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Mark Hemingway

Mortgage Market Update for March 23rd

Tuesday, March 24, 2020 - Article by: Mark Hemingway - Security Financial Services, LLC - Message

This morning the Federal Reserve announced it is now committed to "UNLIMITED Quantitative Easing" as it will purchase unlimited amounts of Treasury and Mortgage-Backed Securities, and purchase corporate and municipal debt for the first time, in a historic effort to battle the economic fallout and to restore the financial markets that have suffered due to the coronavirus. The Fed statement read, "The Federal Reserve is committed to use its full range of tools to support the U.S. economy in this challenging time and thereby promote its maximum employment and price stability goals." The Fed had originally announced a total of "at least" $700 billion.

The Mortgage Banker Association (MBA) reports that mortgage applications to purchase new homes fell 1% month over month from January to February. On a year over year basis, applications were up 26%. The MBA is predicting that New Home Sales to have increased 8% annually in February when the report is released this week on Tuesday. Joel Kan, MBA's Associate Vice President of Economic and Industry Forecasting. "Looking ahead, there is significant uncertainty regarding how the coronavirus epidemic will impact the housing market, and some of January's record-level activity could have been attributed to the warmer winter weather, lower mortgage rates, and the tight inventory of existing homes on the market - especially in lower price tiers."

Coronavirus update: Here in the U.S., there are 35,075 cases, that includes 1,529 new cases with 458 total deaths. There are 351,733 cases of the virus reported worldwide, 15,372 deaths while 100,605 having recovered from the virus. Italy continues to be on total lock down. CDC risk assessment: The immediate risk of being exposed to this virus is still low for most Americans, but as the outbreak expands, that risk will increase. Cases of COVID-19 and instances of community spread are being reported in a growing number of states.

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