October 11, 2017
Mortgage rates haven't done much over the past few days, with the average lender offering substantially similar quotes every day in October. Depending on your perspective, that could be good or bad. On the positive side, the lack of movement means that clear trend toward higher rates in September is at least taking a breather. On the negative side, it means rates have been holding near the highest levels in 2 months.
It's not clear what it will take for this stagnation to lift. It IS clear that it wasn't today's Fed Minutes.
The Fed releases official policy statements 8 times a year. 3 weeks after each of those, the Fed follows up by releasing the Minutes for those meetings, which provide additional detail about their decision making process and the differing views of the various Fed members. While the Fed Minutes CAN result in big market movement, today's were largely as-expected.
Investors continue looking toward Friday's Consumer Price Index data as the next major flashpoint for interest rate momentum.
Loan Originator Perspective
Floaters hoping for bonds to rally continue to be disappointed. It appears until something happens, bond traders will not take yields any lower. So, the trend continues to not be our friend. If within 30 days of closing, i would go ahead and lock. I see no reason to risk floating. -Victor Burek, Churchill Mortgage
Bond markets logged slight gains on Wednesday, as a decent 10 year treasury auction and predictable Fed Minutes reassured bond traders. My pricing improved marginally from Tuesday's. I still hesitate to use the term "rally" here, but holding ground sure beats losing it. "Lock early" is still my instinct here, but at least there's a glimmer of hope that might change somewhat soon. -Ted Rood, Senior Originator
Today's Most Prevalent Rates
- 30YR FIXED - 3.875-4.0%
- FHA/VA - 3.5%
- 15 YEAR FIXED - 3.25%
- 5 YEAR ARMS - 2.75 - 3.25% depending on the lender
Ongoing Lock/Float Considerations
- 2017 has proven to be a relatively good year for mortgage rates despite widespread expectations for a stronger push higher after the presidential election in late 2016. Most of the rate spike was done by the end of 2016 and we've generally moved sideways to lower since then
- The biggest question is whether or not this counter-intuitive trend has an expiration date. Rates haven't been immune from brief corrections back toward higher levels, and each correction causes concern that the good times are over.
- Despite those concerns, we've seen rates make new lows in April, June, and September. Although rates have been rising since early September, they'd have to move even higher before we'd consider a change in the bigger picture theme.
- All of the above having been said, past precedent suggests we're due for a much bigger dose of volatility some time soon.
- 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.