October 16, 2019
Mortgage rates improved modestly today, depending on the lender. Some lenders moved rates higher yesterday due to deterioration in the bond market. Others simply planned to adjust for market conditions this morning. If we look at the last 3 days altogether, however, it's easier to characterize rates as being right in line with the highest levels in nearly a month.
Volatility remains a risk in the near-term future, but not for conventional reasons. Normally, economic data and Fed policy would be responsible for the biggest moves in the bond market that underlies mortgage rates. At the moment, however, geopolitical risks and US/China trade policy updates can have an impact that's just as big. There was fresh evidence of this today when Brexit-related updates offset the influence of a key piece of economic data (Retail Sales).
Loan Originator Perspective
Rates improved slightly today, as retail sales declined, missing expectations. WAY too early to call this a rally, but at least we're not losing ground for now. I'm locking new applications closing within 30 days. -Ted Rood, Senior Originator
Today's Most Prevalent Rates
- 30YR FIXED -3.75%
- FHA/VA - 3.375%
- 15 YEAR FIXED - 3.375%
- 5 YEAR ARMS - 3.25-3.75% depending on the lender
Ongoing Lock/Float Considerations
- 2019 has been the best year for mortgage rates since 2011. Big, long-lasting improvements such as this one are increasingly susceptible to bounces/corrections
- Fed policy and the US/China trade war have been key players. Major updates on either front could cause a volatile reaction in rates
- The Fed and the bond market (which dictates rates) will be watching economic data closely, both at home and abroad, as well as trade war updates. The stronger the data and trade relations, the more rates could rise, while weaker data and trade wars will lead to new long-term lows.
- 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.