Morning Report: Existing home sales fall

Vital Statistics:

 LastChange
S&P futures3,925 10.50
Oil (WTI)80.750.42
10 year government bond yield 3.46%
30 year fixed rate mortgage 6.10%

Stocks are higher this morning on no real news. Bonds and MBS are down.

Jamie Dimon sees the Fed rising rates above 5% “I actually think rates are probably going to go higher than 5% … because I think there’s a lot of underlying inflation, which won’t go away so quick,” Dimon said Thursday on CNBC’s “Squawk Box” from the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. Much of this is due to oil and China “We’ve had the benefit of China’s slowing down, the benefit of oil prices dropping a little bit,” Dimon said. “I think oil gas prices probably go up the next 10 years … China isn’t going to be deflationary anymore.”

Existing home sales fell 1.5% MOM and 34% YOY to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 4.02 million in December. “December was another difficult month for buyers, who continue to face limited inventory and high mortgage rates,” said NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun. “However, expect sales to pick up again soon since mortgage rates have markedly declined after peaking late last year.”

The median existing home price rose 2.3% YOY to $366,900. That sound to me like all of the activity is at the lower price points. Total housing inventory for sale was 970,000 units. Unsold inventory is a 2.9 month supply, which is historically super-low. All-cash buyers were 28% of sales. First-time homebuyers represented 31% of all sales, which was an improvement from 28% Properties remained on market for 28 days.

Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have updated their LLPA matrices. These will go into effect in May 2023. The main change is that Fannie and Freddie reduced the penalties for low credit and high LTV. “These changes to upfront fees will strengthen the safety and soundness of the Enterprises by enhancing their ability to improve their capital position over time,” said Director Sandra L. Thompson. “By locking in the upfront fee eliminations announced last October, FHFA is taking another step to ensure that the Enterprises advance their mission of facilitating equitable and sustainable access to homeownership.”​​

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