U.S. employers added 210,000 jobs in November – The Department of Labor and Statics reported that 210,000 new jobs were added in November. It was the fewest monthly number of jobs added this year and less than half of the 500,000 new jobs economists’ expected. Average hourly wages rose 4.8% year-over-year. The labor-force participation rate (the share of workers with a job or actively looking for a job) increased two tenths of one percent from October’s level to 61.8%. It remains sharply below the 63.6% level before the pandemic. The unemployment rate was 4.2% in November, down from 4.6% October.
Stocks dropped on new variant pandemic fears – Stock markets all dropped again this week on fears that the new Omicrom COVID-19 variant could stall the recovery, shut down travel and lead to increased restrictions. The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed the week at 34,580.08, down 1.1% from 34,899.34 last week. It is up 13.0% year-to-date. The S&P 500 closed the week at 4,538.43, down 1.3% from 4,594.62 last week. It is up 20.8% year-to-date. The NASDAQ closed the week at 15,085.47, down 2.6% from 15,491.66 last week. It is up 17.1% year-to-date.
U.S. Treasury bond yields dropped this week due to COVID fears – The 10-year treasury bond closed the week yielding 1.35% down from 1.48% last week. The 30-year treasury bond yield ended the week at 1.69%, down from 1.83% last week. We watch bond yields because mortgage rates often follow treasury bond yields.
Mortgage rates – The December 2, 2021, Freddie Mac Primary Mortgage Survey reported mortgage rates for the most popular loan products as follows: The 30-year fixed mortgage rate was 3.11%, unchanged from 3.10% last week. The 15-year fixed was 2.39% up from 2.39% last week. The 5-year ARM was 2.49%, almost unchanged from 2.47% last week. For some reason the rates we are seeing clients lock in has been at or below 3% for a 30-year fixed-rate this week. The survey rates are generally closer to what we are seeing.
- Rodeo Realty, Inc.