NEW YORK, NY - Mortgage rates posted only slight changes, but it was enough to push the average 30-year fixed mortgage rate to the third new record in a row of 3.91 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 rate inched higher to 3.17 percent while the jumbo 30-year fixed mortgage increased from last week's record low to 4.48 percent. Adjustable mortgage rates were mixed, with the average 3-year adjustable slipping to 3.08 percent, while the popular 5-year ARM ticked higher to 3.00 percent.
The uncertainty surrounding the European debt crisis will continue to keep a lid on mortgage rates and be a primary catalyst for further rate volatility in the weeks ahead. Next week is also a meeting of the Federal Open Market Committee, in which the likelihood is that the Fed will extend its current Operation Twist that is due to expire at month-end. Even if it is largely just a symbolic move, an extension of Operation Twist will buoy hopes of an eventual larger stimulus from the Fed.
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 3.91 percent, the monthly payment for the same size loan would be $944.48, a difference of $297 per month for anyone refinancing now.
30-year fixed: 3.91% -- down from 3.92% last week (avg. points: 0.39)
15-year fixed: 3.17% -- up from 3.16% last week (avg. points: 0.35)
5/1 ARM: 3.00% -- up from 2.99% last week (avg. points: 0.34)
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. There is no clear consensus, as nearly half of the panelists – 46 percent – expect mortgage rates to decline over the next seven days. A little more than one-third, 36 percent, predict mortgage rates will remain more or less unchanged, while just 18 percent forecast an increase in mortgage rates in the coming week.
For the full mortgage Rate Trend Index, go to: www.bankrate.com
The Bankrate network of companies includes Bankrate.com, Interest.com, Mortgage-calc.com, Nationwide Card Services, 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.