NEW YORK, March 15, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- The average rate on the benchmark 30-year fixed mortgage rate increased for a second straight week, rising to 4.15 percent, according to Bankrate.com's weekly national survey. The average 30-year fixed mortgage has an average of 0.40 discount and origination points.
The average 15-year fixed mortgage stepped up to 3.38 percent, while the jumbo 30-year fixed mortgage jumped to a three-month high of 4.73 percent. Adjustable mortgage rates were mostly higher, with the average 5-year ARM rising to 3.14 percent and the 7-year adjustable climbing to 3.33 percent.
Mortgage rates increased thanks to more good news on the economy, a pat on the back from the Fed, and a Greek debt restructuring. Although the Federal Reserve is sticking with their late-2014 timetable for boosting short-term interest rates, a more upbeat tone from the Fed did not go unnoticed by investors. After talking down the economy at every opportunity in recent months, the Fed appears to have been swayed – at least a little – by the trend of improving economic data.
The last time mortgage rates were above 6 percent was Nov. 2008. At the time, the average 30-year fixed rate was 6.33 percent, meaning a $200,000 loan would have carried a monthly payment of $1,241.86. With the average rate now 4.15 percent, the monthly payment for the same size loan would be $972.21, a difference of $269 per month for anyone refinancing now.
30-year fixed: 4.15% -- up from 4.11% last week (avg. points: 0.40)
15-year fixed: 3.38% -- up from 3.34% last week (avg. points: 0.33)
5/1 ARM: 3.14% -- up from 3.03% last week (avg. points: 0.33)
Bankrate's national weekly mortgage survey is conducted each Wednesday from data provided by the top 10 banks and thrifts in the top 10 markets.
The survey is complemented by Bankrate's weekly Rate Trend Index, in which a panel of mortgage experts predicts which way the rates are headed over the next seven days. One thing is clear from this week's poll – the panelists don't expect mortgage rates to fall. The overwhelming majority, 79 percent, predict an increase in mortgage rates over the coming week while the remaining 21 percent forecast that rates will remain more or less unchanged.
Bankrate is a leading publisher, aggregator and distributor of personal finance content on the Internet. Bankrate provides consumers with proprietary, fully researched, comprehensive, independent and objective personal finance editorial content across multiple vertical categories including mortgages, deposits, insurance, credit cards, and other categories, such as retirement, automobile loans, and taxes. The Bankrate network includes Bankrate.com, our flagship website, and other owned and operated personal finance websites, including CreditCards.com, Interest.com, Bankaholic.com, Mortgage-calc.com, CreditCardGuide.com, Nationwide Card Services, InsuranceQuotes.com, CarInsuranceQuotes.com, InsureMe, Bankrate.com.cn, CreditCards.ca, NetQuote, and CD.com. Bankrate aggregates rate information from over 4,800 institutions on more than 300 financial products. With coverage of nearly 600 local markets in all 50 U.S. states, Bankrate generates over 172,000 distinct rate tables capturing on average over three million pieces of information daily. Bankrate develops and provides web services to over 75 co-branded websites with online partners, including some of the most trusted and frequently visited personal finance sites on the Internet such as Yahoo!, AOL, CNBC and Bloomberg. In addition, Bankrate licenses editorial content to over 100 newspapers on a daily basis including The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times and The Boston Globe.
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