Mortgage interest rates are at their highest level since 2014

Mortgage interest rates are at their highest level since 2014 with the average rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages at 4.46%. Total mortgage application volume rose 3.1% last week from the previous week, but remains 12% lower than a year ago. Refinance volume was 4% higher this week, but is 27% lower than last year. Adjustable-rate mortgages make up an increased 8.2% of all applications, the highest level since October 2014. (Mortgage Bankers Association)

Consumer prices rose 0.1% in February. Consumer prices have risen 2.7% over the past year. Leading the path were housing costs that were up 3.5% during the year and the price of medical treatment was up 3.4%. (AP)

Americans spent 0.1% more last month at retail stores compared with January. The number was lower than last month and some economists speculate that spending was dampened by delays in tax refund payments. (Commerce Department)

Home builder sentiment jumped six points to the highest level in 12 years according to the National Association of Home Builders. The index hit 71 in March, a big jump from 58 in March of 2016.
The S&P 500 is up 5 and the NASDAQ is up 13. The MSCI international index is up.

Oil is up 42 cents at $49.28 a barrel.

Gold is down $26 at $1227 a Troy ounce.

With Northwest Quadrant Wealth Management, a Registered Investment Advisor I am Troy Reinhart.

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Financial Focus • March 16, 2017


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