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Tuesday’s bond market has opened well in positive territory following the release of September’s employment data. The stock markets are also showing gains despite that same economic data. The Dow is currently up 58 points while the Nasdaq has gained 19 points. The bond market is currently up 20/32, which should improve this morning’s mortgage rates by approximately .250 – .375 of a discount point.
This morning’s big news was September’s Employment report that revealed the unemployment rate slipped to 7.2% and that 148,000 new jobs were added to the economy during the month while average earnings rose 0.1%. The unemployment rate was slightly lower than forecasts but the good news came in the smaller than expected payroll number. Analysts were expecting to see 183,000 jobs and a 7.3% unemployment rate.
Technically speaking, the data gave us mixed readings. However, the payroll number draws more attention so the 35,000 job variance from forecasts makes the news favorable for the bond market and mortgage rates. The government shutdown has not distorted these numbers because they were compiled before the October 1 shutdown date. While 148,000 new jobs does indicate the employment sector was stronger than it was in August, it is still a far slower rate of growth than is believed to be needed to push the unemployment rate down to a level the Fed is comfortable with. Slower payroll growth should equate to the unemployment rate declining at a very slow rate, which should push back the date the Fed will start tapering their current bond-buying program.
Tomorrow doesn’t have anything of relevance scheduled that is likely to influence mortgage rates, so we can expect this afternoon’s trading to possibly impact tomorrow’s early mortgage pricing. Thursday has a couple minor pieces of data now scheduled for release, but neither is considered to be market movers.