Last week mortgage rates again hit all time historic lows. There were also signs of an improvement in housing and the economy as a whole based on some of the Economic data that was released. The markets have opened up this week with mortgage rates close to the all time historic lows of last week.

Summary of Last Week’s Positive Economic News: 

  • Single Family Housing Starts: Up 4.4% over November
  • Existing Home Sales: Rose 5.0%, rising for third consecutive month
  • Jobs: Jobless claims hit lowest level since April 2008

The Week Ahead: FOMC Meeting and GDP

The two items with the most potential to move mortgage rates are the FOMC (Federal Open Market Committee) press conference on Wednesday and the release of GDP data on Friday.

The tone and remarks coming from the FOMC can help investors understand where the FOMC’s position on where the economy is, where they believe it is going and what type of actions, if any, they expect to be taking in the future. The market can turn on a dime for better or worse on nothing more than one unexpected statement from Fed Chairman Bernanke or other FOMC members. The market will be watching the FOMC and GDP numbers closely.

Economic Calendar for Week of January 23, 2012

  • Monday – none
  • Tuesday – none
  • Wednesday – Petroleum Status Report, FOMC Press Conference
  • Thursday – Durable Goods Orders, Jobless Claims, New Home Sales
  • Friday – GDP, Consumer Sentiment