NEW YORK, NY - Mortgage rates retreated for the fourth week in a row, and sixth time in the past seven weeks, with the benchmark 30-year fixed mortgage rate pulling back to 4.29 percent, according to Bankrate.com's weekly national survey. The average 30-year fixed mortgage has an average of 0.36 discount and origination points.
The average 15-year fixed mortgage rate slumped to 3.38 percent, while the larger jumbo 30-year fixed mortgage rate stepped back to 4.31 percent. Adjustable rate mortgages were lower also, with the 5-year ARM and 7-year ARM each sliding to an 11-month low of 3.21 percent and 3.45 percent, respectively.
Mortgage rates have been on the downswing as the possibility of a low interest rate environment persisting longer than expected is drawing increased consideration from investors. The Federal Reserve remains concerned about inflation being too low, readings on the housing market have been disappointing of late – both of which lead to uncertain conclusions about the U.S. economy - and the European Central Bank is widely expected to begin their own round of bond purchases in the coming months. Each of these argues for interest rates, including mortgage rates, remaining lower than expected, longer than what had been expected just a few months ago.
As 2013 came to a close, the average 30-year fixed mortgage rate was 4.69 percent. At that time, a $200,000 loan would have carried a monthly payment of $1,036.07. After drifting lower for much of the first five months of 2014, the average rate is now 4.29 percent, and the monthly payment for the same size loan would be $988.57, a savings of nearly $50 per month for anyone that waited.
30-year fixed: 4.29% -- down from 4.33% last week (avg. points: 0.36)
15-year fixed: 3.38% -- down from 3.42% last week (avg. points: 0.2)
5/1 ARM: 3.21% -- down from 3.31% last week (avg. points: 0.21)
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
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. Panelists aren't expecting much change in the upcoming week, with a whopping 89 percent predicting mortgage rates will remain more or less unchanged. Just 11 percent expect mortgage rates to fall further in the coming week, while the no one forecast in increase in mortgage rates over the next seven days.