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Bob Carey
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  US Economy and Credit Markets Ended July 17, 2020
Posted Under: Weekly Market Commentary

 
Last week witnessed new record low yields – in mortgages. According to Freddie Mac, the average rate on a 30-year fixed mortgage fell to 2.98% as mortgage rates continue to plumb new lows amid expansive Federal Reserve policy. Concurrently, next week's existing home sales report is expected to climb but remains substantially off its pre-COVID pace. Treasury's traded in a relatively narrow band last week amid light volumes and prices sagged into the weekend. Last week's economic news highlights included US consumer prices popping up the most since 2012, with gas prices accounting for over half of the 0.6% month-over-month gain. If the COVID plagued second quarter of 2020 has felt miserable; Wednesday's Industrial Production report corroborated the feeling reporting Q2 down at a 42.6% annualized rate! Importantly, the report showed a 5.4% increase in June and an increase in capacity utilization. Thursday's June retail sales report saw a 7.5% lift led by a surge in clothing & accessory stores, autos, and restaurants & bars. This follows May's 18.2% gain. Wrapping up last week's economic news was June housing starts which recorded a 17.3% rise. Major economic reports (related consensus forecasts, prior data) for the upcoming week include Wednesday: July 17 MBA Mortgage Applications (N/A, 5.1%) and June Existing Home Sales (4.8M, 3.91M); Thursday: July 18 Initial Jobless Claims (1,280k, 1,300k) and June Leading Index (2.1%, 2.8%); Friday: July Preliminary Markit US Manufacturing PMI (51.9, 49.8) and June New Home Sales (700K, 676K).
Posted on Monday, July 20, 2020 @ 8:05 AM • Post Link Share: 
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These posts were prepared by First Trust Advisors L.P., and reflect the current opinion of the authors. They are based upon sources and data believed to be accurate and reliable. Opinions and forward looking statements expressed are subject to change without notice. This information does not constitute a solicitation or an offer to buy or sell any security.
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