Yesterday was a VERY heavy day for data. What do you expect? It was the first day of the NCAA tournament with 16 games and when you consider all of the stats for the 32 teams that played (including my beloved Runnin' Utes) there's a lot of points, rebounds, assists, steals, turnovers, fouls, etc. We get more of the same today with the other 16 games of the 1st round.
As for the economic data, there was some of that as well. Initial Jobless Claims were lower than expected at 265K vs. 268K expected. Continuing Claims came in just a bit higher than expected at 2.235M vs. 2.228M expected. The Philly Fed Manufacturing Index blew away expectations with a reading of 12.4 vs. estimates of -1.7. Leading Economic Indicators were weaker than expected at .1 vs. estimates of .2. In spite of the Philly Manufacturing index being much stronger, the FNMA benchmark bond still followed Wednesday's big up day with some small gains, finishing up 17 basis points. The only thing we had this morning is the University of Michigan Consumer Sentiment Index which came in at 90.0 vs. estimates of 92.2. Oil is up again an that is providing some headwind for the bond to move any higher. It is currently up 5 basis points, 7 basis points off the morning high.
Since Wednesday's open, the bond is up 71 basis points. There's a possibility it could move higher on Monday considering the fact that oil has had a nice little run and some traders may want to take some profits off the table which would help bonds. That said, I've got a client who's loan I'm going to lock today in order to take advantage of this nice little run that mortgage bonds have had. If you or a client has a loan closing within 15 days, I would definitely lock - don't get greedy. If the loan is closing beyond that time frame, you may want to see what Monday brings but if you float, make sure you keep an eye on your phone (if you have my app that lets you get alerts when interest rates might move against you). Contact me if I can help in anyway: 702-812-1214, 801-853-8720 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Make it a great day and a better weekend and Go Utes!!