NEW YORK, NY - Interest rates on mortgages have fallen for the 3rd consecutive week as Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen's recent monetary policy remarks continue to impact markets.
Yellen suggested during a speech last week that the pace of further increases in the federal funds rate "is now expected to be somewhat slower."
Since her speech, prices on government bonds have rallied, which has pushed yields down. The 10-year Treasury yield has fallen nearly 10 basis points over the week. Mortgage rates typically follow the direction of yields on long-term government bonds.
A look at rates this week:
The benchmark 30-year fixed-rate mortgage fell to 3.75% from 3.83%, according to Bankrate's April 6 survey of large lenders. A year ago, it was 3.82%. Four weeks ago, the rate was 3.87%. The mortgages in this week's survey had an average total of 0.19 discount and origination points. Over the past 52 weeks, the 30-year fixed has averaged 4%. This week's rate is 0.25 percentage points lower than the 52-week average. The 30-year fixed rate hasn't been this low in about 3 years; it was 3.74% in late May 2013.
The benchmark 15-year fixed-rate mortgage fell to 3.01% from 3.09%.
The benchmark 30-year fixed-rate jumbo mortgage fell to 3.68% from 3.76%.
The benchmark 5/1 adjustable-rate mortgage fell to 3.12% from 3.28%.
Bankrate's national weekly mortgage survey is conducted each Wednesday from data provided by the top 10 banks and thrifts in 10 top 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. Just under half of this week's respondents, 46 percent, expect mortgage rates to continue to decline over the next seven days, while 18 percent expect rates to rise. The remaining 36 percent predict mortgage rates will stay more or less unchanged in the coming week.