30-Year Mortgage Rates Edge Above 4%

Mortgage rates moved up quite a bit this week, following higher bond yields and improving economic data, Freddie Mac reports in its weekly mortgage market survey.

“Mortgage rates are catching up with increases in U.S. Treasury bond yields, placing the average 30-year fixed mortgage rate above 4 percent for the first time since the end of October 2011,” says Frank Nothaft, Freddie Mac’s chief economist. “Bond yields rose over the past two weeks in part due to an improving assessment of the state of the economy by the Federal Reserve, better than expected results of commercial bank stress tests, and the likelihood of a second bailout for Greece.”

The 30-year mortgage rate, the most popular choice of home buyers, took a big leap upward, after hovering below 4 percent and sitting at all-time record lows for weeks.

Here’s a closer look at rates for the week ending March 22:
•30-year fixed-rate mortgages: averaged 4.08 percent, with an average 0.8 point, up from last week’s 3.92 percent. The 30-year rate has not been above 4 percent since Oct. 27, 2011, when it averaged 4.10 percent. Since then, it has hovered below 4 percent and at all-time record lows.
•15-year fixed-rate mortgages: averaged 3.30 percent, with an average 0.8 point, also rising from last week’s 3.16 percent average. Last year at this time, 15-year rates averaged 4.04 percent.
•5-year adjustable-rate mortgages: averaged 2.96 percent, with an average 0.7 point, a rise over last week’s 2.83 percent average. Last year, 5-year ARMs averaged 3.62 percent at this time.
•1-year ARMs: averaged 2.84 percent, with an average 0.6 point, rising from last week’s 2.79 percent. A year ago at this time, 1-year ARMs averaged 3.21 percent.

Source: Freddie Mac

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