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Low(ish) rates; Rocket named great workplace; No one likes this 😐

By April 13, 2021 No Comments

Head of Fed: “highly unlikely” we’re going to raise interest rates this year

How can you turn vaccine awareness into a marketing campaign for something that has nothing to do with the vaccine? Sam Adams found a way in this advertisement where a young man dreams he got vaccinated and got to finally go to a bar (spoiler: he passes out at the sight of the needle and dreamt up the trip to the bar.) Funny stuff!

The U.S. economy is about to start growing much more quickly with hiring set to pick up speed, Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell said in an interview with 60 Minutes (watch here). 

The central bank chief said things have hit an “inflection point,” where the outlook has “brightened substantially” following progress in the COVID-19 vaccination program and strong fiscal and monetary support. He noted, however, that the spread of coronavirus remains the main risk to the economy, adding that it was “highly unlikely we would raise rates anything like this year.”

At one point, 60 Minutes asks Powell his thoughts on federal stimulus.

Scott Pelley: “What do you think would've happened to the economy if the COVID Relief Bills had never passed?”

Jerome Powell: “You know, I hate to even think. It would've been so much worse. Congress, in effect, replaced people's incomes. Kept them in their homes, kept them solvent, kept their lives together with what they did in the CARES Act. It was heroic.” 

🤣 MEME of the day by Andrew Cady 🤣

Have a funny meme? Email your favorite meme here for a chance to be featured in our next Rise&Shred.

Fortune: Rocket is the best company for workers

Fortune released its 2021 Top 40 Best Large Workplaces in Financial Services and Insurance.

#1 is Rocket Mortgage. Last year, they were #9.

“When COVID-19 began spreading across the country in the U.S., we rapidly launched measures to promote the health and safety of our team members, clients and communities,”  said Jay Farner, Rocket Companies' CEO and Vice Chairman, in this statement, which gives more detail on why they won the top spot.

“Because we took care of our people and made sure they had everything they needed to support our clients, we experienced record growth in 2020 – even as the vast majority of us worked from home,” he said.

Also on the list:

  • Bank of America

  • Experian

  • Veterans United Home Loans

  • Navy Federal

  • First American

  • New American Funding 

United Wholesale Mortgage also made the list at #39. Last year they were #26.

🔥 The Villans of the House Crisis 🔥 

With Josh Pitts, Jacob Gaffney, & Rick Sharga

This is a housing boom that no one likes

Well, OK, Axios. Don’t be afraid to tell us what you really think.

Bidding wars, soaring prices, and fears that homeownership is becoming out of reach for millions of Americans.

“We're in a housing frenzy, driven by a massive shortage of inventory — and no one seems to be happy about it,” writes Felix Salmon, a journalist who is rarely, if ever, wrong about what he says.

Prices are being driven upwards by a combination of factors, including continued low mortgage rates, a pandemic-era construction slowdown, a desire for more space as people work increasingly from home, and a stock market-driven increase in money available for a downpayment, he notes.

However, a high downpayment isn’t enough in today’s market. 

“That raises the terrifying prospect of putting down a large downpayment and then not being able to get a mortgage — and/or finding that the house requires hundreds of thousands of dollars in repairs,” he states.

Here’s the good news: Not all bubbles burst. Real estate, in particular, tends to rise in value much more easily than it falls. And most agree this isn’t a bubble.

National Association of Realtors chief economist Lawrence Yun notes this “is not a bubble. It is simply lack of supply.”

Also, rents have not been rising nearly as fast as prices. They stayed roughly flat during the pandemic, and are now rising at perhaps a 4% pace, Yun says.

That’s a sigh of relief that at least one part of housing is not heating up like crazy!

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