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Posted July 2, 2014
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Mortgage rates just keep getting better. Rate shoppers who have been waiting for the ideal rate should consider locking something in.
With interest rates at one-year lows, home buyers and refinancing homeowners are getting access to cheaper housing payments and better mortgage options.
Conventional loans are similarly low.
Mortgage Rates Today At 13-Month Low
The average 30-year mortgage rate fell to 4.14% last week, according to Freddie Mac. The 15-year fixed rate mortgage rate fell to 3.22%.
Both rates are below their year-ago levels of last June; and mortgage rates have returned to near 13-month lows.
Rates fell last week for a number of reasons including strong demand for mortgage-backed securities (MBS), the basis for U.S. mortgage interest rates; and, general downward momentum.
However, the biggest reason for last week’s dropping rates was the release of the Q1 GDP. GDP is a measure of US economic growth or contraction.
The GDP release showed the US economy shrinking 2.9% between January and March of this year. Investors expected GDP to decline because of the harsh winter weather. Still, this was a much bigger decline than expected.
The bearish numbers cast doubt on the health of the economy, boosting demand for MBS and causing mortgage rates to drop.
Unemployment Numbers Could Swing Rates This Week
This week, mortgage rates could take a sharp turn for the worse. It’s a holiday-shortened week, which means that rates may move more than typical; and there are several rate-affecting reports due for release.
The biggest economic report set for release is the June Non-Farm Payrolls report.
Normally released on the first Friday of each month, the Bureau of Labor and Statistics will release its Non-Farm
Payrolls report a day early, on Thursday ,at 8:30 AM ET, because of Independence Day.
The Non-Farm Payrolls report shows the number of net new jobs created in the month prior; and the national unemployment rate.
The economy added 217,000 new workers in May, and is expected to show close to the same number added for June.
The unemployment rate, which measures the number of Americans applying for jobs but not yet hired, is expected to idle at 6.3%.
Mortgage rates will be highly responsive to Thursday’s jobs data. This is for two reasons. The first reason is that jobs are tightly linked to economic health, and as the economy goes, so goes mortgage rates.
The second reason is that future Federal Reserve stimulus is linked to U.S. labor market.
If the June jobs report shows weakness, expect for mortgage interest rates to drop. If the report is strong, expect for mortgage interest rates to rise.
Thursday will be the last day to lock a mortgage rate because of Independence Day. It will likely also be the day on which mortgage rates change the most.
Check Current Mortgage Rates
Mortgage consumers should check mortgage rates regularly. A mortgage rate trough can come and go within hours. It pays to stay on top of market movements.
Some mortgage consumers will qualify for a rate that is well below the Freddie Mac national average. Locking on the right day could yield a very low rate for these borrowers.
Check today’s rates and receive a free, no obligation quote.
The information contained on The Mortgage Reports website is for informational purposes only and is not an advertisement for products offered by Full Beaker. The views and opinions expressed herein are those of the author and do not reflect the policy or position of Full Beaker, its officers, parent, or affiliates.