Morning Roundup (9/9/2021)- Rates Don’t Budge, Ishbia’s Player Funds Spark Controversy

Good Morning! Today is Thursday, September 9. Elizabeth Holmes’ trial starts today; she’s accused of defrauding investors and patients through her blood-testing company Theranos. Job openings in the US have leveled off after breaking records over the summer. Eighty percent of gas and oil production on the Gulf coast is still down after Hurricane Ida. And in mortgage and housing news…Rates Don’t Budge: Freddie Mac’s latest Primary Mortgage Market Survey found that mortgage rates held steady another week, up just .01% from last week to 2.88%. Feminists, Former Employees Cry Foul Over Ishbia’s Big-Dollar MSU Player Stipends: UWM’s Mat Ishbia is paying $6,000/year in stipends to MSU football and basketball players — but only the men. Women’s advocates see sexism,…

Freddie Mac: Rates Steady Yet Again

Freddie Mac’s latest Primary Mortgage Market Survey (PMMS®) found that mortgage rates held steady another week, up just .01% from last week to 2.88%. Rates haven’t moved much in several weeks.  The rate on a 30-day fixed-rate mortgage averaged 2.88%, inching up compared to last week. It was 2.86% a year ago. Rates on 15-year fixed-rate mortgages followed the same trend, averaging 2.19%, nearly identical to the 2.18% rate in the previous week. Fifteen-year rates averaged 2.37% a year earlier. Five-year Treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgages (ARMs) averaged 2.42%, shaking things up with slight decrease from last week’s 2.43%. Last year it was 3.11%. “While the economy continues to grow, it has lost momentum over the last two months due to…

Morning Roundup (9/8/2021)- Mortgage Applications and Forbearances Down, Construction Sees Gains

Good Morning! Today is Wednesday, September 8. The Taliban named a wanted man on the US terrorism list as interior minister. Bitcoin selloff has cooled after a flash crash yesterday erased billions in its value. RFK’s widow Ethel Kennedy says his assassin, Sirhan Sirhan, should not be released from prison in California. And in mortgage and housing news… Mortgage Applications Down: Mortgage applications are down again this week, with refi applications dropping 3%, according to the MBA’s latest survey. Forbearances Down, Too: The MBA reported that number of loans in forbearance fell from 3.25% to 3.23%. Residential Construction Gains: Residential construction, especially multi-family properties, grew in suburban and small metro urban core markets during Q2, NAHB’s Home Building Geography Index reported.  Ginnie Mae-king…

Number Of Loans In Forbearance Falls To 3.23%

The number of loans in forbearance as of August 29 fell from 3.25% of portfolio volume to 3.23%, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) latest survey. That puts the estimated number of homeowners in forbearance at 1.6 million. For Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac loans, the number fell 3 basis points to 1.63%. Ginnie Mae loans fell from 3.92% to 3.62%. But portfolio loans and private-label securities increased the number of homes in forbearance 34 basis points, from 7.18% to 7.52%. Independent mortgage bank servicers saw a drop of 1 basis point to 3.49%, and depository servicers saw a drop of 2 basis points to 3.33%. “The share of loans in forbearance decreased by two basis points last week, with…

Mortgage Applications Down Again

Mortgage application volume fell again in the past week, dropping to its lowest point since Mid-July, the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) weekly survey found. Mortgage application volume fell by 1.9%. On an unadjusted basis, the index dropped 3% from last week. The data is driven largely by a 3% decline in refinancing. The refinance index was 4% lower year-over-year for the same week. The survey also showed a small 0.2% decline in the seasonally adjusted purchase index. “Mortgage application volume fell last week to its lowest level since mid-July, as mortgage rates have stayed just above 3% for several weeks. Refinance volume has been moderating, while purchase volume continues to be lower than expected given the lack of homes on…

Morning Roundup (9/3/2021)- 423,000 New Homes Listed In August, Zillow/NAR Lawsuit Moving Forward

Good Morning! Today is Friday, September 3. The U.S. economy added just 235,000 jobs in August, far below economists’ expectations. The remnants of Hurricane Ida caused flash flooding in the Northeast, resulting in at least 45 deaths. Democrat Sen. Joe Manchin (W.V.) says he won’t support Biden-backed $3.5 trillion spending plan.And in mortgage and housing news…Market Warming: The housing market is leveling out, with smaller, more affordable homes being listed and sellers pricing more competitively as 423,000 new homes go up for sale, according to Realtor.com’s August Housing Market Trends Report. Heading For Normal: Signs of softening housing market and a leveling of mortgage interest rates have some industry observers asking if America is heading back to a ‘normal’ home-buying market.SimpleNexus Approved: Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have approved digital mortgage platform SimpleNexus as…

Morning Roundup (9/2/2021)- Weekly Mortgage Rates Stay Flat, Pending Home Sales Up Just 9%

Good Morning! Today is Thursday, September 2. New York Governor Kathy Hochul issued a state of emergency after remnants of Hurricane Ida caused flash flooding and power outages, resulting in at least nine deaths. A Texas law banning abortions after a fetal heartbeat can be detected (appoximately 6 weeks) took effect when the Supreme Court declined to block it. Purdue Pharma will be dissolved and the Sackler family will pay $4.5 billion to settle claims related to the national opioid epidemic.And in mortgage and housing news…Freddie Mac Says Weekly Mortgage Rates Remain Unchanged: The rate on a 30-day fixed rate mortgage averaged 2.87%, the same as last week and lower than the 2.93% average a year ago. Pending Home Sales…

White House Details Plan to Bolster Affordable Housing

President Joe Biden on Wednesday announced a major initiative to bolster affordable housing in the face of a surge in home prices that is preventing some Americans from becoming homeowners. “The large and long-standing gap between the supply and demand of affordable homes for both renters and homeowners make it harder for families to buy their first home and drives up the cost of rent. Higher housing costs also crowd out other investments families can and should make to improve their lives, such as investments in education,” the White House said in a statement. “President Biden is committed to using every tool available in government to produce more affordable housing supply as quickly as possible, and to make supply available to…

FHFA Announces Two Key Hires

The Federal Housing Finance Agency named Laura Thrift as the new Director of the Office of Congressional Affairs and Communications and Alexei Alexandrov (above) as Chief Economist on Monday. Thrift has more than 15 years of experience on Capitol Hill working for senior members of the House of Representatives. Before joining FHFA, Thrift was the Deputy Chief of Staff for Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-Ore). Thrift previously served as Senior Policy Advisor to Rep. David Price (D-N.C.) Prior to joining FHFA, Alexandrov, a Ph.D. economist, was the director of Central Algorithms for Wayfair.com. He also worked as a senior manager at Amazon.com. Additionally, he served as a senior economist at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, working on mortgage regulations stemming from…

Freddie Mac: Homeowners Affected By Ida Have Relief Options

Freddie Mac has confirmed that homeowners and mortgage servicers impacted by Hurricane Ida are eligible for disaster relief options. Hurricane Ida made landfall in Louisiana Monday, leaving about one million homes and businesses without power. Federal officials said it could be weeks before power is fully restored.  The storm slammed the Gulf Coast as a Category 4 hurricane, and continued moving through Mississippi as a tropical storm. Ida has caused severe flooding, ripped roofs off buildings, and destroyed power lines. For homeowners, the impact could be catastrophic. A statement from the National Weather Service in New Orleans warned that parts of southeast Louisiana “uninhabitable for weeks or months.” On Tuesday night, Gov. John Bel Edwards (D-La.) urged those forced to…