15-Year Rate Mortgage Sets New Low; 30-Year Rate at 4.79%

Home sale pendingThe 15-year fixed rate mortgage set another record low this week – 4.20 percent – which dates back to August 1991 when Freddie Mac started its weekly survey. The key 30-year fixed rate is at 4.79 percent and near its record low.
This marked the third straight week of a new low for the 15-year rate.
The 30-year mortgage was at 4.78 percent last week. It set its low of 4.71 percent on Dec. 3, 2009, Freddie Mac said.
The record or near-record low rates continued to spur a greater number of applications for mortgage refinancing than for home purchases last week, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association. The dip in home purchase loan applications is attributed to the April 30 end of homebuyer tax credits, which analysts say siphoned normally higher seasonal home sales from upcoming summer months.
Freddie Mac Chief Economist Frank Nothaft cited a downward revision of first quarter 2010 gross domestic product (GDP) and low-inflation as contributing factors to keeping rates at their current levels.
The 1-year Treasury-indexed adjustable-rate mortgages averaged 3.95 percent, unchanged from the prior week and the lowest level since May 2004. The one-year ARM averaged 4.81 percent a year ago.
“The economy grew at a slower rate than originally reported in the first three months of the year, according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis, which suggests inflation will remain tame in the near term,” Nothaft said.
Credit conditions may be improving, Nothaft added.
“The number of homeowners with private mortgage insurance who became current on their mortgages outnumbered those who defaulted for the third month in a row in April, according to data compiled by the Mortgage Insurance Companies of America,” he said.
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