August new jobs disappoint – The Labor Department reported that The U.S. Economy added 157,000 non-farm jobs in August. Economists had expected a gain of 180,000 new jobs. The unemployment rate grew to 4.4% from 4.3% in July. Wage growth also stalled growing just .1% over July and up just 2.5% from last August.
Stocks drop this week – Stock markets dropped this week following a disappointing August 2017 jobs report, and concerns about the cost of Hurricane Harvey and Hurricane Irma frightened investors. Investors were calmed by a deal to extend the debt ceiling and avoid a government shutdown for three months. The Dow Jones Industrial Average ended the week at 21,797.79, down from 21,978.56 last week. The S&P 500 closed the week at 2,461.43, down from its close last week of 2,476.55. The NASDAQ closed the week at 6,360.19, down from last week’s close of 6,435.33.
Bond yields lower this week – Bond yields hit the lowest levels in over a year – The 10-year Treasury bond closed the week at 2.06%, down from 2.16% last week. The 30-year treasury yield ended the week at 2.67%, down from 2.76% last week. Mortgage rates follow treasury bond yields so we watch bond yields carefully.
Mortgage Rates near 18 month low – The September 7, 2017 Freddie Mac Primary Mortgage Survey reported that the 30-year fixed mortgage rate average was 3.78%, down from 3.82% last week. The 15-year fixed was 3.08%, down from 3.12% last week. The 5-year ARM was 3.15%, almost unchanged from 3.14% last week. Rates at the end of the week were slightly lower.