What’s on the financial calendar for the week of 1/15 – 1/19

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What’s on this week’s financial calendar?

The following events, reports, and announcements are scheduled for this week and have the potential to impact the financial and mortgage markets:

Monday, January 15th

None scheduled – Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday

Tuesday, January 16th

Empire State manufacturing survey – January 2023
Fed Gov. Christopher Waller speaks

Wednesday, January 17th

Import price index – December 2023
Import price index minus fuel – December 2023
U.S. retail sales – December 2023
Retail sales minus autos – December 2023
Fed Vice Chair for Supervision Michael Barr speaks
Fed Gov. Michelle Bowman speaks
Industrial production – December 2023
Capacity utilization – December 2023
Business inventories – November 2023
Fed Beige Book released
New York Fed President John Williams delivers opening remarks

Thursday, January 19th

Atlanta Fed President Raphael Bostic speaks
Initial jobless claims – Week of Jan. 13th
Philadelphia Fed manufacturing survey – January 2023
Housing starts – December 2023
Building permits – December 2023

Friday, January 20th

Consumer sentiment (prelim) – January 2023
Existing home sales – December 2023
Fed Vice Chari for Supervision Michael Barr speaks
San Francisco Fed President Mary Daly speaks

Where did mortgage rates end last week?

The national average for a 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage ended Friday down 0.03% to 6.69%*.  The bond market had a good week according to experts, but this week has a ton of new data that may influence the market.

We’ll also be getting a lot of speeches from several key players at the Federal Reserve, and market watchers will likely hand on every word looking for guidance. The week is also shortened by the holiday for Dr. King.

Will we see more office space converted to housing in 2024?

While San Diego may not flip from a seller’s market to a buyer’s market in 2024, there may be opportunities to find housing in America’s Finest City.

When it comes to mortgage rates in San Diego, local experts are excited by the recent drop in rates. Spencer Lugash, the president of the San Diego Association of Realtors, said, “That’s a big factor in the affordability of homes to allow more buyers into the market and re-spark some excitement around real estate in San Diego.”

Inventory in San Diego remains low, but Julie Chang, a local real estate agent with Pacific Sotheby’s International Realty, claimed that demand for condos is lower than the demand for single-family homes, but houses are moving well in the area, and it’s critical to price correctly.A recent report from CBS News’ 60 Minutes claims that underused commercial real estate in cities will be converted into residential housing in 2024. We’ve already seen examples of this in several large metro areas, but it may become a lot more widespread in the coming year.

According to the report, 18% of office space in Manhattan is sitting unused. That’s the equivalent of 30 Empire State Buildings and they’re currently vacant.

There are obstacles to making changes to office buildings. Most aren’t zoned for residential use and getting permits changed isn’t always simple. Also, most don’t have necessary utilities like heating and water for residential use.

Stijn Van Nieuwerburgh, a professor of real estate at New York’s Columbia Business School, stated, “None of this is cheap, but a lot of it is doable,” when asked about the challenges of converting commercial real estate for residential use.

However, the opportunity is clear. If all existing vacant commercial buildings were converted for residential use, 400,000 housing units could be created. Van Nieuwerburgh said, “It is an opportunity. Cities have always reinvented themselves as long as they have existed, and this is a moment of transformation.”

* National average rates accurate as of 1/12/24 from MortgageNewsDaily.com and are not advertised rates from Guaranteed Rate.

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