Mortgage rates didn't move much today, despite a somewhat decent improvement in bond markets.  Overnight, trade war brinksmanship between the US and China had investors seeking the safe haven of bond markets.  Excess demand for bonds pushes rates lower, all other things being equal.

As is often the case with safe haven trades, US Treasuries saw more of the benefit than the bonds that underlie mortgage rates.  The net effect is a move back in line with last Friday's levels for the average mortgage lender.

Loan Originator Perspective

Bond markets rallied as trade war fears grew today.  Tariffs hurt economic growth, and boost bonds.  I'm not sure rate sheets reflect the improvements yet, will float today's loans overnight and hope gains get passed along. -Ted Rood

Talks of a Trade War continue to favor Bonds as a safe haven. Locking new originations to capture gains. -Al Hensling

Trade wars appear to be heating up which is benefiting the bond market.  Seeing some modest gains on rate sheets today.  Trouble with not locking in these gains is they could disappear very quickly.   My clients are favoring to lock in the improvements. -Victor Burek

Today's Most Prevalent Rates

  • 30YR FIXED - 4.625
  • FHA/VA - 4.375%
  • 15 YEAR FIXED - 4.00%
  • 5 YEAR ARMS -  3.75-4.25% depending on the lender

Ongoing Lock/Float Considerations

  • Rates have been moving higher in a serious way due to headwinds that cannot be quickly defeated.  These include the Fed's increasingly restrictive monetary policy outlook, the increased amount of Treasury issuance to pay for the tax bill (higher bond issuance = higher rates), and the possibility that fiscal stimulus results in higher growth/inflation.

  • While we may see periodic corrections to the broader trend toward higher rates, it's safer to assume that broader trend can and will continue.  Until that changes, it makes much more sense to remain heavily-biased toward locking as opposed to floating.
  • 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.