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Mortgage Related News

MBS RECAP: Another One of Those Unofficial 3-Day Weekend Days

Posted To: MBS Commentary

These sorts of days (where nothing happens) happen. If you had to bet on a day of the week and a time of year to see them, Summertime Mondays would probably be the safest bet. Overnight volume was almost nonexistent, with much of Asia closed. Domestic volume and volatility was effectively nil with today's trading range falling easily inside Friday's. On a positive note, despite the low volume, any day where bonds begin a new week holding onto gains from the end of the previous week is better than nothing. In that sense, the fact that yields remained well under Friday's 2.937% ceiling in 10yr Treasuries was better than the alternative. That said, I'd look at it more like an unofficial 3rd day of the weekend than a new and meaningful trading session. MBS Pricing Snapshot Pricing...(read more)

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Mortgage Rates Little-Changed to Begin Quiet Week

Posted To: Mortgage Rate Watch

Mortgage rates were sideways to slightly higher today, depending on the lender. The underlying bond market (which dictates rates) was exceptionally quiet. On the heels of last week's important events and without much on the calendar this week, markets may take a couple days to relax. To put that in context, rates have been holding somewhat steady just below long-term highs. Their next major decision will be between pushing into new long-term highs or attempting to move lower for more than just a week or two. "Relaxation," in this context, means we're not likely to see evidence of either this week. Loan Originator Perspective Bonds coasted through a flat session Monday as rates hovered near unchanged. There's scant meaningful data this week to inform markets, I'll be surprised to see much movement...(read more)

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Builder Confidence: Tariffs on Lumber Hurting Affordability

Posted To: MND NewsWire

Builder confidence in the market for new single-family homes ended a three-month slide in May , as the Housing Market Index ticked up two points. This month that two-point gain evaporated as the index slid back down to 68. The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) said the retreat of the measure, which it sponsors in conjunction with Wells Fargo, in June was, in large part, due to elevated lumber prices. "Builders are optimistic about housing market conditions as consumer demand continues to grow," said NAHB Chairman Randy Noel. "However, builders are increasingly concerned that tariffs placed on Canadian lumber and other imported products are hurting housing affordability . Record-high lumber prices have added nearly $9,000 to the price of a new single-family home since January 2017...(read more)

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MBS Week Ahead: Bonds Try to Confirm Last Week's Victory

Posted To: MBS Commentary

Post-Italian drama, bond yields rose for 2 straight weeks heading into last week's Fed and ECB announcements. They both proved friendly and the positive momentum continued on Friday. The timing of the Italian drama was important because it began helping bonds right as US 10yr yields were hitting 7-year highs. As yields rose back toward those highs early last week, it was fair to wonder if Italy had merely delayed a move to even weaker levels. The response to last week's central bank events suggested--if not proved --that bonds don't need to re-test high ceilings just yet. Moreover, there may even be a chance to rally. To reiterate a word of caution I've offered a few times, the fundamentals--at the very least--would not make a sustained rally easy. It's the sort of thing...(read more)

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Compliance and Construction Products; Legal Changes for Lenders on the East Coast

Posted To: Pipeline Press

Rumors continue to swirl. Will a top-10 bank really terminate hundreds, possibly a thousand, of its retail originators in late July/early August for not meeting minimum production standards? Is Houlihan Lokey out there marketing a well-known company (a provider of compliance outsourcing solutions to lenders and servicers) to Radian, Black Knight, or overseas firms? Are hundreds of lenders engaged in small-scale unpublicized layoffs to eliminate overstaffing? Maybe I am merely making this stuff up. Maybe not. Lender Products and Services The American Bankers Association announced its endorsement of Built Technologies, a Nashville-based fintech company focused on simplifying the administration of residential and commercial construction loans through secure, cloud-based software. Built’s...(read more)

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Americans Sitting on Trillions in Tappable Equity

Posted To: MND NewsWire

Americans are sitting on a nearly unprecedented level of untapped wealth - or maybe sitting IN it is more to the point. A report from Black Knight notes the first quarter of this year saw the "tappable" equity Americans have in their homes rose at what could be a record pace. The company says tappable equity growth is a different metric than simple equity growth as it is the amount that homeowners can actually use. That is, it is the amount of a home's value that can be borrowed against before reaching a combined loan-to-value (CLTV) ratio of 80 percent. Tappable equity grew by $380 billion in the first quarter of 2018. That 7 percent increase is the largest single quarter growth in Black Knight's records, which go back to 2005. Equity growth is usually greatest in the first and second quarters...(read more)

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MBS RECAP: Trade Fears Help Bond Rally Extend

