The Fed Sees Economic Growth + More Inflation. Mortgage Rates Should Rise.
The Federal Reserve released its March 15, 2011 meeting minutes Tuesday. The notes revealed a Federal Reserve split between optimism and caution for the U.S. economy.
Pages And Pages Of Fed Conversation
The minutes’ official name is “Fed Minutes”. It’s a periodic publication, published 3 weeks after each meeting of the Federal Open Market Committee.
The FOMC meets 8 times annually, so the Fed Minutes is published 8 times annually, too.
The Fed Minutes is similar to the meeting minutes released after a condo board gets together, or after a meeting of the Board of Directors at a large corporation. The minutes give a detailed account of the important conversations and debates that occurred among the attendees.
At the Federal Reserve, those conversations are deep and, as such, the minutes are long; much longer than the more well-known, post-meeting press release anyway.
Whereas the press release is measured in paragraphs, the minutes are measured in pages. And they’re dense.
Sign Of The Times : Fed Cites Strength And Weakness
The Fed Minutes are thick with details; most of which would bore even the most ardent Bernanke follower. So, for purposes of a summary, here’s some of the key discussion topics from last month:
- On inflation : Pressures are rising, but largely because of food costs and oil costs.
- On housing : The market remains “depressed” with large inventory and weak demand.
- On stimulus : The Fed will keep its $600 billion bond plan in place.
In addition, there was discussion regarding the end of the Federal Reserve’s accommodative monetary policy (i.e. the near-zero percent Fed Funds Rate). And, although the FOMC’s voting members unanimously elected to leave the Fed Funds Rate near 0.000 percent last month, there was talk of raising the rate later this year, and making other policy changes.
Do Something With The Information
As compared to last year, today’s mortgage rates are higher by about a half-percent. This is because the economy is growing. Wall Street sees it. The Fed sees it. And, going forward, U.S. economy growth will accelerate, and gain speed.
This is your signal to “do something”.
Remember. Weak economic conditions drove down rates through 2010. It stands to reason, then, that strong economic conditions will drive rates up. Already, we’re seeing it. And now, with the Fed openly discussing the Fed Funds Rate, the shift could come soon.
If you’re floating a mortgage rate, or have yet to lock one, your chance for low rates is slipping away because once the economy catches gear, local mortgage rates will be among the first of the casualties.
Get a feel for where mortgage rates are now. Call me at 513-443-2020 or click here to email me. Ask for a live quote. I love helping my readers and it would be my pleasure to work with you.