Mortgage rates slipped slightly last week, even as more signs of economic recovery appeared.
The highly-regarded ISM Manufacturing Index moved upward to 52.9, on expectations that it would only
reach 50.2. Any reading that is above 50 indicates that manufacturing is expanding in the US. Its
sister index, the ISM Non-Manufacturing, or Services Index, also climbed, but only to 48.4. Not all of
the data was good news last week, as the unemployment rate climbed unexpectedly to 9.7%.
However, financial markets did not react all that strongly to the news, as most analysts are anticipating
that the unemployment rate will top 10% before this recession has run its course.
News also came outthis week that more top economic forecasters are predicting that the US economy will begin growing in the current quarter, with some estimates for 3rd quarter GDP as high as 3.5%.This week has only a few economic data releases to influence rates. The current slightly downward
trend in mortgage rates is likely to last through the week, and may even last for a few more weeks.