While it was far from a dramatic move mortgage rates ticked slightly higher after today's Employment Situation data, otherwise known simply as "the jobs report" or NFP (due to its headline component: nonfarm payrolls).  On average, over time, NFP is the biggest market mover there is when it comes to economic reports.  It's no surprise to see bond markets (which underlie mortgage rates) react.  That said, today's NFP didn't necessarily warrant a reaction.  Or rather, today's numbers could have gone either way based on past precedent.

The problem today was that market participants were generally positioned for the report to come out slightly weaker than forecast.  Instead, it came out slightly stronger (209k new payrolls were added in July versus estimates of 183k).  That provided quick and easy justification for bond market weakness (which implies higher rates).  Thankfully, the recent range has been narrow enough and lenders have been slow enough to react to market movements that rate sheets weren't too badly damaged.  In fact, you might not notice too much of a difference between today's rate quotes and yesterday's, but on average, we're back in line with Wednesday's offerings.  At the time, those were the best in a month.

Today's Most Prevalent Rates

  • 30YR FIXED - 4.00%
  • FHA/VA - 3.75% 
  • 15 YEAR FIXED - 3.375%
  • 5 YEAR ARMS -  2.75 - 3.25% depending on the lender

Ongoing Lock/Float Considerations

  • Investors were relatively convinced that the decades-long trend toward lower rates had been permanently reversed after Trump became president, but such a conclusion would require YEARS to truly confirm

  • Instead of continuing higher in 2017, rates instead formed a narrow, sideways range, and held inside until April.  Investor perceptions are shifting such that fiscal reforms and other policy developments will need to live up to expectations in order to push rates higher.  Geopolitical risks would also need to avoid flaring up (more than they already have)
  • For the first time since the election, we're in a rate environment where you wouldn't be crazy not to lock at every little opportunity/improvement.  Until/unless it's broken, the highest rates of early-2017 mark the ceiling, and we're now waiting to see how much lower we can go from here.
  • Rates discussed refer to the most frequently-quoted, conforming, conventional 30yr fixed rate for top tier borrowers among average to well-priced lenders.  The rates generally assume little-to-no origination or discount except as noted when applicable.  Rates appearing on this page are "effective rates" that take day-to-day changes in upfront costs into consideration.