Mortgage Market News

After last week's decline, U.S. Stock markets kicked off the new week on a positive note. The recent push lower in the equity markets were touched off by fears of a hike in the Federal Reserve's short-term Fed Funds Rate. The Fed Funds Rate is the rate in which depository institutions lend balances held at the central bank to other depository lenders on an overnight basis. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 394 points, or 2.1% on Friday, the worst day since it fell 611 points after the Br exit vote on June 24.
Target announced it will be hiring 70,000 seasonal workers for the upcoming holiday shopping season. That's about the same number that it hired last year. Target will hold the seasonal hiring events at each of its 1,800 stores on October 14 and 15, while candidates can also apply online. Target has forecasted that holiday sales could fall as much as 2% this compared to last season. Like most retailers, Target gets 30% of their annual sales and profits during the holiday shopping season.
National average gas prices edged higher in the latest week after an uptick in oil prices, but still remain near the low end of the range. The national average price for a regular gallon of gasoline rose $0.06 in the latest week to $2.18. That is below the $2.35 average price seen last year at this time. The highest price recorded was $4.11 back on July 17, 2008. With the busy summer driving season now behind us, combined with the changeover to cheaper-to-produce winter blend gasoline, it is likely that mean prices will move lower over the next several months.
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