Mortgage rates posted mixed growth this week following last week’s Fed hike and announcement that economic growth is “moderating,” according to surveys conducted by Freddie Mac and Bankrate.com.
In Freddie Mac’s survey, the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage inched up to an average 6.79 percent for the week ended today, almost unchanged from last week’s average of 6.78 percent. The 30-year fixed has not been higher since May 24, 2002, when it averaged 6.81 percent.
The average for the 15-year fixed-rate mortgage nudged up to 6.44 percent, also nearly unchanged from last week’s average of 6.43 percent. The 15-year fixed has not been higher since April 12, 2002, when it averaged 6.49 percent.
Points, which are fees charged by lenders for loan processing expressed as a percent of the loan, averaged 0.5 on the 30- and 15-year loans.
The five-year Treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgage averaged 6.39 percent this week, with an average 0.6 point, unchanged from last week. This is the highest the 5-year ARM has been since Freddie Mac started tracking it on Jan. 6, 2005.
The one-year Treasury-indexed ARM averaged 5.83 percent this week, with an average 0.8 point, nearly unchanged from last week when it averaged 5.82 percent. The 1-year ARM has not been higher since the week ending June 8, 2001, when it averaged 5.85 percent.
“Since last week’s rate increase by the Federal Reserve came as no great surprise, mortgage rates remained nearly unchanged from the previous week,” said Frank Nothaft, Freddie Mac vice president and chief economist. “This is fairly consistent with our economic outlook, which continues to forecast that the interest rate for the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage will gradually drift upward, but should remain under 7 percent for the year.”
In Bankrate.com’s survey, fixed mortgage rates took a breather in the immediate aftermath of the Federal Reserve’s June 29th interest-rate hike after rising for three consecutive weeks. The average 30-year fixed-rate mortgage slid to 6.91 percent from 6.93 percent the day before last week’s Fed announcement, according to Bankrate.com’s weekly national survey of large lenders, and the 30-year fixed-rate mortgages had an average of 0.31 discount and origination points.
The average 15-year fixed rate mortgage popular for refinancing sank to 6.54 percent, Bankrate.com reported. On larger loans, the average jumbo 30-year fixed rate remains above the 7 percent threshold, at 7.06 percent. Adjustable-rate mortgages were mixed, with the average 5/1 adjustable-rate mortgage falling to 6.55 percent, and the average one-year ARM increasing to 6.11 percent.
According to Bankrate.com’s survey, mortgage rates backpedaled following the Fed’s June 29 statement, which was initially perceived as carrying a much softer tone than in previous months. As a result, yields on 10-year Treasury notes gave ground, with mortgage rates following suit, as they are closely related to yields on long-term government bonds. But following the July 4 holiday, rates perked up on a rosy prediction of June job growth, though not enough to erase the decline late last week. Over the next couple of weeks, any combination of strong job growth and continued inflation worries will prime the pump for an August Fed hike — and push mortgage rates higher.
Fixed mortgage rates moved up notably in the first half of the year, Bankrate.com reported. As 2005 came to a close, the average 30-year fixed mortgage rate was 6.28 percent, meaning that the monthly payment on a loan of $165,000 was $1,019. With the average 30-year fixed rate now 6.91 percent, the same loan originated today would carry a payment of $1,088. Despite recent increases, fixed mortgage rates remain an attractive refinancing alternative for adjustable-rate borrowers facing sharp payment adjustments, Bankrate.com said.
The following is a sampling of Bankrate.com’s average 30-year-mortgage interest rates this week in some U.S. metropolitan areas:
New York – 6.87 percent with 0.23 point
Los Angeles – 6.95 percent with 0.48 point
Chicago – 7.04 percent with 0.03 point
San Francisco – 6.98 percent with 0.28 point
Philadelphia – 6.8 percent with 0.39 point
Detroit – 6.94 percent with 0.01 point
Boston – 6.89 percent with 0.16 point
Houston – 6.97 percent with 0.4 point
Dallas – 6.92 percent with 0.49 point
Washington, D.C. – 6.71 percent with 0.68 point