Year-over-year, big bank approval rates for small business loans have increased by more than 62 percent, from the 10.9 percent approval rate in August 2012. But the surest bet for a small-biz loan approval is still with smaller banks.
Builders are calling it a “pause” in the housing recovery, but it’s hard to even partially dismiss a plunge of 13.4 percent in newly built, single-family homes in July as reported by HUD and the U.S. Census Bureau on Friday.
The refinance component of the index from the Mortgage Bankers Association has dropped 62 percent since its recent peak during the week of May 3 — fallout from rising interest rates in anticipation of a Federal Reserve pullback in bond purchases.
But how does the Federal Reserve’s stimulus program, the much-debated massive bond purchases, stack up against the central bank’s “forward guidance” on keeping interest rates as low as possible? Guidance on interest rates apparently wins out.
A federal judge ruled Wednesday that merchants were overcharged under a debit card “swipe fee” cap improperly set by the Federal Reserve.
After a brief pullback last week, the 30-year fixed rate mortgage moved higher this week to 4.51 percent on more speculation that the Federal Reserve will reduce future bond purchases.
Bottom line: Even if the central bank begins pulling back its asset purchases by year’s end, it will still persist in providing a stimulus plan that will hold interest rates at low levels, while keeping an eye on the unemployment rate and inflation.
The positive June jobs report released Friday fits firmly into the scenario brewing with the Federal Reserve: continued growth in the economy will likely lead to the dialing back of the central bank’s purchases of bonds and mortgage securities.
Average fixed mortgage rates this week reversed some after last week’s big jump to a two-year high, Freddie Mac reported Wednesday ahead of the Fourth of July holiday.
U.S. Treasuries are getting hammered in a market sell-off from anticipation of the Federal Reserve’s tapering of its stimulus program — and consumers in the market for mortgages or other loan products need to be wary.