Posted To: MBS Commentary

Fresh fears of trade wars pushed stocks and bond yields lower in the overnight session as the White House promised another wave of tariff announcements in the morning. China retaliated by promising its own tariffs and markets slumped accordingly. By "accordingly," I mean they slumped as much as they have for any other trade war headline after the initial shock wore off--i.e. not too terribly much. Case in point, stocks ended up bouncing back and nearly erasing all of the losses. Bonds, on the other hand, got a bit of an extra boost from the overall momentum following 2 decent days of central bank news, as well as weaker economic updates out of Europe overnight. 10yr yields rallied all the way to 2.889 before bouncing up to 2.922% by the close (still 2.4bps lower on the day). MBS underperformed...(read more)

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Mortgage Rates Inch to Week's Best Levels

Posted To: Mortgage Rate Watch

Mortgage rates fell again today, bringing the average rate just slightly lower on the week. Unlike the past 2 days, there were no big ticket calendar events today. Instead, motivation came from market jitters of new tariff announcements and the ensuing retaliation from China. Markets ultimately decided it wasn't the end of the world (yet) and bounced back in the other direction (higher stocks, higher rates) during the 2nd half of the day. Fortunately, the bounce in rates (via the bond market) wasn't big enough to force mortgage lenders to adjust their rate sheets for the worse. That knife cuts both ways though. If bonds were to merely hold flat by the start of Monday's trading, the implication would be for slightly higher rates to begin the day. Loan Originator Perspective Rally makes it time...(read more)

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MBS Day Ahead: Here We Go Bonds, Now, Here We Go!

Posted To: MBS Commentary

Bond markets have their rally caps on after making it through both central bank announcements this week without suffering any crazy damage. In fact, each day brought modest improvements and now today stands the chance of bringing enough of a rally to "confirm" those improvements from a technical standpoint. That's about the size of it at the moment. We're watching and waiting with fingers crossed. It's much the same as a sporting event where our team just made a good defensive stand and now has the ball on offense . They may or may not score, as always, but it's nice to have a chance! The only thing that troubles me about rooting for a bigger rally is that the justification for sustained improvement will be really hard to come by without something changing about the...(read more)

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Compliance, Fraud Prevention Products; Lenders' Digital Notes and Closings

Posted To: Pipeline Press

Taking a tour around the nation…No one has ever used the term “bespoke” in describing any place I’ve stayed. I barely know what it means. But if you’ve got the bucks, and want a nice place to bunk down in Hawai’i, here you go . Marlin jerky? 5,100 miles and six time zones away, a Martha’s Vineyard house that the Obamas have vacationed in sold for $15 million , $7.5 million under original asking. Falling demand on the high-end? In-between, here’s an article on the lay-offs to expect in the Dallas-Fort Worth lending industry. But Freddie Mac announced a new partnership with re-employment solutions company NextJob to provide job search assistance to current and aspiring homeowners living in high-needs and other persistent poverty areas . Digital...(read more)

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MBS RECAP: ECB Surprises Markets, But Bonds Liked It

Posted To: MBS Commentary

We knew the ECB (European Central Bank) was going to have to address its bond buying program soon, because it expires after September. Several speakers had alluded to the likelihood that it would be addressed in today's announcement. Markets took that to mean that Draghi would finally talk about the probable tapering announcement at the subsequent meeting. Instead, the ECB just went ahead and pulled the trigger --several months in advance. In other words, they will indeed continue buying bonds through September. They'll buy half as many over the next 3 months and then be done by 2019. This eventuality was somewhere in the realm of the market's expectation, even if we weren't planning on confirming it so soon. The early announcement caused a bit of bond market weakness at first...(read more)

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Mortgage Rates Are Actually Unchanged This Week!

Posted To: Mortgage Rate Watch

Mortgage rates moved LOWER today, following a policy announcement from the European Central Bank (ECB). That claim runs counter to almost any other mortgage rate headline in the mainstream news because big media is in the habit of quoting Freddie Mac's weekly rate survey. That's not necessarily a bad thing as long as you understand the underlying timelines. Unfortunately, most news outlets gloss over those important details or leave them out completely. Specifically, Freddie's survey is heavily weighted toward responses that come in on Monday and Tuesday, even though Wednesday is also technically included. Thursday and Friday are never counted. That means that any rate volatility that hits during the second half of the week typically isn't captured in Freddie's numbers. Long story short , because...(read more)

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Sales to Slump as Costs Drive Builder Bottleneck

Posted To: MND NewsWire

The Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) is projecting a decline in new home sales in May. Its computation is based on information from its Builder Application Survey (BAS) which collects information on mortgage applications for new home purchases from the mortgage subsidiaries of home builders nationwide. Their non-seasonally adjusted BAS data indicates that applications were down by 4.0 percent from April and by 0.5 percent compared to the previous May. Based on this information and other information regarding market coverage and other factors, MBA estimates that new homes were sold in May at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 626,000 units. This is down 4.6 percent from the April rate of 656,000 units. Joel Kan, MBA Associate Vice President of Economic and Industry Forecasting, said, "Despite...(read more)

