As we head into Memorial Day weekend, we have a lot to be thankful for.  The housing market is showing some strong results!  If you’re wondering what’s going on in all the financial and real estate markets, Rodeo Realty President Syd Leibovitch has your answers.

Stocks mostly unchanged this week –  The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed the week at 18,232.02, almost unchanged from 18,272.56 last week. The Nasdaq closed at 5,089.39,  up slightly from 5,048.29 last Friday. The S&P 500 closed at 2,126.06, also about the same as last Friday’s close of 2,122.73.

Bond yields were volatile  again this week   –  The 10 year U.S. Treasury Bond closed the week at a 2.21% yield, upfrom 2.14%  last week.  The 30 year U.S. Treasury Bond closed Friday yielding 2.99%, slightly up from 2.93%  last Friday. Yields dropped Thursday after minutes from the last meeting of The Federal Reserve were released which ruled out a rate hike at the June Fed meeting. On Wednesday the 10 year closed at 2.26% and the 30 year closed at 3.06%. Fortunately they dropped on Thursday. Mortgage rates usually follow treasury bond rate trends.

Mortgage Rates  –  The 30 year fixed rate ended the week around 4.00% for loans up to $417,000, and around 4.25% for loans over $417,000.  The 15 year fixed rate loans are about 3.25% for loans up to $417,000, and around 3.50% for loans over $417,000. The 5 Year-ARM rates are around 3.00%.  1 Year-ARM mortgages are around 2.50%.  Last week’s Freddie Mac Primary Mortgage Survey showed rates as follows: 30 year fixed rates at 3.84%. 15 year fixed at 3.05%. 5/1 YR ARM at 2.88% and 1 YR ARM at 2.51%.

Inflation report shows prices rising – The labor Department said on Friday that its Consumer Price Index (CPI) rose 0.1% last month. The core inflation figure which discounts food and energy costs were up 0.3%, its largest gain since January 2013. Experts still feel that this is really not a number that would show a strong economy.

Housing Starts rise 20% in April – The Commerce Department reported Tuesday that privately owned housing starts increased in April 20.2% from March. The level was the highest since November 2007. Building permits which is a good guage of future construction also increased 10.1% from March to the highest level since June 2008.

So Cal home prices continue to rise  Home inventory level dropping – CoreLogic / DataQuick released its Southern California Home Resale Activity Report for April which showed that the median price in their six county Los Angeles metropolitan area climbed 6.2% from last April. The report also showed that the number of sales in the six county areaincreased 8.5% from last April. One cause for concern in the report was that there is only a 3.6 month supply of homes. This could cause the number of sales to drop in coming months, and lead to higher prices.

Nationwide home prices up – The National Association of Realtors reported that the median price paid for a home in the U.S. in April rose 8.9% compared to one year ago. April marked the 38th consecutive month of year over year home price gains. On the negative side the number of sales dropped 3.3%. This is a sign that tighter home inventory levels are resulting in fewer sales.

California’s housing market shows strong results – The California Association of Realtors reported that sales of existing homes in California rose in April. The number of homes sold in California rose 9.2% from March. Year over year the number of sales were 9.3% higher than last April. It was the largest year over year sales gain since May 2012. The median price paid for a home in California was up 2.8% from March and 7.4% from last April. Home inventory levels continued to drop. There was only a 3.5 month supply of homes for sale in April, compared a 3.8 month supply in March.

California’s Jobless rate falls to 6.3% –  The California Employment Development Department reported that California employers added 28,500 non-farm payroll jobs in April. Although this was lower than the 40,500 jobs added in March unemployment reached its lowest level in April since 2008.

Have a great Memorial Day Weekend!

If you’d like more information on the San Fernando Valley or Los Angeles, or to have help looking for your next home, please feel free to reach out! I’m happy to help, no obligation.

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