Internet Traffic Points to Strong Spring
Visits to real estate sites from desktop computers surged 15 percent in March compared to the month before, indicating the spring homebuying season has gotten off to a hot start.
Consumers recorded about 362 million visits to real estate sites from desktop computers last month, a good chunk more than February’s 316 million visitors, according to Experian Marketing Services.
Zillow maintained its sizable Web market lead in the real estate category in March — capturing 16.46 percent of visits to real estate sites from desktop computers for the month, according to Experian, which measures total hits and not unique site visitors.
Zillow’s two chief competitors — Trulia, with 8.91 percent market share, and realtor.com, with 7.49 percent market share — closed in slightly on Zillow’s lead over the course of the month. Compared to their February positions, Trulia and realtor.com closed their gaps with Zillow by 0.32 percentage points and 0.3 percentage points, respectively, for the month.
By capturing 0.86 percent of March’s real estate traffic from desktop computers, Re/Max jumped to No. 18, joining Century 21 Real Estate — which ranked No. 16 with 0.99 percent Web market share in March — as the only other real estate franchisor website in the top 20.
What Happened to Rates Last Week:
Mortgage backed securities (MBS) gained +17 basis points (BPS) from last Friday’s close which caused 30 year fixed mortgage rates to move slightly lower from the prior week. The market saw the lowest rates on Friday and the highest rates on Wednesday.
We had another week which showed some solid economic growth in the U.S. With very strong readings in Chicago PMI, Construction Spending, ISM Manufacturing, ISM Non-Manufacturing, Factory Orders, and the Non-Farm Payrolls. Usually economic growth pressures MBS pricing and increases rates. So why didn’t this round of data do that? Well actually MBS were trading worse until Friday’s Non-Farm Payroll report.
This was actually a good report. It had Non-Farm Payrolls increase by over 190K for the second straight month. But the issue is that the bond market was expecting a bigger bounce now that the weather issues have abated with a reading over 200K. Instead, the reading hit 192K. This reading disappointed the bond sector and as a result, your pricing improved.
Date Time (ET) Economic Release Actual Market Expects Prior 7-Apr 3:00 PM Consumer Credit – $14.3B $13.7B 8-Apr 10:00 AM JOLTS – Job Openings – NA 3.974M 9-Apr 7:00 AM MBA Mortgage Index – NA -1.20% 9-Apr 10:00 AM Wholesale Inventories – 0.50% 0.60% 9-Apr 10:30 AM Crude Inventories – NA -2.379M 9-Apr 2:00 PM FOMC Minutes – – – 10-Apr 8:30 AM Initial Claims – 325K 326K 10-Apr 8:30 AM Continuing Claims – 2843K 2836K 10-Apr 8:30 AM Export Prices ex-ag. – NA 0.60% 10-Apr 8:30 AM Import Prices ex-oil – NA -0.20% 10-Apr 10:30 AM Natural Gas Inventories – NA -74 bcf 10-Apr 2:00 PM Treasury Budget – NA -$106.5B 11-Apr 8:30 AM PPI – 0.10% -0.10% 11-Apr 8:30 AM Core PPI – 0.10% -0.20% 11-Apr 9:55 AM Mich Sentiment – 81 80
I will be watching these reports closely for you and let you know if there are any big surprises:
It is virtually impossible for you to keep track of what is going on with the economy and other events that can impact the housing and mortgage markets. Just leave it to me, I monitor the live trading of Mortgage Backed Securities which are the only thing government and conventional mortgage rates are based upon.