Daily Market Update 7/3/13

Mortgage rates held steady Wednesday following a flurry of economic data and global news.  This morning, payroll firm ADP estimated private sector job growth of 188,000 in June, well above expectations.  Weekly Jobless Claims fell to 343,000, close to forecast.  The Institute for Supply Management services index declined unexpectedly to 52.2.  Readings above 50.0 indicate expansion in the services sector of the economy.  The Mortgage Bankers Association weekly purchase activity index fell by 3.1%, while the refinancing activity index declined by 15.6%.  Average reported 30-year fixed rates jumped to 4.58% not including fees, the highest level since July 2011.  Turmoil in Egypt created a flight to safety, boosting mortgage-backed securities (MBS), and causing oil prices to rise above $100 per barrel for the first time since September.  Reports that Portugal is having trouble gaining support for its austerity program raised concerns about European countries with debt problems.  Stocks moved lower.  MBS markets will close at 2:00 PM today and be closed tomorrow in observance of Independence Day.  The closely watched Employment Report for June will be released on Friday at 8:30 AM.

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