Mortgage Rates Calm—For Now

August 16, 2013

Average fixed-rate mortgages remained mostly unchanged this week, after seesawing the past few weeks, Freddie Mac reports in its weekly mortgage market survey. 

Mortgage rates have fluctuated quite a bit the past few weeks as speculation grows that the Federal Reserve will taper its bond-buying program in September, which has been keeping rates at or near record lows in recent months. 

Sixty-five percent of economists surveyed by Bloomberg expect the Fed to reduce its bond purchases at its Sept. 17-18 monetary policy committee meetings. 

Thirty-year fixed-rate mortgages held flat this week but are 1.1 percentage points above their all-time lows set on Nov. 21, says Frank Nothaft, Freddie Mac’s chief economist. That rise alone equates to about $125 more per month in mortgage payments on a $200,000 loan, Nothaft says. 

Freddie Mac reports the following national averages with mortgage rates for the week ending Aug. 15:

  • 30-year fixed-rate mortgages: averaged 4.40 percent, with an average 0.7 point, holding the same average as last week. A year ago at this time, 30-year rates averaged 3.62 percent. 
  • 15-year fixed-rate mortgages: averaged 3.44 percent, with an average 0.6 point, rising slightly from last week’s 3.43 percent. Last year at this time, 15-year rates averaged 2.88 percent. 
  • 5-year adjustable-rate mortgages: averaged 3.23 percent, with an average 0.5 point, rising from last week’s 3.19 percent average. Last year at this time, 5-year ARMs averaged 2.76 percent. 
  • 1-year ARMs: averaged 2.67 percent, with an average 0.4 point, rising from last week’s 2.62 percent average. A year ago, 1-year ARMs averaged 2.69 percent. 

Source: Freddie Mac

Read More

Banks May Ease Lending Standards Soon