Job market loses steam mid-month

The number of jobless claims nationwide rose significantly during the week ending July 14, which could weigh heavily on the financial safety and soundness consumers have making major investments, such as purchasing homes.

The number of jobless claims nationwide rose significantly during the week ending July 14, which could weigh heavily on the financial safety and soundness consumers have making major investments, such as purchasing homes.

Last week, the rate increased by 34,000 claims to a total of 386,000 filings, according to a report from the Department of Labor. This occurrence was in considerable contrast to the previous week, when initial unemployment claims declined by 26,000.  

"Indicators that are weekly are often subject to high volatility and the most prominent weekly indicator on the calendar - jobless claims - is on a roller coaster right now due to the timing and related seasonal adjustments for summer retoolings and shutdowns centered in the auto sector," said analysts from Econoday.

Mortgage rates hit new lows during the week ending July 19, but shaky employment conditions could keep consumer from capitalizing. Specifically, the rate for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage rate fell to 3.53 percent, while a 15-year FRM averaged 2.83 percent. Although these are both very affordable, economic uncertainty could continue to hold back homebuying activity for quite some time, despite the rising affordability of taking on a loan.



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