Mortgage rates climb higher to 2.97%

The average mortgage rate for a 30-year fixed loan is now just 3 basis points away from 3%, after a 16 basis point jump last week pushed mortgage rates to 2.97%, according to Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey.

The average mortgage rate hasn’t risen this high since the end of July 2020, but Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s chief economist, noted higher rates signals an economy slowly regaining its footing.

“Though rates continue to rise, they remain near historic lows,” said Khater. “However, when combined with demand-fueled rising home prices and low inventory, these rising rates limit how competitive a potential homebuyer can be and how much house they are able to purchase.”

Rising rates didn’t slow new home sales in January though, after the U.S. censes bureau reported sales of new single-family houses in January were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 923,000 — 4.3% above December’s rate.

“However, recent increases in mortgage interest rates threaten to exacerbate existing affordability conditions. Builders are exercising discipline to ensure home prices do not outpace buyer budgets,” said National Association of Home Builders Chief Economist Robert Dietz.


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While purchase demand hasn’t shown any sign of decline, the refi wave is showing more vulnerability. As rates rose, refi activity fell 11% according to data from the Mortgage Bankers Association.

For many potential borrowers, the opportunity to refinance is lost before the chance even arises, while other prospective borrowers are caught in a clogged loan pipeline and don’t get the opportunity to lock in that low rate.

According to HousingWire’s lead analyst Logan Mohtashami, a one-eighth to a quarter turn in mortgage rates (high or low) can move the market substantially.

“There are people who had a 4.00% rate that refinanced to 3.25% and then said, ‘Oh well now that rates are low, I’ll refinance again to 2.75%.’ But if that rate sneaks up a quarter it’s no longer ideal and it’s lost its appeal. They are going to wait for it to come back down, right? And then it doesn’t,” Mohtashami said.

Source: housingwire.com

For the third week in a row, mortgage rates stay at 2.73%

For the third week in a row, the average mortgage rate for a 30-year fixed loan remained unchanged at 2.73%, according to Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey.

Even though rates remained at their record low levels, mortgage applications dipped, with some economists pointing to overheated home prices and lack of supply for applications seesawing.

“The residential real estate market remains solid given healthy purchase demand while implied real-time home price growth is high, due to the inventory shortage that is plaguing the housing market,” Sam Khater, chief economist at Freddie Mac, said.

According to Joel Kan, Mortgage Bankers Association‘s vice president of economic and industry forecasting, despite some weekly volatility, Treasury rates have been driven higher by expectations of faster economic growth as the COVID-19 vaccine rollout continues.

“New COVID-19 cases are receding, which is encouraging and that has led to a rise in Treasury rates. But, the run-up in Treasury rates has not impacted mortgage rates yet, which have held firm,” Khater said.

A year ago at this time, the 30-year FRM averaged 3.47%, and the 15-year fixed-rate mortgage has also maintained a substantial low compared to last year, dropping to 2.19% last week.

With rates settling below 3% for six months now, homeowners are taking advantage of lowering mortgage rates – the MBA estimates refinances are still making up over 70% of mortgage activity. However, as economists warn that rates will make their way up, loan teams will need to buckle down for a drop in refi activity.

“It’s a tale of two economies. The services economy remains in the doldrums, but the production side of the economy remains strong,” Khater said.

Unemployment numbers for January painted a similar picture, as another month of rising COVID-19 cases left the U.S. unemployment situation virtually unchanged for the third month in a row.

Source: housingwire.com

Mortgage rates continue to stay low at 2.73%

The average mortgage rate for a 30-year fixed loan remained unchanged last week from the week prior at 2.73%, according to Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey.

With mortgage rates hovering below 3% for over six months now, Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s chief economist, said this may be a sign of an economy still struggling.

“This rate environment is advantageous for those who are looking to refinance in order to strengthen their financial position,” Khater said. “While many have already refinanced, the evidence suggests that upper-income homeowners have taken advantage of the opportunity more so than lower-income homeowners who could stand to benefit the most by lowering their monthly mortgage payment.”

Overall, record low mortgage rates are still fanning the refi flame regardless of who’s snagging the offer. The Mortgage Bankers Association reported that the refinance index of mortgage applications hit its highest level since March 2020 last week – a whopping 59% higher year-over-year.

