Fixed mortgage rates dipped slightly during the week ending May 1, according to Freddie Mac's Primary Mortgage Market Survey.
The average rate for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage (FRM) was 4.29%, down from 4.33% the previous week. A year ago at this time, the 30-year FRM averaged 3.35%.
The average rate for a 15-year FRM was 3.38%, down from 3.39% the previous week. A year ago at this time, the 15-year FRM averaged 2.56%.
The average rate for a five-year Treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) was 3.05%, up from 3.03% the week prior. A year ago, the five-year ARM averaged 2.56%.
The average rate for a one-year Treasury-indexed ARM was 2.45%, up slightly from 2.44% the previous week. At this time last year, the one-year ARM averaged 2.56%.
‘Mortgage rates were down slightly following the release of real GDP estimates for the first quarter of the year which rose 0.1 percent and fell well short of market expectations,’ says Frank Nothaft, vice president and chief economist for Freddie Mac.
‘Meanwhile, the pending home sales index rose in March ending eight consecutive months of decline and the S&P/Case-Shiller 20-city composite house price index rose 12.9 percent over the 12-months ending in February 2014.’
Earlier this week, the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) released figures showing that locked-in rates on closings decreased overall during the month of March.
According to that report, the national average contract mortgage rate for the purchase of previously occupied homes by combined lenders was 4.22%. The figure, based on closings, represents a decline of 0.08% compared to February.
The contract rate on the composite of all mortgage loans was 4.22%, unchanged from February, according to the FHFA report.
The FHFA, however, is careful to point out that interest rates are typically locked in 30-45 days before a loan is closed. Consequently, March data reflects market rates from mid-to-late February.
The effective interest rate – accounting for the addition of initial fees and charges over the life of the mortgage – for March was 4.37%, down slightly from 4.38% in February.