May 2013

Found 42 blog entries for May 2013.

Encouraging economic data helped lift fixed mortgage rates to their highest level in the past year this week, according to surveys from Freddie Mac and

Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey showed the 30-year fixed rate rising to an average 3.81 percent (0.8 point) for the week ending May 30, up from last week’s 3.59 percent. Since the beginning of May, the 30-year fixed average has jumped up nearly half a percentage point.

The 15-year fixed-rate mortgage (FRM) also soared this week, rising to 2.98 percent (0.7 point) from last week’s 2.77 percent.

Adjustable rate movements were mixed. The 5-year hybrid adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) averaged 2.66 percent (0.5 point) this week, up from last week’s average of 2.63

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Mortgage rates continued to see high volatility throughout the short trading week.   On Tuesday rates worsened throughout the day, climbing by an even higher margin than they did throughout last Wednesday’s massive spike, as better than expected Consumer Confidence and Home Prices fueled early Fed exit concerns.  Rates began to improve sharply as buyers reentered the market Wednesday morning, while Thursday’s worse than expected GDP, Employment, and Home Sales reports began to soften early Fed exit concerns.  Mortgage volatility then continued Friday morning, as rates opened up better alongside of worse than expected Personal Income and Spending reports, then sharply spiked alongside of better than expected reports of Chicago PMI and University of

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After four record-setting weeks in a row for stocks, investors put on the brakes, all indexes closing down for the week. Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke's Congressional testimony, plus comments in the FOMC meeting minutes, made Wall Streeters worry that the Fed will begin tapering its bond purchases, designed to keep interest rates down and the economy heading back up. Some Fed members saw this starting in late June if the economy showed more evidence of growth, but "...views differed about what evidence would be necessary and the likelihood of that outcome."

There was plenty of reason for investor optimism going into the long holiday weekend. Friday's Durable Good Orders report showed stronger than expected demand in April for big ticket purchases. Thursday's

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A shower of home purchases sure sweetened the real estate market in April, as Existing Home Sales gained 0.6% for the month, hitting an annual rate of 4.97 million units. This put them up 9.7% over a year ago, reaching their highest sales pace since November 2009, when they were helped along by an $8,000 homebuyer tax credit. No government largesse is needed now to lure buyers, and the median price of an existing home is up 11.0% from a year ago, the supply at 5.2 months.

April was a sweet month for new home purchases too. New home sales were up 2.3%, to a 454,000 annual rate, and are now up a solid 29.0% versus a year ago. The faster sales pace meant that a 5,000-unit increase in inventories did not push out the 4.1 months' supply. With the number of

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Many people shopping for real estate today are younger than previous generations of home buyers, and they’re extremely tech savvy. They grew up with smartphones, apps, and Google searches. And they want to use technology not only in their search for a home but throughout the home itself.

A recent survey by Better Homes and Gardens shows that 77 percenr of Gen X & Gen Y home buyers want their homes “equipped with the technological capabilities they have grown accustomed to.” And it doesn’t stop there. This new generation of home buyers is “rewriting the rules to home ownership and reinterpreting traditional norms to fit their values,” says Better Homes & Gardens Real Estate.

These aren’t your standard-issue young home buyers from 30 or

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Buoyed by rising home prices throughout much of the nation, both single-family and multifamily housing starts are expected to post double-digit gains over last year in 2013. However, headwinds continue to hold back even stronger growth as the housing recovery evolves, according to economists at NAHB’s Spring 2013 Construction Forecast Conference Webinar.

“The broadening housing expansion is evidenced by the NAHB/First American Improving Markets Index, which now lists 273 metros areas out of a universe of 361, or three-quarters of the metropolitan areas in the U.S.,” said NAHB Chief Economist David Crowe.

The recent surge is almost all due to improvements in house prices across a broader number of markets, he added. Home price increases became more solid and

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Americans' dream of owning a home is alive and well, evidenced by the fact that 56 percent of Americans own a home and plan to continue to do so, or don't own a home but plan on buying one in the next 10 years (25 percent), according to a survey by polling company Gallup. Eleven percent of Americans don't own a home and have no plans to buy one, and 3 percent own a home but plan on selling it and renting in the next 10 years.

A number of additional factors could affect the future trajectory of homeownership in the U.S. There will be a continuing stream of young people entering the 18 and older segment of the population going forward, and it is possible that they will have a different attitude toward homeownership than those who came before them. Also,

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Found this press release for our high school district.


NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--May 22, 2013--
Fitch Ratings has affirmed the following ratings for Fullerton Joint Union High School District (the district):

--$1.7 million series 2002A general obligation (GO) bonds at 'AA+';

--$22.3 million certificates of participation (COPs) at 'AA';

The Rating Outlook is revised to Stable from Negative.


The GO bonds are secured by an unlimited ad valorem tax on all taxable property within the district.

The district has pledged to include all lease payments for the COPs in its annual budgets and to make lease payments from all sources of available funds. The district also pledges to maintain 24 months rental interruption insurance and maintains a cash-funded

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Though residential construction “is keeping the economy on an expansionary path,” Moody’s Analytics suggests in its latest “ResiLandscape” report that homebuilders are having a tough time shouldering the burden of growth on their own.

In its analysis, Moody’s echoed two of the most common concerns voiced by builders today: lack of labor and rising building costs.

“Homebuilders are finding it difficult to rebuild the industry and, in particular, to find skilled labor,” wrote Celia Chen, senior director of economic research at Moody’s. “The Great Recession decimated the homebuilding industry, with a 42 percent decline in residential construction jobs from peak to trough, a loss of 1.4 million jobs. To date, only 8 percent of these jobs have come

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 May 14, 2013®, the leader in online real estate operated by Move, Inc. (NASDAQ: MOVE), released its April data showing that the U.S. housing market is on its way to a broad-based recovery, an accelerated trend since March. The home buying season shifted into high gear last month as inventory and home list prices on® increased by 4.12 percent and 2.63 percent, month over month, respectively. As of April, homes are on the market nationwide approximately 81 days—a decrease of nearly 11 percent since April 2012—highlighting that while new homes are entering the market they are not available for long.

"Due to increased demand for homes and more confidence in the job market – we are beginning to see more and more buyers entering the

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