Going into the holiday weekend caused a surprise bump in mortgage rates prior to July 4, especially given their recent slip from the heights of 4.75 percent down to below 4.5 percent by Tuesday of this week. Instead, the 30-year fixed mortgage bellwether did a little bit of a U-turn before everyone took off for an extended week of BBQs, hot dogs, ball games and fireworks.
The movement for Wednesday placed the mortgage rate average squarely back onto 4.5 percent. For those who are thinking or trying to get a lower rate, paying points will be the likely scenario for a cheaper loan. Employment data that came out this week showed the economy is still improving versus falling back, which weakened the bond side further. That in turn makes borrowing for a mortgage more expensive due to an inverse relationship.
Again, there was a lot of chatter about the Federal Reserve’s continued involvement in the market. With employment improving, many keep wondering how long the Feds will want to continue propping up the market with continued securities purchasing. If the figures continue on their track, some see the Reserve pulling out sooner rather than later. That again decreases demand for bonds which in turn will drive rates up further. Many marketwatchers are looking to September for a call from the Federal Reserve to formally announce its tapering move and lessening of mortgage-backed securities purchasing.
So, as mentioned above, the 30-year fixed mortgage rate average was firmly pegged on Monday at 4.5 percent. The 15-year counterpart has removed its float, and best loans available are now at 3.625 percent. The FHA/Veteran’s Administration loan is only a quarter of a point better than the 30-year at 4.25 percent. And the 5-year adjustable rate mortgage hovers between 2.875 and 3.375 percent.