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Freddie Mac: Mortgage rates retreat back

Taper does little to disturb rates

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Mortgage rates marginally decreased after a slight uptick last week, the latest Freddie Mac Primary Mortgage Market Survey found.

The average 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage averaged 4.32% for the week ending March 20, a drop from 4.37% a week ago, and up from 3.54% a year earlier.

Meanwhile, the 15-year FRM fell to 3.32%, a decline from last week’s 3.38%, but significantly up from 2.72% for the same period in 2013.

The 5-year Treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgage averaged 3.02% this week, decreasing from 3.09% a week ago, but up from 2.61% last year.

The 1-year Treasury-indexed ARM hit 2.49% this week, up from 2.48% a week prior and 2.63% in 2013.

“Mortgage rates eased this week as housing starts declined 0.2% in February to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 907,000, below consensus forecast,” Frank Nothaft, vice president and chief economist with Freddie Mac, said.

“The rate on the 10-year Treasury note rose following the Fed's announcement Wednesday afternoon and, if this holds, interest rates may begin to trend higher going into next week,” Nothaft said.

Additionally, Bankrate also recorded that mortgage rates pulled back

The average 30-year FRM dipped to 4.46% from 4.50%, while the 15-year FRM sunk to 3.48% from 3.51% a week prior.

Meanwhile, the 5/1 ARM edged down to 3.26% from 3.30% last week.

“Mortgage rates pulled back slightly in the lead up to the Federal Reserve meeting, with the benchmark 30-year fixed mortgage rate unwinding most of last week's increase,” Bankrate noted.

However, Bankrate added, “The mostly static nature of mortgage rates in recent weeks owes to not much new regarding the economy and the lead-up to Janet Yellen's first FOMC meeting as Chairman of the Federal Reserve. With the Fed maintaining the taper and pledging to hold short-term interest rates at record lows, there were no bombshells in Yellen's initial meeting at the helm of the Fed. While investors are reading into a slightly earlier timetable for Fed rate hikes, Yellen assured observers the Fed had not changed their policy.”

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