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The Mortgage Bankers Association reported today that its Market Composite Index, a measure of total loan application volume, rose by 1.3% in the latest week. It was the first positive reading in four weeks. The refinance index increased by 2% while the purchase index declined by 0.4%.
Over in housing news, CoreLogic released its monthly Home Price Index yesterday showing that prices on a year-over-year basis rose by 12.4% in the month ended in July. It was the 17th consecutive month of year-over-year home price gains. In addition, there was a 1.8% increase from June to July. However, prices are still nearly 18% below their peak levels set back in April of 2006. Looking ahead, CoreLogic sees a 12.3% increase from August 2012 to August 2013.
The government jobs report will be released this coming Friday morning at 8:30am ET and the markets and members of the Federal Reserve eagerly await the numbers. It is expected that employers added 177,000 new jobs in August, above the 162,000 that were created in July. The Federal Reserve will closely scrutinize the numbers for continued signs of a labor market recovery to base its decision as to whether or not to begin tapering the current Bond purchase program in September, or hold off until the end of the year or early in 2014.