May 24, 2023
US Mortgage Rates Rise to Highest Since March, Slowing Demand
US mortgage rates rose to a more than two-month high, reducing home purchase and refinance activity.
The contract rate on a 30-year fixed mortgage increased 12 basis points to 6.69%, according to Mortgage Bankers Association data out Wednesday. The index of applications for home purchases fell 4.3% in the week ended May 19 to the lowest level since early March.
BOE Governor Says Inflation Is Taking Longer to Come Down in UK
Bank of England Governor Andrew Bailey said inflation is taking longer to come down in the UK and remains more sticky than officials had expected, but that the shock figures reported earlier Wednesday don’t mark an upward “spiral.”
“I don’t think ‘spiral’ is the right word to use,” Bailey said at an event hosted by the Wall Street Journal. “I think that gives you a connotation of things that are sort of marching upwards.”
Chinese Stocks Wipe Out 2023 Gains as Headwinds Intensify
China’s benchmark stock index erased all its gains for the year as a weaker yuan and developers’ debt woes added to persistent worries over growth and geopolitics.
The CSI 300 Index closed down 1.4% Wednesday, with the energy and financial sectors leading the decline. The benchmark is among the worst performers in Asia this year, compared to a more than 3% advance in the MSCI Asia Pacific Index and double-digit gains in key gauges for Japan, South Korea and Taiwan.
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