August 26, 2010

Freddie Mac Weekly Mortgage Update: Long-Term Mortgage Rates Fall for the Ninth Week Out of Ten

30-year fixed-rate mortgage: Averaged 4.36 percent with an average 0.7 point for the week ending August 26, 2010, down from last week when it averaged 4.42 percent. Last year at this time, the 30-year FRM averaged 5.14 percent.

The 15-year fixed-rate mortgage: Averaged a record low of 3.86 percent with an average 0.6 point, down from last week when it averaged 3.90 percent. A year ago at this time, the 15-year FRM averaged 4.58 percent.

Five-year indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgages ARMs: Averaged 3.56 percent this week, with an average 0.6 point, unchanged from last week when it also averaged 3.56 percent. A year ago, the 5-year ARM averaged 4.67 percent.

One-year Treasury-indexed ARMs: Averaged 3.52 percent this week with an average 0.7 point, down slightly from last week when it also averaged 3.53 percent. At this time last year, the 1-year ARM averaged 4.69 percent.

Freddie Sayz
Attributed to Amy Crews Cutts, deputy chief economist, Freddie Mac.
  • Existing home sales plunged 27 percent in July, while new homes fell 12%  to a new all-time record low, which led to some market concerns that the housing market may slow the economic recovery. As a result, long-term bond yields fell to the lowest levels since January 2009, allowing fixed mortgage rates to ease to new record lows this week.
  • Much of the slowdown in sales, however, was expected due to the recently expired homebuyer tax programs, which pulled through future home purchases into the first half of the year. For instance, average existing home sales over the first seven months of 2010 were nearly 8 percent higher than over the same period a year ago.
  • Moreover, house prices still appear to be stabilizing. Nationally, house prices rose 0.9 percent on a seasonally-adjusted basis during the second quarter of this year this year after 11 consecutive quarterly declines, according to the Federal Housing Finance Agencys purchase only index. Eight of the nine census regions experienced positive gains, compared to none in the first quarter

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