Carrington Wholesale Lending

Consumer Inflation Below Expectations

Last Week in Review:
Consumer and wholesale inflation were tame in April, while geopolitical events also made headlines.

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The Consumer Price Index (CPI) rose 0.2 percent in April, just below expectations, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported. This was down from the 2018 high of 0.5 percent recorded in January. The numbers revealed an uptick in energy and food prices which was offset by a decline in demand for used cars and trucks. The Core CPI, which strips out volatile food and energy prices, rose 0.1 percent, also below expectations.

Inflation at the wholesale level was also tame in April as the Producer Price Index (PPI) rose 0.1 percent. Core PPI rose 0.2 percent, as expected.

Tame inflation is typically good for Mortgage Bonds, as well as the home loan rates tied to them, because inflation reduces the value of fixed investments like Bonds. And Mortgage Bonds were boosted by the tame inflation data in the latest week.

It’s also important to remember that many factors impact both Stocks and Bonds. Strong economic news can benefit Stocks (sometimes at the expense of Bonds), while geopolitical turmoil can have the opposite effect. Stocks received a boost in the latest week when energy Stocks lifted the entire market, as oil prices spiked after President Trump announced his decision to withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal. The release of prisoners from North Korea and the scheduling of a meeting between President Trump and Kim Jong-un also lifted some uncertainty and helped the recent rise in Stock prices.

Investors will be watching headlines from the Middle East and Korea closely in the coming weeks as they decide where to put their investing dollars.

For now, though, home loan rates have trended higher this year, they remain attractive and near historically low levels.

If you or someone you know has any questions about home loans, please contact us. We’d be happy to help.

Jobs, Inflation and the Fed

Last Week in Review:
The April Jobs Report disappointed while inflation ticked up in March. Plus, the Fed met.

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The Jobs Report for April was a bit of a disappointment, as job creation rose from March but came in below expectations. There were 164,000 new jobs added in April, below the 190,000 expected, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported. This was up, however, from the 135,000 recorded in March (which was revised higher from 103,000). The Unemployment Rate fell to an 18-year low of 3.9 percent. Wage growth fell to 2.6 percent on an annual basis, down from the 2.9 percent recorded in January. Month-over-month hourly earnings rose 0.1 percent versus the 0.2 percent expected.

The Fed’s favorite inflation measure, annual Core Personal Consumption Expenditures (PCE), showed that inflation rose 1.9 percent in the 12 months through March. This was up from the 1.6 percent annual increase recorded in February. The Core reading excludes volatile food and energy prices. March’s number was the biggest increase since February 2017, and it brings annual Core PCE closer to the Fed’s target of 2.0 percent.

Inflation reduces the value of fixed investments, like Mortgage Bonds, meaning inflation can hurt Mortgage Bonds and the home loan rates tied to them. It will be important to see if signs of inflation remain in the air.

The Fed met and, as expected, left its benchmark Fed Funds Rate unchanged at 1.5 to 1.75 percent. This is the rate at which banks lend money to each other overnight, and it is not directly tied to home loan rates. The Fed noted, as mentioned above, that inflation has moved closer to its 2.0 percent target, employment growth has been strong, and that the economy is growing at a moderate rate.

Over in the housing sector, high demand plus a limited supply of homes for sale on the market pushed home prices higher in March. Research firm CoreLogic reported that home prices, including distressed sales, rose 7 percent from March 2017 to March 2018, while there was a 1.4 percent gain from February to March. Looking ahead, CoreLogic forecasts a 5.2 percent rise in home prices from March 2018 to March 2019.

Despite the warm inflation reading, the disappointing labor market news in part helped Mortgage Bonds bounce off five-year lows. Home loan rates improved this week and remain historically attractive.

If you or someone you know has any questions about rates or home loans, please get in touch. We’d be happy to help.

Introducing a new Near-Prime Product

Overview

Effective May 3, 2018 Carrington Mortgage Services, LLC (CMS) will introduce a new Near-Prime Product to broaden our commitment to serving the underserved borrower!

The Near-Prime product is well suited for borrowers who may have credit challenges but need pricing that is closer to prime rates. The program features Fixed and Adjustable Rate loan programs with FICO scores down to 620.

