Treasury Bond Yields lower this week:The 10-year Treasury bond closed the week yielding 3.08%, down from 3.20% last week. The 30-year Treasury bond yield ended the week at 3.32%, down from 3.38% last week. We watch treasury bond yields because mortgage rates follow bond yields.
Mortgage rates almost unchanged this week:The October 25, 2018 Freddie Mac Primary Mortgage Survey reported that the 30-year fixed mortgage rate average was 4.86%, almost unchanged from 4.85% last week. The 15-year fixed was 4.29%, slightly up from 4.26% last week. The 5-year ARM was 4.14%, up from 4.10% last week.
GDP up 3.5% in third quarter:The U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis announced that the first reading of the nation’s gross domestic product (GDP) rose by 3.5% in the third quarter of 2018. That beat expectations of a 3.4% rise, but was well below the 4.2% increase registered in the second quarter of 2018. The report also said that The PCE price index, a key indicator of inflation, rose at a 1.6% annual rate in the quarter. That was well below the 2.2% annual increase analysts forecasted. Consumer spending, which accounts for about two thirds of the U.S. economy, grew by 4% in the third quarter. That marked the largest increase since the fourth quarter of 2014.
September Nationwide Existing Home Sales:Data released this week from The National Association of Realtors showed that total existing home sales fell again in September. The number of existing homes sold in September fell 3.4% from August, and are down 4.1% from one year ago. The median price paid for a home in the U.S. was up 4.2% from last September. That marked the 79th straight month of year over increases. The unsold inventory index is at a 4.4 month supply, up slightly from a 4.2 month supply one year ago.
September California Existing Home Sales:The California Association of Realtors reported that existing single family home sales totaled 382,550 in September on a seasonally adjusted annualized rate. That was down 4.3% from August and down a staggering 12.4% from last September, when sales totaled 436,920 on a seasonally adjusted annualized rate. The median price paid for a home in California was $587,850, up 4.2% from September 2017. On a more regional level, the median price increased 4.7% in Los Angeles County, 10.6% in Ventura County, and 3.3% in Orange County from one year ago. Inventory levels continued to rise after hitting historic lows in 2017. The unsold inventory index in California stood at a 4.2 month supply in September, up from a 3.3 month supply in September 2017. Inventory levels have now increased for 6 straight months and are up 20.4% from one year ago. Listings are at the highest level in 31 months. Los Angeles County has a 4.4 month supply, up from a 3.1 month supply last September. Orange County has a 4.3 month supply, up from 3.1 months last September. Ventura County had a 6.3 month supply of homes, up from a 4.7 month supply one year ago.