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Sunday, May 19, 2019

Market Commentary

Updated on May 17, 2019 11:03:46 AM EDT

There were two economic reports posted at 10:00 AM ET this morning. One was a non-factor and the other had a bigger influence on rates than it usually does. The latter was Mays preliminary reading to the University of Michigans Index of Consumer Sentiment that came in at 102.4. This was well above forecasts and a large jump from April’s 97.2. It was also the strongest reading since 2004, indicating that consumers feel better about their own financial situations than they have in a long time. Since rising confidence usually translates into stronger levels of consumer spending that fuels economic growth, this data is bad news for bonds and mortgage rates. The size of the jump caused a larger reaction in bonds (erasing overnight gains) than we usually see.

Aprils Leading Economic Indicators (LEI) was the other. The LEI showed a 0.2% rise, meaning the indicators are predicting minor economic growth over the next several months. That matched forecasts and had no impact on this morning’s bond trading or mortgage pricing.

Next week has a few relevant economic reports scheduled, mostly housing-related and one important manufacturing release. We also will get the minutes from the most recent FOMC meeting, giving us insight into the thoughts of individual Fed members. The first report doesn’t come until Tuesday, so expect weekend news to drive trading as the new weeks begins. Look for details on all of next week’s activities in Sunday evening’s weekly preview.

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