Falling Mortgage Rates Reflect Weak Share Prices for Homebuilders

A weak of little economic news can't save mortgage rates from renewed slippage.

Jul 17, 2014 at 3:43PM

Freddie Mac released its weekly update on national mortgage rates on Thursday morning, showing renewed slippage in mortgage rates after last week's brief movement upwards.

30-year fixed-rate mortgages (FRMs) ticked down two basis points to 4.13%. 15-year FRMs fell one single b.p., slipping to 3.23%. One year ago, 30-year FRMs cost 4.37%, and 15-years 3.41%.

5/1 adjustable-rate mortgages (ARMs) dropped two basis points to 2.97%. 1-year ARMs slipped one b.p. to land at 2.39%. A year ago, 5/1 ARMs were at 3.17%, and 1-year ARMs at 2.66%.

Freddie Mac Vice President and Chief Economist Frank Nothaft noted that there was little news on the economy this past week, capable of shifting mortgage rates more drastically. Industrial production rose slightly in June, but was still below "market consensus forecast."

Elsewhere in the markets, the housing sector as a whole is showing continued weakness. The SPDR S&P Homebuilders ETF (NYSEMKT:XHB), which tracks the value of publicly traded homebuilders, has declined 3.4% in value over the past seven days, slipping below $31 a share in midday trading Thursday. This followed a 2.1% decline in the preceding week. 

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4 in 5 Americans Are Ignoring Buffett's Warning

Don't be one of them.

Jun 12, 2015 at 5:01PM

Admitting fear is difficult.

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The catch was: Attendees weren't allowed to record any of it. No audio. No video. 

Our team of analysts wrote down every single word Buffett and Munger uttered. Over 16,000 words. But only two words stood out to me as I read the detailed transcript of the event: "Real threat."

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KPMG advises we're "on the cusp of revolutionary change" coming much "sooner than you think."

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David Hanson owns shares of Berkshire Hathaway and American Express. The Motley Fool recommends and owns shares of Berkshire Hathaway, Google, and Coca-Cola.We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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