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Daily Market Watch for Wednesday, May 23, 2018 (Courtesy of Larry Baer and Market Alert )
Short Term Trend (5 days or less): Favors slightly higher prices and fractionally lower mortgage interest rates.
Long Term Trend (6 days or more): Favors fractionally higher rates and lower prices.

The April New Home Sales report was released earlier this morning. The data showed sales fell 1.5% below the revised March gain of 2.0%. Mortgage investors shrugged because the pace of new home sales is still 11.6% above the year-ago mark.

As they do every Wednesday, the Mortgage Bankers of America have released their Mortgage Application Survey for the week ended May 18th. Overall single-family mortgage demand fell 2.6%. Refinance activity was down 3.7% and purchase money loan requests declined by 2%.

On a four-week moving average basis, refinance activity is down 5.7% over the past month and it is 19.6% lower than this same time last year. Purchase-money mortgage loan requests are down 0.9% over the past month, and they are 3.5% above year-ago levels.

For the week ended May 18, refinance applications accounted for 35.7% of all single-family mortgage applications filed.

The contract rate for 30-year fixed-rate conforming mortgages ended the week nine basis points higher at 4.86%. The interest rate is 13 basis points higher than four weeks ago, and it is 69 basis points higher than the year-ago mark.

This afternoon at 2:00 PM ET the Federal Open Market Committee will release the minutes from their May 2nd meeting. Most observers do not believe there will be any significant surprises in this document, especially compared to the minutes from the March meeting.

The Fed will probably continue to reiterate gradual rate hikes are necessary, though they will probably be limited to no more than three 25 basis point bumps for the balance of the year. If this assessment is correct, this afternoon's event will likely have no discernible impact on the current direction of mortgage interest rates.

Uncle Sam will be back in the credit markets today looking to peddle $36 billion of five-year notes. The auction series will conclude on Thursday when the final gavel falls on $30 billion of seven-year notes.

Still to come this week in terms of economic data is tomorrow’s Existing Home Sales report for April which will be followed by the Durable Goods Orders report for April on Friday.

The mortgage market is scheduled to close early on Friday at 2:00 PM Eastern time for the Memorial Day holiday. The mortgage market will be closed on Monday, May 28th.

It is unlikely either the Treasury debt sale or the scheduled economic data will significantly influence the current trend trajectory of mortgage interest rates.
Rates Last Updated 5/23/18, 9:47 AM CST 
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  *Rates and terms are subject to change at any time and certain variations, restrictions, or improvements may apply based on creditworthiness, loan amount, property type, etc. APR's do not include mortgage insurance which may be required for LTVs greater than 80%, or closing costs from undetermined third parties including the title company.
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Contact Information
Houston:Jim Norris (RMLO #304627)
12010 Miramar Shores Dr
Houston, Tx 77065
(281) 970-1082 ext 1
(866) 717-4556 ext 1
Houston:Ellen Roloff Norris (RMLO #304630)
12010 Miramar Shores Dr
Houston, TX 77065
281-970-1082 ext 2
866-717-4556 ext 2
Brenham:Gayle Valentine-Hill (RMLO #298234)
Brenham:Sandra Starnes (RMLO #298126)
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