MMG WEEKLY – WHAT ARE THEY SAYING THIS WEEK?

MMG WeeklyForecast for the Week

This week’s economic calendar starts off slow, but features several key items later in the week.

  • Economic reports begin on Wednesday with Existing Home Sales for April, followed by New Home Sales on Thursday.
  • Weekly Initial Jobless Claims will also be reported as usual on Thursday.
  • Ending the week on Friday, Durable Goods Orders for April will be released. This report measures orders for goods used for an extended period of time.

In other important news to note this week: The minutes from the latest Federal Open Market Committee meeting will be released on Wednesday and these always have the potential to move the markets. Also, the Bond market will close early on Friday, at 2:00 pm ET, in advance of the Memorial Day holiday. The Stock market will be open for a full session on Friday.

Remember: Weak economic news normally causes money to flow out of Stocks and into Bonds, helping Bonds and home loan rates improve, while strong economic news normally has the opposite result. The chart below shows Mortgage Backed Securities (MBS), which are the type of Bond that home loan rates are based on.

When you see these Bond prices moving higher, it means home loan rates are improving — and when they are moving lower, home loan rates are getting worse.

To go one step further — a red “candle” means that MBS worsened during the day, while a green “candle” means MBS improved during the day. Depending on how dramatic the changes were on any given day, this can cause rate changes throughout the day, as well as on the rate sheets we start with each morning.

As you can see in the chart below, it was a volatile week in the markets, but Bonds and home loan rates remain near record best levels. I will continue to monitor their movement closely.

Chart: Fannie Mae 3.0% Mortgage Bond (Friday May 17, 2013)

Japanese Candlestick Chart

The Mortgage Market Guide View…

Productivity Points: How to Boost Office Efficiency

“Control leads to compliance; autonomy leads to engagement.” Daniel H. Pink, Drive, 2011

Small business owners typically work more hours than their corporate counterparts–yet on average report more satisfaction at work. The reason is simple: they have more control over their day.
In the same vein, it’s important to make sure the people on your team have a certain amount of autonomy and choice in their day. You will see stronger internal relationships, better productivity and a team that’s excited to come to work each day.

Here are some tips to keep in mind:

  • Do your best not to micromanage. Set your expectations and allow direct reports to work it out for themselves–unless they ask for your help, of course!
  • Give frequent feedback. Busy managers are, well, busy. But don’t wait until performance reviews to give your feedback. Taking a few seconds to help can sometimes save hours of anxiety for someone else.
  • If your office is flexible, let team members set their own hours. (You may be surprised at how much more gets done!)
  • Physical discomfort can create feelings of helplessness–make sure your workplace is comfortable and employees have some say about their preferred seating. Consider ergonomic alternatives like stability balls for seating.
  • Even running out of sticky notes too often can create unnecessary tension, so keep a supply list that anyone can add to and make sure someone fills it each week.

Please feel free to pass these tips along to any clients and colleagues who may benefit!

Economic Calendar for the Week of May 20 – May 24

Date
ET
Economic Report
For
Estimate
Actual
Prior
Impact
Wed. May 22
10:00
Existing Home Sales
Apr
NA
4.92M
Moderate
Wed. May 22
02:00
FOMC Minutes
5/1
HIGH
Thu. May 23
08:30
Jobless Claims (Initial)
5/18
NA
NA
Moderate
Thu. May 23
10:00
New Home Sales
Apr
NA
417K
Moderate
Fri. May 24
08:30
Durable Goods Orders
Apr
NA
-5.8%
Moderate

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