Rate Update March 11, 2010

Mortgage rates are mostly unchanged this morning.

The bond market is bracing for today’s $13 billion 30-yr bond auction by the US Treasury.  Both the 3-yr and 10-yr auctions drew strong demand earlier in the week but the longer duration of this issue has analysts concerned that there won’t be sufficient demand.  If their trepidation comes to fruition we may see mortgage rates pressured higher as well.

In other news this morning’s weekly jobless claims number declined.  On the surface this is good news (less people are filing for unemployment benefits) but analysts aren’t satisfied because the amount of people filing jobless claims declined by less than expected.  Based on last week’s jobs report it seems as though lay-offs are declining but employers have not yet begun to hire workers back.

From a technical standpoint mortgage-backed bonds (MBS’s) are trading up against technical support.  Should trading drop below current levels I wouldn’t be surprised to see rates get pushed back above 5.00% (5.12%APR).

Current outlook: locking bias