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MBS Day Ahead: Bonds Cheer ECB's Mic Drop

Posted To: MBS Commentary

Today's domestic session begins with a positive reaction to the European Central Bank (ECB) announcement. The ECB broke from tradition by dropping their bigger bombs at the 7:45am announcement as opposed to Draghi's 8:30am press conference. They also arguably dropped the proverbial mic in a way we haven't often seen by making definitive statements about bond buying and rates well in advance of any changes. Specifically, the ECB will taper its bond buying purchases by 50% in Oct-Dec, and then be done buying new bonds. They'll still be reinvesting proceeds until further notice and they won't be considering a rate hike until the summer of 2019. At first glance, the tapering announcement seems like a problem for bond markets. In fact, it did cause a bit of initial weakness,...(read more)

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Digital Marketing Products; Freddie and Fannie Secondary Activity Picks Up

Posted To: Pipeline Press

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects increasing customer usage of technology will reduce the number of bank tellers by 42,000 through 2026. Given their average pay is a little over $2k per month, I can see why some of the smarter ones are being wooed and hired as loan officer trainees. (And yes, the BLS mentions loan officer forecasts .) While we’re talking about banks, and possible good news for them, Goldman Sachs analysts believe Amazon won’t go so far as to open a bank , due to the extra regulatory scrutiny and credit risk. Amazon, however, will likely continue to provide supplementary financial services and it has partnered with various banks on their financial products already, and has a large pool of customers for financial products. Lender Products and Training Learn...(read more)

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MBS RECAP: Mostly a Knee-Jerk Reaction to Fed Dots and Powell

Posted To: MBS Commentary

In one sentence, today's Fed rate forecasts pushed bonds into weaker territory at 2pm and Jerome Powell's press conference helped to recover most of the losses. The forecasts showed a slightly higher probability of 4 rate hikes in 2018. The average "dot" (so named for the dot plot on which the forecasts appear) also moved a hair higher in 2019 and 2020. This was the key market mover at 2pm, even though the Fed announcement was heavily edited from its previous version. It probably didn't help that most of the edits were easier to argue as "unfriendly" for bonds. That said, it would be harder to argue they were unexpected or unjustified. Powell's press conference saw bonds bounce back and recover most of the losses, starting at 2:30pm. He said he wasn't...(read more)

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Mortgage Rates Higher Following Fed Forecasts

Posted To: Mortgage Rate Watch

Mortgage rates moved higher today, following the Fed's much-anticipated policy announcement. Although the Fed changed quite a few words from the announcement's previous iteration (far more than normal), it wasn't the announcement itself that did the damage. Rather, it was the Fed members' economic projections, which include an assessment of where the Fed Funds Rate will likely be at the end of the next few years. Specifically, a few of the Fed members who'd been holding out for slightly lower rates in 2018 moved their forecasts up enough to increase the odds of a 4th rate hike by December. This was already a strong possibility, but before today, those in the "3 hike" camp had a stronger case. While the Fed's rate doesn't directly affect 30yr fixed mortgage rates, shifts in the Fed's rate hike...(read more)

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Differences Between Previous and Current FOMC Statements

Posted To: MBS Commentary

Information received since the Federal Open Market Committee met in MarchMay indicates that the labor market has continued to strengthen and that economic activity has been rising at a moderatesolid rate. Job gains have been strong, on average, in recent months, and the unemployment rate has stayed low.declined. Recent data suggest that growth of household spending moderated from its strong fourth-quarter pace,has picked up, while business fixed investment has continued to grow strongly. On a 12-month basis, both overall inflation and inflation for items other than food and energy have moved close to 2 percent. Market-based measures of inflation compensation remain low; survey-based measuresIndicators of longer-term inflation expectations are little changed, on balance. Consistent with its...(read more)

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Lenders Remain Pessimistic about Demand, Profits

Posted To: MND NewsWire

Last week the Mortgage Bankers Association said that independent mortgage bankers had reported negative production revenue in the first quarter of this year. This week Fannie Mae reminded us that lenders have long expected it to happen. The company's Mortgage Lender Sentiment Survey for the second quarter, which gathered responses from 87 senior executives representing 170 lending institutions, found more than a third (35 percent) expect their net profit margin to decline over the next quarter while 47 percent expect it will stay the same. Over the last four quarters less than 20 percent of respondents have expected profits to improve. Fannie Mae said it was the seventh consecutive quarter that the lender profit outlook has been negative, although responses to the second quarter survey were...(read more)

