Jobs and Homes

There were only 1.4 million foreclosure filings in 2013, down 26% from 2012, according to
RealtyTrac.  This is the lowest number since the housing crisis began in
2007.

In the much-watched labor market, 2000 fewer folks filed for their first
unemployment check last week than the week previous. The Labor department also
reported that the Consumer Price Index rose 0.3% in December.  This is the
biggest gain since last summer, and is due in part to fluctuations
in the price of fuel and other energy sources.  The year over
year CPI index remains at 1.7%, under the Fed’s target rate of 2.0%. This news
a good indication that the economy is picking up, but not so fast that interest
rates will skyrocket in the near future.

FHA drops their rates today to 3.75%, while 4.5% is still the going rate
for Conventional 30 year loans. Fifteen year rates are in the 3.25-3.5% range (APR will be higher,
depending on the loan and down payment amounts, and amortization term–as closing costs and
the presence of mortgage insurance affect each loan differently.)

I would like to think that we can hold this level for a week or
so, allowing Fannie and Freddie to drop back down a smidgen.