It is not surprising that mortgage rates are continuing to
climb. But Freddie Mac's Weekly Primary Mortgage Market Survey for the week
ended November 3 showed the largest changes in all categories that have been
recorded during all of 2005.
With a few exceptions, over the last 10 months rates have tended to move, either
up or down, by three to nine basis points. Last week each of the four mortgage
products tracked in the survey were up double digits from the previous week.
Both the 30-year and the 15-year fixed mortgage rates jumped 16 points with
the 30-year averaging 6.31 percent and the 15-year 5.85 percent. Fees and points
remained relatively low, unchanged at 0.5 for each type of mortgage.
The 5/1-year ARM increased by13 basis point from 5.63 percent to 5.76 percent
while fees and points declined from 0.6 to 0.5. The biggest change was in the
1-year ARM which was up 17 basis points to 5.09 percent. This was the first
time that the 1-year had topped 5 percent since March 2002 when the rate for
the month averaged 5.06 percent. Fees and points did drop from 0.7 to 0.5 for
The Mortgage Bankers Associations Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey for the
week ended November 4 reported that mortgage loan applications were up slightly
on both a seasonally adjusted and unadjusted basis - 2.3 and 1.0 percent
respectively. Mortgage activity, however, was down 9.2 percent as compared with
the corresponding week in 2004.
The housing purchase index which measures applications for purchase money mortgages
was up by 6.4 percent from the previous week but still dropped 3.6 percent below
the level for the same week in early November 2004. This was the first time
in six months that the 2005 index was running below 2004 levels.
Refinancing represented 41.7 percent of total mortgage activity,
down from 43.6 percent the previous week. ARMs represented 31.6 percent of all
mortgage applications, up 2.2 percent from the previous week.
MBA rates ran close to those reported by Freddie Mac. The 30-year fixed rate
mortgage increased to 6.31 percent from 6.21 percent the previous week with
points, including the origination fee, increasing to 1.37 from 1.27.
The average contract rate for 15-year mortgages was up 10 basis points to 5.85
percent with points increasing from 1.27 to 1.36 and the ARM (which the MBA
survey has reported above 5 percent for several weeks) at 5.45 percent from
5.39 percent with points decreasing from 0.99 to 0.96. All MBA figures are for
80 percent LTV loans.