Economic update for the week ending July, 9, 2016

Employers add 287,000 new jobs in June – The Labor Department reported that U.S. employers added 287,000 net new jobs in June, easing fears of that job growth was faltering, after 3 months of lackluster growth. June marked the largest number of new jobs created since October 2015. The unemployment rate increased from 4.7% in May to 4.9% in June, as more workers entered the workforce. Another positive in the report was that wage growth, which has shown signs of improvement after many years of stagnation, was up 2.6% from one year ago. 

Stocks up again this week – S&P and DOW approach record highs – Stocks surged yesterday following the release of a surprisingly strong jobs report. Over the past few months job gains have been very disappointing, suggesting that job growth was faltering. This report, the strongest gains since last October, eased some fears. Stocks have made up all their loses and more following the Brexit vote over the last two weeks. The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed the week at 18,146.75. up from 17,949.37 last Friday. The S&P 500 closed the week at 2,129.90 up from 2,102.95 last week. The NASDAQ closed the week at 4,956.76, up from last week’s close of 4,862.57.

Historically low Bond yields drop again this week – The 10 year U.S. Treasury bond yield closed the week at 1.37%, down from 1.46% last Friday. The 30-year U.S. Treasury bond closed at 2.11%, down slightly from 2.24% last week. Mortgage rates follow bond yields so this is great news for loan rates.

Mortgage rates at historic low levels – Mortgage rates fell again this week. The Freddie Mac Primary Mortgage Survey released on July 7, 2016 showed that average mortgage rates from lenders surveyed for the most popular mortgage products were as follows: The 30-year fixed rate average was 3.41%. The 15-year fixed average rate was 2.74%. The 5/1 ARM average rate was 2.68%. chief economist predicts best summer for the housing market in a decade – Jonathan Smoke, chief economist for reported that following the strongest spring in 10 years, the residential real estate market should continue to see growth throughout the summer despite some growing economic headwinds. Through May, year to date home sales (that’s non-adjusted existing and new-home sales combined) are up 6 percent, over the last year, which is the best year since 2007, according to Smoke’s calculations using the NAR and Commerce Department data. 

Have a great weekend!