General Highlights

  • Recent Mortgage / Rental Lates up to 1 x 30 x 12
  • Foreclosure, Short Sale, Deed in Lieu and Bankruptcy with 36-month seasoning
  • Max Debt Ratios from 50% up to 55%
  • First Time Home Buyers allowed
  • Non-warrantable Condo Permitted (max 80% LTV)
  • Fully Documented Loans, 24 Months Bank Statements, 12 Month Bank Statements, and 1-Year Alternative Documentation
  • No Mortgage Insurance required
  • No Prepayment Penalties

Near-Prime Program Terms

  • Purchase, Rate/Term and Cash-Out Transactions (up to $500,000 cash-out)
  • 30 Year Fixed, 5/1 and 7/1 LIBOR ARMs
  • Maximum Loan Amount to $1.5MM
  • Cash-Out available to $500K
  • Primary Residence and Second Homes
  • Max LTV/CLTV: Up to 95%*
  • Min FICO: 620
  • Not Available in AK; MA; WV

*Refer to the CMS Near-Prime Matrix for LTV requirements.

Housing Starts, Retail Sales Rise

Last Week in Review:
Retail Sales and Housing Starts blossom in March.

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Retail Sales rose 0.6 percent in March, above the 0.4 percent expected and up from the decline of 0.1 percent in February, the Commerce Department reported. Leading the boost was spending on automobiles and health and personal care items. Consumer spending makes up two-thirds of U.S. economic activity and is crucial to a healthy economy.

Housing Starts also bloomed in March, rising 1.9 percent from February to an annual rate of 1.319 million units, per the Commerce Department. February’s figure was also revised higher to 1.295 million units. Housing Starts got a big boost from a 16.1 percent monthly increase from the multi-dwelling sector. However, things were less rosy for those interested in single family homes, as single-family starts fell 3.7 percent from February. From March 2017 to March 2018, Housing Starts were up 10.9 percent.

Building Permits, a sign of future construction, rose 2.5 percent from February to March to an annual rate of 1.354 million. Limited inventory remains a challenge in many areas of the country, so it will be important to see if Housing Starts continue to blossom and if single family starts shift gears higher.

Mortgage Bonds struggled in the latest week, approaching five-year lows, due to strong economic news and positive data. Home loan rates have edged higher but still remain historically attractive.

If you or someone you know has any questions about rates or home loans, please get in touch. We’d be happy to help.

Newsflash! Carrington on CNBC

CNBC highlights Carrington’s new Non-Prime programs with Rick Sharga

See what Rick Sharga, Executive Vice President of Carrington Mortgage Holdings has to say about Carrington’s new Non-Prime loan programs, in this CNBC video clip.

 

Inflation Tame, GDP Edged Lower

Last Week in Review:
GDP edged lower in fourth quarter 2017, while inflation remained tame in February.

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Fourth quarter 2017 Gross Domestic Product (GDP) edged lower to 2.9 percent, down from 3.2 percent in the third quarter, the Bureau of Economic Analysis reported. However, the report showed that consumer spending rose 4.0 percent, up from 2.2 percent in the third quarter. The jump in consumer spending was the quickest pace since the fourth quarter of 2014. Consumer spending makes up two-thirds of economic activity and is a key driver of economic growth.

Home prices continued to rise in January due in part to the low amount of homes for sale on the markets. The S&P/Case-Shiller 20-City Home Price Index rose 6.4 percent from January 2017 to January 2018, up from 6.3 percent recorded from December 2016 to December 2017. Home prices were also up 0.8 percent from December to January. Inventory continues to be a real challenge for many would-be buyers. Currently, there is a 3.4-month supply of homes for sale, well below the 6-month supply that is seen in a healthy market.

Consumer inflation remained low in February. The Bureau of Economic Analysis reported that Personal Consumption Expenditures (PCE) and Core PCE rose 0.2 percent from January to February, both in line with estimates. The more closely watched Core PCE reading excludes volatile food and energy prices and February’s figure was just below the 0.3 percent recorded in January. From February 2017 to February 2018, Core PCE came in at 1.6 percent, just above the 1.5 percent recorded in January. However, the reading is still well below the Fed’s target range of 2 percent.

When inflation starts to rise, a rise in home loan rates can follow. Inflation reduces the value of fixed investments like Mortgage Bonds, and home loan rates are tied to Mortgage Bonds.

For now, home loan rates remain attractive and near historically low levels.

If you or someone you know has any questions about home loans, please reach out. We’d be happy to help.

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