Good morning to everyone out there, and I hope you’re having a great week so far! We’ve had quite a busy one, not only inside our industry, but across the board. So, I’m going to try something a little different today… since it’s been so eventful and there’s a lot to cover, I’m going to do a “Last Week Tonight with John Oliver” – esque blog. If you’re not sure what that means or have never seen the show, run a quick Google search and you’ll get the idea.
And that’s where we start… Google. The go-to search engine when you need to know how to… basically do anything. Just as much noise as Amazon has been making, Google has been flying “somewhat” under the radar and quietly acquiring startups that specialize in blockchain technology. Blockchain and crypto have been making headlines as of late, so it’s no surprise that a tech giant like Google is dabbling. Prelim reports say that they’re interested in using the technology to secure transactions for its cloud services. Google is enormous, everyone knows Google, they’re stock price is at $1,077 a share… if they’re giving blockchain attention, maybe we should all get on the bandwagon and see how we could use it to help our businesses? Google hasn’t really swung and missed a lot throughout its 20 years of existence.
And speaking of secure transactions, next we go to Facebook… which is mainly used by Pam from high school who can’t stop posting pictures of her Yorkshire Terrier who she conveniently named “Yorkie Poo”. Facebook has been under heavy scrutiny this week surrounding a privacy scandal where a data firm collected Facebook user data – what’s the big deal, right? But here’s the punch line… the data firm worked for Trump’s presidential campaign in 2016. Many people are up-in-arms about this scandal which has initiated a #deletefacebook movement. And it seems to be working on some scale – Facebook lost $50B in market cap this week alone. Just as big as Google is in its industry, Facebook is comparatively just as big (if not bigger) in the social media space. Now I know many of you are thinking, “I don’t have Facebook”, or “I deleted Facebook because I was sick of Pam”, but on a global scale, Facebook has 2.2 billion users worldwide – that’s 30% of the world’s population. This type of scandal could continue to hurt Facebook long-term, who has depended on advertising business that collects data from its users. Zucks has already apologized publicly saying, “I’m really sorry this happened”. He also said he’s open to testifying before Congress about data collection and said changes will happen. My thoughts? We’re going to see increased data regulation and maybe even a complete overhaul… which may get some of you Facebook haters back on board?
And our main topic has to do with… drum roll please… the mortgage industry! The industry that when you tell your friends you work in, their instant response is, “How are interest rates looking?” Well, it’s funny you ask because yesterday the Fed announced that it was increasing the funds rate by a quarter point to a target of 1.5 – 1.75%. This is the first of 3 expected rate hikes throughout 2018 which suggests that our economic outlook is strengthening. Our industry is directly tied to interest rates and we all know that certain brokers and borrowers are very price sensitive. It will be interesting to see the response as we enter the Spring/Summer purchase season. My thoughts? The rate hike affects everyone so as brokers and lenders, we need to figure out what our competitive advantages will be in a rising rate market. Will that be technology? What about service? Whatever it is, make sure you actually provide that to your customers.
Here at Princeton Mortgage Wholesale, we do what we say we are going to do - and if you’re interested in finding out what that is, check us out…
Have a great rest of the week.
Photo by Todd Medema on Unsplash
The opinions expressed in this post are the sole view of the writer and do not reflect the opinion of Princeton Mortgage Corporation.