And while borrowers are scrambling to snag what’s left of record low inventory, LOs came out on top. Recent data from mortgage software firm LBA Ware revealed that total funded loan volume by LOs in Q4 2020 increased 106% from the fourth quarter of 2019.


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The average LO managed to produce $2.6 million per month in volume in the last quarter, thanks to all those sweet low mortgage rates. That’s a 63% increase and a whopping million dollars more per person than seen in Q4 2019. 

But LBA Ware Founder and CEO Lori Brewer said loan teams should be cautious as signs the refi train slowing down are starting to show.

“As rates are predicted to rise in 2021 and for several years to come, loan teams that wish to maintain their earnings would do well to put a strategy in place that enables them to offset waning refi volume with more purchase volume,” Brewer said.

Source: housingwire.com

Current Mortgage Rates for Monday, August 20, 2018

current mortgage rates
August 20, 2018
by Carter Wessman

Mortgage rates are continuing to hover in a tight range. We saw last week in the Freddie Mac PMMS that they moved a little bit lower, but that’s not a trend we expect to sustain over time. Read on for more details.

Where are mortgage rates going?                                             

Investors Eye Jackson Hole Symposium

Here we go with another week. It’s a fairly light economic calendar today and tomorrow, but things start to pick up as we hit the half-way point. The big event on the horizon is the Jackson Hole Symposium on Thursday and Friday.

That event, put on by the Kansas City Federal Reserve, will be closely watched by financial market participants around the world.

With the Fed widely expected to raise the nation’s benchmark interest rate, the federal funds rate, by a quarter-point as early as next month, investors are eager for more confirmation that this will take place, as well as clues on what else might happen in the coming months.

Ahead of that gathering we will get the FOMC minutes from their meeting a few weeks back, which could give some insight into the Fed’s outlook, potentially providing some talking points for officials in Wyoming.

Rate/Float Recommendation                                  

Lock now before move even higher     

With the Federal Reserve gearing up to raise the nation’s benchmark interest rate, the expectation is that mortgage rates will gradually rise over the coming weeks and months. In the near term, we could see rates tick up if there are any hawkish statements that come out of the Jackson Hole Symposium.

Learn what you can do to get the best interest rate possible.  

Today’s economic data:           

  •   Atlanta Fed President Raphael Bostic at 11:00am

Notable events this week:     

Monday:   

Tuesday:   

Wednesday:         

  • Existing Home Sales
  • EIA Petroleum Status Report
  • FOMC Minutes

Thursday:     

  • Jobless Claims
  • FHFA House Price Index
  • PMI Composite Flash
  • New Home Sales
  • Jackson Hole Symposium
  • Kansas City Fed Mfg Index

Friday:          

  • Fedspeak
  • Jackson Hole Symposium

*Terms and conditions apply.

Carter Wessman

Carter Wessman is originally from the charming town of Norfolk, Massachusetts. When he isn’t busy writing about mortgage related topics, you can find him playing table tennis, or jamming on his bass guitar.


Filed Under: Current Mortgage Rates, Mortgage Interest Rates, Mortgage Rate Trends and Analysis, Mortgage Rates, Rates
Tagged with: Current Mortgage Rates, daily mortgage rates, Mortgage Rates, todays mortgage rates

Source: totalmortgage.com

Mortgage rates drop even lower to new record of 2.65%

The average U.S. mortgage rate for a 30-year fixed loan fell two basis points this week to 2.65% – the lowest rate in the Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey’s near 50-year history. This week’s mortgage rate broke the previous record set on Dec. 24.

With this week’s record drop, there have now been 22 consecutive weeks when average mortgage rates have been below 3%, and this is the 17th time this year rates have broken a record.

The average fixed rate for a 15-year mortgage also fell last week to 2.16% from 2.17%. A year ago at this time, the 15-year FRM averaged 3.07%.

Despite a full percentage point decline in rates over the past year, housing affordability is slipping as these low rates have been offset by rising home prices, according to Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s chief economist.

“The forces behind the drop in rates have been shifting over the last few months and rates are poised to rise modestly this year. The combination of rising mortgage rates and increasing home prices will accelerate the decline in affordability and further squeeze potential homebuyers during the spring home sales season,” Khater said.


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This year’s record low rates may be setting a new norm.

