Freddie Mac released its weekly update on national mortgage rates on Thursday morning, and after last week's sharp bounce up, today we're seeing rates ease right back down again -- nearly across the board.
Both 30-year fixed-rate mortgages (FRMs) and 15-year FRMs dropped over the past week, with 30-year FRMs shedding five basis points to fall to 4.32%, while 15-year FRMs gave back all of last week's six-basis-point gain to return to the 3.32% level of two weeks ago.
5/1 adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) rates reacted even more abruptly, returning to levels last in 2013 as they fell seven basis points to 3.02%. Only 1-year ARMs got more expensive, blipping up a single b.p. to reach 2.49%.
A year ago, 30-year fixed-rate mortgages averaged 3.54% and 15-year FRMs averaged 2.72%. A year ago, 5/1 ARMs averaged 2.61% while 1-year ARMs averaged 2.63%.
Freddie Mac vice president and chief economist Frank Nothaft pointed to a modest decline in housing starts as one explanation for the weakness in rates -- but also warned homebuyers that with interest rates on 10-year U.S. Treasuries rising following Wednesday's Fed announcement, we could see mortgage rates move higher in tandem.
In short -- if mortgages got a bit cheaper last week, they could get a bit more expensive over the week to come.
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