This week’s calendar may seem on the lighter side with regards to economic indicators scheduled to be released. There are no economic indicator scheduled to be released this week. On Wednesday, the FOMC Minutes are scheduled to be released and this probably has the potential to influence the direction of mortgage interest rates. Remember, mortgage rates are based on bonds (mortgage backed securities) and often move in the opposite direction of stocks.
Mortgage rates are based on bonds (mortgage backed securities) and often fluctuate throughout the day depending on activity in the markets. Often times when the stock market is taking a hit, we’ll see mortgage rates improve as investors will trade seek the safety of bonds. World events, like what is taking place in Crimea, may impact mortgage rates, as will the Fed’s bond buying program and economic data that is scheduled to be released. Here are some of the economic indicators scheduled to be released this week:
Last week mortgage interest rates improved thanks to Janet Yellen indicating at her confirmation hearing that as our next Fed head, she will continue on with QE and support the Fed’s actions of buying mortgage backed securities to keep mortgage interest rates artificially low. This was sweet news to the markets and we’re still seeing lower mortgage rates this morning.
Mortgage rates continue to be at very low levels. Although they’re not at the lows from May, Freddie Mac’s Mortgage Market Survey reports that mortgage rates have been trending lower for the last four months. If you missed the refi-boat a few months ago, this may be your second chance. You may want to contact a local licensed mortgage professional for an updated mortgage rate quote (if your home is located anywhere in Washington state, I’m happy to help you).
This week’s calendar appears to be on the light side. Mortgage rates will be taking ques from the from stocks. All eyes will be on Congress with their vote on whether or not to be taking action against Syria.
The Treasury will start selling $65 billion in notes and bonds on Tuesday, which may also impact rates.
Here are the economic indicators scheduled to be released this week:
With conforming mortgage rates trending higher largely due to the end of Fed’s support of keeping mortgage rates at QE artificially sweet low levels, we’re seeing less difference between conforming mortgage rates and non-conforming mortgage rates (aka Jumbo mortgages). In most Washington state counties, a jumbo mortgage is any loan over $417,000 (for a single family dwelling). In the greater Seattle area (King, Pierce and Snohomish counties) we have “conforming high balance” mortgages which will allow loan amounts from $417,001 to $506,000 before it’s considered a non-conforming (or jumbo) mortgage. Here’s a link to 2013 Washington State conforming loan limits.
It’s not only economic indicators that may impact the direction of mortgage rates, world events, such as what’s going on in Syria, may also cause rates to go down or up. This is because mortgage interest rates are based on mortgage backed securities (bonds) and when their is uncertainty in the world, investors may seek the safety of bonds, which tends to cause mortgage rates to improve. Remember, as the stock market improves, investors will trade the safety of bonds (like mortgage backed securities) for the potentially quicker returns found in stocks.
I thought it would be interesting to share a historic snapshot of where rates have have been based on a national annual average back to when I began my mortgage career in 2000.
The chart below is based on a 30 year fixed conventional as reported by Freddie Mac. NOTE: 2013 is not on the chart below because this is based on “annual” averages.
Today, as of 8/8/2013 at 9:00 am, I’m quoting 4.500% (apr 4.598%) priced with 0.304 points. Mortgage rates are currently hanging around back to 2011 levels. As you can see, mortgage rates are still historically very low.
In fact, back when I bought my first home in 1988, the average annual mortgage rate was 10.34 with 2.1 points!
My point is, rates are still historically low and won’t stay this low forever.
If you would like me to provide you a rate quote for your home purchase or refinance on property located anywhere in Washington state, please click here.