Rutgers scholar and economist Bruce Mizrach is available to comment on stresses on the housing market and the Federal Reserve’s response during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Mizrach said: “According to data from Redfin, pending home sales slowed significantly during late February as bad news about the coronavirus accumulated and the stock market turned down. Pending sales then fell 42% in March as the virus disrupted economic and social relations.
“As housing finance markets shared the liquidity problems created by COVID-19, the Federal Reserve chose to intervene in the dominant market for mortgage-backed securities (MBS) and the TBA market (To Be Announced). All the announced MBS purchases are designed to provide liquidity and facilitate trading of agency MBS during this period of disruption. While the Federal Reserve's actions have stabilized the housing finance market for the moment, the health of the broader economy will ultimately determine the behavior of trading activity, transactions costs and issuance of mortgage-backed securities.”
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