Positive news on progress towards coronavirus cures, combined with rebounding economic numbers, moved most stock prices higher. The most remarkable number of the week was that the average 30 year mortgage rate fell to 2.98%, the lowest ever.
Let’s start with that amazing drop in mortgage rates. Freddie Mac says that the average 30 year fixed rate mortgage has dropped below 3% for the first time in the 50 years they have been tracking these rates. Mortgage rates started this year at 3.7%. For home buyers, inventory is tight and prices are rising in suburbs where people are moving from cities. To find the best rate where you live and see what kind of loan you could qualify for, use the Mortgage Rate Calculator on Moneyanswers.com If you want to access up to 90% of the equity you have built up in your home, consult SpringEQ.com which lets you apply online and get a quick decision.
The number of new coronavirus cases rose sharply around the country, with reports of more than 60,000 cases every day. Several states had with surging new cases, such as Texas, Florida and California, are shutting down again and cancelling in person school in the fall. While the current situation is deteriorating, the prospects for a vaccine got much better. Moderna and Johnson and Johnson and others continue to report positive results of their drug trials and experts hope we will have a vaccine by early 2021.
Most economic numbers showed the economy rebounding. Retail sales jumped 7.5%. Consumer prices shot up 0.6%. New home sales jumped 17%. Factory output surged 7%. 1.3 million Americans filed for unemployment which is about the same as the last few weeks.
Many stocks continued to rise, with the NASDAQ Index hitting several all time highs. It continues to be led by the big tech giants such as Microsoft, Apple, Amazon and Facebook which continue to have a lot of momentum.