NEW YORK, NY - After last week meant the end of a nine week streak of falling rates, mortgage rates resumed the decline this week. The benchmark conforming 30-year fixed mortgage rate is now 4.66 percent, according to Bankrate.com's weekly national survey. The average 30-year fixed mortgage has an average of 0.47 discount and origination points.
The average 15-year fixed mortgage slipped to 3.83 percent while the larger jumbo 30-year fixed rate ticked up to 5.23 percent. Adjustable rate mortgages were mixed, with the average 5-year ARM sliding to 3.36 percent and the 7-year ARM stepping up to 3.65 percent.
Disappointing economic news, such as continued weak housing numbers, and ongoing nervousness about Greece led government bond yields and mortgage rates lower. Mortgage rates are closely related to yields on long-term government debt. Although Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke confirmed that bond purchases known as QE2 will end as scheduled this month, long-term interest rates remain at ultra-low levels due to the economic softness and overseas debt concerns.
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 4.66 percent, the monthly payment for the same size loan would be $1,032.47, a difference of $209 per month for anyone refinancing now.
30-year fixed: 4.66% -- down from 4.71% last week (avg. points: 0.47)
15-year fixed: 3.83% -- down from 3.86% last week (avg. points: 0.37)
5/1 ARM: 3.36% -- down from 3.40% last week (avg. points: 0.37)
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.
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. This week, a majority of the panelists, 60 percent, expect mortgage rates to remain more or less unchanged. One-third, 33 percent, predict mortgage rates will climb and just 7 percent forecast a decline in mortgage rates in the upcoming week.
For the full mortgage Rate Trend Index, go to: www.bankrate.com
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