HW 30 falls, Dow drops 225 points before regaining momentum

Investors fret over weaker housing data, global economy

Weak U.S. and international economic data pushed the stock market into turmoil Thursday, with the Dow Jones sliding more than 200 points in daily trading, according to various news reports.

All major stock indices – including the HW 30 – finished the day down.

In late day trading, HousingWire’s exclusive list of mortgage finance stocks remained down more than 1%, with mega banks Bank of America (BAC), Wells Fargo (WFC) and JPMorgan Chase (JPM) falling by -2.04%, -0.95%, and -2.24, respectively, by late afternoon.  

So what happened? Global financial concerns tripped up the market, analysts with Interactive Data claimed.

"Purchasing Manager Surveys in China and the United States showed unexpected weakness to start the new year, with the former falling below the 50.0 threshold separating expansion and contraction," Interactive Data noted in a market report. "Additionally, several housing indicators (FHFA HPI, Existing Home Sales) registered weaker than forecast readings this morning, casting doubt on the sustainability of further home price gains in the face of rising rates."

Existing-home sales experienced only a slight uptick, growing 1% to a seasonally adjusted rate of 4.87 million in December from a downwardly revised 4.82 million in November, according to the National Association of Realtors latest report on existing sales.

"Adding to the generally pessimistic tone this morning were contents of a letter to Congress from Treasury Secretary Jack Lew who warned lawmakers that they must act to raise the debt ceiling before the end of February, at which point he estimates the country will run out cash, after having exhausted all of its extraordinary measures," Interactive Data pointed out.

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