NEW YORK, NY - Mortgage rates increased again this week, with the benchmark conforming 30-year fixed mortgage rate rising to 5.01 percent, according to Bankrate.com'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 jumped to 4.25 percent, and the larger jumbo 30-year fixed rate moved up to 5.55 percent. Adjustable rate mortgages were higher, as well, with the average 5-year ARM climbing to 3.89 percent and the 7-year ARM rising to 4.23 percent.
Mortgage rates climbed as worries eased over recent global events and investors returned to a risk-taking mindset, whether corporate mergers and acquisitions or individual investors moving money from cash to stocks. While the same global events persist – Japan's nuclear crisis, Europe's debt issues, and conflict in Libya – there was less worry about possible downside to the economy, and mortgage rates notched higher. Mortgage rates are closely related to yields on long-term government bonds, a frequent safe haven when investors' nerves are frayed.
The last time mortgage rates were above 6 percent was Nov. 2008. At the time, the average 30-year fixed 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 5.01 percent, the monthly payment for the same size loan would be $1,074.87, a difference of $167 per month for anyone refinancing now.
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. More than half of the panelists, 59 percent, predict rates to increase further. Of the remaining panelists, 35 percent think that rates will remain more or less unchanged and the remaining 6 percent forecast a decline in mortgage rates over the next seven days.
For the full mortgage Rate Trend Index, go to: www.bankrate.com/RTI.
The Bankrate network of companies includes Bankrate.com, Interest.com, Mortgage-calc.com, Nationwide Card Services, Fee Disclosure, InsureMe CreditCardGuide.com, Bankaholic, CreditCards.com and NetQuote. Each of these businesses helps consumers to make informed decisions about their personal finance matters. The company's flagship brand, Bankrate.com is a destination site of personal finance channels, including banking, investing, taxes, debt management and college finance. Bankrate.com 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. Bankrate.com reviews more than 4,800 financial institutions in 575 markets in 50 states. Bankrate.com 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). Bankrate.com'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.