Here is just an update...Credit Card companies are tightening credit. This means if you have credit you aren't using, your limit may be lowered. If you apply for a new card, you will probably get less available credit than just a few months ago. We are hearing industry insiders say interest rates will be going up where increases are legal.
Several Mortgage Banks have raised their minimum favored rate credit score to 700. You can also expect lower home appraisals going forward in some areas of the market. This comes together as higher down payments and tougher closing experiences, not to mention, people that were borderline qualified for best rates will now be paying higher rates where these changes take effect.
It is going to be harder in areas of the market to buy a house going forward, but house payments for many people will still be less than renting. There are hidden reasons to buy a house. The Bureau of Labor Statistics does a study on home renters vs home owners and the net worth of the owner runs from the high 20's to the low 40's in times they have more net worth. In other words, a buyer on average can have 30 times the net worth of a renter, income and other factors being equal. Why? They are still trying to figure it out, but I say it is the difference in mindset that comes with owning a home.
Gasoline prices are not following oil prices down yet. There is still a huge disconnect between negative oil prices and what we are seeing at the pump. At the pump prices are pretty stable over the last week and the last wholesale price of 12 cents a gallon was not reflected at the pump. Refiners and jobbers are trying hard to hold the line, but it will be more of when people start driving again than what they do that affects the price over the next months.
Staying with a personal note, five major meat processing plants have shut down over the last few weeks and there is no set time for them to reopen. Expect higher meat prices and area shortages going forward.
Silver is still holding about the same range in the last week with it being down about a quarter an ounce and now back up about the same. Gold went down about a week ago and is back up. The truth is you can't buy silver or gold at spot prices. There is a premium for real silver and gold vs the paper prices. The last I saw was a ten dollar or so premium over spot for real silver and about two hundred for gold.
That is probably enough for now...
Remember, when the outlook isn't good, the up look is always good!
Scott Hogue CCFC, CCA