Friday, December 18, 2009

Market Commentary for Dec. 18th 2009

Friday’s bond market has opened down slightly with no relevant economic news scheduled for release today. The stock markets are showing relatively minor gains with the Dow up 8 points and the Nasdaq up 16 points. The bond market is currently down 4/32, but I am still expecting to see a small improvement in this morning’s mortgage rates due to strength late yesterday.

We likely will see plenty of movement in stocks today as a result of option expirations. Therefore, we cannot rely on stocks to give direction to bonds since the movement in the major stock indexes will be due more to the expirations than direct concerns or optimism about the economy. In other words, it will likely be a directionless day for unless something unexpected occurs. This will likely prevent seeing changes to mortgage rates this afternoon.

Next week brings us the release of a couple of important economic reports for the markets to digest. Included in next week’s releases are a couple of housing sector reports, data on personal income and spending along with a high profile manufacturing report. There is no relevant data scheduled for release Monday, so look for the stock markets to influence bond trading and mortgage pricing.

The next two weeks are holiday’s shortened trading weeks due to the Christmas and New Year’s holidays. As we get closer to those particular days, the market tends to thin as traders head home early for the holiday weekends. This sometimes leads to larger than normal reactions to some of the key reports or any significant news releases. But look for more details on next week’s events in Sunday’s weekly preview.

If I were considering financing/refinancing a home, I would.... Lock if my closing was taking place within 7 days... Float if my closing was taking place between 8 and 20 days... Float if my closing was taking place between 21 and 60 days... Float if my closing was taking place over 60 days from now...

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