Mortgage Rates Follow Treasury Bonds on Positive Economic News

March 15, 2012 (Shirley Allen)

Positive economic news pushed Treasury Bond yields higher this week, resulting in higher mortgage interest rates across the board according to Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey® (PMMS) for the week ending March 15th.

Fixed Rate Mortgages:

Interest rates on fixed rate mortgages increased this week with the 30-year fixed rate averaging 3.92 percent with an average of 0.8 points, up from an average of 3.88 percent last week. A year ago, the 30-year fixed rate mortgage averaged 4.76 percent.

It was the 19th consecutive week that 30-year fixed mortgage rates have been four percent or less.

The 15-year fixed rate mortgage increased to an average of 3.16 percent with an average of 0.8 points, up from last week’s average of 3.13 percent. At this time last year, the 15-year fixed rate mortgage averaged 3.97 percent.

Adjustable Rate Mortgages:

Interest rates for adjustable mortgages also increased this week with the 5-year Treasury-indexed hybrid ARM averaging 2.83 percent, up from last week’s average of 2.81 percent, with an average of 0.8 points. The 5-year adjustable rate mortgage averaged 3.57 percent a year earlier.

The 1-year Treasury-indexed adjustable rate mortgage averaged 2.79 percent with an average of 0.6 points, up from last week’s average of 2.73 percent. A year ago, the 1-year adjustable rate mortgage averaged 3.17 percent.

Frank Nothaft, vice president and chief economist of Freddie Mac, stated, “An upbeat employment report for February caused U.S. Treasury bond yields to increase over the week and mortgage rates followed. The economy gained 227,000 jobs, above the market consensus forecast, and revisions added another 61,000 to January and December. Job growth over the last six months was the strongest since 2006. In addition, the Federal Reserve’s March 13th policy committee announcement noted that it anticipates the unemployment rate will decline gradually toward levels that it judges to be consistent with its mandate to achieve maximum employment with stable prices and moderate long-term interest rates.”

30-Year Fixed Rate Mortgages US NE SE NC SW W
Average 3.92 3.91 3.96 3.91 3.97 3.90
Fees & Points 0.8 0.8 0.8 0.8 0.8 0.8

15-Year Fixed Rate Mortgages US NE SE NC SW W
Average 3.16 3.17 3.18 3.15 3.26 3.10
Fees & Points 0.8 0.8 0.9 0.6 0.9 0.7

5/1-Year Adjustable Rate Mortgages US NE SE NC SW W
Average 2.83 2.82 2.85 2.97 2.72 2.78
Fees & Points 0.8 0.8 0.8 0.7 0.9 0.7
Margin 2.74 2.74 2.75 2.73 2.76 2.74

1-Year Adjustable Rate Mortgages US NE SE NC SW W
Average 2.79 2.90 2.72 2.98 2.66 2.64
Fees & Points 0.6 0.7 0.6 0.6 0.6 0.5
Margin 2.76 2.78 2.78 2.73 2.77 2.75

The National Mortgage Rate Snapshot One Year Ago One Week Ago
  30-YR 15-YR 5/1-YR 1-YR ARM 30-YR 15-YR 5/1-YR 1-YR ARM
Average 4.76   3.97   3.57   3.17   3.88   3.13   2.81   2.73  
Fees & Points 0.7   0.7   0.6   0.6   0.8   0.8   0.7   0.6  
Margin N/A N/A 2.74   2.76   N/A N/A 2.74   2.76  

Tags: 15 year fixed, 30 year fixed, fixed rate mortgage, freddie mac, interest rates, mortgage rates, 5-year hybrid, 1-year treasury

Source:
Freddie Mac