US Pending home sales fell 2.5% in November because of higer mortgages rates. Expectationd were for a 0.4% gain in the index. The Realtors blame the drop on the low supply of available homes and rising mortgage rates.
“Already faced with climbing home prices and minimal listings in the affordable price range, fewer home shoppers in most of the country were successfully able to sign a contract,” said Lawrence Yun, NAR’s chief economist.
Despite the somewhat disappointing data, the USD still managed to hold steady against the euro and the pound, but sagged against the yen. In the intraday EUR/USD dropped below $1.04, trying to retest January 2003 lows.
Overnight, treasury yields fell in the wake of weaker-than-expected pending home sales data and a robust debt auction, causing for a weaker USD.
EUR/USD is pushing higher this morning and is near yesterdays intraday highs (1.04625). GBP/USD is currently trading at 1.2252 and USD/JPY is at 116.340.
The virtual, digital currency bitcoin extended its recent rally, hitting its highest levels since January 2014 amid bullish momentum. Bitcoin was trading as high as $970.44 on the New York-based itBit exchange, before falling back to $951.90 by 11:00AM ET (16:00GMT), up around 2% on the day. Technical analysis is targeting the $1000 level.
Gold prices jumped yesterday, despite a strong USD, settling at $1,142.90.
Brent crude oil reached $57.13 a barrel yesterday with the growing optimism over the global supply glut, but then dropped to just above 56 because of disappointing API reports.
Trade is expected to remain thin for the rest of the week as most investors are away for year-end holidays.
U.S. stocks were lower after the close on Wednesday, as losses in the Basic Materials, Utilities and Oil & Gas sectors led shares lower.