Tuesday’s bond market has opened in positive territory with stocks in negative ground and today’s only economic data showing somewhat favorable results. The major stock indexes are showing relatively minor losses with the Dow down 41 points and the Nasdaq down 28 points. The bond market is currently up 8/32 (2.31%), which will likely improve this morning’s mortgage rates by approximately .125 of a discount.
The Commerce Department announced late this morning that September’s Factory Orders fell 0.6%. This was close to forecasts of a 0.5% decline in new orders, indicating manufacturing sector weakness. However it wasn’t enough of a variance to draw much attention in this morning’s trading or affect today’s mortgage rates.
Tomorrow also has only one report that is likely to affect mortgage rates. That would be the ADP Employment report at 8:15 AM ET. It has the potential to cause some movement in the markets if it shows much stronger or weaker numbers than expected. This report tracks changes in private-sector jobs of ADP’s clients that use them for payroll processing. While it does draw attention, it is my opinion that it is overrated and is not a true reflection of the broader employment picture. It also is not accurate in predicting results of the monthly government report that follows a couple days later. Still, because we have seen reaction to the report recently, we should be watching it. Analysts are expecting it to show that 220,000 new payrolls were added. The lower the number of jobs, the better the news it is for mortgage rates.
I would not be surprised to see the markets get pretty active as the week progresses. This is not just due to the economic data set for release tomorrow and Thursday, but more of a situation where traders are preparing for Friday’s extremely important Employment report. I think there is room for some improvement in bonds and rates the next day or so, although it is always risky to float a rate going into this particular report because it is certainly a market mover. Accordingly, I am holding the current recommendations for the time being.