This week, investors focused on international events as the eye-opening Brexit vote looms closer. However, the trade front provided few updates on negotiations with China. The Brexit story also failed to shed much additional light.
On the economic front, the United States experienced mixed reports. As a result, the new data created little impact. Thus, mortgage rates ended the week nearly unchanged.
Eye-Opening Brexit Vote Looms on International Front
After a lack of success for over three years, the eye-opening Brexit vote looms closer finally. The United Kingdom put forth a new plan for leaving European Union before the October 31st deadline. While many remain unhappy with the uncertainty created by a departure with no deal in place, opposing sides continually fail to compromise on a solution. Over the weekend, the British parliament plans to vote on the latest proposal. Analysts debate the outcome.
Meanwhile, the United States announced a limited trade deal with China last week. Overall, investors found this surprising. Essentially, the deal stipulates that China will purchase more agricultural products from the United States. In exchange, the United States ceases its implementation of planned tariffs. Beyond that, the trade deal offered little additional news.
Economic Reports Show Mixed Results
While the eye-opening Brexit deal looms, investors concentrate on the latest economic reports. Because consumer spending strengthened the United States economy this year, investors prioritized the key Retail Sales report. Heading into the holiday season, Retail Sales declined 0.3% from August to September. Additionally they fell far below the consensus for an increase of 0.3%. Many believe the slowdown is temporary and analysts revised August’s results to be higher. Even with the September decline, retail sales hover 4.1% higher than the prior year.
Similarly, the housing sector contained mixed news. On the down side, overall housing starts in September fell a rather large 9% from August. However, the surprisingly strong reading seen last month was the highest since June 2007. Therefore, analysts anticipated this decline. While multi-family units presented the majority of the weakness, single-family starts increased from August.
Looking Ahead as Eye-Opening Brexit Deal Looms
As the eye-opening Brexit deal looms, the next European Central Bank meeting takes place on Thursday. Simultaneously, New Home Sales and Durable Orders also come out on Thursday. Before that, the United States sees Existing Home Sales release on Tuesday.
However, the Brexit situation and trade deal still hold influence over mortgage rates. While this week didn’t provide much, next week should offer more insight into the long-term outlook.
While the eye-opening Brexit deal looms, mortgage rates remained nearly unchanged. Never miss an update with MBSQuoteline. To receive by-the-minute updates on mortgage-backed securities, try our platform free for 14 days.
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