Mortgage rates held their ground today, keeping them in line with long-term lows achieved over the past 2 weeks. To be fair, it was the previous week that offered the biggest benefits, but last week was no slouch. Factoring out the first few days of January, it would have been the best week for mortgage rates since April 2018.
It was a relatively quiet day for financial markets with the bonds that underlie mortgage rates trading in mostly the same territory as last week. It remains to be seen how markets will react to the absence of the typical spread of economic data (much of which is on hold due to the government shutdown). Beyond that, the shutdown could certainly begin to have an effect on the economy itself although it’s hard to say how big of an effect that would be. With this now being the longest shutdown ever, we’re in uncharted territory as to the deleterious effects.
The silver lining with respect to “deleterious effects” on the economy is that such things tend to benefit mortgage rates. The flipside is that rates could bounce quickly higher on any indication of the shutdown ending.
Loan Originator Perspective
Bonds traded in a tight range through mid-day, and appear to be on hold, waiting for more DC or Brexit Drama details. Since we’re still near rates’ one month low, I’m locking applications closing within 30 days for most clients. –Ted Rood, Senior Originator
Today’s Most Prevalent Rates
- 30YR FIXED – 4.5%
- FHA/VA – 4.25%
- 15 YEAR FIXED – 4.125%
- 5 YEAR ARMS – 4.25%-4.625% depending on the lender
Ongoing Lock/Float Considerations
- Headwinds that had plagued rates for most of the past 2 years are slowly dying down. The rising rate environment could flare up again, and some headwinds remain in effect, but the broader tone has taken a more optimistic shift.
- Highest rates in more than 7 years in Oct/Nov. Lowest rates 8 months by the end of the year.
- This is a bit of a crossroads. We may look back at Oct/Nov and see a long-term ceiling, or we may look back at early December and see a temporary correction before more pain. Either way, it’s one of the more hopeful positions we’ve been in for several years.
- 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.