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Mortgage Outlook for the Week of March 5, 2012

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Mortgage Outlook for 3/5/12Last week saw more economic data showing modest economic growth in the US.

Positive economic data last week consisted of GDP numbers showing a 3% annual rate in the fourth quarter of 2011, a rise in consumer confidence and initial jobless claims falling.

Further confirmation of a possible recovery in progress came from Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke, whom spoke and also mentioned in subtle terms that he is seeing moderate growth as well in the US.

Mortgage Rates in the Week Ahead

This week the markets will have a close eye on Greece and the Non-Farms Payroll Report due at the end of the week (otherwise know as the “jobs report”). The market is looking for more confirmation to supplement previous positive or moderately positive employment / jobs data that has trickled out in the past month. More confirmation will help market watchers better understand what to expect in the future.

Very positive news from the jobs report on Friday has the potential to make mortgage rates spike upward. 

Greece? Yes, Greece AGAIN!

The markets will also have a close eye on Greece this week as Thursday is the due date for Greece’s swap-offer deadline. Keep in mind that a positive outcome in the Greece debacle exerts upward pressure on mortgage rates and an negative outcome will exert downward pressure on US mortgage rates.

This week, the existing Greek plan is looking for a yes vote from 75% of private borrowers involved for the plan to move forward. The bottom line that if voters approve the measure, mortgage rates could move rates up, even though the agreement is already somewhat priced into the existing market. A failure to approve could cause some volatility in the market, which would likely drive mortgage rates down or at least exert downward pressure on US mortgage rates.

Economic Calendar for Week of March 5, 2012

  • Monday – Factory Orders, ISM Non-Mfg Index
  • Tuesday – n/a
  • Wednesday – ADP Employment Report, Productivity and Costs, EIA Petroleum Status Report
  • Thursday – *Jobless Claims
  • Friday – Employment Situation

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