Daily Market Update 2/5/10

Rates inched lower Friday following the January Employment Report. While the Unemployment Rate fell unexpectedly to 9.7% from 10.0%, job losses continued. Against a forecast for a gain of 15,000 jobs, the economy lost 20,000. The Unemployment Rate does not take into consideration those workers who have stopped looking for work, a figure estimated to be in excess of 1 million. The economy has now lost 8.4 million jobs since the start of the recession in December 2007. Average hourly earnings, a proxy for wage growth, increased more than expected. Stocks moved lower. The key report due out next week will be Thursday’s Retail Sales. Treasury auctions of 3-, 10-, and 30-year securities will likely have the greatest impact on mortgage rates.

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