Flat Rates this Week Remain Seasonally Low

Mortgage rates across the board remained relatively flat, moving up or down only a few basis points (bps) in the week ending June 25, according to a weekly survey released today by mortgage giant Freddie Mac (FRE). The average 30-year fixed mortgage rate rose to 5.42% with an average 0.7 point in the week ending June 25, from 5.38% a week earlier. The rate averaged 6.45% at the same time last year, more than a full percentage point above the rates seen this week. Fifteen-year fixed-rate mortgages averaged 4.87% with an average 0.7 point, down from 4.89% last week. Five-year Treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgages (ARMs) averaged 4.99% with an average 0.7 point — up from 4.97% last week — while one-year ARMs averaged 4.93% with an average 0.7 point,  down from 4.95% last week. “Mixed economic reports on the state of the housing market helped hold mortgage rates fairly flat this week,” said chief economist Frank Nothaft, citing rising existing home sales despite a median sales price down 16.8%, and lower new home sales despite median prices only 3.4% below the previous year. A separate rate survey conducted by Bankrate.com similarly found the average 30-year FRM moved to 5.8%, up four bps, while 15-year FRMs averaged 5.16%, down three bps. The surveys illustrate just how high mortgage rates have rallied from recent historic lows. In May, for example, the average conventional, 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage loan of $417,000 or less saw a 4.88% interest rate, according to a study released today by the Federal Housing Finance Agency. May’s average is a single basis point up from April’s average, based on the FHFA’s study of loans closed in the month. As the interest rate is usually determined from 30 to 45 days before the loan closing, this average represents the prevailing market conditions in mid- to late-April. Fees and charges up front represented 0.58% of the loan balance in May, up a single bp from April. So-called “no-point” mortgages accounted for 44% of purchase mortgages originated in May, from 45% in April. May originations totaled 74.1% loan-to-value, down from 75.1% in April, while the average loan amount increased by $4,200 to $221,200. Write to Diana Golobay.

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