Industry News

Mortgage rate gains erase months of declines

Freddie Mac anticipates refi slowdown

Mortgage rates were up again this week, Freddie Mac reported today, as concerns about inflation and continued turmoil in credit markets stoked the fire under long-term interest rates. The average rate on 30-year fixed-rate mortgages jumped to 6.24 percent this week from 6.04 percent a week ago, and the average 15-year fixed mortgage gained from 5.64 percent to 5.72 percent. Points, or fees that lenders charge for loan processing expressed as a percent of the loan, averaged 0.5 on the 30- and 15-year loans. "Long-term fixed mortgage rates trended up for a third week, bringing rates on 30-year and 15-year fixed-rate mortgages back to their levels of last November," Frank Nothaft, Freddie Mac vice president and chief economist, said in a statement. "Refinancing activities, which had surged to a 12-month high in January, according to Freddie Mac's monthly refi share report, are likely to ebb following this recent rise in rates." Indeed, the Mortgage Bankers Association reported Wednesday...