Len Kiefer, Freddie Mac‘s deputy chief economist, noted every decade since the 1980s experienced a 2% drop decade-over-decade. With rates sitting at close to 12% nearly 50 years ago, declining patterns may mean 30-year mortgage rates could average 2% the rest of the 2020s.

“Even just a year ago, that didn’t seem probable, and it’s certainly not my baseline forecast, but we’d have to acknowledge that there is a chance rates could continue their secular decline,” Kiefer said.

However, news of Democrats having won control of the Senate on Tuesday has some economists shifting gears.

The prospects of increased spending and deficits will likely put upward pressure on mortgage rates as the year progresses, said Mortgage Bankers Association Chief Economist Mike Fratantoni. In turn, Fratantoni estimates the massive refinance wave lenders have been riding may be cut short.

Source: housingwire.com

Mortgage rates hold steady at 2.77%

The average mortgage rate for a 30-year fixed loan fell two basis points last week to 2.77%, according to Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey. Now 12 basis points above the record low set Jan. 7, rates more closely resemble those seen over two months ago.

The 15-year fixed mortgage rate also shifted downward to 2.21 from 2.23 the week prior.

With last week’s data in, mortgage rates have now managed to hover below 3% for nearly six months and have fueled purchase and refinance activity to record-setting levels amid a global health crisis.

But political and economic factors are causing some fluctuation in those rates, putting upward pressure on Treasury yields, said Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s chief economist.

“However, we forecast rates to remain relatively low this year as the Federal Reserve keeps interest rates anchored near zero for a longer period of time, if needed until the economy rebounds,” Khater said.


Leveraging eClosings to effectively manage increased loan volumes

With no end in sight to record low rates and the increased loan volume, lenders must streamline workflows and accelerate time to close. Evolving from traditional closings to hybrid closings to full eClosings can help lenders process more loans at a faster pace without overwhelming their resources.

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Freddie Mac’s quarterly forecast estimates that the average 30-year fixed-rate mortgage will be 2.9% in 2021 and 3.2% in 2022. However, some economists believe a slow upward path for rates is inevitable in 2021.

Despite the Fed’s vow to keep interest rates low until 2022, Mike Fratantoni, chief economist at the Mortgage Bankers Association, said recent Fed speeches revealed they are less committed to asset purchases, and wouldn’t be surprised if said purchases were reduced by the end of year.

“While for some time people thought that mortgage rates might be less impacted than Treasury rates, the spread between mortgage rates and Treasury rates has narrowed substantially. Going forward, any increases in Treasury rates are really going to be matched by increases in mortgage rates,” Fratantoni said.

The Treasury is now expected to auction close to $3 trillion worth of bonds this year, and with that amount of supply hitting the market, a historically inverse relationship will see bond prices dropping and yields on the rise.

Source: housingwire.com

Mortgage Rates Continue to Rise

Mortgage rates are continuing to move higher this week. We’ve now seen them rise for two consecutive weeks in the Freddie Mac PMMS. The consensus is for them to continue rising for the foreseeable future. Read on for more details.

Where are mortgage rates going?                                             

Mortgage rates rise in the Freddie Mac PMMS again

Mortgage rates have moved higher for the second straight week according to the Freddie Mac Primary Mortgage Market Survey (PMMS). Here are the numbers:

  • The average rate on the 30-year fixed rate mortgage moved two basis points higher to 4.54% (0.5 points)
  • The average rate on a 15-year fixed rate mortgage ticked up two basis points to 3.99% (0.4 points)
  • The average rate on a 5-year adjustable rate mortgage moved up eight basis points to 3.93% (0.3 points)

Here is what Freddie Mac’s Economic and Housing Research Group had to say about mortgage rates this week:

“The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage inched higher for the second straight week.

Borrowing costs may be slowly on the rise again in coming weeks, as investors remain optimistic about the underlying strength of the economy. It’s important to note that mortgage rates are now up three-quarters of a percentage point from last year and home prices – albeit at a slower pace – are still outrunning rising inflation and incomes.

This weakening in affordability is hindering many interested buyers this fall, even as the robust economy brings them into the market. The good news is that purchase mortgage applications have recently rebounded to above year ago levels.”

