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Market Minute - November 11, 2019

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Housing/Real Estate Market 

LA rents hold steady in November: Rents in Los Angeles declined 0.1% over the past month but grew at a steady pace of 0.4% when compared to the same time last year. The current median rent stands at $1,370 for a one-bedroom apartment and $1,760 for a two-bedroom.

Macro Economy

Factory orders down two consecutive months: U.S. factory orders fell an overall 0.6% in September. Comprising a drop in orders for durable goods, which fell a revised 1.2%, meanwhile nondurable goods orders rose a scant 0.1% in the same month amidst rising economic uncertainty.

U.S. trade deficit dropped to 5-month low: The nation’s trade deficit fell 4.7% from a revised $55 billion in August to $52.5 billion in September. Despite the decline, the nation’s deficit is still on track to post an even larger trade gap in 2019 than it did in 2018.

ISM Non-manufacturing index climbs to 54.7% from 52.6%: The service side of the U.S. economy rebounded in October after tapering off the month prior to a 3-year low. The service index is currently down 6 points from last year’s postrecession peak, but its growth has been enough to insulate the U.S. economy from the broader global economic slowdown.

Job openings fell for 4th consecutive month: The U.S. economy added fewer jobs in September as openings slipped for the 4th month in a row to 7.02 million from 7.3. Opening have been declining as companies are cutting back on hiring, as a result of a slower growth economy nationally as well as abroad.

U.S. productivity fell in Q3 for the first time since 2015: American workers were less productive in Q3 for the first time in almost 4 years, reflecting a cutback in production as the U.S. economy slowed toward the end of summer. Productivity declined at a 0.3% annual rate from July to September and without more business investment, it might just backslide further.

Consumer credit grew at an annual growth rate of 2.8%, the slowest rate in 15 months: Consumers pulled back on credit-card use for the second straight month, even as overall credit expanded. This marks the slowest pace since June 2018.

Weekly jobless claims fell to 1-month low: The number of people who applied for unemployment benefits fell to 211,000 clinging near its 50-year low even as economy slows.    

Real Estate Finance

Mortgage rates fall back: The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage (FRM) decreased from 3.78% the week prior to 3.69% the first week in November. The FRM is more than a 125 basis points lower than the average of 4.94% recorded a year ago.

Mortgage applications dip from a week earlier: Mortgage applications decrease 0.1% from the week prior even as mortgage rates fell back. The refinance index increased 2% from the week prior and jumped to 144% higher than a year ago. New purchase applications decreased on a weekly basis by 3% but remained 7% higher than last year. With rates substantially lower than what it was at the end of 2018, we should continue to see solid year-over-year gains in purchase applications as well as refinance in the upcoming weeks.

Past Market Minutes
November 4, 2019 - Pending home sales rise, unemployment rate rises, mortgage rates inch up
October 28, 2019 - Dip in national home sales, jobless claims fall, mortgage rates rise to highest point in 12 weeks
October 21, 2019 - Low rates boost up home sales, builders are optimistic and California sees solid job growth
October 07,2019 - Housing market expected to continue growing albeit at lower pace following suit to the macro economy

For previous weeks visit our archive folder.

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