NEW YORK, NY - Mortgage rates hit record lows again this week, with the average conforming 30-year fixed mortgage rate inching lower to 4.74 percent, according to Bankrate.com's weekly national survey. The average 30-year fixed mortgage has an average of 0.39 discount and origination points.
The average 15-year fixed mortgage bucked the trend, rising slightly to 4.22 percent, while the larger jumbo 30-year fixed rate declined to a new low of 5.48 percent. Adjustable rate mortgages were lower as well, with the average 5-year ARM ticking down to 4.06 percent and the average 7-year ARM retreating to 4.46 percent.
Mortgage rates have fallen as a result of worries about the health of the economy, as investors have stampeded into the safety of Treasury securities. Mortgage rates are closely related to yields on long-term government debt. The lingering uncertainty about whether the economy gets better or worse from here will help keep rates at ultra-low levels, a boon to homebuyers and refinancers alike.
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 4.74 percent, the monthly payment for the same size loan would be $1,042.09, a savings of $199 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: www.bankrate.com/mortgagerates
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. According to the panelists mortgage rates aren't headed anywhere, with 56 percent forecasting that mortgage rates will remain more or less unchanged. One-third of respondents expect mortgage rates to rebound from current lows, and just 11 percent predict mortgage rates will fall further in the next week.
For the full mortgage Rate Trend Index, go to: www.bankrate.com/RTI
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