Long-term mortgage rates inched lower this week, remaining mostly undisturbed by yesterday’s quarter-percentage-point hike in the federal funds rate, according to surveys conducted by mortgage buyer Freddie Mac and Bankrate.

In Freddie Mac’s weekly survey, the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 6.21 percent for the week ended today, down from last week when it averaged 6.25 percent.

The average for the 15-year fixed-rate mortgage this week is 5.62 percent, also down slightly from last week when it averaged 5.64 percent. Points on both the 30- and 15-year averaged 0.6.

One-year Treasury-indexed adjustable-rate mortgages averaged 4.19 percent this week, with an average 0.7 point, up from last week when it averaged 4.13 percent.

“As expected, long-term mortgage rates were relatively unaffected by the Fed’s recent actions to preempt any future inflationary trend. And, as also expected, short-term mortgage rates moved upward in response to those same actions,” said Frank Nothaft, Freddie Mac vice president and chief economist.

“Although we anticipate a moderation in the housing sector at some future point, with the economy picking up steam and mortgage rates still low by historical standards, the housing market will remain buoyant for at least the rest of the year,” Nothaft said.

Fixed mortgage rates remained largely unchanged, even as the Federal Reserve’s rate-setting committee yesterday raised short-term interest rates, according to Bankrate.com’s weekly national survey of large lenders. The average 30-year fixed-rate mortgage is 6.3 percent, unchanged from one week ago, Bankrate reported. While the Fed changed short-term interest rates, fixed mortgage rates have been largely unchanged over the past eight weeks.

The average 30-year fixed mortgage rate has stayed between 6.3 percent and 6.37 percent since May 12. The 30-year fixed-rate mortgages in this week’s survey had an average of 0.33 discount and origination points.

The 15-year fixed-rate mortgage popular for refinancing dipped one basis point to 5.71 percent, while the average jumbo 30-year fixed-rate mortgage remained at 6.5 percent. The average one-year adjustable-rate mortgage resumed the upward climb, jumping 7 basis points to 4.43 percent. A basis point is one one-hundredth of one percentage point.

Mortgage rates showed little movement leading up to this week’s much-anticipated Federal Open Market Committee meeting. The one-quarter-percentage-point interest rate hike was widely expected, and mortgage rates reflected those expectations months ago. With little to change those expectations in the interim, yields on long-term Treasury notes have been in a consistent range in recent weeks. Mortgage rates are closely related to the yields on government bonds.

The following is a sampling of Bankrate’s average 30-year-mortgage interest rates this week in some U.S. metropolitan areas.

New York – 6.31 percent with 0.15 point

Los Angeles – 6.31 percent with 0.59 point

Chicago – 6.38 percent with 0.02 point

San Francisco – 6.33 percent with 0.35 point

Philadelphia – 6.35 percent with 0.25 point

Detroit – 6.17 percent with 0.25 point

Boston – 6.35 percent with 0.1 point

Houston – 6.21 percent with 0.62 point

Dallas – 6.28 percent with 0.41 point

Washington, D.C. – 6.27 percent with 0.55 point


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