Housing Prices Firm, Manufacturing Slows

Rates continue holding record lows as investors seek safety in U.S. mortgage bonds while the European crisis proliferates. Rates drop (or stay low) when mortgage bonds rally (or hold lows).

Here’s a rundown of today’s U.S. fundamentals…

FHFA House Price Index (May 2012)
– Month/Month change +0.8%
– Year/Year change  +3.7%

– The sky is no longer falling.  Stabilization of home values is important if we are to get homebuilding going again. 

Fed District Report (for July 2012)
– Richmond Fed Manufacturing Index -17 
– The manufacturing indices have been weak
– This could be result of having had too much inventory or the leading edge of slower GDP growth. 

Chain Store Sales (week ended 7/21/2012)
– ICSC-Goldman Store Sales, week/week +1.0%
– ICSC-Goldman Store Sales, year/year +3.3%

– Redbook Store Sales Year/Year +1.3%. Previous was +1.7%.