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MBS Day Ahead: All About The Dots, Bout The Dots, No Rate Hike

Posted To: MBS Commentary

"The dots" refer to the Fed's periodically updated economic projections. "Periodically, " in this case, means 4 times a year out of the 8 annual Fed meetings. "Economic projections" is a misleading term, not because the Fed isn't actually publishing such a thing, but rather, because no one really cares what the Fed thinks GDP and job growth will do. Markets are only interested in the part where each Fed member says where they think the Fed Funds Rate will be by the end of the year as well as at the end of the next few years. This rate hike outlook is conveyed via a dot plot in the Fed's Economic Projection materials. And that's why you're just as likely to hear "dots" in reference to the whole darn thing. In any event, when I say "dots...(read more)

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Lender Events; Inflation, Interest Rates, and the Fed

Posted To: Pipeline Press

Lenders aren’t likely to eliminate their owners or senior management, nor do they want to eliminate producers (who are meeting minimum thresholds) or slash their compensation. And good Ops staff is worth its weight in gold. In this time of margins being squeezed, what’s left? There is this note: “Given lender profits and LO commissions, I think one factor is a lot of expensive middle managers who do little or nothing to help improve, increase, or drive production. Lenders need to evaluate their role.” There are many great and talented individuals at that level, but yes, I am already seeing companies doing exactly that. Special Events Come celebrate with Angel Oak Mortgage Solutions! As the leader in non-QM lending, it’s growing rapidly and happy to announce the...(read more)

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Mortgage Application Volume Falls Back as Rates Rise

Posted To: MND NewsWire

The flurry of mortgage activity during the week ended June 1st didn't last long. Application volume resumed its months-long retreat last week as interest rates rose. The Mortgage Bankers Association said its Market Composite Index, a measure of volume, fell back by 1.5 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis during the week ended June 8. Because the previous week's data was adjusted to account for the Memorial Day Holiday, the June 8 index rebounded on an unadjusted basis, rising by 9.0 percent compared to earlier shortened week. The Refinance and the seasonally adjusted Purchase indices both slipped back by 2 percent compared to the previous week. The unadjusted Purchase Index was up 9 percent week-over-week and was 0.2 percent lower than the corresponding week in 2017. Refi Index vs 30yr Fixed...(read more)

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MBS RECAP: No Drama From CPI; Bring On The Fed

Posted To: MBS Commentary

Today turned out to be a dud, thanks to a completely uneventful CPI reading as well as a right-down-the-middle 30yr bond auction. Neither of these events were necessarily destined to shake things up, but CPI certain COULD have (if it fell far from forecast). When it comes to tomorrow's Fed events (which include updated forecasts and a Powell Press Conference), we can assume that there are enough trading ideas hinging on the event that it will be impossible to avoid a volatile reaction . The least volatile outcome would probably be a knee-jerk that ends up leaving bonds in relatively unchanged territory. If that ends up happening, the ECB will be out on Thursday morning to see about getting some momentum going. Either way, the moral of the story is that we've reached this week's...(read more)

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Mortgage Rates Brace For Volatility From Central Banks

Posted To: Mortgage Rate Watch

Mortgage rates didn't move much today. That keeps them in line with some of the highest levels in nearly 7 years, though the same could be said for a majority of the days since mid-April. Rather than talk about where we are and where we've been, the hotter topic is where we may be going. Stop me if you've heard this one before, but rates could move higher or lower . That's always the case because the financial markets that underlie rates (and everything else, for that matter) are always doing their best to adjust today's prices for everything that can be known about the present and the future . Presently, the range of potential outcomes is wider than normal because of the nature of upcoming events. Specifically, tomorrow's Fed Announcement could push rates quickly higher or lower in the afternoon...(read more)

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Credit Availability Climbs to Three-Month High in May

Posted To: MND NewsWire

An increase availability of high balance loans helped drive the Mortgage Bankers Association's (MBA's) Mortgage Credit Availability Index (MCAI) to a three-month high in May. MBA said the Index rose 1.5 percent to 180.6. An increase in the MCAI is indicative of loosening credit standards while a decline means those standards are tightening. All four components of the MCAI posted increases. The Conventional MCAI rose 2.0 percent from the April level and the Government index was up 1.0 percent. The Jumbo index and the Conforming Index were up 2.2 percent and 1.9 percent respectively. "The expansion of offerings across all loan types drove credit availability to its highest level in three months," Joel Kan, MBA's Associate Vice President of Economic and Industry Forecasting said. "In particular...(read more)

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Joe Sanchez
Allied Equity
Ph: 909-932-9226Fax:909-803-9840
400 North Mountain Ave., Suite 223
Upland, CA 91786 US
CA DRE License # 01201910, NMLS: 359382, Company ID: 359090
www.alliedequity.com
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