By Jessica Shanahan, Premier Lending LLC adapted from the Shirmeyer Rate Market Report.
Mortgage interest rates improved slightly this past week as economic data was mixed. Economic data stronger than expected included August Auto and Truck Sales, Q2 Productivity, the July U.S. Trade Deficit, the August ISM Services Sector Index, August Unemployment, and August Average Hourly Earnings. The unemployment rate fell to 5.1% in August. Economic data weaker than expected included the August ISM Manufacturing Index, July Construction Spending, the August ADP Jobs Report, Q2 Unit Labor Costs, July Factory Orders, weekly jobless claims, August Non-Farm Payrolls, August Non-Farm Private Payrolls, and the August Labor Participation Rate. Non-Farm Payrolls increased by 173k on expectations that they increased by 233k. In China, the Manufacturing Purchasing Managers Index for August fell to 49.7, its lowest level since August 2012. The European Central Bank cut its growth forecast for the EU. Global economic weakness is calling into question whether the Fed will increase short term interest rates at its September 17 FOMC Meeting.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average is currently at 16,128, down over 500 points on the week. The crude oil spot price is currently at $46.26 per barrel, up slightly on the week. The Dollar strengthened versus the Euro and weakened versus the Yen on the week.
Next week look toward Thursday’s Jobless Claims and Friday’s Producer Price Index (PPI) and Consumer Sentiment Index as potential market moving events. U.S. markets are closed on Monday for Labor Day.
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