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Tag Archives: Payrolls

Bernanke: Tight Credit Continues to Hamper Recovery

Fed

Negative equity, tight mortgage credit, and an overhang of foreclosed properties conspire to delay a full-fledged housing rebound and economic recovery, Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke said Friday. He said that the inability ├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔé¼┼ô or unwillingness ├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔé¼┼ô of lenders to lend puts the brakes on much-needed activity by first-time and repeat homebuyers. He cited a contraction in mortgage credit outstanding for U.S. homes by about 13 percent, with mortgage originators reluctant to lend to otherwise eligible borrowers.

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Housing Plays Small Part as Economy Adds 243K Jobs

New

A still-brittle economic recovery picked up steam in January as the private sector added 243,000 jobs, driving unemployment figures to lows not seen in three years. The Labor Department said that the national unemployment rate fell to 8.3 percent, also signaling a fifth straight month for declines in the number of jobless Americans. Construction added 21,000 jobs from December, with gains for nonresidential construction and specialty trade contractors. Financial services lost some 5,000 jobs from last month by comparison.

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Record-Low Mortgage Rates Ring In New Year

Uncertainty in the markets helped ring in the New Year with record lows for mortgage rates, as concerns over debt crises and job growth lingered for wary investors. Finance Web site Bankrate.com and mortgage company Freddie Mac released their findings for mortgage rates Thursday in two separate weekly surveys. Bankrate.com reported interest rates for the 30-year loan hitting a record 4.18 percent this week, down from 4.21 percent last week. Freddie likewise found rates for the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage sliding from 3.95 percent last week to 3.91 percent this week.

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Reports: Morgan Stanley to Eliminate 1,600 Jobs

Amid declining share and revenue across the industry, financial services firm Morgan Stanley announced that it will eliminate about 1,600 jobs, or about 2.6 percent of all employees, multiple news outlets said Friday. The move arrives for the financial services firm amid continued problems for the investment trading industry and debt crises for euro zone countries. Earlier this year Bank of America, Citigroup, and MetLife all followed the same route by announcing job-slashing measures.

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Fannie Economist: Europe ‘Clearly’ in Recession

The chief economist with Fannie Mae said Tuesday that Europe is "clearly" in recession and forecasted that the United States will endure market corrections for the next five years as housing largely stays in the doldrums. Fannie Mae economist Doug Duncan spoke at the 2011 MPact Mortgage Banking Conference and Expo, which former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice headlined Monday evening. Rice discussed problems with the euro zone during her keynote address. Duncan predicted that annual growth will hedge toward 1.5 percent over the next year.

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Housing Market Will Stay Flat in 2012: Fannie Mae

Even with a pickup in the general economy, overall growth will remain flat into the New Year, slowing any impact from the housing market and delaying significant changes, according to a think tank internal to Fannie Mae. The mortgage company described circumstances going forward as those vulnerable to weak jobs growth, external shocks from the euro zone, and pickups or drops in consumer spending and confidence. Troubled euro zone markets continued to weigh down on the forecast.

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Q3 Home Prices Fall While Some State Sales Rise

Existing-home prices sagged in most metropolitan areas over the third quarter, pointing to a soft spot in job security for people across the country as home affordability hovers around record highs. A quarterly report by the National Association of Realtors revealed that more than two-thirds of all metropolitan areas suffered plunges in home prices from last year. The NAR found state existing-home sales falling by 0.1 percent to crest at a seasonally adjusted 4.9 million over the third quarter. First-time buyers bought up 32 percent of homes.

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Nearly 70% Want Housing Solutions from Candidates: Survey

Nearly three-quarters of Americans will look for positions on housing from presidential candidates for the 2012 election cycle, according to a recent survey. Move, Inc. released the findings in a survey that it facilitated in phone interviews with respondents in early October. According to the survey, some seven in 10 Americans, or roughly 70 percent, expect candidates for the presidency to address housing concerns. Of these, nearly 71 percent identified themselves as Millennials. About 82 percent called housing "critical" to the recovery.

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