Initial Jobless Claims, for the week ending August 16th, declined to 298K (consensus 303K) vs. 312K prior (revised). Continuing Claims fell to 2500K (consensus 2520K) vs. 2549K prior (revised). The Leading Index edged up a lower-than-expected +0.3% in June and is forecast to show a small boost to +0.6% for July. Existing Home Sales rose +2.6% in June to 5.04 Million with an upward revision in May to +5.4% and for July consensus is for a -0.5% decline to 5.02 Million. Treasuries declined yesterday following the FOMC minutes release indicating that the economy is closer to the Fed’s underemployment and inflation goals, dampening demand. The curve is opening flat to yesterday’s 2:00 PM (PDT) close with MBS 1-2 ticks tighter (outperform) to hedges.
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