Market Forecast: MBA Mortgage Applications, Consumer Credit, and ADP Employment

Posted On March 06, 2017

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Mortgage rates did not move much last week, trending upward according to some surveys.  There are no major housing reports scheduled this week, except for the weekly Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) purchase application survey.  Other notable economic reports include consumer credit and the ADP employment report.

The consumer credit report measures changes in revolving and non-revolving credit.  Revolving credit measures monthly credit card bills and other short term payments.  Non-revolving credit counts ongoing debt like student loans and car loans.  Healthy growth in outstanding consumer credit can be a sign of economic strength, as consumers are comfortable borrowing and banks are able to lend.  Too much growth in outstanding consumer credit may be a sign of debt problems ahead. 

The MBA releases its weekly survey of mortgage applications as a composite index of refinances and new purchase applications.  The MBA mortgage application survey has experienced some volatility this year, increasing last week and declining for two weeks before that.  With rates holding steady, mortgage applications may follow suit.

The ADP employment report tracks changes in private-sector hiring.  The numbers are derived from payroll company ADP’s records.  When ADP hiring improves, this indicates a strong job market, when ADP hiring drops, it may signal labor market problems ahead. 

Mortgage rates rebounded last week after falling the two previous weeks.  Healthy growth in consumer credit and ADP employment can translate into economic stimulus because consumers are willing to borrow and jobs are available. 


Sources: MarketWatch, Bloomberg, Mortgage News Daily