Long Term Mortgage Rates Highest Since Fall 2003
March 10, 2006
One-Year ARM Reaches Highest Level Since 2001
McLean, VA – Freddie Mac (NYSE:FRE) results of its Primary Mortgage Market SurveySM (PMMSSM) found the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage (FRM) averaged 6.37 percent, with an average 0.6 point, for the week ending March 9, 2006, up from last week's average of 6.24 percent. Last year at this time, the 30-year FRM averaged 5.85 percent. The 30-year FRM has not been higher since September 5, 2003, when it was 6.44 percent.
The average for the 15-year FRM this week is 6.00 percent, with an average 0.6 point, up from last week's average of 5.89 percent. A year ago, the 15-year FRM averaged 5.38 percent. The 15-year FRM has not been higher since July 5, 2002, when it averaged 6.03 percent.
Five-year Treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgages (ARMs) averaged 6.03 percent this week, with an average 0.7 point, up from last week when it averaged 5.97 percent. A year ago, the five-year ARM averaged 5.22 percent.
One-year Treasury-indexed ARMs averaged 5.45 percent this week, with an average 0.8 point, up from last week when it averaged 5.34 percent. At this time last year, the one-year ARM averaged 4.24 percent. The one-year ARM has not been higher since September 21, 2001, when it averaged 5.58 percent.
"Stronger than expected gains in the manufacturing and service industries – coupled with higher labor costs – ignited inflation concerns, which led to the rise in mortgage rates this week," said Frank Nothaft, Freddie Mac vice president and chief economist. "Financial markets are beginning to think that the Fed will hike rates three more times this year, instead of two, putting upward pressure on mortgage rates.
"Although the signs are mixed, the housing industry is now beginning to shift into slower gear, and higher mortgage rates will only strengthen that change. However, we see no signs of a bursting bubble, but rather a return to a more normal pace of activity."
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Source: Freddie Mac
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