Kevin Wallace's (kevincwallace) Blog

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Mortgage and Lending - Merrimack Mortgage Company
RECENT BLOG POSTS
The market optimism that had pushed mortgage rates lower since late-March reversed last week on ever-rising oil prices and a bleak outlook from the Federal Reserve. When gas prices reached $3.93 Friday, it re-ignited inflation concerns and inflation, you'll remember, is the enemy of mortgage rate...
05/27/2008
High oil prices are derailing the mortgage market this week, taking an almost-vertical path higher. Since mid-February, prices are up by 50 percent. Rising oil prices can be a threat the U.S. economy because with every extra dollar that Americans pay to energy companies, there is less money avail...
05/23/2008
Four times annually, the Federal Reserve surveys 84 different banks about general banking conditions. One of the survey questions asks about current mortgage lending standards and whether they are loosening or tightening. The chart at right is from the April 2008 survey and it illustrates what w...
05/21/2008
Yesterday, several mortgage lenders issued three separate "rate sheets" in response to the changing mortgage market. It was the fourth time in the last 6 trading days that mortgage lenders issued multiple rate sheets in a day, and continued the trend that started in mid-January. The yo-yo nature ...
05/20/2008
Optimism ruled the markets last week -- optimism about employment, optimism about housing, and optimism about inflation. Mortgage rates edged lower overall. Despite the positive sentiment from Wall Street, consumer confidence in the economy reached a 28-year low. This is a normal divergence becau...
05/19/2008
It's not often that a mainstream media publication taunts renters into buying homes, but that's exactly what Smart Money does in its latest issue. The Smart Money Web site "lead-in" reads 5 (Lame) Excuses for Not Buying a Home. That's a forceful title! It's unfortunate that renters could feel ant...
05/16/2008
When real estate news is reported on television or in the papers, it's usually told as a national story. Unfortunately, stories like these aren't helpful for everyday Americans because real estate is not a national market. Real estate is local. The graph above was used by Fed Chairman Ben Bernan...
05/15/2008
With little economic news to influence trading and despite a late-Friday afternoon spike, mortgage rates edged lower last week. Two weeks ago, when it lowered the Fed Funds Rate by a quarter-percent, the Federal Reserve noted two things: The economy was stabilizing High energy costs threatened in...
05/12/2008
The ubiquity of "free" credit reporting services like FreeCreditReport.com, TrueCredit.com, and AnnualCreditReport.com have helped breed a new generation of credit-aware Americans. Because credit ratings have more importance to everyday life than in years past, this is a welcome development. For...
05/06/2008
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the U.S. economy shed 20,000 jobs in April 2008. The labor force now counts at 146 million people as employed. Normally, a loss of jobs would foretell economic weakness and would be a good thing for mortgage rate shoppers. Today, though, traders had be...
05/02/2008
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Kevin Wallace

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