Fixed Mortgage Rates Hit Record Lows Again

May 17, 2012

Average fixed mortgage rates again hit new record lows, according to the latest Freddie Mac Primary Mortgage Market Survey.

The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage (FRM) continues to remain well below 4 percent and 15-year fixed-rate mortgages are also slightly down at 3.04 percent.

According to the survey, the 30-year FRM averaged 3.79 percent with an average 0.7 point for the week ending May 17, 2012, down from last week when it averaged 3.83 percent. Last year at this time, the 30-year FRM averaged 4.61 percent.

Meanwhile, the 15-year FRM this week averaged 3.04 percent with an average 0.7 point, down from last week when it averaged 3.05 percent. A year ago at this time, the 15-year FRM averaged 3.80 percent.

The 5-year Treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) averaged 2.83 percent this week, with an average 0.6 point, up from last week when it averaged 2.81 percent. A year ago, the 5-year ARM averaged 3.48 percent.

The 1-year Treasury-indexed ARM averaged 2.78 percent this week with an average 0.5 point, up from last week when it averaged 2.73 percent. At this time last year, the 1-year ARM averaged 3.15 percent.

"The European debt crisis overshadowed improving economic indicators for the U.S. and allowed Treasury bond yields and fixed mortgage rates to ease for another week,” said Frank Nothaft, vice president and chief economist for Freddie Mac. β€œFor instance, industrial production rose 1.1 percent in April -- the largest gain since December 2010 – and consumer sentiment in May rose to its highest reading since January 2008, according to the University of Michigan.”