 75 after a reading of 78 that matched the highest since 2005. The index of current sales cooled to 74 this…

Younger Homeowners Opt for HELOCs

Posted on April 18, 2017 by Laura Lam

As interest rates increase, hovering higher than rates last year, buyers have little incentive to refinance their mortgages.  But as refis drop, a whole new loan type rises to take its place – home equity lines of credit (HELOC). While mortgage rates may be high, so are home prices, creating a wealth of new equity for homeowners. Thus, the increase in HELOCs, according to a recent CNBC article by Diana Olick.  More than any other generation, Millennials are utilizing this cash-out mortgage loan.  According to the article, “The last time interest rates rose as much as they have over the…

Home Equity Loans on the Rise

Posted on April 11, 2017 by Laura Lam

Mortgage lenders, along with borrowers, are starting to welcome home equity lines of credit back into the market after the loan product began to disappear in the wake of the financial crisis.  Given their growing prominence in the market, a new report from the American Bankers Association’s Consumer Credit Delinquency Bulletin provides a current pulse on the health of the product by looking at delinquencies.  The report looked at both closed-end loans and open-end loans, since home equity loans fall into both categories. Bankrate explains that there are two types of home equity loans: term, or closed-end loans, and lines of credit, open-end loans.  A home equity…

Auto Loan Defaults Not Likely to Cause Next Bubble

Posted on April 10, 2017 by Laura Lam

An increase in the delinquency of risky auto loans probably won’t send the U.S. economy into the doldrums the way the mortgage loan crisis did in 2008-09, but it will likely pinch car sales.  Borrowers are falling behind on most subprime car loans, but deep subprime consumers – those with credit scores below 550 – have deteriorated fastest, according to a report by Morgan Stanley. Just like mortgages, many of those loans have been packaged into bonds, “securitized” in Wall Street parlance, and sold across the world to investors searching for yields in the wake of the financial crisis. Car…

Bank Card and Mortgage Defaults Tick Upward

Posted on April 06, 2017 by Laura Lam

Data from the recent S&P/Experian Consumer Credit Default Indices report shows the composite rate up two basis points from last month at 0.94% in February. The bank card default rate recorded a 3.22% default rate, up one basis point from January. Auto loan defaults came in at 1.05%, down one basis point from the previous month. The first mortgage default rate came in at 0.74%, up two basis points from January. The 5 major cities showed mixed results in February with two higher default rates, two lower, and one unchanged. Dallas had the largest increase, reporting 0.83%, up eight basis…

Tappable Equity Hits 10-Year High

Posted on April 05, 2017 by Laura Lam

An annual home price appreciation of 5.5% during 2016 helped to increase the number of mortgage holders with tappable equity to 39.5 million, according to new data from Black Knight Financial Services (BKFS). More than two-thirds of the tappable equity level belongs to borrowers with current interest rates below today’s 30-year interest rate. Tappable equity – defined as the amount of lendable equity available to a borrower before hitting a combined loan-to-value ratio of 80% – reached the $4.7 trillion mark last year. An equity growth of $570 billion throughout 2016 pushed the total equity level to its highest level since…

Average Mortgage Loan Size Hits All-Time High

Posted on March 16, 2017 by Laura Lam

The average loan size for purchase mortgage applications hit an all-time high last week, according to the latest data from the Mortgage Bankers Association.  The MBA’s Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey for the week ending March 3, 2017 showed that the average loan size for purchase applications was $313,300.  That’s the highest that figure has been during any week since the MBA began conducting its weekly application survey in 1990. Overall, the MBA’s report showed that mortgage applications increased 3.3% from the previous week.  The report also showed that the Refinance Index increased 5% from the previous week to the highest level since…

Millennials Locked Out of Housing Market Again

Posted on March 14, 2017 by Laura Lam

For quite some time, we’ve heard that Millennials have put off buying a home.  These reasons include student debt load, tighter lending standards, and simply not wanting to sacrifice everything for a chance to own the “American Dream.”  Whether Millennials actually want to buy a home or not, there has to be homes available to purchase.  Currently, young home shoppers have a very shallow pool of options – and the current inventory shortage is predicted to stick around through 2017. Daren Blomquist, senior vice president at ATTOM Data Solutions, identified 3 key factors keeping housing inventory in a drought, barring entrance for aspiring…