Thursday’s bond market has opened up slightly in what will likely be a pretty quiet day. The stock markets are mixed with the Dow down 41 points and the Nasdaq up 1 point. The bond market is currently up 2/32 (2.25%), which should improve this morning’s mortgage rates slightly from yesterday’s morning pricing.
Last week’s unemployment figures were posted early this morning, showing that 267,000 new claims for benefits were filed last week. This was a decline from the previous week’s revised total of 272,000 initial claims. Analysts were expecting to see 271,000 claims, meaning the employment sector appears to have strengthened slightly last week. That makes the data negative for bonds and mortgage rates but since this is only a weekly update, it has had a minimal impact on today’s trading.
We have early closings today ahead of tomorrow’s Christmas Day holiday. Stocks will close at 1:00 PM ET today while bonds will close at 2:00 PM ET. All the markets will be closed tomorrow and will reopen Monday morning for regular trading hours. These holidays sometimes cause a little additional volatility as investors look to protect themselves over the long weekend and most firms are working on a skeleton staff. We should see very thin or light trading as many traders will be home already. Therefore, we shouldn’t be too concerned about any bond losses or excited about gains that may come today.
We would like to take this opportunity to wish you and yours a wonderful and safe holiday!