August 27, 2018
Mortgage rates moved higher for some lenders and lower for others, depending on how that particular lender adjusted their rate sheets on Friday afternoon.
While the bonds that underlie mortgage rates are moving constantly throughout the day, lenders want to see a certain amount of movement in any given direction before they go to the trouble of adjusting their mortgage rate offerings. Friday began with weaker bonds. Consequently the first mortgage rate sheets of the day were worse than Thursday's (i.e. rates were higher). But bonds improved throughout the day--just enough for a handful of lenders to adjust rates lower.
Lenders in that "handful" had to move rates back up a bit today. Lenders not in that handful were able to drop rates just a hair from Friday morning's levels. All this having been said, all of these moves are relatively quite small in the bigger picture. On this scale, we're only talking about the upfront costs associated with any given rate as opposed to the actual payment ("note") rate itself.
Loan Originator Perspective
Bonds regressed slightly today amid a stock rally. We're still locked within recent ranges, and that's unlikely to change before Labor Day. I'm still locking loans within 30 days of closing. -Ted Rood, Senior Originator
Today's Most Prevalent Rates
- 30YR FIXED - 4.625-4.75
- FHA/VA - 4.25-4.5%
- 15 YEAR FIXED - 4.125%
- 5 YEAR ARMS - 3.75-4.25% depending on the lender
Ongoing Lock/Float Considerations
- Rates moved higher in a serious way due to several big-picture headwinds, including: the Fed's rate hike outlook (and general policy tightening), 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.
- Despite those headwinds, the upward momentum in rates has cooled off heading into the summer months. This could merely be the eye of the storm, or it could end up being the moment where markets began to doubt that prevailing trends would continue.
- It makes sense to remain defensive (i.e. generally more lock-biased) because the headwinds mentioned above won't die down quickly. Temporary corrections can be explained away, but it will take a big change in economic fundamentals or geopolitical risk for the big picture to change. While that doesn't necessarily mean rates have to skyrocket, there's a good chance it means rates will struggle to move much lower than early 2018 lows until more convincing motivation shows up.
- 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.