Long-term mortgage interest rates made little movement in the latest week, according to data from mortgage giant Freddie Mac, even though foreign markets continued to scare investors, a condition that typically pushes rate down.
The average rate on a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage slipped to 3.85 percent, excluding fees, during the week ended October 1, 2015, down from 3.86 percent the previous week. Compared with the year earlier, rates were down from 4.19 percent.
Fifteen-year fixed-rate mortgages carried an average rate of 3.07 percent, down from 3.08 percent the week before and were down from 3.36 percent during the same week of 2014.
“In contrast to the volatility in equity markets, the 10-year Treasury rate — a key driver of mortgage rates — varied just a little more than 10 basis points over the last week,” said Freddie Mac chief economist Sean Becketti. “As a result, the 30-year mortgage rate remained virtually unchanged, dropping 1 basis point to 3.85 percent. This marks the tenth consecutive week of a sub-4-percent mortgage rate. Despite persistently low mortgage rates, the pending home sales index dropped 1.4 percent in August, suggesting possible tempering in existing home sales in September.”
A recent report from the National Association of Realtors showed existing homes sales fell 4.8 percent in August, the month that usually marks the end of the real estate busy season. If sales already started cooling that much in August and low rates are not a motivating factor anymore, there is certainly reason to believe sales will slow even more in September.
Adjustable rate mortgages (ARMs) were completely unchanged in the latest week. Rates on 5-year Treasury-indexed hybrid ARMs held steady at 2.91 percent and one-year ARMs carried an average rate of 2.53 percent, unmoved from the previous week.