Mortgage rates show an upturn


For the second week in a row, mortgage rates went up, according to the latest data released by Freddie Mac.

The 30-year fixed-rate average surged to 3.51 percent with an average 0.7 point. It was up from 3.42 percent a week ago but down from 3.79 percent a year ago. For the first time since April 4, the 30-year fixed-rate moved above 3.5 percent.

The 15-year fixed-rate average climbed to 2.69 percent with an average 0.7 point. It was 2.61 percent a week ago and 3.04 percent a year ago. The 15-year fixed-rate hasn’t been above 3 percent for nearly a year.

Hybrid adjustable rate mortgages also rose. The five-year ARM increased to 2.62 percent with an average 0.5 point, up from 2.58 percent a week ago. The one-year ARM moved to 2.55 percent with an average 0.4 point, up from 2.53 percent a week ago.

“Mortgage rates followed U.S. Treasury bond yields higher this week on signs of stronger consumer spending,” Frank E. Nothaft, Freddie Mac vice president and chief economist, said in a statement. “Advanced retail sales rose 0.1 percent in April, above the market forecast consensus of a 0.3 percent decline. Excluding such items as automobiles and gasoline, sales were up 0.5 percent for the second time in three months.”

Following last week’s increase in interest rates, mortgage applications dwindled, according to the latest data from the Mortgage Bankers Association.

The Market Composite Index, a measure of loan application volume, declined 7.3 percent from the previous week. The Refinance Index dropped 8 percent, while the Purchase Index fell 4 percent.

For the second week in a row, the refinance share of mortgage activity held steady at 76 percent of total applications.

 

Kathy Orton is a reporter and Web editor for the Real Estate section. She covers the Washington metropolitan area housing market.

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