Rate/Float Recommendation                                    

Lock now before rates move even higher         

Mortgage rates have risen these past few weeks and that trend is expected to continue over the coming months as the Federal Reserve gets ready to, and does, increase the nation’s benchmark interest rate.

If you are planning to buy a home or refinance your current mortgage, we strongly recommend that you lock in a rate sooner rather than later. The longer you wait, the more likely it is that you’ll get a higher rate.

Learn what you can do to get the best interest rate possible.  

Today’s economic data:             

ADP Employment Report

The ADP employment report showed 163,000 jobs added to the U.S. economy in August.

Jobless Claims

Applications filed for unemployment benefits in the U.S. came in at 203,000 for the week of 9/1/18. That’s 10,000 fewer than the previous week, bringing the four-week moving average to 209,500.

Productivity and Costs

Nonfarm productivity rose 2.9% Q/Q in the second quarter of 2018. Unit labor costs fell 0.1%.

PMI Services Index

The PMI Services Index came in at 54.8 for August.

Fedspeak

San Francisco Fed President John Williams is set to speak at 10:00am.

Factory Orders

Factory orders fell 0.8% month over month in July.

ISM Non-Mfg Index

The ISM Non-Mfg index hit a 58.5 in August, up a little from July.

EIA Petroleum Status Report

For the week of 8/31:

  • Crude oil: -4.3 M barrels
  • Gasoline: 1.8 M barrels
  • Distillates: 3.1 M barrels

Notable events this week:     

Monday:   

  • Markets Closed

Tuesday:   

  • PMI Manufacturing Index
  • ISM Mfg Index
  • Construction Spending

Wednesday:         

Thursday:     

  • ADP Employment Report
  • Jobless Claims
  • Productivity and Costs
  • PMI Services Index
  • Fedspeak
  • Factory Orders
  • ISM Non-Mfg Index
  • EIA Petroleum Status Report

Friday:          

  • Employment Situation
  • Fedspeak

*Terms and conditions apply.

Carter Wessman

Carter Wessman is originally from the charming town of Norfolk, Massachusetts. When he isn’t busy writing about mortgage related topics, you can find him playing table tennis, or jamming on his bass guitar.

Source: totalmortgage.com

Alongside rising yields, mortgage rates increase to 2.79%

The average mortgage rate for a 30-year fixed loan rose from its previous record low by 14 basis points this week to 2.79%, according to Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey. This marks the first time mortgage rates have risen in almost two months.

The 15-year fixed rate also rose slightly this week from 2.16% to 2.23%.

Even with this week’s uptick, there have still been 23 consecutive weeks when average mortgage rates have been below 3%.

According to Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s chief economist, rising treasury yields have been putting pressure on rates to finally move up again.

“While mortgage rates are expected to increase modestly in 2021, they will remain inarguably low, supporting homebuyer demand and leading to continued refinance activity,” Khater said. “Borrowers are smart to take advantage of these low rates now and will certainly benefit as a result.”

And take advantage they have.


Leveraging eClosings to effectively manage increased loan volumes

With no end in sight to record low mortgage rates and the increased loan volume, lenders must streamline workflows and accelerate time to close. Evolving from traditional closings to hybrid closings to full eClosings can help lenders process more loans at a faster pace without overwhelming their resources.

Presented by: SimpleNexus

Mortgage applications jumped 16.7% last week according to the Mortgage Bankers Association, and refi’s hit a massive 93% year-over-year mark as government loans experienced their strongest week in nearly eight years.

The jump underlines the seasonality behind the decrease in mortgage rates the week prior, coupled with expectations of additional fiscal stimulus from the incoming administration, according to MBA Associate Vice President of Economic and Industry Forecasting Joel Kan.

While purchase borrowers have been scrambling for months now to battle it out for the lowest possible rate on the limited inventory available, the Federal Reserve may have given borrowers until the end of 2021 to snap one up.

In a speech on Friday, Fed. Vice Chairman Richard Clarida said he expects the central bank to maintain the pace of its bond purchases through 2021. Those purchases are what prevented a credit crunch and made borrowing cheaper back in March.

Now, at an average of $120 billion a month — split between $80 billion in Treasuries and $40 billion in MBS — Fed holdings have surpassed $7 trillion, and Clarida doesn’t see a pullback anytime this year.

Source: housingwire.com