After six straight weeks in decline, mortgage rates spun on
their heels last week and headed back up.
Freddie Mac's Weekly Primary Mortgage Market Survey recorded increases in
three of the four home financing products it tracks with the fourth, the 5/1 ARM
The 30 year fixed rate mortgage increased to 6.12 percent from 6.10 percent the
previous week and the 15-year fixed was up to 5.70 percent from 5.67 percent.
Fees and points for both products were unchanged at 0.5.
The 5/1-year ARM, as stated earlier, was unchanged at 5.75 percent and its associated
fees and points held steady at 0.6. The 1-year ARM inched up from 5.18 percent
to 5.20 percent with fees and points unchanged at 0.6.
Since hitting its most recent high of 6.37 percent during the week ended November
17, the 30 year fixed rate had drifted slowly but steadily down until last week.
Two of the other products also peaked during mid-November, reaching highs of 5.90
percent for the 15-year fixed and 5.86 for the 5/1 ARM. The 1-year ARM has been
more volatile, bouncing in a narrow range between 5.14 and 5.22 during that period,
with the high occurring during the week of December 22.
Based on recent downward trends Freddie Mac recently reduced earlier projections
that the 30-year fixed would average 6.5 percent for 2006. The revised estimate
is for an average rate of 6.4 percent.
The Mortgage Bankers Association's weekly survey for the week ended January
27 also recorded increased rates. The 30-year fixed rate mortgage was
up to 6.20 percent from 6.04 percent the previous week although points, including
the origination fee, decreased to 1.17 from 1.24 for 80 percent loan to value
originations. 15-year fixed-rate mortgages were up 13 basis points to 5.79 percent
and points increased to1.22 from 1.14 the week before. 1-year adjustable rate
mortgages increased to 5.48 percent from 5.44 percent and points were up 0.01
Mortgage activity was down 5.1 percent on a seasonally adjusted
basis for last week and 9.1 percent on an unadjusted basis. Activity was off
12.1 percent from the same week in 2005.