LOS ANGELES A preliminary reading of HSBC’s China manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index moved closer to expansionary levels this month, with the index’s headline number rising to 49.1 from September’s final reading of 47.9. Anything above 50 represents expansion for manufacturing activity, while anything under 50 signals contraction, and the index has been below the 50 mark for a year as of the October report. The so-called “flash” version of the HSBC PMI is based on initial responses from 85% to 90% of those surveyed. Sub-indexes covering manufacturing output and new orders also marked gains. Stocks came off their lows following [...]
SAN FRANCISCO Apple Inc. sent out invitations to media representatives on Tuesday for an Oct. 23 “special event” that is widely expected to feature a new, smaller iPad. “We’ve got a little more to show you,” the invite read. The company shared no other details of what will be unveiled at the event, per its usual secretive policy around new products, but analysts are widely expecting a new “iPad Mini” with a screen size around 7 inches that might compete more directly against smaller tablets such as the Kindle Fire from Amazon.com and the Nexus 7 from Google , as [...]
Builder confidence in October edged higher to mark the sixth gain in a row and the top reading in more than six years, a trade group said Tuesday in the latest indicator of a revival in the housing market. The National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo housing market index nudged up 1 point to 41, marking the highest level since June 2006. Economists polled by MarketWatch anticipated a slightly better read of 42. Still, the index – which historically has a very strong correlation with single-family housing starts – has surged from as low as 17 in Oct. 2011, even [...]
The Empire State manufacturing index increased slightly but remained in negative territory for the third straight month, the New York Federal Reserve Bank said Monday. The index rose to negative 6.2 in October from negative 10.4 in September, which was its weakest reading in almost two years. Economists polled by MarketWatch expected the index to improve to negative 4.0. The key new orders sub-index rose to negative 9.0 in October from negative 14.0 in September. However, unfilled orders, another forward-looking component, fell to negative 18.3 in October from negative 14.9 in September. Employment conditions weakened, with the index for number [...]
Apple Inc (AAPL) is expected to take the wraps off its highly anticipated mini iPad at an Oct. 23 invitation-only event, reported tech blog AllThingsD on Friday, citing sources familiar with the company. The event would come before Microsoft Corp (MSFT) unveils its latest operating system, Windows 8, and its new Surface tablet on Oct. 26. An Apple spokesman did not immediately respond for comment. Speculation has been swirling for months that Apple was planning a smaller, less expensive version of its popular iPad to take on cheaper competing devices.
Mortgages 3.59% (30-year fixed) 0.44 (average points) Mortgage rates edged higher this week after the latest jobs report injected some confidence in the market. The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage rose 7 basis points to 3.59%. A basis point is one-hundredth of 1 percentage point. The 15-year fixed-rate mortgage rose 4 basis points to 2.88%. The average rate for 30-year jumbo mortgages, or generally for those of more than $ 417,000, rose 3 basis points to 4.19%. The 5/1 adjustable-rate mortgage rose 1 basis point to 2.68%. With a 5/1 ARM the rate is fixed for five years and adjusted annually thereafter. [...]
Introduction Panel Prediction Up Down Unchanged 20% 13% 67% Will rates rise or remain relatively unchanged? Experts and Bankrate analysts predict where mortgage rates are headed over the next week. This week (Oct. 11-17), one-fifth of the panelists believe mortgage rates will rise over the next week or so, 13% think rates will fall, and 67% believe rates will remain relatively unchanged (plus or minus 2 basis points). Click on the three tabs above to read the comments and rate predictions of mortgage experts and Bankrate analysts. About the Bankrate.com Rate Trend Index Bankrate.com surveys experts in the mortgage field [...]