As Economic Fears Rise, Mortgage Rates Fall

As Economic Fears Rise, Mortgage Rates Fall
NEW YORK, NY - Mortgage rates hit another record low this week, with the average conforming 30-year fixed mortgage rate dropping to 4.75 percent, according to's weekly national survey. The average 30-year fixed mortgage has an average of 0.41 discount and origination points. The average 15-year fixed mortgage hit a new low, retreating to 4.20 percent, as did the larger jumbo 30-year fixed rate, down to 5.55 percent. Adjustable rate mortgages were lower as well, with the average 5-year ARM falling to 4.06 percent while the average 7-year ARM sank to 4.48 percent.

Increasing worries about the health of the global economy and concerns over a possible double-dip recession in the U.S. have underscored investors' appetite for the safety of Treasury securities. Mortgage rates are closely related to yields on long-term government bonds. The dour economic outlook and heightened demand for U.S. Treasury debt has kept mortgage rates on a downswing. But despite the tremendous affordability brought about by record low mortgage rates and a sharp drop in home prices, consumers are reluctant to take the plunge into homeownership.

The last time mortgage rates were above 6 percent was Nov. 2008. At that time, the average rate was 6.33 percent, meaning a $200,000 loan would have carried a monthly payment of $1,241.86. With the average rate now 4.75 percent, the monthly payment for the same size loan would be $1,043.29, a savings of $198 per month for a homeowner refinancing now.

Bankrate's national weekly mortgage survey is conducted each Wednesday from data provided by the top 10 banks and thrifts in the top 10 markets.

For a full analysis of this week's move in mortgage rates, go to:

The survey is complemented by Bankrate's weekly Rate Trend Index, in which a panel of mortgage experts predicts which way the rates are headed over the next seven days. The panelists are divided, with 43 percent predicting a rebound in mortgage rates and 38 percent expecting mortgage rates to remain more or less unchanged. Fewer than one-in-five, just 19 percent, expect rates to keep falling in the next week.

For the full mortgage Rate Trend Index, go to:

The Bankrate network of companies includes,,, Nationwide Card Services,, Fee Disclosure, InsureMe and Bankaholic. Each of these businesses helps consumers to make informed decisions about their personal finance matters. The company's flagship brand, is a destination site of personal finance channels, including banking, investing, taxes, debt management and college finance. is the leading aggregator of rates and other information on more than 300 financial products, including mortgages, credit cards, new and used auto loans, money market accounts and CDs, checking and ATM fees, home equity loans and online banking fees. reviews more than 4,800 financial institutions in 575 markets in 50 states. provides financial applications and information to a network of more than 75 partners, including Yahoo! (Nasdaq: YHOO), America Online (NYSE: AOL), The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times (NYSE: NYT).'s information is also distributed through more than 500 newspapers. Bankrate, Inc. was acquired by Apax Partners, one of the world's leading private equity investment groups, in September 2009. Apax operates across the United States, Europe and Asia and has more than 30 years of investing experience.

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